If you're the proud new owner of an iPhone or iPad, you're probably working your way through iOS, trying to figure out what Apple's mobile operating system can and can't do. And while iOS 10 ships with a number of solid apps — Music, Safari and others will keep you entertained and help you get your work done — you can find many more on the App Store that will expand your iOS device's capabilities. After doling out for a new phone or tablet, you may be tempted to load up on free downloads: there are many great free apps for the iPhone and iPad. But the App Store also hosts a number of paid apps that are well worth the money and can really improve your iOS experience. Whether you're looking for apps to fill up a new iPhone or iPad or even if you just want something new for your existing device, these paid apps provide the most bang for your bucks.
Day One Journal is a $4.99 app that helps you journal from your new iPhone and iPad. The app includes the ability to input text and photos; it also features private-key encryption so no one can snoop on your private thoughts. Day One Journal includes a slew of filters that will help you find content quickly when you're searching for a particular entry.
Fantastical 2 (iPhone, iPad) is one of the best calendar apps for the iPhone. The $4.99 app comes with support for reminders, sophisticated event details, customized alerts, and much more. Fantastical 2 also supports dictation so you can create events with just a voice command. Fantastical 2 takes your standard Calendar app that comes with iOS and offers better features on all fronts.
While there are a lot of good podcasting apps out there, you'll have to shell out some cash for one of the best in the field. Castro does things a little bit differently compared to other podcast managers, presenting new episodes of your subscribed podcasts in an inbox, much like email, for triage. Users then queue the ones they want, which the app automatically downloads, allowing you to plan ahead for your listening. In addition to its unusual workflow, Castro throws in a slew of nice features such as playback controls, a sleep timer, discovery and sharing tools, show notes, and download management.
Soulver is a powerful replacement for the stock iOS calculator that mimics some of the best features of tape-style office calculator while offering digital extras. Soulver displays all of your calculations in a straight column, allowing you to quickly reference previous calculations, while an editing cursor allows you to go backward and forward to change lines, with each modification automatically updated downstream. The app includes support for custom labels, unit and currency conversions and users can save their sheets and share them or work on them later.
Just Press Record is a versatile one-tap recording app for iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch that also adds some useful features like built-in transcription features for easy note taking. Users can record from a long press on the app icon, from a lock screen or notification widget. (There's also an Apple Watch Complication for Just Press Record if you've got one of Apple's smartwatches.) The app can transcribe speech with support for a number of languages and spoken punctuation commands. Recordings are sorted by date and time, and can be manually renamed. The transcription also allows you to search through recordings for specific terms. Recordings and transcriptions sync to iCloud, and you can share them to a variety of apps.
There are a number of excellent mobile office apps out there, but iA Writer stands out as an extremely clean and no-nonsense writing app that still manages to pack in numerous useful features that don't get in the way of creating text. While at its core, a plain text editor, iA Writer includes support for embedding pictures, tables and text files, as well as a focus mode that visually highlights the current sentence, paragraph, or syntax elements, and a customizable keyboard bar lets you add convenient macros. Cloud storage support, numerous export options, and a raft of other features make this a stylish and powerful mobile text editor.
The first Reeder was a best-in-class RSS reader, and Reeder 3 builds on its predecessors to deliver a clean, feature-packed iOS news reader app that supports a variety of newsfeed services, such as Feedly, Feed Wrangler and Feedbin. The app displays stories in dense, no-nonsense email-style lists, and a clean article viewer strips away ads and other unnecessary extras. Swipe controls let you quickly switch from the article view to the full website, as well as user configurable actions in list-view. In addition, the app supports a variety of sharing services, such as Pocket, Pinboard and Evernote.