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Thursday, October 20, 2011

Val Steed’s List of Top Ten iPad Apps


1. GoodReader

GoodReader is a well-known document reader. I prefer good reader to any other one as it is cheap, fast, and easy to work. I can easily annotate a PDF and store the annotations in the file or as a separate file.

2. Dropbox

Free for up to 2GB Dropbox is probably the best synchronization tool I have ever used. I have it loaded on my iPad, laptop, and desktop. All files sync in seconds and are available across all systems. Be sure to have strong Windows passwords and invoke the security keys on the iPad. I seconds I can create a file on my desk system, access it in Dropbox on my iPad then open it in GoodReader.

3. Speed Test – OOKLA

Free speed test. There are many speed test apps so be sure to get the right one. Only the one from OOKLA is this good. Great graphics and reliable results. You would be surprised at how often the speed of your internet connection changes.

4. FaceTime

No doubt one of the best communication tools ever invented. The only issue is that the person on the other end of FaceTime must have an iPad or iPhone 4 or newer. Despite the face this is an Apple app and comes with your iPad do not overlook it’s power and capabilities.

5. Photobucket

2GB of free cloud storage and an interface that works great across all devices. The key to Photobucket is that it becomes your library of photos and videos that you can easily link to for Facebook, LinkedIn or any other website posting.


I am a baseball fan so this ranks high on my list despite the fact that you have to buy an annual subscription to the service each year for around $15. You get to see any game not blocked by blackouts in HD (internet connection permitting).

7. Intellicast HD Weather

I guess I am part Eubank (local joke). Truth is, I love weather and especially like to know what I am headed for when traveling. This is the best of the weather apps to date as it gives you HD radar. Try zooming in/out and you can examine the world in detail even ocean beds!

8. Keynote

Not free, Apple app. This is a pay for app that is the PowerPoint of the Apple line. If you want to do presentations from your iPad this is the tool. Create the presentation in PowerPoint on your PC, transfer the file with Dropbox, open with Keynote, and present. Viloa, it is that easy but it will cost you $ 9.99

9. Dragon Dictation

Free app. Best voice recongnition to date. You talk, it types, this can help with email responses especially when they become lengthy on the iPad.

10. Concur

The app is free, the account with Concur will not be free. You can get a personal free account for you by signing up for the Concur Accountants program. See click on the Concur Accountants Program and join. Then you can use this app on your iPad to help track and report expenses. We have our whole company signed up and this is a great tool.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

iPad 2

iPad 2,

I held off upgrading for a while so I could evaluate reasons to move from an iPad 1 to an iPad 2. I have now moved up to an iPad 2 based on the following considerations.


1. Ability to project entire iPad screen to audiences.

2. Many mobile apps now emerging for the CPA firm market.

3. Faster, lighter, clearer


4. FaceTime

5. Easier to carry

Overall, I am extremely pleased and surprised that the iPad 2 feels so different and runs so much better. This was touted as a small upgrade based on certain features but I feel like it is a substantial upgrade based on size, speed, and the one killer feature the projection to audiences.

Definitely recommend and upgrade to anyone and a new buy to a non iPad user.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Thomson Reuters Enables Seamless iPad™ Access for Virtual Office CS® and SaaS Customers

ANN ARBOR, Mich., March 8, 2011—Users of Thomson Reuters cloud offerings now have a new way to access their CS Professional Suite® applications and data, thanks to a new release that offers support for the Apple iPad tablet.

iPad users will have full, secure access to Software as a Service (SaaS) for CS Professional Suite® and the Virtual Office CS environment, providing easy access to staff portals and client files within FileCabinet CS®

The new functionality is a better fit for today’s computing environment, which is expanding beyond traditional PCs to offer users a variety of tools for different mobile environments, according to Scott Fleszar, vice president of strategic marketing for the Tax & Accounting business of Thomson Reuters. He said the new capabilities offer a way to meet the rising expectations of increasingly tech-savvy Gen X and Gen Y clients.

“The massive success of the iPad is certainly no secret, but what has surprised a lot of people is its popularity as a business tool,” Fleszar said. “More and more firms are discovering how valuable they can be at meetings, during client appointments, at client sites, or in situations where it’s just not practical to carry a full-sized laptop. And this new release ensures that our users can take full advantage of that convenience. The instant-on feature of the iPad and its convenient size and portability are freeing professionals from the need to lug larger computing devices as well as paper documents and collateral.”

In addition to using iPads to access apps and data, CS Professional Suite users have access to

Mobile CS on iPhones and iPads for convenient mobile access to Practice CS data.

For more information about Virtual Office CS, SaaS for the CS Professional Suite, and other Thomson Reuters web services offerings, visit

, including source documents, tax returns, and financial statements.

Monday, March 7, 2011


While I am late to the online photo game it is because I have not liked any site so far. I have tried Picasa, Office Live, etc. I have now settled on Photobucket and love it. Easy to manage, store, share, move and much more. I am very happy with this solution and now am looking to use my iPad to help manage photos. Viewing and managing photos on the iPad is super.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Angry Birds

O.K., o.k. I caved in and bought Angry Birds for the iPad. I am not much for games at all but this one is very fun and it also has the ability to distract kids when needed. Only game I am recommending to date.