iPad Lifestyle Apps

Epicurious

Functionally speaking, Epicurious on the iPad is not much different than on the iPhone (you browse by the same categories along with shopping list support). But on the iPad, layout makes all the difference. Viewing lists simply makes more sense than browsing through recipes Cover Flow style. And the sheer speed and fluidity (over Wi-Fi, granted) of navigation, adding recipes to your collection and then saving those recipes as itemized shopping lists—you'll be impressed. What can I say other than that this doesn't feel like a V1 iPad app. This is polished, functional and wonderful if you're the cooking type. Heck, it's free, so that alone makes it worth a shot. [iTunes]

iPad Lifestyle Apps

I've used Epicurious on the web and iPhone extensively already, but the iPad implementation is already my favorite.

iPad Lifestyle Apps

The Weather Channel Max

Whether you're a weather dork or you just like to see a detailed local forecast, The Weather Channel's free iPad app is a must-download. Scan a 36-hour and 10-day forecast all on one tastefully animated page, then hop to radars, webcams and video clips with a single button press. And for now, it's all free from advertisements. If realtime animated radars are your thing, WunderMap (also free!) handles this single task more elegantly. But overall, I'll be using Weather Channel's app a lot more often. [iTunes]

iPad Lifestyle Apps

A free, well-designed, info-rich weather app that's at least worth trying out.

iPad Lifestyle Apps

Zagat to Go

If you own an iPhone or iPad, there's simply no reason to buy paper Zagat guides over the $10 digital app. For $10, you get an easy to navigate, nationwide Zagat guide that sits right on top of Google Maps. So view restaurants with you location in mind, then click on them to read what Zagat has to say. Save your favorites and track your most recent visits. Their iPad app operates a bit slower than it should , and the iPad's screen size allows Zagat the opportunity to better highlight photos (of both the restaurants and food) than they currently are. But seeing as all existing iPhone app owners get a free version of this iPad app (and the iPad app comes with a free iPhone app), there's really very little worth complaining about. [iTunes]

iPad Lifestyle Apps

If you like Zagat, you'll like Zagat to Go.

iPad Lifestyle Apps

BigOven

Big Oven, a database of over 170,000 recipes, comes in two versions for the iPad, a free Lite version and a $5 Pro Version. We tried out the Pro version, which allows you to search their recipe database in a number of ways, save these recipes for offline viewing and one-button transform these recipes into shopping lists (the shopping lists feature is basically what costs you $5). Big Oven is a nicely made app—with notable points to their big food porn title page (doesn't that cookie look wonderful?). The problem is, Epicurious can do pretty much everything that the $5 version of the Big Oven app can do for free (except save shopping lists across iPhone/iPad platforms)...and we prefer Epicurious' interface. Still, BigOven Lite is worth checking out to decide for yourself. If you prefer it to Epicurious, then maybe the Pro version is worth the $5 investment. [iTunes]

iPad Lifestyle Apps

Try Epicurious first—it has BigOven's tempting Pro features for free.

iPad Lifestyle Apps

Accuweather

It definitely looks nice, with the portrait view showing current weather (plus other meteorological data), and a two-week forecast, and the landscape mode showing just the forecast. There are also other slick views, like a circular hourly mode, video weather forecasts and the weather map. What's goofy are the settings: there are a couple bugs here, like not being able to properly add a city in the landscape mode, which should be worked out quickly. Otherwise, it's a good free app, with the only downside being that the stupid ad pops up from the bottom occasionally. If you want, you can pay a dollar to get rid of the ads. [FreePaid]

iPad Lifestyle Apps

Very pretty, and worth paying the $1 to get rid of ads.

iPad Lifestyle Apps

eBay

The eBay app does about what you'd expect, allowing you to search through and bid on auctions. The search results are laid out with large images, making it easy to scroll through auctions visually. Unfortunately, many forms of instant payment aren't supported by the app yet, so a good number of auctions tell you to go to ebay.com if you want to bid, which kind of defeats the purpose of the app. But for casual browsing and those auctions that you can bid on in-app, it's pretty slick.

iPad Lifestyle Apps

For the auctions you can bid on, it's great. They just need to add all the payment options to the app. [iTunes]

iPad Lifestyle Apps

KAYAK Flights

Everyone's favorite bargain basement trip planner has staked a claim on the iPad. Kayak lets you select from a myriad of flights, hotels, and car rentals so you can more easily (and cheaply) plan a "business trip" at the last minute. The interface works very well in that regard—date selection being the highlight here—and offers you a practical list to select from at the end of your query. For legal reasons, however, you're not allowed to complete your purchase within the Kayak app itself. Once you choose your desired results the app springboards you into Safari where you complete the purchase at whatever website offered you the best deal. We can't fault Kayak for this maneuver as they're just a flight aggregator and they don't actually sell tickets, but it's rather awkward considering you're gonna be typing all your credit card info into the iPad's onscreen keyboard. Nonetheless, it's a free app, so go nuts.

iPad Lifestyle Apps

Solid design and execution for planning flights. Completing purchases in Safari is more awkward than it should be.

iPad Lifestyle Apps

Stumbleupon

Stumbleupon is a community that acts as a springboard to most of what's good, or popular, on the internet. Input your interests, get recommendations, and then give your recommendations thumbs up or thumbs down. Simple. The trouble is this app kinda blows. It's slow to load pages and only offers a maximum of 16 choices per category to view at a time. If you go to the actual website via Safari you'll find you get better functionality and speedier page loads. The recommendations are not always consistent as well. It's kind of like a 4chan image board free-for-all in terms of what you may or may not see on a given splash page—making it a pain to try and find something again if you didn't add it to your favorites. Also, I couldn't log in to save my life, probably just a launch hiccup, but a huge downside nonetheless. Free. [iTunes]

iPad Lifestyle Apps

Only for die hard Stumbleupon fans.