Top Entertainment & Lifestyle iPad Apps
Sure, we’d love to see a Hulu app that includes all the most popular shows, but ABC Player provides more than enough free content to kill some time, not to mention a slick user interface. After sitting through a 30-second commercial, we enjoyed smooth playback when watching an episode of Modern Family, and you can quickly get rid of the bars above and below the video by clicking on an expand button on the bottom of the screen. Our only complaint is that the Play/Pause and slider button for fast forwarding are small.
Comic books are expected to enjoy a renaissance due to the iPad, and the Marvel Comics app makes a very good argument. With an in-app store that’s reminiscent of iTunes, buying new comics couldn’t be much easier. The smooth flow from panel to panel while zoomed in is gorgeous in the way it mimics how your eyes would naturally move across a page. Your choice of comics ranges from such titles as X-Men and Iron Man to Wolverine and Captain America, and most cost $1.99 each. The app includes several free comics to get your superhero juices flowing.
Subscribers to the most popular movie delivery service now have one more way to get their fix. This app lets Netflix users access an unlimited number of films and TV shows at home or on the go. Streams start quickly, and the interface makes it fairly simple to find something good (if not terribly current) to watch. When we first logged on The Ugly Truth and Julie & Julia were new to the Watch Instantly lineup, and TV shows included older seasons of 30 Rock, Lost, and 24. If you start watching on a PC, you can pick up where you left off on the iPad, and vice versa. You can also use the app to manage your Neflix queue. Not bad for the $8.99 (or more) you’re already paying.
Free (with $8.99 Netflix subscription); www.netflix.com
It’s easily the most attractive interface we’ve seen on an iPad app yet, and it should look good since everything else in the entertainment world is judged by its appearance. But this app’s beauty is more than skin deep. It serves up free television listings (using your location), as well as entertainment news and videos. We like the way Yahoo presents headlines and images in huge numbered grids, even if you can’t share individual articles. You can also read book reviews and comics to kill time between your favorite shows.
Whether you’re clueless in the kitchen (like we sometimes are) or you’re just looking for some inspiration, Epicurious is a must-have app. It offers easy-to-follow recipes with a full-screen Cookbook view that provides ingredients and photos, as well as the proper prep steps you can bookmark. User-rated recipes ensure that your creation has the best chance possible of pleasing the crowd, while detailed nutrition info will keep their waistlines from ballooning to the size of your newfound culinary confidence.
25 iPad Apps You Need (By Category)