Five Must Have iPad Apps for your Business

April 3rd is right around the corner for those intrepid early adopters to get their hands on a WiFi only Apple iPad. Being able to run the more than 170,000 apps from the App Store makes this one powerful and versatile device. A large number of developers will be developing iPad specific software, but many of the current iPhone and iPod touch apps should be able to run unmodified on the iPad. For my practice, I have five specific apps in mind that will be a shoe-in for my new iPad. Accessing them on the iPad’s gorgeous 9.7 inch touch screen, they will help me stay on top of my business needs.

Truthfully, there will be more than five apps I will be getting for the iPad, however, I will certainly use these five quite often and they will be helpful, not only in my line of work (Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery), but in any business, even yours.

1. LogMeIn Ignition. Remote access to any of your computers, whether they are at home or in your place of business, will be an asset to you. I use it now with my iPhone and absolutely love it. It’s very easy to set up and use.

There is a bit of a learning curve pinching, panning and zooming with the iPhone version when I’m accessing my main computer at work that is normally rendered on a 20” screen. But once you get the hang of it, this app can have you administering like an IT pro from virtually any location. It will be 10-fold better on a larger display, i.e. the iPad!

2. Dragon Dictation. A terrific dictation program on the iPhone that can be quite useful on your iPad. The iPad looks to be a great device, however, the soft keyboard input method may be a bit challenging if you’re carrying the device with one hand.

Even if you use a bluetooth enabled keyboard or the keyboard dock accessory to input text, you won’t be able to stay mobile for very long. That’s where Dragon Dictation will be very useful, while you’re on the go and have your voice and one (or both) hand(s) free.

Emails, documents, patient and client notes (Note that the company that produces Dragon Dictation, has announced Mobile Medical Dictation apps that will be available this year) can all be created or modified with only your voice.

A real necessity for the doctor, lawyer or business professional on the go.

3. Epocrates. As a healthcare provider, access to the myriad of medications, including their proper indications, doses and potential interaction complications is a no-brainer.

Coupled with an Essentials Deluxe membership, you can gain access to in-depth disease content from peer-reviewed prominent medical journals, medical billing code information, infectious disease treatment guidelines, alternative medications and diagnostic/ lab test preparation, interpretation and follow up, among other perks.

Again, essential to point-of-service with your patients.

4. Instapaper. It happens to me all the time, I find a great article on Apple or I’m reading from one of the professional journals online and I have to run to see a patient or take a phone call. What do I do with that article? That’s where Instapaper comes in handy.

With a simple touch of a bookmark, the article is automatically saved to Instapaper and makes itself accessible to you offline when you have a second to peruse its contents.

A truly necessary app for the professional on-the-go! I use it routinely on my iPhone and, with a larger screen, it will make reading the content much more enjoyable!

5. GoodReader. A great PDF file reader that can also handle MS Office docs (.doc, .ppt, .xls), iWork ’08 and ’09, HTML and Safari Web archives, high-resolution images and even audio and video.

It even has the ability to access Dropbox to upload or download files. It delivers a great viewing and reading experience and I highly recommend it for anyone who requires the ability to access and read large PDF files.

There you have my top five “Must Have” iPad apps that should be available to you on day one of the iPad launch. Leave a comment on what other apps you feel are a “Must Have” as well!

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