50 Coolest iPad Apps (So Far)

iPad apps, both free and paid, for business, play, and overall iPad functionality. Plus: weird iPad apps.
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ALSO SEE: Cool iPad Apps: Best 104 iPad Apps

AND: Coolest iPad Apps: Top 71 Free iPad Apps

iPad apps? Who needs them? ask the naysayers.

The iPad is nothing but a large iPod Touch, they claim. We answer: With the right iPad apps, that is so not true.

The iPad is an interesting way to read newspapers and magazines, but you need a notebook PC to get real work done. Oh no: with the best iPad apps, this Apple tablet feels right both at work and play.

The iPad’s large touchscreen offers an easy way to view and interact with content. Armed with the right apps, you'll quickly see why it's the most personal personal computer yet.

To help you discover new things you can do with your iPad, peruse this list of the 50 most useful, fun, unconventional, and surprising iPad apps so far. Download some and learn that your iPad is much more than just a digital newspaper. Have apps, will travel.

iPad Apps: Business

Cool iPad apps, both free and paid, for business.

The Box iPad app helps you manage your essential files.

1) Box.net (Free): Access your content from any location. When you have crucial files stored in a Box.net account, you can open them on your iPad no matter where you are.

2) Desktop Connect ($11.99): Turn your iPad into a window to your main computer. With Desktop Connect, you can view and control your Windows, Macintosh, or Linux computer as if you were sitting in front of it.

3) Dragon Dictation (Free): If you've had enough of typing into a flat on-screen keyboard, give Dragon Dictation a try and speak what you want to type. It's one of the most powerful free programs around.

4) GoToMeeting (Free): If you've got GoToMeeting and an iPad, you're always at the office. Join a meeting in seconds and view whatever the presenter shares on screen.

5) Keynote ($9.99): The release of the iPad gives Apple another chance to build up its trio of office applications, since they're your best bet for doing work on the iPad. Keynote lets you create visually rich presentations.

6) Numbers ($9.99): Apple's newest office application, Numbers, is a spreadsheet program that makes far more attractive reports than Excel ever could.

7) Office2 Pro ($7.99): The main threat to Apple's office apps on the iPad is Office2 Pro, which lets you work with document formats that you're already used to. Use it for Word, Excel, and Google Docs files, and access your MobileMe iDisk account.

8) Pages ($9.99): If you're looking for a Microsoft Word alternative, consider the iPad version of Apple Pages. It's a word processor, but it's also a desktop publisher since it's even more of a document layout tool.

9) PrintCentral ($9.99): The one thing everyone is griping about with the iPad is the lack of printer support. Who wants to e-mail documents every time? PrintCentral adds the printing functionality that should have been there from the beginning.

10) WebEx for iPad (Free): Another great online meeting option, WebEx lets you hold a live discussion even when you're not in the office. These conference apps will be more attractive to users when some future version of the iPad has a front-facing video camera.

iPad Apps: Play

Cool iPad apps, both free and paid, for fun -- sports, comics, movies and more.

The iPad app At Bat 2010 puts you in the center of the action.

11) At Bat 2010 for iPad ($14.99): One of the most visually stunning games created for the iPad so far, At Bat makes you feel like you're really at the ballpark, and holds all the player and game stats that you could want.

12) Dailymotion for iPad (Free): You're never bored when you’ve got Dailymotion on your iPad. This apps brings 15 video channels to you, letting you watch whatever you want whenever you want.

13) ESPN Pinball on iPad ($3.99): The iPad's large screen cries out for a pinball game, and this one from ESPN is the best we've found. It offers a sports theme, innovative targets, and a bunch of cool minigames. The low price feels like a bargain.

14) Marvel Comics (Free): Yes, you can read all kinds of newspapers and magazines on the iPad, but did you know you can also read comics? Now we're talking. This app is a comic shop on your iPad, letting you buy and read new titles for $1.99 each.

15) Netflix (Free): People are calling Netflix the iPad's killer app, and after a little testing it's easy to see why. This app lets you browse instant play Netflix movies and then watch them on the iPad's big screen. Remember that you need to get a Netflix unlimited streaming membership to use it.

16) Plants vs. Zombies HD ($9.99): One of the biggest gaming hits on the iPad, Plants vs. Zombies offers colorful cartoony fun. Zombies are invading and you need to use an arsenal of plants to fight them off.

17) Tap Blaster HD (Free): Currently free (grab it quickly), Tap Blaster HD is an ideal two-person game for when you're hanging out with a friend. Defend your planet while sending missiles at your opponent's planet.

18) VH1 Classic Presents: Intellivision for iPad ($2.99): Kids today with their game consoles don’t know what they're missing. Well, maybe they do, but these titles are still fun for those who don't mind a little old-school pixilation and repetition. Choose from six classic Intellivision games, including Skiing and Night Stalker. Here's hoping they add more titles as in-game purchases.

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