10 Must Have iPad Apps for Designers

Categories Articles, iPhone

This series is supported by Appboy – the most popular social outlet for mobile app lovers. Find out more about Appboy and be sure to check out their blog.

With it’s larger screen, multitouch capabilities and ultra-portability, the iPad is an ideal tool for designers, particularly when it comes to working on the go or going to client meetings. The following 10 apps are sure to be useful at times, from simple sketches to keeping track of your thoughts, make the iPad your go-to device when you’re away from the office.

iMockups – by Endloop Systems Inc.

With iMockups you can quickly create wireframes and mockups for websites and iPhone/iPad apps.

Adobe® Ideas – by Adobe Systems Incorporated

Use Adobe Ideas for quick sketches and design concepts.

Masque – by Ubermind, Inc.

Edit your photos and then share your creations with Masque.

Brushes – by Steve Sprang

Create beautiful paintings on your iPad with Brushes.

Penultimate – by Cocoa Box Design

With Penultimate, you’ll be taking notes in style and in your own handwriting.

iThoughtsHD – by CMS

Keep all your thoughts organized and connected with iThoughtsHD.

Markup – by Soroush Khanlou

Markup allows you to connect to and edit your websites on the go.

Photogene – by Omer Shoor

Another handy, simple to use app for improving your digital photos.

Sketchbook Pro – by Autodesk Inc.

Autodesk brings you another fabulous product in Sketchbook Pro, a high quality paint and drawing app.

Freeform – by Stunt Software

Freeform is a really simple vector drawing tool.

Thorren is Director of Operations at Appboy, the premier social network for mobile app users and developers.

  • Tod

    This has just turned into a list site?

  • These apps are pretty amazing… and making me re-think purchasing an iPad. I want iMockup! I wonder if they have a similar app for the iPhone…

    Great post!

  • Your missing ArtStudio, PhotoForge, Strip Design, TouchUp and Juxtaposer!

  • @Tod – I’m a guest poster on Inspired M and can’t speak for the other authors, but for my part, the intent is not to just provide a list, but to provide value.

    The reason I haven’t added a lot of context behind each of the apps is two-fold – first, it would make this a really long post and tough to read through. Second, I think these are really great apps, but the reality is, everyone should check them out for themself, they are not all going to work for everyone.

  • @David Scott Leibowitz,

    Thanks for the heads up. I will check those out. It’s always tough to narrow down a list. I think the reality is that the iPad has a lot of really great apps, particularly for those involved in the creative process.

    There’s a reason I labeled the post as 10 must have apps, not the “Best Apps”. There are way too many good ones out there for me to profess to be able to select the best apps for anyone, that’s a little too subjective and also a matter of personal choice.

    I love finding new apps, so really appreciate your feedback, looking forward to checking those ones out.

  • Thorren, I like this post mate. Short and straight to object.


    PS: agree with David, some apps forgotten. :)

  • I can’t wait to have an iPad someday. This is only the beginning too.


  • Amazing apps..really nice..thanks for this wonderful list…

  • But what if I can’t afford to by these apps? We need just a few decent free ones. They just don’t exist right now…

  • @Scott Corgan,

    Adobe Ideas is a free app and really good quality. http://appboy.com/ipad/adobe-ideas-10-for-ipad-200868/

    For Photo Editing, check out Filterstorm. I haven’t tried it, but it looks to be fairly decent: http://appboy.com/ipad/filterstorm-199877/

    Art Studio is a drawing/painting app that is only $0.99: http://appboy.com/ipad/artstudio-for-ipad-200247/

    Anyway, there are some out there, just have to spend some time looking. The reality is that the iPhone has taught us to believe that we should be getting software for free, the reality is, $9.99 for a really good app should be something we’re willing to pay. Developers deserve to be compensated. It might mean we don’t all have hundreds of apps on our devices, but we might also find that the ones we’ve got are better used :)

  • This is a fantastic list. With the iPad being so new, it’s going to take a while for the app market to stabilize and the winners to float to the top. Lists like this are really helpful for getting the word out about the good ones though; we’ll have to check them out!

  • @Thinkstock, thanks for the feedback. Would love to hear what you think of the apps after you’ve had a chance to see them.

  • Will do Thorren. Still looking for the perfect Twitter client for the iPad as well if you have any suggestions.

  • How about Omnigraffle? Find it really usefulll..
    Plus Tweet Deck and Twitterrific..

  • Nice collection!

  • I’m the founder of iMaginemachine.com and we are the developers and publishers of a unique creativity app from the desk of the artist Hanoch Piven (pivenworld.com).
    It’s called Faces iMake-Creative Craziness!!!

    It give you the ability to experience creating Faces and whatever your imagination holds from everyday objects. It is base on his sold out around the world workshops.


  • ipad got so many problems,but still can’t stop people buying.
    I guess just outlooking attract many,and some Personalize setting make you more comfortable.
    Specially,it never similar with any others,so if you are conditioned to use Apple stuff,you are in.

  • Giotto

    Sketchbook is just amazing, it really shows off the real potential of the iPad..it can be done so much..
    I would also add Dragon Dictation, which works pretty nice when taking audio/voice notes.
    Here is also another interesting selection of the best ipad apps, with some great choices…

  • Some brilliant apps there, I liked the keyboard app, yeah it’s a little cheesy and doesn’t really give off the desired key notes but it’s fun and passes the time.

  • Very cool man!
    I love the post for inspiration but if you want to know some really cool IPad apps check this out http://www.dreamincoloronline.com/15-useful-ipad-apps-for-webdesigners/

  • nathan james higginson

    hi im writting to you concerning an app design that will be an excellent idea ad would like you to contact me for an interview in private to help me create the design for a percentage of my idea. The sooner we get this app underway the sooner we make cash.
    Please help with this idea or i will or another company will.
    Please reply asap as technology is fast these days and dont want to miss my chance.
    Yours thankfully nathan higginson
    24 emerson street leumeah2560

  • check out these10 Amazing ipad apps http://bit.ly/hEzjAD

  • i am looking forward to the ipad 2 release…

  • excellent. i love the designing apps. thank you for posting the information here. ;)

  • Candis Spraul

    Are there any apps that can be used as a tablet for image editing/creating?

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