Any technology device is only as good as the software installed on it. Combined with desktop access and Android phone access, I am able to use these applications just about anywhere. These are my iPad application recommendations to administrators.
In an earlier post, I recommended Evernote as premium app for administrators. For many of the same reasons I listed there, adding Evernote to the iPad is a no-brainer. With Evernote, I can’t foresee ever having to take a legal pad into a meeting ever again. The iPad app is free, and you have all the same functionality found in the Desktop or Android versions. Throw in a premium subscription, and its functionality gets even better. Check out Evernote at their web site.
I also recommended Dropbox as an administrator application in an in an earlier post too. Dropbox is basically a virtual flashdrive that you can access from the web, or from any device on which you have installed the software. It automatically syncs your files to all these devices. It is a fantastic place to store all of those documents you need constant and immediate access to. Adding Dropbox to my iPad just gives me another layer of access, since I have it on all my computers, and my Android phone too. Throw in software like Docs to Go, and I can read all my MS Word, MS PowerPoint, MS Excel, and PDF documents wherever I’m working on my iPad. Check out Dropbox at their Web site.
Documents to Go
I actually examined several of these so-called “mini-Office” apps before deciding on Documents to Go. I had used Documents to Go a few years back on an old Palm. This application had good ratings as well, so I paid for the iPad version. Documents to Go gives me the ability to read MS Office and PDF documents, and it also gives me the ability to edit them, though I’m not sure how much editing I will do using the iPad. Since I still use MS Office for a great deal of my documents editing, I have found this application invaluable. It even allows me access and edit my Google Docs. For more information about Documents to Go, check out their Web site here.
As a regular Twitter and Tweetdeck for desktop user, I have found Tweedeck for the iPad to be a familiar application. The iPad version is only slightly different from the desktop version. Being able to access my Personal Learning Network with the iPad adds another dimension to connecting to the national education conversation. For more information about Tweetdeck for the iPad, check out the Tweetdeck Web site.
Google Mobile App and GooTasks
Since our school system uses Google Apps, having access on my iPad to my email, Google Docs, and Calendar are vital. Google Mobile App gives me that access. For more information about this app, check here. I also use the Task List in Google Aps, so I needed a way to access my task list on my iPad. That’s where GooTasks comes in. GooTasks allows me to enter tasks using my iPad, and it syncs very easily. For more information about GooTasks, check here.
As an avid reader, it was only a matter of time that I get an e-reader. One of the reasons I have been reluctant to purchase an e reader is because of my concern regarding not being able to access books from all of the e-book sellers. With the iPad that problem is quickly resolved by downloading each of the major e-readers. I have iBooks, the Nook reader, the Kindle reader, and Free Books reader. The iBooks Reader is Apple’s e-reader, and provides you with access to their e-books. The Nook Reader is Barnes and Noble’s e-reader, while the Kindle Reader gives you access to Amazon’s e-books. These applications are free to download. The Free Books app currently costs $1.99. This application gives you access to over 20,000 classics.
Mobile RSS Pro
Being able to read my Google Reader RSS feeds was a must on my iPad. I tried a few free apps, but none of them gave me the functionality I was looking for, and ease of being able to thumb through my subscriptions quickly. That’s where Mobile RSS Pro does an excellent job. I can thumb through the articles even more quickly than I can on my desktop. I can also share what I’m reading very easily through Twitter or Facebook. This application was well worth the $2.99 I paid for it. For more information on Mobile RSS Pro, check here.
Honestly, I’m only a week into using my iPad, but I have found it much more useful than I thought I would. It’s easier to carry around than my laptop, and it provides me with an additional layer of access to both my documents, as well as my PLN. But it truly is only as good as the applications I have installed on it.