1. Computing

The 20 Best Uses for the iPad

How to Use the iPad

By

A woman using the iPad

The iPad has more uses than just browsing the web. Photo © Jordan Siemens / Getty Images

Can't decide if the iPad is worth it? Are you wondering what to do with the iPad? How to use an iPad is an easy question to answer. Between its ability to stream movies to its ability to play great games to the thousands of apps available in the Apple App Store, you may be surprised about how many great uses there are for the iPad.

A Buyer's Guide to the iPad

The Best iPad Uses:

  1. Surf on the Couch. Let's start with the most obvious use for the iPad. Have you ever been watching TV and wondered where you'd seen a particular actor before? Having IMDB, Wikipedia and the rest of the web at your fingertips from the comfort of your couch can be a wonderful thing.
  2. Mobile Gaming. The iPad was already a great gaming machine, with the ability to use the gyroscope and accelerometer to take portable gaming to a whole new level. The iPad 2 added to this with the ability to play augmented reality games, which makes gaming a great use for the iPad. And with the iPad 3's Retina Display, the graphics can even compete with console games. The Best Action/Arcade Games for the iPad

  3. eReader. The ability to read eBooks from Apple's iBooks, Amazon's Kindle and Barnes and Noble's Nook certainly makes the iPad one of the most versatile eReaders on the market. But don't forget the great newspaper and magazine content, like The Daily from News Corp., which is hoping to redefine the daily newspaper for the digital age.

  4. Recipe Book. The size and portability of the iPad makes it great for any room in the house, including the kitchen. There are tons of great cooking apps, such as recipes from Epicurious and Whole Foods Market. You can even manage your gluten sensitivity with apps like Is That Gluten Free?

  5. Photo Album. It's one thing to carry around a bunch of photos on your iPhone, it is a totally different thing when you can display them on a 9.7" screen. You can easily store thousands of photographs on the lowest end iPad, and even display them as a slideshow. How much memory does your iPad need?

  6. GPS. A great use for the iPad 4G model is as a GPS replacement. With an Assisted-GPS chip, the iPad can keep you from ever being lost. And the Maps app introduced in iOS 6.0 includes hands free turn-by-turn directions with data from TomTom.

  7. Portable TV. This little-known use for the iPad can be great for parents that often find themselves at soccer games and tennis matches but might want to catch up on their television. Through the use of Sling Media's Sling Box, you'll never be without television. Shop for Sling Box

  8. Home Stereo. One of the first things I recommend to new iPad users is to enable Home Sharing on iTunes and their iPad. This will allow you to play all of your music (and movies) on your iPad without actually loading them onto the device. And with the Digital AV Adapter, you can hook your iPad into your TV and get your music through your home theaters speakers. This definitely makes Home Sharing one of the best uses for the iPad.

  9. Connect the iPad to Your TV. The iPad has a lot of great entertainment value, including the ability to stream HD video and play high-quality games. But what about watching it on the big screen? There a several methods to hook your iPad up to your HDTV, including using AirPlay to wirelessly connect the iPad to Apple TV. And most solutions work with both video and sound, so you can really get the full HD experience. Find out how to connect your iPad to your TV
  10. Say Goodbye to Premium Cable. Have you ever wanted to ditch premium cable? The ability to stream Netflix and Hulu Plus directly to your HDTV means you can replace your premium channels without being forced to watch movies on a smaller screen. And considering the amount of television available on those services, some people could dump cable completely. The Top Apps for Streaming Movies and TV Shows

Next: 11-20 Best Uses for the iPad

  1. About.com
  2. Computing
  3. iPad
  4. iPad Guides and Tutorials
  5. iPad Tips
  6. The 20 Best Uses for the iPad

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.