We all love getting something great for free! However, hunting down the good free iPad apps from the terrible ones in the jungle of the App Store can be a difficult job.
Fortunately for you, I’m here to help. We’ll try and keep a mix of old classics and new favourites, read on and stock up on fantastic free iPad apps!
Flipboard is one of the most popular news readers for the iPad due to its fantastic, intuitive interface and its sheer ease of use. It pools various news websites (which you can customise) and displays them in an easy-to-read format. Best if all, it’s totally free to use!
Planetary is a fascinating way to explore your music collection that’s only available on the iPad. It allows you to fly through a 3D universe dynamically created by information about the recording artists you love – you can lose hours here!
We recently reviewed Planetary and found it to be a simply stunning free offering for the iPad. If you love music, eye-candy, and your iPad, you need to download this app now. It’s about time we put that orange iPod icon to rest – and it’s free!
Zite is a great way to consume all kinds of news and articles, that gradually learns your preferences and what you like to read. It’s definitely worth trying out both Zite and Flipboard before settling on your favourite way to browse and enjoy the news.
If you’re not already a fan of The Onion, you probably should be. The app is a great free addition to any iPad, providing amusing riffs on current events along with purely fictional hilarity. A few ads here and there is a very small price to pay.
It’s been said many a time before, but if you’re a movie fan you can get no better friend than the IMDb app for iPad. The sheer wealth of information available, alongside new movie trailers and news, makes the IMDb app a must even for casual film fans – it’s free and beautifully designed, get it now!
It’s a pretty simple suggestion, but if you don’t already have Remote then you should get it right now. It’s the perfect way to take control of iTunes from your iPad, and fantastically useful if you own an Apple TV.
We recently reviewed Paper and, although it does require in-app purchase to unlock all of the tools, found it to be a superb app with a beautiful design aesthetic. If you love your iPad but miss the experience of filling real, physical notebooks, let me assure you that Paper is the closest thing to a real notebook outside of a real notebook. It’s just plain amazing software, from the accuracy of the handwriting to the drop-dead UI design. Nothing looks quite like or feels quite like Paper.
Bamboo paper is a great way to turn your iPad into a paperless communication tool. It’s completely free so get stuck in and enjoy one of the best note-taking engines we’ve reviewed to date.
Pocket is a beautifully made cross-platform app that is the perfect solution for saving multiple articles, videos, and images for later – no matter where you are and what device you’re on. We reviewed it recently and loved it – giving the app a top notch 10/10!
Do you ever feel a little disappointed that an app exists, purely because you wish you’d thought of it first?
That’s exactly how I felt using Aweditorium the very first time. It’s a beautifully immersive way to listen to and discover new music! Simply dive in and start exploring the vast expanse of organised sound that awaits you, Aweditorium even provides images, and text, to help occupy your eyes and keep them out of trouble.
For those who love minimalism, there’s no better note-taking app than Simplenote. It syncs seamlessly with your computer and all your devices. It’s extremely easy to use. For those who want more power, you can also use tags, pins, versions, and sharing.
Appetites is one of our favourite recipe apps here at AppStorm, the concept and execution working perfectly to create a beautiful interactive experience.
You can get recipes from a variety of food bloggers and chefs and watch step-by-step video instruction, it’s almost foolproof. There are in-app purchases to get more recipes, but it’s free to download and try out the stock recipes.
Proven to be the worlds fastest and most-accurate music recognition app, SoundHound is a superb free offering and a great way to keep track of songs you like off the radio.
The depth of features in SoundHound make it a great way to find new music, plus it has the world’s only viable singing and humming recognition!
The Guardian Eyewitness app is one that’s worth opening every single day. It’s effortless charm is down to its simplicity, it does one thing very well indeed.
It describes itself as:
A showcase for the world’s most distinctive and provocative photographs, providing a daily, visual reflection of global events.
While Square Register won’t interest everyone, it’s a simply stunning app for those people who can make use of it! A more robust, point-of-sale style solution from Square that allows you to take card payments and run your iPad as a centre for transactions.
Unstuck is a brilliant app for getting you through those moments when you feel completely stuck, through a series of diagnostic activities and tools tailored towards whatever the particular problem is.
We reviewed it back in February and found it to be a great way to alleviate any kind of creative block!
Whether you’re trying to figure out what movie to go to at the theater down the street this weekend, or trying to find a good movie to add to your Netflix queue, having an application to help you through that process is fantastic.
Flixster may not be the most entertaining, elegant application, but it performs many functions quickly and easily – and it’s free!
