Looking for great free apps and games for your iPad? Here are some of our favorites!

The App Store is home to millions of apps and a surprising number of them are available for free or have free versions that allow you to take advantage of most, if not all the features of the regular apps (with some ads sometimes).

Whether you're new to iPad and looking for a fast, free way to get started with apps, or you're just bored and looking for a little free fun, check out the apps and games below. Here are our favorite free apps for iPad across several different categories!

Best free social networking apps for iPad

Facebook

Facebook is the most popular social network on the planet, and it's always been one of the most popular free apps on the iPad. Inside the free Facebook app, you can update your status, view photos, and check into your location. You can also keep up with your news feed, messages, events, pages, chat, as well as upload your photos and videos, and much, much more.

Twitter

The free, official Twitter app for iPad is the best way to get started finding cool celebrities and interesting internet personalities to follow. Get a list of daily trending topics so you can see what the whole world is talking about, and join in the conversation!

LinkedIn

With the LinkedIn app for iPad, you will have on-the-go access to your professional network. You can keep up with the latest news and keep up with your groups and share content.

Best free IM and communications apps for iPad

Skype

The free Skype app for iPad lets you make free audio and video calls and exchange text chats from your iPad to other iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad users, as well as Android, Mac, Windows, and millions more Skype users around the world. You can also buy Skype credits to call traditional phone numbers at really low prices.

IM+

IM+ from Shape Services gives you free access to Facebook, Google Talk, WLM, AIM, ICQ, and more right on your iPad. It also includes free mobile-to-mobile Beep service and works as a free alternative to SMS. Group chats, message history, multimedia messages, and more are also included.

Google Hangouts

Just like Skype, Google Hangouts excels at video conference calling. Turn on your webcam and talk face-to-face with anyone who has a Google account. You can have a video chat with up to 25 people in the same room, making it perfect for business meetings. At any time during a call, Google Hangouts will let you type out a message in the chat log, so you can ask the presenter a question without having to talk over other people.

Best free educational apps for iPad

iTunes U

The free iTunes U app for iPad gives you access to courses from universities and schools. These courses are completely free and even include assignments. iTunes U and the instructors provide course materials, including audio, video, books, documents and presentations, apps, and books. iTunes U includes over 500,000 free lectures, videos, books, and other resources on thousands of subjects from Algebra to Zoology.

Khan Academy

Khan Academy is one of the best products for education on the internet, and with the Khan Academy app for the iPad, you will have free access to over 2700 videos on topics ranging from kindergarten, advanced science, humanities, history, and more. Even more, you can download the videos to watch offline, keep up with what the teacher is saying with organized captions, and earn achievements as you learn.

Duolingo

Duolingo is an incredibly fun way to learn a new language. Whether you actively want to be multilingual or just love the idea of being able to learn something new, Duolingo uses little game-like activities to teach you to speak another language. French, German, Dutch, Russian — all the languages you could want to learn are included.

Duolingo has won plenty of awards, and on top of learning a new language, it will encourage you to keep coming back by awarding bonuses for multiple consecutive days playing. Perfect for helping you establish a routine.

Best free entertainment apps for iPad

YouTube

The entire world of YouTube is at your fingertips with the YouTube app. Link the app to your YouTube account and start watching all your subscribed channels instantly. With built-in notification support, so you never miss a new video from your favorite creator, the YouTube app is the perfect way to keep up on entertainment, tech news, the latest music videos, and more!

IMDB

IMDB's free iPad app means you're always only a few taps away from the latest show times, trailers, movie and TV rations, and cast and episode lists. It's the perfect couch-side companion for any serious entertainment buff and the perfect mobile app for cinema buffs!

TED

The free TED app for iPad blurs the lines between education and entertainment, showcasing interesting talks from experts in the fields of technology, entertainment, and design. With the TED app, you can browse their complete catalog of talks, bookmark and download your favorites, and share individual talks and playlists with your friends. It's like holding a genius in the palm of your hand.

Best free financial apps for iPad

Bloomberg

Bloomberg for iPad is a great way for casual traders and investors to interact with their stocks and stay up to date with world news. Whether you need to monitor stocks on your iPad casually or just find the urge to check out financial news, the free Bloomberg app has you covered.

