Ten iPad Apps for AV Managers by Virginia Rubey

4/13/2010 12:03:36 PM
By PSN Staff

When “iPad” first hit the headlines, Kleiner Perkins invested $100 million in iPad app building startups. Consumers were hit by higher eBook prices across the board. Colleges like Seton Hill and George Fox decided to grant freshmen an iPad in the Fall.

If the game is changing, what’s your position? AV Technology magazine has the iPad app list for AV and IT professionals. We’ve listed the best iPad apps that showcase audio, video, and the ever-evolving capabilities of the AV industry.

They’re the apps that understand what AV professionals love about their work, and what clients love about AV professionals: cutting-edge capability paired with creativity.

Top Ten iPad Apps

Crestron Electronic’s Mobile Pro G ($99.99) allows Crestron system users to control multiple locations from a Crestron graphical interface that registers room temperature, lighting levels, shade position, volume and digital media metadata anywhere throughout a building or campus, in real time. The new app, according to the company, “transforms the Apple iPad into a full Crestron touchpanel.”

CommandFusion’s iViewer (Free) is an all-in-one package for the AV integrator who needs two way remote control of more than a few TCP/IP capable hardwares and softwares, including Crestron, AMX, Control4, GlobalCache, IRTrans, and others. Users can run commands/macros with page specific timers, create custom commands, and design a custom interface via CF’s guiDesigner software, which takes advantage of the iPad’s 1024x768 screen resolution. With improved subpage transitions, configurable statusbar visibility, Winamp control, and other fixes through feedback processing upgrades, iViewer for iPad is looking good.

TInSys VideoCalc ($2.99) maximizes the quality of your projected presentation - literally. With AV technology advancing faster than you can say, “iPad,” AV pros have the attention and the ideas, which they’re presenting on the big screen. VideoCalc computes ideal projector and viewer seat positioning based on entered screen dimensions, projector throw range, audience and room size, making the projection as riveting as your ideas.

TInSys AudioCalc ($2.99) emphasizes the qualitative difference a professional sound systems makes. By evaluating prime speaker positioning with a frequency, period, and wavelength converter, it enriches the audio experience in any space. A band tool compliments the AV professional’s expert parametric EQ setup, which is further enhanced by tools that ensure optimal speaker distances, delays, required amp power, and your client’s unparalleled audio experience.

LogMeIn’s Ignition ($29.99) offers a VNC option with multi-monitor support so you can log in to your Mac and/or PC with virtually no setup - just download the universal app for access from your iPhone, iPod Touch, or your iPad. You’ll get iPad-optimized resolution, network speed and display options, keyboard mapping, desktop shortcuts, settings control, right and left click capability, function keys, and navigation options so you can move around the screen with your finger or navigate with your mouse. Ignition for iPads has yet to include all the VNC features of its desktop and USB versions - but LogMeIn is working on it. If they work as fast as their iPad app does, Ignition might just drive MobileMe out of Tech Town.

For crossover professionals working in commercial and home environs....Savant’s Rosie 4i ($9.99) is a magic wand - er, pad - for home automation clients who have Savant’s Rosie or Protégé system installed. A demo mode showcases the app’s intuitive interface, multi-zone whole house control, and a built-in media search function.  

ElasticFiction’s Splitbrowser ($1.99) is the app Apple would have built in to the first-generation iPad, if the iPhone OS 4 release date wasn’t already circled on the Climaxes of Cupertino calendar. Though users can’t multi-task in this generation of iPads, Splitbrowser facilitates dual-site browsing so you don’t have to alternate tabs when comparing app offerings, recipes, or the utility of different  AV equipment for your company. With portrait or landscape view options, adjustable site margins, and independent toolbars, Splitbrowser is like having two iPads in one: imperfect, but pretty cool. It also gives users a tiny taste of what they should expect in iPad 2.0 .

Bonnier’s Popular Science + ($4.99) ran with the iPad’s advanced opportunity for graphics and content layout, and other digital magazines on iPad are racing to compete. Intuitive swipe-based navigation provides science and technology professionals with a seamless experience of images and articles together or in the spotlight. The offline library makes each digital issue well worth the cost of the paper edition - who wants a filing cabinet full of stellar photos that have aged in a cellar?

Vito Technology’s Star Walk ($4.99) adds technology to natural wonder, and the sum is beyond beautiful. User-controlled settings enhance your personal experience of the universe in this 3D planetarium experience, which showcases the magnificent technology Samsung and other 3DTV developers realized, with the content that hasn’t been initialized. While waiting for iPhone OS 4, new iPad apps, and more 3D content to be unveiled, the Star Walk time machine feature shows off the wonders of our current technologies - and reveals the sky scape of a future night.
 
Autodesk’s Sketchbook Pro ($7.99) isn’t an app like Elements or Marvel Comics. It’s an app like you want it to be, and it likes you whether you’re a visual tech professional, an artist, or if you can’t draw a straight line with a ruler - though for $8, this is a prime option for the latter to learn. The painting and drawing app is for iPad users who create technology, and use technology to create. Though it’s more of a creation-stimulation game than an office tool for AV professionals, this one shows promise for iPad productivity.

--Virginia Rubey is a writer and researcher for AV Technology.

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