Getting inspired is vital for taking awesome photographs, and 500px is a beautiful way to do just that! Jacob gave it a solid 8/10 in his review, saying;
Enjoy the world’s best photos right at your fingertips. Discover exhilarating landscapes, cute wildlife moments, striking portraits and more.
Skitch is an image annotator that makes sketching and sharing a snap. Point out objects in photos, mark up a design mockup, or annotate a screenshot. Evernote integration makes sharing easier than ever.
We reviewed it a short while ago and gave the a 10/10, it simply does one thing very well indeed.
TED is an app that allows you to listen to a selection of talks from the TED conferences, which perhaps sounds a little dull. Let me assure you that it isn’t! TED gets in expert speakers to deliver concise and thoughtful talks across a veritable smorgasbord of subjects, there’s no better way to feed your mind in 5 to 20 minutes.
Wunderlist is a brilliant, and free, cloud-sync task manager that also allows you to share task lists with friends and colleagues.
I love the gorgeous interface and the pure simplicity of the app, it’s effortlessly intuitive. I would heartily recommend Wunderlist to anyone who doesn’t need the extra functionality that an app like Omnifocus provides, or anyone who needs to share simple task lists with others.
Continuing on with apps that integrate beautifully with Evernote, Evernote Peek is a great little free app that allows you to create engaging quizzes and tests.
It works by virtue of the magnets in the Smart Cover, allowing you to test yourself by gradually revealing the question and then the answer. It’s a small but interesting app that makes use of the Smart Cover in an intriguing way.
Now to Evernote itself. Much like DropBox, barely a week goes by without Evernote cropping up, but there’s a reason for that. It’s a powerful, insanely useful, and free service that’s ever expanding its features and functionality. While the underlying concept may not be up everyone’s street, for many, Evernote is an unmissable app.
Stuck in Earth is a free app invented by the renowned HDR photographer Trey Ratcliff. The app’s name is modeled on his photography blog, Stuck in Customs. Ratcliff designed the app to help photographers and explorers find the prime spot to take a photo while on their travels. It works like a traditional map, except with community involvement and photo sharing that spreads the word if there’s a great spot somewhere near where you’ll be traveling. If you love to explore the great abyss and take photos while doing so, then check out our review to discover an app that will assist you with your endeavors.
Pepperplate is a complete kitchen app which can help you manage your recipes, plan your meals, shop for the ingredients, and cook your meals.
We reviewed it in February and gave it a strong 8/10, if you’re looking for a free recipe manager, look no further.
SkyDrive is an excellent alternative to Dropbox that allows you to easily access, manage, and share files on the go. You can also upload photos or videos from your iPhone or iPad to SkyDrive.
It’s been updated for the Retina display and also allows you to share using a simple link, something Dropbox only recently added.
As far as free games go, you can’t do much better than Temple Run on the iPad!
It looks and plays fantastically, and is alluringly addictive once you get into it – making great big swiping gestures has never been more satisfying than when trying to evade trees and escape those demon monkeys!
If you’re a big Wikipedia fan, it’s definitely worth trying out Wikipanion for size. It’s feature-packed and even allows for bookmarking of individual sections within an entry. The interface is slick and aims to closely replicate the feel and style of Wikipedia itself.
While perhaps not the most interesting app ever, although I do like the magical feel of it, Find My iPhone is simply a vital addition to any iPad.
Once set up it allows you to find the location of your iPad from any computer connected to the internet. It’s fantastically useful, particularly if you’re prone to misplacing things.
HowStuffWorks is a very informative and content rich app which offers an learning experience rarely matched. The articles contained within are very well written and reflect the company’s commitment to education excellence. Best of all, all this knowledge is totally free!
iTunes Movie Trailers is perfect for helping you decide on every aspect of the movie experience, from which trailers to watch to which theater is showing the movie you’re dying to see. Check out our review right here.
FLUD is a reader that looks to add a social experience to your everyday reading by giving each user the ability to create their own “news personality.” It has a few issues, but is an intriguing prospect…
Wikihood is an application which pulls data from Wikipedia to give you information about the things around you; such as landmarks, geography, economy and so on. It’s free, so head to the App Store and give it a try!
If you can’t decide whether to upgrade, check out our review!
Facebook for iPad allows you to experience everything that Facebook has to offer. On your iPad. It’s easily the best way to browse the social network. Read our review of the long-awaited official app here.
