The 25 Best Free iPad Apps

With more and more iPad apps flowing into the App Store every day, it can be tough to find the best of the best. To help you cut through the clutter, the following is a list of our picks for the 25 best free apps for the iPad so far, in no particular order.

25 Best Free iPad Apps:

Picture Summary
1. CNN App for iPad is an iPad-optimized way to get your content. Easy browse through the news stories, watch videos, or view the best photography in a slide show. Watch live video streams of breaking news.
2. Crackle offers free access to movies and TV shows from Sony Entertainment like Seinfeld, The Davinci Code, Ghostbusters, Snatch and more. Hundreds of movies and thousands of TV show episodes available for free with unlimited streaming. The only catch is that you have to watch the occasional commercial. Still, awesome app!
3. Facebook is the official app from Facebook. What else is there to say? Get it. Update your status. Read your friends statuses, view photos, poke, like, recommend, etc.
4. Twitter is the official app from Twitter. View your friend’s tweets, search, find trending topics, open links within the app. Cool transitions and an “open sideways” interface.
5. ABC Player lets you watch all of your favorite ABC shows on the iPad. Streams over 3G and WiFi. Saves the spot where you left off. Look up the tv schedule of your favorite shows. Good quality video that can be watched full screen.
6. Toy Story Read Along is a great bargain for anyone with kids. Features a full Toy Story picture book that you can read out loud or use the included voice narrator. Record your own voice reading each page so your kids can listen to your voice instead. Features a fun coloring book version of each page. Also features brief movie clips for some pages. Tap parts of the pictures for sound effects. Includes two mini games. A powerful interactive learning tool for kids.
7. Pandora Radio is a streaming music app that has been our favorite iPhone music app for a long time. The app learns your musical likes and dislikes and slowly improves the quality of the music served over time. Bookmark songs for later purchase, identify favorite artists, block artists you don’t like. Features album art, artist info, and lyrics. Our favorite iPhone music app turned into a universal app with an iPad-specific interface.
8. Flipboard turns content sources like Facebook, Twitter, and other news streams into a magazine. Cool graphics and animations makes any content seem cutting edge. Has to be experienced to be truly appreciated.

9. is an offline dictionary for your iPad—no internet connection is required to view over 1,000,000 definitions and 90,000 synonyms and antonyms. Get audio pronunciations, Word of the Day, example sentences, and similarly spelled words.
10. eBay for iPad streamlines the eBay experience. Does away with pages, just seamless transitions to buying and selling auction items. Efficient way of using eBay.
11. Epicurious is a searchable cookbook for the iPad with constantly updated content. Find recipes, read reviews and tips from users, look at pictures. Take advantage of the portability of the iPad and keep it in the kitchen as you cook. Create a grocery list for all items in a recipe with a single tap. Features nutritional info for health watchers. Advanced filtering tools for narrowing down recipes.
12. TV Guide for iPad gives you quick and convenient access to local TV listings. Simply find your cable provider or local over-the air broadcast and everytime you launch the app, you’ll see the latest TV listings. Create custom channel lists to skip over the channels you never watch. Track your favorite shows. Get the latest entertainment news from
13. Kayak Flights brings the Internet’s best airplane ticket search engine to the iPad. Touch interface makes the search process extremely efficient. Only downside is that you can’t buy the tickets within the app, you have to call or use the browser.
14. Kindle gives you access to all of your Amazon Kindle ebooks on the iPad. Take advantage of Amazon’s larger e-book catalogue as well as hundreds of thousands of free books. Synch your books across your Kindle, iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad.
15. Netflix lets you watch your Netflix instant streaming movies and TV shows on the iPad as well as manage your Netflix DVD/Blu-ray queue. Watch as much as you want, all it takes is a Netflix subscription.
16. USA Today for iPad gives you America’s most-read newspaper in an iPad friendly format. Features USA Today‘s popular category format, including News, Sports, Money and Life sections. Download the newspaper for offline reading—a nice feature for travelers.
17. Bloomberg for iPad offers financial news, stock quotes, personal portfolio tracking, charts, global markets, currencies, etc. Basically a must-have for anyone interested in the financial world.
18. Washington Post for iPad is the legendary Washington newspaper on the iPad along with their bloggers. It’s one of the few big newspapers to offer free access.
19. CNBC for iPad provides real-time stock quotes (no typical 15-minute delay) as well as access to over 150 video clips a day from popular CNBC shows. Create and monitor your own stock portfolios. Create your own personal scrolling ticker.
20. PBS for iPad lets you watch PBS shows right on the iPad, including recent episodes of popular award-winning shows like Frontline and Nova. Also provides TV scheduling for local PBS stations and additional info for PBS show episodes.
21. Victoria’s Secret features the sexy lingerie catalogue and models as well as video featuring commercials, Victoria Secret events, etc. Fun for both girls and boys!
22. Simplenote is a simple text editor with one killer feature: it stores your documents both on the iPad and in the “cloud,” so you can pick up writing where you left off no matter what device you’re using. Flawless synching. Sign up for a free account within the app.
23. TripAdvisor is the best travel website made easy on the iPad. Research hotels, restaurants, and other travel attractions. Access over 40 million reviews and opinions. Read real travelers’ reviews. Write your own. Or my favorite feature: browse customer’s photos of the locations with a swipe of your finger. No glossy marketing photos! Over 5 million photos.
24. TED features the world’s greatest thinkers giving talks on cutting-edge topics. Includes everything from comedy to science to the Internet.
25. VEVO HD lets you watch music videos from today’s biggest artists. Features 25,000 videos from more than 7,500 artists.

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11 Responses

  1. dave says:

    That toy story app looks sweet!

  2. Dan says:

    What a list, can’t wait to take advantange of it when my iPad comes in.

  3. Tara Benwell says:

    Great list. Can’t wait to show the kids Toy Story. They love The Princess and the Frog one. It was worth the money.

  4. This is great!! I though I had seen them all and I haven’t heard of half these apps. Thanks!

  5. David says:

    I just wanted to write to thank you for all the great apps for my ipad. So far, from your list I’ve got the apps for CNBC which is really nice, Pandora is great and much better than I expected, Nasa hd is really great and wow what some beautiful pictures, WeatherBug is really nice, Flixter is much better than what I’ve been using and I think my 11 year old daughter will like the Virtuoso piano I just downloaded.

    Tried to get the Talking Tom Cat and PocketPond Hd but after several tries it keeps saying “connect to a wi-fi network or use itunes on your computer to download” So now those two icons are there and say loading but, not really loading. Not sure how to get it from my computer so I might just wait and hope they download soon.

  6. Amanda says:

    Thank you so much for posting this list! I’ve gotten pretty bored w/ the apps I had and needed some more to keep me busy. These are all great! A little bit of everything!

  7. Pam says:

    Perfect. Thank you!

  8. John says:

    Thanks for this list.

    I’m on day two with a new iPad 2 and just grabbed at least 10 of these apps! Looking forward to giving them a test drive!

    I think I’m most fired up about the photoshop app…

  9. Gail Emmett says:

    This is a fantastic list of iPad apps and even better is the fact they are free. Thanks for sharing.

  10. Krystal says:

    Very, very grateful. I just got my iPad and this list made searching for good, free apps very easy. I already downloaded half of them. Thanks :)

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