2022 Top Picks by Megan Lavey-Heaton on TUAW

With the holiday season winding down, you may find yourself with some spare cash or gift cards. Perhaps you’ve even gotten a new Apple gadget and are on the hunt for the best apps or accessories to go with it. Here are my top picks from 2012, listed in no particular order.

I began using a mophie juice pack (starting at $79.95) after purchasing it on Amazon for a conference, and it quickly became my go-to case. It significantly extended my iPhone’s battery life, allowing me to use my phone intensively throughout the day without a charge. It also protected my phone from several drops.

Despite the release of the iPhone 5, I’ve held off upgrading since a compatible mophie case isn’t available yet. However, mophie is actively addressing the demand with a daily giveaway of portable batteries until their new models are ready.

The iPad mini (starting at US $329) has become a favorite of mine for its portability and convenience, especially for multitasking. Initially skeptical, I quickly became a fan of its compact size, using it as a secondary screen or a lightweight alternative to my laptop. Keep an eye out for refurbished models soon to be available at the Apple Store.

Although the iPad mini’s Smart Cover didn’t impress me due to its high price and limited functionality, I found a suitable alternative in the Belkin Classic Tab Cover with Stand ($29.99). It offers a decent stand and is widely available, though I’m now leaning towards the BookBook cover.

The Belkin cover is a solid starting option available in black, pink, and purple.

At Macworld | iWorld 2012, I tested the Jot Pro ($29.99) stylus and paired it with the Remarks ($4.99) app by Readdle. This combination transformed my iPad into an efficient digital notebook for marking up PDFs and writing scripts. The Jot Pro feels like a regular pen and has proven to be durable.

After switching from Spotify, I’ve been using Rdio (free with ads, plans start at $4.99 a month) primarily because of its appealing family plan and superior app interface. Rdio offers a vast music library and is accessible via web browser, making it convenient for listening at work without needing to use my devices.

For photo editing and sharing, I rely on Flickr (free), Snapseed (free), and Camera+ ($.99). These apps streamline my workflow from editing to posting online.


Patricia is a well-respected author and tech enthusiast who has made significant contributions to the Apple community. Writing for TUAW, Patricia brings a wealth of knowledge about Apple products, including the iPhone, iPad, and MacBook. Her insightful articles and guides help readers navigate the ever-evolving world of Apple technology. With a knack for breaking down complex topics into easy-to-understand content, Patricia has become a trusted voice for Apple fans everywhere.