Best iPad Apps
The Guide for Discriminating Downloaders
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Released: December 2010
Pages: 240

What really wows iPad fans is when their touchscreen does what's impossible on other gadgets: the finger-painting app that turns a cross-country flight into a moving art class, the mini music studio (two-dozen instruments strong, each with motion-induced warble effects), and the portable fireworks display that you sculpt by swiping.

Problem is, with tens of thousands of apps available for your iPad, who knows what to download? You can try to sort through a gazillion customer reviews with a mix of 5- and 1-star ratings, but that’s a head-hurting time-waster. The stakes are getting higher, too: instead of freebies and 99-cent trinkets, the price of iPad apps is steadily creeping up and beyond their iPhone predecessors.

Best iPad Apps guides you to the hidden treasures in the App Store's crowded aisles. Author Peter Meyers stress-tested thousands of options to put together this irresistible, page-turner of a catalog. Inside these pages, you’ll find apps as magical as the iPad itself.

Flip through the book for app suggestions, or head directly to one of several categories we've loaded up with "best of" selections to help you:

  • Get work done
  • Manipulate photos
  • Make movies
  • Create comics
  • Browse the Web better
  • Take notes
  • Outline ideas
  • Track your health
  • Explore the world

No matter how you use your iPad, Best iPad Apps will help you find the real gems among the rubble -- so you make the most of your glossy gadget.

Table of Contents
Product Details
About the Author
Recommended for You
Customer Reviews

REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

by PowerReviews
O'Reilly MediaBest iPad Apps
 
4.3

(based on 7 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (4)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

86%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Easy to understand (6)
  • Helpful examples (4)
  • Concise (3)

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Novice (6)
    • Intermediate (4)

    Reviewed by 7 customers

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    Displaying reviews 1-7

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    5.0

    Lost in the Sea of App? This is for you.

    By gregorywest

    from sarnia, ontario, canada

    Verified Reviewer

    Pros

    • Easy to understand
    • Helpful examples

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Intermediate
      • Novice

      Comments about O'Reilly Media Best iPad Apps:

      Best iPad Apps
      The Guide for Discriminating Downloaders

      by Peter Meyers
      Published by OReilly Media Inc.

      ISBN- 9781449392475
      Pages: 230
      USA: $21.99 / CDA: $25.99
      oreilly.com

      Review: by Gregory West
      prospector16(at)gmail.com
      Member of Computer Groups
      bwcomp.org - scug.ca - apcug.net

      Everyone now owns an iPad. Well maybe not everyone, however the number of sales are far reaching into the millions. If you look at a graph depicting the sales of Apple's iPad you will see a line that looks like the path of the Space Shuttle taking off. The iPad has taken off with an huge explosion of sales. There is a good reason: Apps.

      Apple announces the iPad has "thousands of apps...available in every category", which is mind numbing to say the least. How does one sift through such numbers to find the top notch apps and not get stuck with one that, well let's just say stuck with an app that is not the best? How does one find the best of the best in iPad apps?

      Well you need to look no further. Peter Meyers' book offers the easy solution to such a complex issue of sorting through thousands of iPad apps to make sense, with precise reviews on each one.

      Meyers says that "this book helps do some serious chaff snuffing" in that he has gone through the thousands of apps to bring us the best. The book is sequenced with seven color coded chapters, making referencing easy. Each chapter takes us to a new use for the iPad: At Work - At Leisure - Creative Corner - At Play - At Home - Out and About - For Your Health. Browsing through these chapters is fun to see what you can really do with your iPad.

      For instance, in Chapter 6, "Out and About", you will find numerous apps that cover "Finding (and booking) a Restaurant", "Finding Cheap Airfares", to "Driving Instructions in Your Car". For the more serious users you can get one for your "Health" such as: "Portable First Aid Reference", "Dieting and Weight Loss", and even "Bird Watching". Games were not left behind, not at all. Meyers offers Chapter 6: "At Play". Here you get to read about the best apps for "Arcade Games", "Puzzles", "Racing", "Combat" and many more.

