We live in a mobile age, my friends. An age where an office is more of a formality and a storage space than an actual necessity. An age where companies are actually closing their offices down so employees can work out of their homes, their cars, and anywhere else they happen to land. So it should come as no surprise that tools and technologies that are making it easier for those employees to get out of the office are some of the hottest on today’s market.
And, Apple being Apple, I also doubt it’s going to surprise you when I tell you that the iPad apps that are letting designers work from home, from their car, from their coffee shop or their favorite restaurant or pub are the hottest topics of conversation in today’s designer drawing rooms.
So, without further ado, let’s share what they’ve shared and talk about the 16 hottest iPad apps for mobile designers today.
Adobe Ideas: Adobe Ideas acts as a mobile digital sketchbook and, with the awesomeness that Adobe design tools have long been known for, offers up to ten design layers, making it a favorite for iPad design out on the road.
iMockups: iMockups acts as a design board, allowing you to quickly design wireframes and mockups for your website or other project. Also available for iPhone.
SketchyPad: This one, I have to admit, intrigued me when I first saw it laid out. Sketchy Pad does exactly what it says it does-offers you a place to “sketch” your website or app. I’m really at a loss for how to explain it beyond that, but it’s well worth checking out.
AirDisplay: As someone who regularly uses their mobile phone as a minicomputer, this thrilled me. I mean seriously thrilled me. Why? Because with AirDisplay, you can use your iPad as an additional monitor to your other mobile devices. Deceptively pointless, this provides a large scale view of something you’ve spent months trying to squint at. (Also makes a great tool for entertaining the kiddies when you’re out on the road!)
MindNode: This mindmapping/brainstorming tool for your iPad is the perfect place to expand and connect ideas, which is great when you’re having a brainstorming fit mid-marketing campaign!
FTPOnTheGo: You love FTP. I love FTP. So there’s no point in pretending that something that doesn’t make accessing, editing and moving FTP files out on the road without giving yourself a massive migraine isn’t the coolest thing since sliced bread. Seriously.
Freeform: Freeform is a vector drawing tool for the iPad that allows you to create just about anything, then export it in an easy to use JPEG, PNG or PDF format. Nothing fancy, nothing difficult, and it’s compatible for use with most other mobile programs and applications.
iThoughtsHD: Another fun brainstorming tool that’s easy to export, this is fun for designers but brutally necessary for project managers out on the road.
LiveSketch HD: You’d never be caught without a sketchpad. Now you can have the digital form. LiveSketchHD works just like a regular sketchpad, but it’s embedded into your iPad for traveling convenience and protection from prying eyes, little or otherwise!
AutoDesk Sketchbook Mobile: Painting and drawing software for the artistically gifted designer. Now also available for Android, designers who have used AutoDesk (I haven’t personally taken it for a test drive yet) really like its versatility and the way it doesn’t pen them in to any specific type of design media. You’ve got your 3-D and your stick figures all in one!
TypeDrawing: Typography for photos and fun for fonts, typography takes calligraphy to a whole new level for designers. People who have used it are raving over its ease and speed, even for an iPad newbie.
Photopad by Zagg: A high-quality photoediting app for a mobile device, if there’s something you want to do to your photo with a regular photoediting software you can’t do here, I haven’t found it yet. It doesn’t, however, seem to have the capabilities of Photoshop and may prove more helpful to photographers than graphic designers.
Filterstorm: Filterstorm seems to offer more versatility in photo editing for the iPad than Photopad. This is another one I haven’t had the chance to play with yet; however, their product description page claims that they’re a favorite with photojournalists.
Omnigraffle: Charts. Wireframes. Diagrams. Page layouts. Omnigraffle. Check it out.
Moodboard Pro: Moodboard creates mood and inspiration boards for your family. I’m really not sure how to describe it, aside from the finished products are absolutely gorgeous and offer a definite improvement over the same same-old same-old.
Brushes App: Another app takes the artist’s easel out onto the iPad. This offers realistic layering, a number of brush options, and the opportunity to digitally create works that look like they were made on the easel and brought out into the digital world…
…explaining why the iPad really is the latest and greatest for today’s mobile design.