Getting the right kind of machine with the right specs and setting up your system correctly is essential, but it’s the apps that truly make the computing experience. Make the most of Windows 8 with this selection of ten essential Windows 8 apps.
Not every game has to be brand new to make it worth installing. Cut The Rope remains one of the most appealing touchscreen titles since its release in 2010; don’t blame us when you find that you’ve missed your train stop.
While Windows 8 Live Tiles make it easy to track updates from your Start screen, there’s still a lot to be said for having all your messaging in one spot. IM+ covers all the biggies (Facebook, Skype, ICQ, Google Talk, Jabber and more) so you can easily converse with others.
Given that we still can’t buy a Kindle with a coloured screen in Australia, the ability to also access your Kindle library on your Windows 8 device is very welcome. Especially useful if you have a convertible or tablet, but a great option for everyone.
There are a number of Twitter apps offered for Windows 8, but to our mind none is as slick and useful as Australian-developed MetroTwit. You can easily customise the views and handle multiple Twitter accounts simultaneously.
Want all your Google Reader feeds in a single grid-based view that makes it easy to browse the latest news? If that sounds appealing, this $2.99 app is worth the investment.
The rest of Office 2013 might still be in desktop mode, but OneNote is available as a full Windows 8 app, making it easy to share content from other apps and store it for later reference. It syncs with existing OneNote notebooks and uses an innovative pop-up scroll wheel to help you make selections.
Forget finger painting; with Sketchbook Express, you can create finger masterpieces. Drawing becomes easier than ever with this nifty application from Autodesk.
If you’re used to the conventional and information-crammed layout of a typical Wikipedia page, the Windows 8 app is a revelation, with information cleanly presented and images highlighted. The app also makes clever use of zoom to help you browse longer articles.
There are two advantages to a word game such as Wordament. Firstly, it’s great for casual gaming, since every game only lasts for two minutes. Secondly, if anyone says you are slacking off, you can claim you’re improving your spelling. Online competition makes this dangerously addictive.
If you own an Xbox 360, this is an essential addition. Easily share movies from your computer to your console, or use your Windows 8 box as a second gaming screen.
Stay tuned for the next instalment of the Windows 8 Ultimate Buyers Guide.