“60 iOS Apps for Lawyers in 60 Minutes” from ABA TECHSHOW 2012

60 iOS Apps for Lawyers in 60 Minutes from Brett Burney Josh Barret and Jeff RichardsonI had the great pleasure of presenting “60 iOS Apps for Lawyers in 60 Minutes” last Saturday at the ABA TECHSHOW 2012 with Josh Barrett (www.tabletlegal.com) and Jeff Richardson (www.iphonejd.com). I had been looking forward to this for many months, since this popular tradition was started about 3 years ago.

I figured the room was going to be packed since I saw an AMAZING number of iPads at the TECHSHOW this year. iPads far, FAR outnumbered laptops this year. It was quite the game-changer to look over a room at TECHSHOW and see nothing but iPads everywhere. So I knew that the “60 Apps” session was going to be popular.

Jeff posted his list of apps yesterday and I wanted to mirror the list here, add a little color commentary, and add a few extra apps that didn’t make the final cut for the show.

  1. Agenda Calendar (99¢) – an alternate calendar for both the iPhone and iPad.
  2. Instacast ($1.99) & Instacast HD ($4.99) – Josh’s preferred app for downloading and organizing podcasts.
  3. Conference Pad ($4.99) – I’m glad Josh included this in his list since I’ve been wanting to try it out. Instead of showing a presentation from your iPad to a projector, Conference Pad allows you to share your presentation wirelessly to other iPads in a conference room.
  4. GoodReader ($4.99) – Jeff had the honor of mentioning this absolute must-have app for any lawyer using an iPad. You can read Jeff’s in-depth review on iphonejd.com.
  5. PDFpen ($9.99) – while PDFpen may be relatively new to the iPad, just about any Mac-using lawyer will be familiar with the excellent PDFpen software for Macs from Smile Software. I am very interested in taking advantage of using iCloud behind the apps on my iPad and my Mac. Jeff also wrote up an excellent review of PDFpen for iPad.
  6. Adobe Reader (FREE!) – Adobe’s free PDF reader now ported over to the iOS platform. You can read Jeff’s review here.
  7. PDF PROvider ($6.99) – I don’t need to create a PDF file on the iPad very often, but when I need to convert a web page to PDF, this is the app I use. I copy the URL from Safari into PDF PROvider app and it generates a nicely formatted PDF file. I originally was going to discuss PDF Converter from Readdle, but I went with PDF PROvider mainly because you can merge multiple PDF files together.
  8. PDF Expert ($9.99) – one of my must-have iPad apps for every lawyer. And while I think PDF Expert is great for reading and annotating PDF files, the two things that I use it for is 1) filling in PDF forms and 2) applying signatures to PDF files. Readdle just released version 4.0 which supports the new iPad’s retina display and PDF Portfolios!
  9. Mr. Reader ($3.99) – this is my preferred RSS reader on the iPad. I still use Reeder on the iPhone, but I just enjoy using Mr. Reader more on the iPad. Both Mr. Reader and Reeder sync with your Google Reader account.
  10. PaperKarma (FREE!) – I admit that I didn’t completely understand this app from Josh, but theoretically, it allows you to snap a picture of junk mail that you receive and the company will take you off the respective mailing lists.
  11. Voice Brief ($1.99) – reads aloud your calendar, weather, Twitter feeds, as well as your e-mail with an in-app purchase.
  12. Cards (Free, except each Card sent in the US costs $2.99) – create digital postcards on your iPhone that can be sent around the country and the world.
  13. TranscriptPad ($49.99) – an excellent app for reading and summarizing transcripts on the iPad from the developers of TrialPad. I spied the CEO of Lit Software, Ian O’Flaherty, in the middle of the room recording Jeff’s discussion on TranscriptPad, so I’m hoping Ian will post that video soon. I was thrilled to see Ian at ABA TECHSHOW, since I had seen him at LegalTech in NYC and mentioned to him how great TECHSHOW would be. Jeff Richardson wrote an excellent review of TranscriptPad on phonejd.com.
  14. Documents To Go ($9.99) & Documents To Go Premium ($16.99) – probably one of the best office suites on the iOS platform, although I find myself going to Quickoffice more often. I think I just like the interface a little more.
  15. WordPerfect Viewer for the iPhone ($4.99) & WordPerfect Viewer for the iPad ($5.99) – only in a legal audience are you going to get the question about viewing WordPerfect files on an iPhone and iPad. Fortunately, Jeff explained that the WordPerfect Viewer is the best method for doing so, which is now owned by Corel. I usually point folks to Jeff’s review as well.
  16. CloudOn (FREE!) – Josh explained the concept behind CloudOn which allows you to edit Microsoft Word documents stored in your Dropbox folder in an almost full version of Word. My only complaint is that the version of Word accessed through CloudOn is not fully finger-compatible.
