So we come down to the top 10 across all categories from the hundred of iPad apps I reviewed this past year over on a social site for mobile apps.

The process- These are apps I personally downloaded off the App Store to my personal iPad and spent the time to review. I tend to pick apps that have not been reviewed before on Appolicious, or may have received only 1 or 2 reviews if any. I don’t particularly read the reviews on the App Store before downloading, not to influence my review, since I’m performing a task for Appolicious. And I pick apps randomly across several categories, download them in iTunes, sync then to my iPad and many times I don’t get around to reviewing a particular app until several days later.

I’m sure you may have your own opinions on what were the some of the best iPad apps of 2010. Let me know your favorites!

So without further delay, here are my top 10 “Best iPad Apps of 2010” that I have personally reviewed, in reverse order, with my original reviews and further commentary.


#10. Google Earth

by Google and FREE

“It’s awesome and to have it on iPad is just great. Not all the levels and features do to performance limitations, but still, it rocks!”

Of all the big commercial apps from the big name brands in 2010, this is the only one of three that made my top 10. It’s a great online experience that had been extended to the iPad family, where it continues to shine…

best iPad apps 2010 Appolicious Google Earth Randy Giusto


#9. iSpice

by Monica Bhide for Sutro Media for $1.99

“iSpice is a great app to learn about spices. A good mixture of the familiar and the exotic, with background information and recipes. A great companion for your digital kitchen!”

I had to include a food app. I reviewed so many of them this past year and iSpice was at the top. Wonderful illustrations, informative, with rich history around each and every spice, including many of the exotics. And a nice selection of related recipes as well.

best iPad apps iSpice 2010 Appolicious


#8. Life for iPad

by Time, Inc. and FREE

“Life for iPad is amazing, just for the photos alone. This is one of he best online magazine apps for iPad out there. Great articles, updated regularly, and then there are those photos that Life is known for, from around the world.”

Life has always been an inspiration due to its long heritage as a premier journalistic and photographic icon in American heritage. It really shines on iPad…

best iPad apps 2010 Life Time Appolicious


#7. Rough Guides World Lens

by Rough Guides Limited and FREE

“Rough Guides World Lens takes the best photography from the Rough Guides series and serves it up in a dazzling piece of eye candy, with flexible features, map integration, and more! Yes, they pitch their paid guides/apps but it’s a soft sell, not annoying ads on very screen like others. Nice app design!”

Truly an inspiration and multi-faceted app combining the best of travel, photography, education, and news…

best iPad apps 2010 Rough Guides World Lens


#6. Reactable Mobile

by Reactible SL for $9.99

“Reactable mobile allows you to Improvise and create music based on the instrument design used used by Björk on her Volta Tour. Spin, strum, change instruments, pitch, percussion sounds and more on a truly creative app from an interactive instrument that was once only on stage, and is now in your hands!”

The Reactable music device is bizarre to say the least, with incredible sounds and percussive beats coming out of it. Transferring that experience to iPad was very, very, cool!

best music apps for iPad 2010 Reactable Mobile


#5. AlbumWall

by Shun Yao for $0.99

“This is by far the best app to display your music collection, and use as a music player on the iPad. Grabs all the album covers from your collection and then turns them in a large grid. Cool concept!”

I continue to use AlbumWall on a regular basis. It makes a great screen saver as well. Hopefully they will add more features over time, like more shuffle features, and background information on the bands and artists themselves. It made the top 10 based on it’s design and UI. I truly enjoy this app.

best music apps for iPad 2010 AlbumWall


#4. Angry Birds

by Rovio and distributed by Chillingo for $0.99 (reduced price)

“A huge success on multiple platforms but especially engaging on the iPad.”

I must admit, I was an early fan and I have the seasonal versions as well. I met Mikael Hed several times at Harvard and MIT events here in Boston. It’s nice to see someone who has tried for so many years, and put out many, many titles, finally have that one big huge hit that pays for all the sweat equity on all the games that Rovi did before it.

Number 4 with a bullet, and the only game app in my top 10 list.


#3. 60 Minutes for iPad

by CBS Interactive for $4.99

“60 Minutes for iPad is a great app with great videos and content from the show, updated and delivered right to your iPad. A MUST for any 60 Minutes fan!”

By far my favorite of the big brand name apps. I just love the layout, the chapter by commentator design, the 60 Minutes Overtime feature, the rich use of video. A truly great UI for others to dissect and learn.

best iPad apps 2010 Appolicious 60 Minutes


#2. Aweditorium


“Aweditorium is one of those very special iPad apps. Next to Flipboard it’s one of the best iPad apps of 2010. An amazing assortment of independent artists, a really unique interface, share your recommendations, save them, discover new music! A true aural and visual experience. Requires iOS 4.2 to run”

When I saw this app come out I immediately wanted it. But it came out on iOS 4.2 and on that day, the iPad had not yet gotten that OS update. So impatiently waited a week for it, and don’t regret the wake. It is a great way to find, recognize and appreciate underground music talent, and is my #1 pick for best music app for iPad in 2010, based on the 15 or so I reviewed during the year, and my #2 pick for best iPad app in 2010.

best music apps for iPad 2010 Aweditorium


#1. Flipboard

by Flipboard, Inc. and FREE

“I’ve been using Flipboard for a few weeks and it’s one of the most amazing iPad apps out there! Set up your Facebook and Twitter accounts into panels and have an instant online magazine of your accounts that become visually pleasing and very interactive. Pick from a growing list of content providers to create more panels. I created one just for my personal Twitter account @randygiusto and our business account @ipsosvantis and automatically generated online magazines for both. Great stuff!”

I’ve settled in nicely with Flipboard over the last month and it just goes to show how creative some of the free iPad apps can get. The Flipboard folks keep adding channels, making the app even more valuable going forward. It’s become the essential reader on my home page and I don’t bury it in a folder, it’s right there front and center!

No surprise, Flipboard has redefined the content reader, social, and news categories, brilliantly combining all kinds of feeds into one slick interface.

best content reader apps iPad 2010 Flipboard


As you can see, my list is made up from a wide range of gaming categories- strategy, simulation, arcade, FPS, sports, FRP, and children and young adult, that shows the scope of my game reviews and types of gameplay in my household.

– Randy Giusto