Developer: Ten Touch Apps
Price: $2.99
Version: 1.0

Design Rating: ★★★☆☆
Features Rating: ★★★★☆
Integration Rating: ★★★☆☆

Overall Rating: ★★★½☆

The iPad’s generous 9.5″ display makes it more appealing to those who are more pictorially interactive, using the iPad for more than just text-based purposes. iDesk for iPad is a canvas drawing tool with some unique features like shape recognition and cross deleting, allowing your fingers to do the talking.

The interface of iDesk is refreshingly clean, with more than 80% of the screen being taken up by a document. Two menu bars at the top and bottom offer a wide variety of options: up top you’ll find access to your library of documents; e-mail facilities; trash and new document creation. Down below is where all the customization happens, including the ability to draw an object, write text, change the colour of an object, move objects about, copy objects and an undo function. A help guide is also present to ensure that you’re making full use of iDesk.

The application is intuitive, particularly in the two features noted in the opening paragraph: shape recognition and cross deleting. The former, as the name suggests, recognizes a rough shape that you draw and turns it into a properly balanced object. Uneven circles become perfectly smooth, odd rectangles transform into having perfectly parallel edges etc. There does remain enough intuition for iDesk to recognize custom shapes, meaning you aren’t limited to standard shapes. The cross delete feature is equally cool, where you simply write an “X” over an object that you want deleted. However, this is great right up until the point where you want to draw an X (for example, the technical symbol for a lightbulb contains an X in it).

Adding text into a box also reveals another much-welcomed feature: auto-resizing. You don’t choose the size of the text that you want, rather simply write everything that you want to and iDesk will take care of the rest. A certain amount of space is automatically provided against the edges of the object you are writing text in, to ensure that your document looks clean and is easily readable. Whilst this doesn’t work perfectly for circles, in straight-line objects it works fine.

iDesk fills a gap that Apple has yet to address. For that reason, it’s worth checking out.

Posted in: iPad Apps and Games, iPad Productivity, Reviews

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