  17. Phraseology ($3.99) – Josh introduced us to a very nice streamlined text editor called Phraseology. My favorite part is that the app will rate your writing against some various reading standards.
  18. Day One ($1.99) – a journaling app that connects to iCloud and Dropbox.
  19. Picture It Settled (FREE!) – Jeff pointed out that Don Philbin, the developer of Picture It Settled, was sitting in the audience. Picture It Settled “helps you visualize the negotiation dance and calculate your next steps.” Jeff wrote a great review of the app on iphonejd.com.
  20. Note Taker HD ($4.99) – one of several note-taking / handwriting apps we featured.
  21. Notes Plus ($7.99) – another note-taking / handwriting app, and probably my second favorite in this category.
  22. Notability (99¢ since it is still on sale for 80% off) – this was the note-taking / handwriting app that I was assigned to discuss, and I am very impressed some of their recent updates. I still, however, keep launching Noteshelf when I need to handwrite notes – it’s still my favorite for handwriting.
  23. SoundNote ($4.99) – even though Notability above can record audio while you’re taking notes, I still prefer to go to SoundNote for this task. SoundNote will record audio while I’m typing notes, and it will sync the audio and text. Later, when I tap in the middle of a paragraph, I can start playing the audio from that location.
  24. Air Display ($9.99) – when I’m in my office, I have three monitors in front of me. I am a HUGE proponent of having multiple monitors. But when I’m out of the office at a coffee shop or client site, I can’t take my extra monitors with me, but I do have my iPad! Air Display can extend the desktop of my MacBook Air on to my iPad or iPhone and it works wonderfully!
  25. PhotoSync ($1.99) – Josh introduced this app as an excellent method for transferring photos back and forth between your computers and iOS devices.
  26. AutoStitch Panorama ($1.99) – an app that lets you take multiple pictures from your iPhone and “stitch” them together to form one picture. I think Josh showed another app for doing a 360 degree image, but I can’t remember what app that was.
  27. GroupShot ($1.99) – one my favorite apps that Josh mentioned that I wasn’t aware of. When you take a great picture of the family except one person is picking their nose, GroupShot lets you select that one person and replace them with a better shot from another picture. The app uses facial recognition to enable you to do this.
  28. iPhoto ($4.99) – Apple’s version of iPhoto now brought from the Mac to iOS. One of the best photo editors that you can purchase for the iPhone or iPad.
  29. Photoshop Touch ($9.99) – an excellent photo editor from Adobe for the iPad.
  30. Reminders (included with iOS 5) – Jeff mentioned Reminders, the task management app that is built into iOS 5. The best part is the integration with Siri.
  31. Scanner Pro ($6.99) – one of two “document scanner” apps that I offered. I tend to like Scanner Pro’s interface better than others, and so this is usually my go-to app when I need to “scan” a document with my iPhone.
  32. DocScanner ($3.99) – I included this document scanning app for the iPhone because you have the option of performing OCR on the image of the document. It’s not perfect, but it’s great to have access to this option when you need it.
  33. Print Central & Pro for iPhone ($4.99 & $5.99) & Print Central & Pro for iPad ($8.99 & $9.99) – one of the questions I am always fielding is “how can I print from my iPad?” Apple’s official response is that you must purchase an AirPrint-enabled printer that must be running on the same wireless network as your iPad. However, apps such as Print Central claim they can print to other wireless printers. And while I’m skeptical, they can absolutely print through your computer that has a printer attached – you simply download the free WePrint software from EuroSmartz for your Mac or PC and the iPad can print through that application.
  34. Toodledo ($2.99) – I like Toodledo’s interface and features, and most importantly, the way that it constantly syncs with the Internet service so that I can alway access the most up to date version of my task list.
  35. Timeli (FREE!) – Josh offered this gem of an app that presents nice visual timelines.
  36. OmniFocus for iPhone ($19.99) & OmniFocus for iPad ($39.99) – if you have OmniFocus for Mac, then you would be foolish not to pick up OmniFocus for iPhone and iPad. Check out the excellent videos from the OmniGroup, including the Screencasts from fellow-TECHSHOW-speaker David Sparks at Mac Power Users.
  37. Launch Center (99¢) – Josh discussed this interesting app that can basically act like a quick-launcher for the apps on your iPhone.
  38. LogMeIn (FREE!) – Jeff did a great job introducing LogMeIn, and I agree with him that it is probably the best way to remotely access a desktop computer via the iPad. You can read Jeff’s extensive review on iphonejd.com.
