As you might've notice, either here on the site or likely elsewhere on the internet, we at Engadget have somewhat of an affinity to social networking. With a new screen sitting here saving us some screen real estate, we decided to give a number of Twitter and other pro-social apps a go for perennially staying connected to our online friends -- so long as there's a decent WiFi connection nearby. Here's the highlights from what we've toyed with, and stay tuned for even more roundups on the horizon.
Twitterific for iPad (free; $4.99 for Pro account) - Definitely the best Twitter app on the iPad so far (pictured above). It works great in portrait and landscape, contextual links conveniently pop out and photos even get special format treatment. No option to upload photos when tweeting, but we're guessing with a lack of a camera, it didn't seem as necessary an addition -- we like to show off our screen captures and saved browsing images, but hey, that's just us. The only deterrent for power users is that you can only view one column at a time, but with lists, saved searches, and all other thread options easily accessible from the leftmost column, we didn't find it too inconvenient whatsoever. [See in iTunes]
Loopt (free) - Find nearby events and restaurants (mostly culled from Zagat, it seems), check out images and reviews of the venues, and immediately get directions via a jump to Google Maps. If nothing else, photo mode is a gorgeous look at your local nightlife that provides the same review-and-find services without the map. [See in iTunes]
Add to Home Screen (free!) - You're not gonna get the prettiest of icons, but given the iPad's expanded screen size, sometimes the best option is via Safari itself. Simply navigate to the proper URL, click the plus sign ('+') on the top bar, and assign it the name you always wanted. No image uploading might be a deterrent for the likes of Flickr and Facebook, but if the iPhone is any indication, we imagine official apps -- free and generally superior in quality to anything else out there -- aren't too far off into the future. The iPhone apps, also, still work fine despite some graphical inferiority, so why shell out cash now for just a temporary solution?