TiPb checks out the best, most must-have apps to load up on your iPhone or iPad before you head into the Christmas Holidays
Wondering how you'll get through all the Christmas cooking, cleaning, shopping, and entertaining? Luckily there are lots of iPhone and iPad apps for that. Whether you need to take your turkey (or tofu!) up a notch, get the perfect gift for that special someone, or just survive the
relatives festivities, read on for TiPb's top 5 favorite, most recommended, most must-have iPhone and iPad apps to get you through Christmas and into the New Year.
Epicurious Recipes and Shopping List (Universal)
From the famed website of the same name Epicurious brings the best in seasonal recipes to your iPhone and iPad year round, but they really give it their all for Christmas. Currently featured categories include Christmas Cookies, Pies and Tarts, Christmas Dinners, Holiday Desserts, Christmas Cocktails, Edible Gifts, Holiday Sides, and Vegetarian Holiday fare. From full time foodies to those who only cook -- and panic about it -- this time of year, Epicurious is our go-to app to get our Christmas cheer started in style. Universal app - download once, use on iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. [Free - iTunes link]
Also check out:
- iTunes Holiday Cooking Apps [Various - iTunes link]
Gift Plan (iPhone)
Watching Homer Simpson race out the door, hop into the car, and speed off to the gas station because he forgot to buy that all-important Christmas gift may be funny to watch but it's terrifying when it happens to you. Gift Plan makes sure it never ever does. While it works for birthdays, anniversaries, and pretty much any special occasion, it really shines over Christmas when everyone needs presents all at once. Just enter in who you have to buy for, include all-important metrics like your lady's dress size or boss' hobbies, add ideas as you get them, and then let Gift Plan do the heavy reminder lifting. And hey, if it's too late and you missed a gift this year, whip out Gift Plan and add it in for next year. The app is cheap. Staying off the couch and out of the dog house is priceless. [$1.99 - iTunes link]
Amazon Windowshop (iPad)
Once you know what you want to buy, you still need to buy it. Online shopping offers tons of options from the megamarts to the mom and pops but Amazon is the reigning king of great selection, good prices, and fast delivery. With Amazon Windowshop, they've even made it more fun to get your shopping done. It's a completely custom, totally optimized iPad interface and it makes browsing for items a fast, fluid experience. All the usual product categories are there, as are featured items, best sellers, new releases, most wished for, and appropriately for the season -- most gifted. If you're an Amazon Prime member, or don't mind forking over the extra cash for next or second-day delivery, it can even rescue the last-minute shopper in you. [Free - iTunes link]
Also check out:
- iTunes Apps for Holiday Shopping [Various - iTunes link]
Scrabble, the classic word game, is available for both iPhone and iPad, though you have to buy each separately. Each works pretty much as you'd expect -- you can play Scrabble on your iPhone or iPad with them, just the way you've played the board game for years if not generations. But here's where it gets especially great for the holidays: If you have an iPad and an iPhone, or especially if a group of you have iPhones, you can use the iPad as the Scrabble board and each keep your individual letter tiles on your iPhone via the free Scrabble Tile Rack app. Then, where you're ready to play your word, you can flick the tiles from your iPhone to the iPad board. It supports up to 4 friends and/or family members and while gimmicky it's also a great. [$0.99 on sale - iPad iTunes link, iPhone iTunes link] [Free - Tile Rack iTunes link]
Also check out:
- iTunes Holiday Apps (Games section) [Various - iTunes link]
How the Grinch Stole Christmas (Universal)
The classic Dr. Seuss book, How the Grinch Stole Christmas comes to both iPhone and iPad in interactive form. It can automatically read to kids, young and old, read but let you control the page turning, or let you read out loud all by yourself. You can also touch the pictures -- all Dr. Seuss originals, of course -- and their name will be written, and spoken out loud. There are a half-dozen or so Dr. Seuss books available in the App Store but this time of year none makes our tiny, cold little hearts grow more sizes than the story of the Grinch. Perfect to either help keep the kids busy or to read together for some quality time over the holidays. Universal app - download once, use on iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. [$3.99 - iTunes link]
- iTunes Holiday Apps (Books section) [Various - iTunes link]
Your top Christmas apps?
So there you have them, our top 5 best iPhone and iPad apps to help you survive Chistmas. Be sure to check out our Picks of the Week and iPhone App and Games Forum and iPad App and Games Forum for more recommendations, and if we missed any of your favorites leave them in the comments below!