  39. ABBYY Business Card Reader ($4.99) – Jeff offered this app as one of the best business card scanners available, and authored an excellent review on iphonejd.com. I prefer to use Card Scanner from Readdle, but they’ve apparently dropped that product from their line.
  40. CardMunch (FREE!) – Jeff discussed this free app from LinkedIn, although he cautioned that he’s a little nervous about how it automatically pulls and posts information via the LinkedIn service.
  41. GateGuru (FREE!) – as I stated on Saturday, this is my second favorite app after TripIt. As soon as I land and we’re allowed to turn on our phones, I check TripIt to find what gate we’re arriving at, and then I switch over to GateGuru to find out where I’m going to eat in the Concourse.
  42. Hipmunk (FREE!) – I know a lot of folks like Kayak, but I’ve started to use Hipmunk to find flights. And I really, really like the interface on the iPad app. Jeff has a great review on iphonejd.com.
  43. SitOrSquat (FREE!) – it’s fantastic that the iPhone can determine your location for restaurants, maps, and travel information. But what if you need to find a bathroom quick? SitOrSquat to the rescue. This free app pinpoints the closest public restroom for your needs, complete with ratings and pictures.
  44. Sparrow ($2.99) – Josh described this as a more streamlined way to check and manage e-mail on the iPhone, except he did say it doesn’t yet support “push” mail.
  45. OfficeTime ($7.99) – Josh briefly described the advantages of using OfficeTime for tracking time on your iPhone or iPad.
  46. WestlawNext (Free but requires WestlawNext subscription) – I agree with Jeff’s comments that this is so far the best online legal research app available for the iPad. Here is Jeff’s review.
  47. Lexis Advance & Lexis Advance HD (Free but requires LexisNexis subscription) – as Jeff stated, Lexis Advance is not quite all the way there yet, but it should improve steadily as it matures. Read Jeff’s review here.
  48. Fastcase (Free but requires subscription for some items) – this is an excellent alternative instead of Lexis or Westlaw, especially for those folks who are members of a local bar association that subscribe to Fastcase. Jeff also reviewed Fastcase.
  49. Klammer (99¢ plus $1.99 in-app upgrade for .MSG files) – I shares two apps that are important for opening Outlook-specific files on an iPad. First is Klammer that easily handles .EML and .MSG files when they are attached to e-mail messages. Klammer also handles those pesky winmail.dat files that sometime haunt your Inbox.
  50. PST Mail ($9.99) – this second app opens .PST files that are created from Outlook. Usually a .PST file is created by archiving e-mail messages out of Outlook using the File > Export command. The app is fantastic for “offline” viewing of .PST files and does a great job keeping the formatting intact.
  51. GoToMeeting (FREE!) – I have become a big fan of attending online conferences with my iPad. All of the major services including Webex, GoToMeeting, and join.me now offer a free iPad app for joining online meetings.
  52. AppStart (FREE!) – Josh offered this free app as a great way to get app recommendations.
  53. 1Password Pro ($14.99) – I agree with Josh, this is the best way to keep confidential information secure, as well as carry important passwords. And it syncs with Mac and Windows versions of the software.
  54. DaysFrom (99¢) – one of Jeff’s favorite apps for quickly calculating the number of days until something is due.
  55. Do Date (99¢) – Jeff reviewed Do Date on iphonejd.com back in December, but it doesn’t look like it’s still available. It was developed, however, by the fine folks at LawOnMyPhone who also make the excellent Court Days Pro.
  56. Tweetbot ($2.99) – I agree with Jeff, this is probably the best Twitter client available for the iPhone right now. I can put up with the standard, free Twitter app, but I found myself enjoying the Twitter experience so much more throughout TECHSHOW with Tweetbot.
  57. Keynote ($9.99) – I find myself thoroughly enjoying work in Keynote on the iPad. It’s just so amazing to be able to interact with a presentation using your fingers. I know that sounds a little silly, but you gotta try it for yourself.
  58. Keynote Remote (99¢) – I don’t even carry a “clicker” with me anymore when I go give presentations because I already have my iPhone! As long as my MacBook Air and iPhone are on the same wireless network (I usually carry my own hotspot for this purpose), then I can control the Keynote presentation with my iPhone from anywhere in the room.
  59. Google Translate (FREE!) – I don’t use this very often, but Jeff continues to be amazed at what this app can do.
  60. Infinity Blade II ($6.99) – of course we had to stick at least one game in the mix! Jeff stated that if you have a new iPad and need to convinced that the screen is superior, than this is the app you need.
  61. Action Movie FX (FREE!) – for our finale, Jeff crushed the entire room with an Apache attach helicopter. See video below:


