O'Grady's Best iOS apps of 2012

O'Grady's Best iOS apps of 2012

Summary: A lot of great iOS apps were released this year. Here's a list of my favorite apps of 2012.

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TOPICS: Apple, Apps, iOS, iPhone, iPad, Reviews
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  • Fantasical - Calendar killer - $3.99

    I've been using Fantastical for Mac ($14.99, Mac App Store) since it came out and was thrilled when I heard about the iPhone version ($3.99, App Store). It brings civility to my unruly calendars via the gorgeous DayTicker and makes creating new calendar events a breeze with natural language event creation. What takes 10 plus touches in Apple's calendar app can be accomplished by dictating (or typing) a sentence like "meet Ryan for wings on Monday at 8pm." Fantastical has the smarts to all the data into the right fields and looks great doing it. Apple's calendar app has barely changed in years and Fantastical roared by it like it was standing still. It could be a little faster on first launch and I can't wait for the iPad version, but overall the Fantastical is what Calendar aspires to be. Apple should acquire developer Flexbits to replace its tired iOS app, I know that I already have. 

  • Clear - Gesture-based Note taking app - $1.99

    The iPhone is the perfect device for taking notes but there are a plethora of apps in the crowded note-taking space. Despite using a half dozen or so such apps, Clear ($1.99, App Store) is the one that's on my iPhone home screen. It's an exceedingly beautiful, gesture-based app that actually makes it a joy to look at my to-do list -- which is saying a lot. Instead of relying on old school buttons and that horrible Comic Sans font (like Apple's Notes app), Clear uses intuitive swipe gestures to create, delete and move lists and list items. Bonus points for the new OS X app ($9.99, Mac App Store) and iCloud syncing. 

    Runner Up

  • Downcast - The definitive podcast app - $1.99

    The Apple Podcasts app has a horrible UI, is buggy as hell and deserves to be Forestalled. After the novelty of the skeuomorphic reel-to-reel tape player (remember those?) wears off, you should sober up and purchase Downcast ($1.99, App Store) -- a real podcast app. Downcast features intelligent podcast discovery (instead of a counter-intuitive "store") and controls that let you auto-download podcast subscriptions according to network (i.e., Wi-Fi), location, or time. It even streams podcasts on demand freeing up precious local storage on your device. If you own an iPhone and an iPad Downcast syncs podcast subscriptions, playlists, settings and episode information via iCloud. Apple needs to acquire the developer then ask him to redesign iTunes. 

    [Downcast for OS X will enter private beta "soon after the new year" which means that I might new use iTunes again.]

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Topics: Apple, Apps, iOS, iPhone, iPad, Reviews

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9 comments
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  • Remote

    "What did I miss? What are your favorite iOS apps?"

    Perhaps the most useful for me has been Jump Desktop for remote connection to PC's either by VNC or RDP. So well written, stable, smooth, cleverly laid out on iPad (but especially on the small iPhone display) that you wish all apps were done by these guys.

    Support/responsiveness from developers top-notch.
    JohnrC
    • look at the next page link

      look at the next page link above. The site gives you a very small amount of text with many opportunities to click on an advertisement to the point of annoyance.
      Ken_SF
  • Jump Desktop - Remote Desktop Control

    "What did I miss? What are your favorite iOS apps?"

    Perhaps the most useful for me has been Jump Desktop for remote connection to PC's either by VNC or RDP. So well written, stable, smooth, cleverly laid out on iPad (but especially on the small iPhone display) that you wish all apps were done by these guys.

    Support/responsiveness from developers top-notch.
    JohnrC
  • Wow one man's best an other's worst

    Why anyone would use Chrome when you could use Safari is one click search so you can go to a page and give google info about where you go instead of a click? And most of the rest have already been delated off my phone.
    kpbpsw
  • MyBoxOffice

    If you're like me and have lots of movies try MyBoxOffice.

    https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/myboxoffice/id317039484?mt=8

    It's saved me a few times from buying the same movie again.
    Arm A. Geddon
  • Really,fantastical

    Not being able to invite attendees ruins it for me. It may have a fancy interface but can't do the basics.
    elvisfan0108
  • Top New Years Countdown App is free today

    Top New Years Countdown App is free today, http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/new-years-countdown-2013-hd/id485460856
    Mary Rogers
  • Sparrow? An e-mail app?

    My BB has native MSActiveSync, and POP3/HTML mail. I use it for outlook.com, att.net, and corporate email. All native. No apps to buy.
    bb_apptix
  • Calendar

    Considering that the iPhone native calendar hosed MS Echange servers, I'm not surprised that you find a need to buy a calendar.
    bb_apptix