      Each App review page lists the price, the version, and short synopsis about the App. The review page also includes a graphic and an explanation of how it works. From reading sheet music to drawing to gaming to buying online, Meyers book has it all covered and then some.

      Gregory West is a Mac Computer Instructor at Lambton College, Ontario. He is also a crew member for TVCogeco. In his spare time he runs a free computer "drop-in" centre that assists people who want to learn about technology. He can be reached at prospector16@gmail.com

      (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

       
      3.0

      Great for newbies, only perhaps

      By Dozza

      from Sydney, Australia

      About Me Designer, Developer

      Pros

      • Concise
      • Easy to understand

      Cons

      • Only for Novice users
      • Too basic

      Best Uses

      • Novice
      • Student

      Comments about O'Reilly Media Best iPad Apps:

      If you are to give a new iPad to a friend or family, this is the book that goes with the iPad. Or why not bundle it as an ebook within the iPad? Peter Meyers disseminates the App Store into categories, based on whether the user is looking for Apps for Work for instance, sub-categorising that into TO-DO Lists and Making Calculations, thus giving the user the ability to search by activity/need. An essential for the 'newbie', I would question however whether an app could truly be pigeon-holed into any one category, but nevertheless, it might be the developer's primary intent and something the user can organically work out. The author reviews each app within the sub-category, by title, price and the version (as of the date of review). The reviewer provides a more informative explanation of the product and it's use, it's quirks and so on, which adds for a great central repository of product reviews. You could get the reviews individually by googling and looking up websites like macworld, but having a concise book that details by use each of the products is convenient.The categories and sub-categories as the author has the book organised is useful and helpful, a user would want to find an app that related to kids and parents, would yield "Baby Connect for iPad" for instance. I would prefer though to have more on each app, more of an aggregation of other sources, such as a YouTube video screencast link of an app if it's available, to give users a more in-depth understanding than four or so paragraphs the author offers. Having said that, for [$], it's a bargain and regardless it would at least give the user a chance to filter out the 'gimmicks' from the 'useful' apps, and then use that shortlist to google and Youtube for more information on that app, before buying.

      (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      Best iPad Apps Book about Best iPad Apps

      By bookroomreviews

      from Iowa

      Verified Reviewer

      Pros

      • Concise
      • Easy to understand
      • Helpful examples

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Expert
        • Intermediate
        • Novice

        Comments about O'Reilly Media Best iPad Apps:

        The latest Apple iPad commercial shows there are currently over 600,000 apps available. Plus this number grows every day. If you are a novice or an expert with your iPad it is overwhelming to know which apps are worth the money. Best iPad Apps has some worthwhile recommendations to start your app adventures. The book isn't very long, but it covers several categories including apps for work, play, health, leisure and more.

        The author's titles for each app are fun. For example, one app is titled "Best Game for Killing Pigs With Birds." Can you guess which app that is? I like the author's short descriptions of each app. They are informational and fun to read. He convinced me to download quite a few of the apps. The pages show full color pictures of scenes in the app with the prices listed. Some are just silly, but I'm sure someone else might find them useful. My favorite section is the photos and movies. I found some gems. I have several apps on my wish list and will be referring back to the book. My parents have already borrowed it. Here is a list of some of my favorites that I discovered reading the book:

        Pages: Best app for creating Beautiful Documents $9.99

        Photo Artist HD-Oil: Best app for Oil Painting Your Photos $4.99

        Drawing Pad- Best App for Drawing Time for Kids $1.99

        Interactive Alphabet for iPad-Best App for Learning ABCs $2.99

        Craigslist Pro for iPad- Best App for Craigslist Browsing $.99

        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Great Book!

