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Top 100: Must Have iPad Apps

By Harry Marks on September 10, 2011

Entertainment

TiVo (Free): TiVo Premiere owners and subscribers will definitely want to download the TiVo app for iPad. It’s the perfect portal to the TiVo’s core functions, including search, the guide, scheduling recordings and season pass management. There’s also a built-in remote that uses either the standard TiVo remote buttons or swipe gestures – i.e. swipe right once to play, once more to fast forward, etc… The app also works on the iPhone and iPod Touch and offers a much better experience for navigating the TiVo’s interface than trying to use the DVR’s own remote control.

ABC Player (Free): Now you can catch up with the Desperate Housewives or the doctors on Grey’s Anatomy using ABC’s Player app for iPad (not that I watch those shows…I mean, who would…um…never mind.) Full episodes of many popular ABC shows are available, including Modern Family, Castle and No Ordinary Family. The app also remembers where you left off in an episode in case you need to come back later and packs an ABC schedule inside, so you always know when your favorite show is on.

HBO Go (Free): Got an HBO subscription? Check out HBO Go on the iPad for streaming HBO shows and movies straight to the tablet without the need for a PC or TV. True Blood, Deadwood, Bored to Death – they’re all here, as well as hit films currently airing on the premium channel. You can also create a customized Watchlist full of your favorite shows and movies, as well as a TiVo-esque Series Pass that auto-loads the latest episodes from the HBO programs of your choice.

NOTE: HBO Go is free for current HBO subscribers on participating television providers

Optimum for iPad (Free)/Time Warner Cable (Free): These two apps are being lumped in together because they essentially do the same things, but using two different providers.

Those who subscribe to Optimum as their cable service provider will definitely get use out of the Optimum for iPad app. Stream live TV, use the built-in remote to zip to the channel of your choice, browse the guide, watch free and subscription On Demand programs and manage your DVR scheduled recordings right on your iPad.

For people in Time Warner Cable-provided areas, the TWCable TV app functions similarly to the Optimum iPad app, in that it provides streaming access to selected channels on the iPad, as well as a DVR manager and a remote to change the channel on the TV.

 

TuneIn Radio Pro ($.99): TuneIn Radio Pro dumps over 50,000 radio stations (both Internet and local) right in your lap. It works in the background, so you can surf the Web and rock out simultaneously and it uses most dock and headphone controls for playback operations.

But what’s the main reason to drop a whole dollar on TuneIn Radio Pro? You can record any radio station directly on the iPad. Is your favorite band playing on Soundcheck this afternoon? Open the app, hit record and the audio is stored for later listening. There are also a ton of other compelling features, like the ability to pause live streams for up to 30 minutes, browse recommended stations based on what’s in your music library, album art and alternate stream and bit rates when available.

iMovie ($4.99): When iMovie was originally released on a mobile device, it was for the iPhone 4. Now that the iPad has an HD video camera inside, it can also benefit from iMovie’s intuitive touch-based interface for cutting together home videos from captured footage.

 

Pandora (Free): There’s not much difference between the iPad app and the Web app, but Pandora runs in the background while you’re doing other things and makes use of the iPad’s built-in audio controls, so you can play/pause from the lockscreen. Create and manage your stations, and view artist info and lyrics right from your iPad.

TWiTPad ($.99): Leo Laporte’s TWiT network is one of the most popular netcast channels on the Web. The official TWitPad app brings TWiT’s livestream, show schedule, chatroom and an integrated browser to your fingertips, so you can keep up with Leo and his panel of tech superstars. You can also access all archived video and audio netcasts for on-demand viewing and listening.

Netflix (Free): It’s possibly the most popular movie-watching destination on the Internet and now it’s on the iPad. With your streaming account, you can watch any available streaming movies directly from Netflix via the dedicated iPad app. Did you need to stop mid-movie and now you’d like to watch it on your TV or computer? You can pick up right where you left off – your last known position in the film is kept, regardless of the device you used to watch it on. You can also browse and add to your Instant Queue without ever having to leave the app.