7 best productivity apps for iOS 7 you need to get now

by Derek Walter

October 7 2013

TalkBoard provides a blank surface for collaboration.
TalkBoard provides a blank surface for collaboration.

Many developers have been quick to jump on making their apps ready for the new design aesthetic of iOS 7. If you have made the leap, the experience is even better if you get some apps that have been optimized for Apple's newest operating system.

Here are some of the best ones you can get to enhance productivity (they also look great).

TalkBoard by Citrix

There is no lack of whiteboard/brainstorming apps, but TalkBoard is particularly well-designed and meshes nicely with iOS 7. Much like Paper by Fifty-Three, it creates a blank template for sketching your ideas. Yet by logging in with a Twitter, Facebook or Google+ account you can share and collaborate your white board markups with others. 

Using TalkBoard is a good way to do some group brainstorming without jumping into a full-blown Office or Google Docs file.

(See also: The 7 best productivity features of iOS 7 for iPad users)

Evernote

Evernote’s design was compromised in the eyes of some with its previous design, which relied too much on real-looking folders and other so-called skeuomorphic elements. Now that iOS 7 has tossed all of that aside, Evernote’s designers completely jettisoned the old look and went with one that blends rather well with Apple’s operating system redesign.

The color scheme uses various shades of green and plenty of white in an effort to let the user focus more on the content. While iOS 7 hasn’t pleased everyone, those who like the new look will enjoy what Evernote has done here.

Simplenote

If your note-taking needs are well, simpler, then give Simplenote a try. It excels as a minimalist cross-platform tool that works for jotting down quick thoughts and keeping them synced up across platforms. If you have other devices outside of Apple’s ecosystem, Simplenote is a good alternative to the default Notes app.

Mailbox

The iOS version of Apple’s Mail app got a makeover in iOS 7, but not much more on the feature side. For a more robust mail app that also looks great with the newest version of iOS consider Mailbox.

It has several features for power users, relying on swiping away emails for later viewing or deletion - all with the goal of achieving Inbox Zero. It is a great way to deal with a large volume of email from an iPad.

The app also sports some useful Dropbox integration (the company acquired Mailbox in March). You can view and save an attachment inside of Dropbox, or attach a file from your account to a message. If Dropbox is your primary hub for cloud storage, it can greatly enhance your productivity on the iPad.

Unfortunately, Mailbox still only works with a Google Apps or consumer Gmail account. Dropbox has been promising to expand  for a while, so hopefully it will be happening soon.

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Skype

While the update for Skype on iOS is a more subtle one, it adds in some nice touches that make it mesh better with the iOS 7 design scheme. Many of the icons get a refresh

The update also improves video quality and adds the option to join group voice calls from the iPhone.

Kashoo Accounting

Already a solid app for tracking receipts and business expenses, Kashoo Accounting has a flatter redesign for iOS 7. It lets you create a customized invoice to send to clients directly from the iPad. Up to 20 transactions per month are free; businesses with larger spreadsheet and accounting needs can subscribe for $49.99 per year.

Calendar 5

Gone is the popular Calendar+ from Readdle. Instead the company has replaced it with Calendar 5, which is a far superior offering to the native calendar app. It has a strong feature set to match its excellent design.

The $6.99 app features SMS alerts, a task manager, and background sync to ensure all of your data is there. The calendar also works offline if you're away from a data connection.

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