As usual, we couldn’t get to all of the apps we wanted to show, so I wanted to add three more to the list:

  1. Craigslist (99¢) – if you can’t stand navigating the online craigslist.org website, then try Craigslist for the iPad. I prefer to search the service through the iPad now, and I love the fact that I can easily change the city and area that it searches.
  2. Cymbol ($1.99) – you can type a section symbol (§) on the iPad by tapping and holding the ampersand on the symbol keyboard. Then someone asked if there was a paragraph symbol (pilcrow ¶) and I couldn’t find one! Thankfully, I was able to find the Cymbol app that not only gives me a paragraph symbol, but also daggers (†) and double-daggers (‡) along with a whole set of subscripts and superscripts. You still have to type what you need in Cymbol and copy & paste to your other app, but hey, it’s great to have access to so many symbols on the iPad!
  3. Accordéon ($3.99) – I can play a mean Chicken-Dance on this instrument. It makes me feel like Weird Al up on stage.

Thanks to everyone who made it to ABA TECHSHOW and our “60 Apps” presentation. I hope to see all of you back next year!


  1. Just wanted to pass on a fantastic program for printing to a Mac from an iOS device – Printopia. http://www.ecamm.com/mac/printopia/ It is incredibly easy to install and just works – exactly as they promise! It has a free demo, which is good because it is pricey comparatively ($19.95). But once you see how well it works and how easy it is to use, the price is well worth it.

    In our all-Mac office, we installed it on one computer that is connect via ethernet to our network. Once that it done, any iOS device logged into our password protected wifi on the same network could print to any of existing printers. As well, you can protect the individual printer options, which includes being able to send it to a Mac Desktop or folder.

    1. Thanks for the tip on Printopia Shanna! That really is a great program. It’s only for Mac, but I’ve heard good things about FingerPrint (www.collobos.com) that works on both Mac and Windows.

  2. […] Macs in Law – Attorney Brett Burney writes about the use of Macs, iPhones, & iPads in the practice of law. Here you’ll find the recent post chock full of good ideas, from his recent presentation at the ABA Techshow – 60 iOS Apps for Lawyers in 60 Minutes […]

  3. Thanks for these professional applications. Great post !!

    In business/productivity app, I’d like to recommend a great one which integrated an interesting concept; saving time from your notes. This app, Beesy, generates automatically ToDo lists from a smart note taking. Also, the advantage is you can easily generate professional minutes from your notes and send them by email. Besides, you can browse your ToDo by actions,projects or people. You save a lot of time at meetings.

    I strongly recommend Beesy for people which often have meetings and want to appreciate them again 😉 http://www.beesapps.com/beesy-ipad-to-do/


  4. I have just launched an iphone app and android called Lawsauce. It covers most jurisdictions in the world and helps ensure lawyers use the best resource when researching.

  5. This is all great for helping attorneys work away from the office. BUT! studies have shown that without a way to record the time worked with all of these apps attorneys are LESS productive. If you did not record the time it never really happened, right? a recent LexisNexis study shows that attorneys are losing up to 33% of their time.

    Add the iTimeKeep in to the mix and now we are running on all cylinders.

    iTimeKeep integrates with most all legal time and billing systems. Download it for free from the app store and touch the words LOG IN AS A GUEST to give it a try.

    To a productive and profitable 2013!

  6. Thought you might like to know about FileBrowser. This smart little app allows you to connect to your office workstation, cloud storage, NAS drives and existing file servers all from your iPad. it removes the need to carry a laptop, as your documents can be retrieved, edited and then saved back using only the iPad.

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