Apple’s biggest tablet yet is aimed squarely at professionals. There’s a 12.9-inch display with split-screen functionality and plenty of power under the hood. Now, there’s also a 9.7-inch iPad Pro, which boasts a smaller screen, but the same promise of productivity. But if you’re looking to get really productive, you’ll need the right software. That’s why we’ve gathered together the best productivity apps for the iPad Pro. Snag the apps on this list, and you’ll have everything you need to conquer the business world.
Microsoft Office (from $7 per month)
When it comes to word processing, spreadsheets, and presentations, Microsoft’s offerings are still streets ahead of the competition. Write up reports, manage your data, and dazzle your business peers in style with the complete Office package. The bad news for iPad Pro owners is that you’ll need an Office 365 subscription to get full editing access to Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. The good news is that these are excellent apps with split view support and bucket loads of features. The best deal is probably $100 for 12 months, because it allows you to install the software on five different devices, while granting you 1TB of OneDrive storage and 60 minutes of free Skype calls.
If you ever engage in Web development, you’ll find this app invaluable. It’s a powerful text editor that supports every conceivable file format. You can work on pages with your website up in Safari at the same time, thanks to the split view support. It also allows for easy file management and transfer, handy shortcuts to speed up your coding, and even provides a full-featured SSH client built-in. It’s everything you need to manage your website. If you would prefer a simpler editor for your blog and just use Markdown, then check out Byword ($6).
Omni Productivity Pack ($150)
This pack offers four of the Omni Group’s best productivity apps: OmniGraffle for diagramming and wireframing, OmniPlan for project management, OmniOutliner for organizing data, and OmniFocus for task management. With this pack, you’ll have the tools you need for everything from visualizing navigation for a user interface to creating a complex Gantt chart. These apps will help you to get organized and to stay that way. If you only need one, you can buy each of them separately.
PDF Expert 5 ($10)
If you have to read, edit, and possibly annotate PDFs, then this is the only app you need. It’s really easy to use and allows you to highlight text, fill in forms, create notes, and sign documents. It also supports a bunch of different file formats, features integration with the major cloud services, and provides a handy review mode that lets you track changes in a similar fashion to Word. It usually costs $10, but at the time of writing, it’s entirely free.
Roambi Analytics (free)
How do you turn an ugly spreadsheet into something more palatable? You use an app like Roambi, which can suck in data from Excel, Google Spreadsheets, databases, and a host of other sources before transforming it into a sexy report or chart. The visualizations are high quality and sure to add weight to your argument. Moreover, all you need to do is import your data and Roambi will automatically filter and analyze it on your behalf.
Vizable is a beautiful iPad app that will turn your data into interactive visualizations. It’s the perfect app to have on hand when you’re ready to present your data to various company executives, or during a board meeting. Vizable can read data from a spreadsheet or a CSV file, and once imported, you can interact with your data using a host of touch-based gestures. And really, Vizable extends to any type of data you have stored on a spreadsheet, so it’s not limited to professional use. It allows you to analyze and explore trends over time, and then share your visualized data using a static image or through a Viz file.
Chances are you’ve used Slack on your phone and desktop, and if you’re working hard on your iPad Pro, why not stay in communication with the rest of your team? While it’s great to see more of a conversation while in full-screen mode, Slack’s best use-case for the iPad Pro is its split-screen support, which makes it easier to keep in touch with your coworkers while simultaneously working on something else. It’s handy if a coworker sends you a document as well, since you can view it while continuing to message one another.
Evernote doesn’t need an introduction, but it does need credit for adding support for the Apple Pencil, which is exclusive to the iPad Pro. Using the app, you’ll be able to write quick handwritten notes to yourself, or make a quick sketch. However, Evernote’s split-screen support is the software’s real hallmark. This makes it incredibly easy to work on a project while using another app — like Slack, for example. It’s also a quick way to copy and paste something from another app to Evernote.
This article was originally published on November 14, 2015, and updated on May 6, 2016, by Julian Chokkattu to include Slack, Evernote, and Vizable.