Grab yourself a cheap TouchPad? Sick of those empty-looking app screens? Let us fill it up with some great apps, free and paid-for, to make the most out of it.
It’s worth saying that as the HP TouchPad can handle both HTML 5 and Flash, many sites can provide rich multimedia content on the TouchPad without the need for an app download.
Games on the HP TouchPad
Slice It! HD
The mobile-gaming megahit, Slice It has made it onto the TouchPad, bringing the ever-so-slightly educational fun of cutting shapes into precisely equal portions to your fingertips. Simple to figure-out, difficult to master, and well worth forking out money for.
Glyder 2 HD
Making the most of the speedy processor found in the Touchpad, this a fully-3D gliding adventure.
Made up of several themed levels with a multitude of different tasks., the closest comparison we could make is to Super Mario 64’s feather-capped stages. Tilt the Touchpad to dive or climb, and steer the glider. If you run out of upwards thrust, search for heat currents to get back into the sky.
Angry Birds HD
Do we need to explain any more? TouchPad users will find the definitive smartphone gaming hit free to download. You’ll find there’s plenty of levels to battle through, and seasoned bird-flinging pros can move onto Angry Birds Rio, a paid-for addition to the Angry Birds oeuvre.
Duke Nukem has found another place to relive his 90’s PC adventure – this is a copy of the series’ greatest hit Duke Nukem 3D, except you’ll control the Duke with on-screen directional buttons. Expect strippers and aliens in almost even measure.
Utility apps for the TouchPad
Take your pick from these two classy weather apps. Both are also available on Android devices, and so will be familiar to anyone with an Android phone.
You can select your location, and add extra cities that you’re likely to visit.
Whilst Accuweather has a slightly glossier effect overall, WeatherBug has webcam live feeds, and world maps that have infra-red layers to show cloud cover, and temperature highs and lows.
Sadly limited by the need for a WiFi connection (it uses Google translate as a base) this app will attempt to auto-detect the language entered and will attempt to translate it into most of the popular languages spoken around the world. There’s is a history to refer to translations offline.
Music apps for the HP TouchPad
7Digital mp3 music
7Digital provide the music store on the HP Touchpad, which means you can expect to see a wide range of contemporary artists as well more mature fare. It’s still not reached the heady heights of iTunes, but there should be plenty to shop around for.
Prices stand at £7.99 for an album and around 99p for single downloads.
Multitouch Piano HD
Making the most of the multi-touch input, this Keyboard app keeps it simple, with two rows of ivory . No silly instruments or effects here, just vanilla piano.
Another app that’s arrived free on TouchPads, this offers up a wide range of commercial radio stations to stream from your tablet.
You’ll have to head to the Beeb’s site to stream radio content from them, but alongside the likes of XFM, Gold and Classic FM, you’ll get a huge range of international radio stations that broadcast on the web.
You can also get access to plenty of podcast content too – check the search box in the top right corner.
Social networking on the TouchPad
Surprisingly tablets with an official app of Facebook are still rather short on the ground. Not an issue for the Touchpad, which has a very slick multi-column interface.
Spaz HD beta Preview
Conversely, it’s rare that a mobile device launches without an official Twitter app offering. It its stead, we plumped for Spaz HD beta Preview – the best (only?) Twitter client we’ve found. Obviously, there’s also the official web client, but Spaz HD is a pretty slick offering, reminding us of TweetDeck on the iPad, though the image uploader seems to be broke at the moment.
You may not find the likes of Batman or the X-Men on the Ave comic viewer, but there’s a surprisingly eclectic range of comics, including several French offerings, some videogame adaptations and retro comics from yesteryear.
You do need to register to get access , and the original website is en Francais. But don’t let that stop you – especially when there’s plenty of free comic content, including some inspired cold war scare stories with adverts for military bonds.
Fingers crossed, we’ll see the Amazon Kindle app soon, which is available to download for the Touchpad in the US, but as of yet , it’s not in the HP App Catalog.
An honourable mention for the HP App Catalog, if only for the very slick monthly appzine, Pivot which previews a handful of apps, typically around a theme. It’s worth adding several of our app picks above were covered in previous issues.