        By Louis

        from North Miami, Florida

        About Me Everyday user

        Pros

        • Accurate
        • Easy to understand
        • Helpful examples
        • Well-written

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Novice

          Comments about O'Reilly Media Best iPad Apps:

          I received an iPad as a gift 6 months ago and frankly was struggling to understand what to do with it beyond watching movies and sometimes reading a book. Then I read "Best iPad Apps" and quickly discovered all of the amazing things that have been created for the iPad. Peter Meyers has done a great job of clearly explaining cool and interesting apps as well as exposing the reader to apps that have real function. Peter's writing is fun and clever and I am now the one to tell my friends all of the cool things happening on the iPad. Thanks for the great book!

           
          5.0

          Great Book!

          By Louis

          from North Miami, Florida

          About Me User

          Pros

          • Accurate
          • Easy to understand
          • Helpful examples
          • Well-written

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Novice

            Comments about O'Reilly Media Best iPad Apps:

            I received my ipad as a gift about 6 months ago and frankly had been struggling with what to do with it beyond watching a movie or reading a book. Then I read "Best iPad Apps" and have slowly been discoving all the great things I have been missing. For someone like me, who does not spend every minute of everyday discovering new cool things in technology, this book has been a great "go to" resource. I found the writing to be clear, straightforward and very clever. I think Peter Meyers has done an excellent job of pulling together examples for the average user and explaining information in a way that can have an impact on your everyday life. This book has really helped me better understand the value of my ipad!

             
            4.0

            Good guide to apps for new iPad users

            By Marvin

            from Malaysia

            About Me Developer

            Verified Reviewer

            Pros

            • Easy to understand

            Cons

            • Not always updated

            Best Uses

            • Intermediate

            Comments about O'Reilly Media Best iPad Apps:

            With the sheer number of applications in the Apple App Store, it would take a long time for one to pick the best app for the task of accomplishing something.
            This might be the main problem for one who has just picked up the iPad.
            With that in mind, this book is a god-send guide for first time iPad users who might not have the pleasure to purchase and try all the apps in a specific category and to pick up the best app.
            However, users who have been using iPhone or the iPod Touch would probably have their own preference of applications.
            The author has picked the 'Best Apps' with the purpose of selecting apps as elegant as the iPad itself and apps that are usable without much instructions. They should be intuitive for first time users.
            That said, we all know that the content and applications published in the App Store is constantly changing, but this book might not.
            So most of the apps are either official ones, such as Twitter app from Twitter.com or Scrabble for iPad. Then there are popular games such as Angry Birds and Cut The Rope.
            It's pretty safe to say for non-advanced iPad users, this book would be most beneficial, to have a quick start in using the iPad without wasting time trying apps or purchasing them one-by-one, as you have a review with very graphical description of the reviewed apps in this book.

            (2 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

             
            3.0

            Great apps, not so great prose

            By Greg the Librarian

            from West Linn, Oregon

            About Me Librarian

            Verified Reviewer

            Pros

            • Concise
            • Informative
            • Thorough

            Cons

            • Annoying writing style

            Best Uses

            • Intermediate
            • Novice

            Comments about O'Reilly Media Best iPad Apps:

            "Best iPad Apps: The Guide for Discriminating Downloaders" promises to provide a guide to the best iPad apps available. The apps featured are, largely, excellent choices. In fact, thanks to the book, I discovered my new, favorite writing app, iA Writer (which I'm using to write this review...the app's amazingly-useful fifth row of keys on the virtual keyboard alone is worth the price of purchase).

            That said, however, it was difficult to actually enjoy this book. The main culprit? Author Peter Meyers' excessive attempts at snark, forced informality, and self-aware flippancy. The average review probably contains 10 sentences, a third of which contain some "clever" alliteration, faux-folksiness, or flat-footed attempt at hipster humor/coolness. The writing style is a real distraction, and a significant impediment to the book's utility.

            I was also left wondering about the book's long-term utility and value. With the constant stream of new and noteworthy apps appearing in the app store every day, how long can a reference work such as this remain relevant and up-to-date? Hopefully, O'Reilly will create an online counterpart to this book to make sure that readers can discover new, noteworthy apps that come out subsequent to the book's publication.
            (reviewed as part of O'Reilly's blogger review program)

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