7 Great iPad Apps for CIOs

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As we head into the weekend, maybe you will be sitting down with a coffee tomorrow morning with your iPad, wondering what to do with it beyond read email and looking at a few websites.  I thought I would share a few ideas for how you can get more out of it, especially focusing on iPad apps that a CIO or IT leader would appreciate.

Most people I’ve talked to and commentary I’ve read highlights the iPad as an incredible information consumption device.  That is certainly the most obvious and easy way to position it.  The iPad also presents an exciting platform for collaborative business applications, but I have yet to see anything compelling on that front but would expect to soon.

So, keeping focused on information consumption, here are 7 iPad apps that you should consider adding (in addition to Note Taker HD).  Please let me know your thoughts and what apps you have found useful.

iPad App Why Care?
Pulse Pulse is a visual feed reader.  I like it because it helps you quickly and visually scan all of your sources, using the photo thumbnails to help.  It blows away readers like native Google Reader that presents only text and titles.  It also helps you get started by pre-integrating some popular feeds.
Flipboard Flipboard is a Pulse style app bit for Twitter streams.  So if you want to see what Kristin Burnham at CIO.com is saying, you can add her Twitter feed.  Flipboard can also pull in Facebook streams too (to monitor your kids, of course).  If you want to see what CIOs are saying on Twitter, you can follow a lists, like CIO Dashboard.  For another take on Twiter stream newspapers, check out Paper.li.
MIT SMR While the first 2 apps are broad in their scope, the next 2 are more CIO-role specific.  The MIT Sloan Management Review app is the full version of their great magazine.  For now, its free and based on the Texterity digital publishing platform.  I asked a room full of IT leaders at a conference last month how many read this – not one hand was raised.  Do yourself a favor and start reading this.
CIO Another Texterity based magazine, CIO has also gone digital.  You can have a virtual copy on your iPad to read at your leisure and keep the hard copy on your coffee table in your office.
Zinio Wondering if a magazine other that SMR or CIO is available.  Chances are if its available, its on Zinio which is basically an iPad magazine rack.  I read BusinessWeek and The Economist using Zinio.  Before you roll your eyes at The Economist, a good friend of Diamond’s, Prof. Marvin Zonis told a group of my partners a while back that he manages the info overload by scanning the Economist’s table of contents and tears out 1 interesting article and throws the rest away.
Calendar If you want to delve a little deeper into using the iPad as a supplement or even primary computing device, I suggest you have a look at the standard Calendar app.  It is honestly the most beautiful office productivity app I’ve seen.  It’s really nice and looks like a real appointment book.
Popplet If you are a visual thinker, doodler, etc. you probably have played around with mind maps.  Popplet is a very simple and very easy mind mapping tool that’s great for brainstorming and sharing some simple concepts.  Granted there are other more sophisticated mind mapping tools and web apps, but this is a good basic one to try.

BONUS: Here are other two more killer apps just for fun – Plants vs Zombies, StarWalk.

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  • Brandon

    I am a huge fan of Zinio. This app alone has made business travel much more enjoyable.

  • Looking back at this list, it stands pretty strong today.  I would add Zite to the list as I find myself using it as my go-to personal newspaper.  Another one to check out is Hitpad.  It’s a bit different but I find one or two new topics of interest every time I look.

    -Chris

  • Looking back at this list, it stands pretty strong today.  I would add Zite to the list as I find myself using it as my go-to personal newspaper.  Another one to check out is Hitpad.  It’s a bit different but I find one or two new topics of interest every time I look.

    -Chris

  • Looking back at this list, it stands pretty strong today.  I would add Zite to the list as I find myself using it as my go-to personal newspaper.  Another one to check out is Hitpad.  It’s a bit different but I find one or two new topics of interest every time I look.

    -Chris

  • Cristina Ampil

    Hi Chris! 

    I like Zite’s “did you like this?; more from the author; more of the same category” alongside the articles.

    I prefer to have direct relationships with my magazine publishers, except when I can access the mags only through Zinio.  

    Will check out the Texterity-based magazines.

    And what’s that about The Economist?  I LOVE the Economist and its Intelligent Life.