AccuWeather gives you a detailed weather forecast for the next few days and even features a nifty hourly forecast (modelled on a clock face), which tells you the temperature, weather conditions, and humidity at any given hour. You can also use the lifestyle section, which lists a number of different activities (e.g. grass growing, arthritis risk, and star gazing) and the app rates whether it is worth undertaking these activities based on the forecast. AccuWeather also integrates video weather forecasts into the application (although these are only for the US).
iTunes U is a powerful app that misses the mark with its faux-world interface, but offers a large variety of courses and materials for free.
With the cost of textbooks alone, not to mention transportation, tuition, and every other cost associated with learning, “free” is a breath of fresh air in a costly landscape. Sure, you won’t have a piece of paper with your name on it, but if you want to learn for learning’s sake you can do worse than iTunes U.
It’s extremely useful to know where the nearest Wi-Fi hotspot is. Wi-Fi Finder’s database includes over 650,000 hotspots in 144 countries and automatically brings up all the hotspots around you based on your current location. This little free app could save you a lot of money.
If you’re not fully committed to getting in shape, but just want to test the waters, Workout Trainer could be for you. First off it’s free, and it features a clean and bright interface that’s in contrast with Fitness for iPad.
A powerful and surprisingly sleek looking app for delving deep into the world of math. The app features more than 120 topics and over 700 formulas – I’m imagining it’d be frowned upon in an examination…
The iPad interface has been designed specifically for the larger screen and even allows you to do calculations by hand on the screen!
An amazing and intriguing free app that allows you to view and manipulate molecules on the iPad, bringing you closer to the chemical makeup of our world.
It’s a great way to get hands on with science, I’m always fascinated by the intricate shapes and patterns!
A wonderfully detailed and educational collection of high-resolution historical maps. Intuitive controls and the sheer fascination of these historical artefacts make this a thoroughly enjoyable learning experience.
Do bear in mind that it’s a rather large app, you’ll need a good connection and space on your iPad. The upside is that they’re all available for offline viewing!
Frequency is your personal video service. It puts the entire world of web video at your fingertips. We took a look a several video apps a while back, and found Frequency to be one of the best – and it’s free!
Dictating notes to secretaries has become office folklore, yet with Dragon Dictation the iPad can transcribe your speech to text with a remarkable level of accuracy. With its clean interface this app will allow any time-poor executive to get their thoughts on paper with ease.
If you don’t have the new iPad, this is a great substitute for the the speech-to-text feature.
For anyone who needs to keep up with the financial markets, or who relies on getting the most up-to-date business news, Bloomberg is an absolute must-have.
It’s also a superbly useful app for tracking your own stock portfolio, should you be that way inclined.
Qwiki’s goal is to forever improve the way people experience information. By combining conventional snippets of textual information with highly interactive and engaging formats like audio, video, and images, the app offers an elegant and intuitive mode of learning.
We reviewed it back in June and found it to be a simply excellent way to experience the wealth of information available on Wikipedia!
A superb app for anyone who loves to experiment and discover new recipes, Epicurious is the perfect companion for any cook – and it’s free! It’s packed with functionality, including the ability to keep track of your favourites and build a shopping list. Not only does it have more than 30,000 recipes, Epicurious allows you to easily share your favourites with family and friends via e-mail, Facebook, Twitter, and more.
TuneIn Radio is a simply great app that brings the best radio stations to your iPad.
The best part about TuneIn Radio is that it caches the station if you pause it and then you can skip commercials and skip to the next song. You can even find stations based on your gps location. There is a paid upgrade but the free app works just fine.
Google Earth is a beautiful, and intriguing, way to hold the world in the palm of your hand. It turns your iPad into the perfect coffee table item, giving you access to incredible global satellite and aerial imagery at the touch of your fingers.
Fotopedia Heritage provides a virtual passport to the hundreds of sites that constitute the world’s collective cultural and natural human legacy. It’s a stunning, and effortlessly engaging, app created in partnership with the UNESCO World Heritage Centre and an essential for anyone intrigued by the mark we have left on the world.
The photographs are of the highest quality and help to immerse you in the absorbing content.
Jamie’s Recipes is one of the best examples of a recipe app on the App Store, the photography is stunning, and the recipes are delicious. While it’s free to download, and you do get some taster recipes, the app functions doubly as a recipe store; allowing you to purchase new recipes and packs as they arrive. Check out the videos and stunning design throughout!
As always, we’d love to hear your thoughts – simply post a comment below! What is your favourite free app, did we miss one that you love?
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50 Fantastic Free iPad Apps