Mint

The free Mint.com for iPad app gives everything you love about the website on the go and in the palm of your hand. You can track, manage, and budget your money, connect your bank, credit card, and other financial accounts, and safely, securely keep it with you wherever you are. It also syncs with the Mint.com website, so you're always up-to-date.

Best free games for iPad

Crossy Road

The classic Frogger-like game, Crossy Road, is a great casual game to play in your downtime even when you only have a couple of minutes to spare.

You need to get the chicken across the road by swiping in the direction you want to go, but be careful; the road is a dangerous place! Avoid the cars and get to the other side, and challenge your friend to do the same!

Fallout Shelter

Bethesda knocked it out of the park when they made Fallout Shelter, and it's a game I keep coming back to time and time again.

You're in charge of a Vault — an underground bunker built to protect people from the nuclear war — and the future of the community of people in your vault depends on your decisions. You'll need to keep people happy, but also safe, in this crazy post-apocalyptic world.

One of my favorite things about Fallout Shelter is Bethesda's continuing support for Fallout Shelter. The game launched in 2015 and it's still receiving updates, special events, and new content from the developers, making the game stay fresh for the players you have been playing from the beginning.

If you're a fan of the Fallout series of video games, Fallout Shelter will reward your knowledge with familiar names, jokes, and events; however, this game offers plenty of excitement and challenge to newcomers as well, making it a fantastic game for everyone.

Fire Emblem Heroes

Fire Emblem Heroes is a stellar game through and through. Whether you're a fan of the long-running series or a complete newcomer, Nintendo has beautifully designed a game that keeps both groups happy.

While game progression has all the hallmarks of a typical freemium game, such as needing to spend money to reach the top of the leaderboards or waiting various periods of time to unlock game items, you won't need to shell any money out to enjoy 95% of what Fire Emblem Heroes has to offer.

Fire Emblem Heroes is visually breathtaking, and it's clear to anyone who plays it that Nintendo put a lot of time and effort into creating this game, which means I'm going to enjoy putting a lot of time and effort into playing it.

Best free health and fitness apps for iPad

Epicurious

One of the biggest aspects of living a healthy life is to eat healthy food, and with the help of Epicurious Recipes and Shopping List for iPad, you shouldn't have a problem conjuring up healthy choices. This gorgeous recipe app is packed with recipes and regularly updates with new ones.

Medscape

With the free Medscape, you'll have complete access to mobile-optimized health information and decision-support tools including WebMD's Symptom Checker, Drugs & Treatments, First Aid Information and Local Health Listings.

MyFitnessPal

MyFitnessPal is free, the MyFitnessPal account is free, and if you're dedicated enough to stick with them, the positive effects they can have on your health are priceless. Keep track of what you eat, how much you are working out, etc. If you're looking to take better control of your fitness, download MyFitnessPal and start working towards a healthier lifestyle today.

Best free music apps for iPad

Shazam

How many times have you been listening to the radio or attending a party or watching TV when you hear a song that you like but have no idea what the name of the song is or even who the artist is? With the free Shazam app for iPad, all you have to do is let your mic listen to the song for about 30 seconds, and Shazam will tell you exactly which song it is!

Spotify

Spotify is one of the largest music streaming services around and is arguably the biggest competitor for Apple Music. With a monthly subscription of $9.99 (or $14.99 for a family membership), you can stream music from the company's huge catalog and download content for offline listening. However, the biggest benefit of Spotify is that there is a free tier that allows you to listen to anything in shuffle mode on iPhone and iPad without having to pay for it!

TuneIn Radio

The free TuneIn Radio app for iPad gives you on-the-go access to over 50,000 radio stations worldwide. From the local station where you may live now to the far away station where you may have grown up or simply visited and always remembered, TuneIn radio has over 120,000 free shows for you to choose from, right on your iPad.

-Free - Download Now

Best free navigation and location apps for iPad

Waze

The free Waze app for iPad uses OpenStreetMap data, which means you're contributing to building a map as you drive, and you also get to view the things added by others. The crowd-sourced nature of Waze lets users share information about traffic jams, accidents, speed traps, and other pertinent data. It includes standard turn-by-turn navigation, but the accuracy can vary depending on the quality of the maps in your area.

Google Earth

The free Google Earth app for iPad lets you hold the world in your lap. Spin the globe, fly over Antarctica, zoom through Tokyo, or simply check out your own back hard. Google Earth beautifully melds satellite and aerial mapping and imagery to give you just a glimpse of how Superman might feel.

Best free news apps for iPad

Flipboard

The free Flipboard for iPad app shows you the news that matters to you, along with recommendations from your Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram friends. That makes it a dynamic, up-to-date, and highly personalized magazine, right in the palm of your hand! It also makes it easy to share the stuff you like most back with your friends and social circles.

AP News

The free AP News app brings the Associated Press right to your iPad. With comprehensive, timely coverage of local and global news, it's not like having a newspaper or TV station in the palm of your hands — it's like having their news sources. Plus, if you find yourself in the middle of the news, you can even send the AP your tip!

Best free photo apps for iPad

Snapseed

If you're looking for an app that has dozens of tools to play and edit with, an app that allows you to be as precise as possible with editing on an iPad, or as simple and streamlined with fun and fast filters while still producing stunning results, then take a peek at Snapseed.

Designed to edit RAW photos, equipped with tools like healing, brush, structure, HDR, transform, crop, white balance, and so much more, and free to use on your iPad, Snapseed makes your photos look like they were shot and edited by a professional.

You can even add different effects and feels to your photographs, like grainy film, vintage filters, dramatic overlays, retrolux looks, noir effects, and so much more.

-Free - Download Now

VSCO

If you're someone who likes to add a filter to a photo and forget about it, or if you're someone who likes editing and creating content that'll pop on social media, check out a true online cult favorite: VSCO!

While VSCO isn't normally praised for its precise editing abilities, it does come with 15 different editing options to play around with, meaning you can easily adjust contrast, saturation, temperature, vignette, along with other things just like you would with most photo editing apps.

Where VSCO shines, though, is its stunning filters: once you slap a VSCO filter on a photo on your iPad, you really feel like a pro!

The app itself is free to download, but if you want to pick up any more filter packs or individual filters, then you're going to have to shell out a couple of dollars.

-Free - Download Now

Best free productivity apps for iPad

Adobe Reader

With the free Adobe Reader app, you can have all your PDFs stored right on your iPad. What's more, you aren't limited to just viewing PDFs, but you can annotate them with text, handwriting, strikethroughs, highlights, and more. You can also fill out forms and add your signature.

Evernote

Evernote isn't just a great free note taking app for iPad. It's a great free note taking app on almost every platform. That means no matter where you are, or what device you have access to, your notes are always there for you. You can also add pictures and search for text in the images, add voice notes, and easily share what you've collected.

Dropbox

The free Dropbox app gives you access to all your files stored in your Dropbox account (free up to 2GB). You can mark items as favorites to store them locally on your iPad for offline viewing, save photos and videos to your Dropbox account, and easily share them with family, friends, and colleagues.

Best free sports apps for iPad

MLB.com at Bat

Although it has premium options, the free or "lite" version of MLB at Bat for iPad still gives you access to lots of great content. You can watch the scoreboard during every game, see news and highlights from recent games, buy tickets to upcoming games and check in around the league for other scores and highlights. While diehard baseball fans will want to buy the full app, the Lite version is great for casual fans on the go.

theScore

Any sports, any league, anywhere in the world, theScore lets you follow all your favorite teams. Get the latest news updates from your favorite league, or check to see how your favorite player is doing in the game that's currently live. Plus, theScore is known for having super accurate and timely notifications, meaning while the game is live, you'll always know exactly what's happening.

Best free travel apps for iPad

Yelp

If you're searching for a place to eat, shop, drink, relax, or play, the free Yelp app will provide you with a map or list of exactly what you're looking for. Each location is also filled with reviews by users who have been to that place before. When you decide on a place and have finished your visit, you can leave a review of your own for other users to read when in the same predicament that you were in.

TripIt

Tripit, when paired with a free TripIt account, becomes your virtual travel assistant. Simply email any flight or hotel confirmations to TripIt, and it'll automagically get logged and displayed on your iPad, along with helpful maps and additional information to make your travel safer and easier.

Google Translate

While there are a lot of language courses and travel references available for the iPad, the free Google Translate app lets you find the right phrase, in the right language, right when you need it. Text translation is available in 64 languages and voice translation in 17. Yup, you can talk instead of type! Fantastique! Hen hao!

Your favorite free iPad apps?

Let us know in the comments below!