You use your iPad for nearly everything: Browsing the web, checking news reports, watching movies and contacting family and friends. But if you use your iPad for work, you will be frustrated. As handy as the iPad is, it is still not really as powerful as a Home computer or laptop. That is where remote-access apps may help. Developers have created a number of programs which allow you to access and control your desktop or laptops from the iPad. You can access your files, folders and contacts. Some even permit you to stream the videos and music you store on your computer on the iPad. Controlling a PC or laptop from the iPad isn’t perfect. The iPad’s screen is large for a tablet, but it’s small for a desktop or laptop computer. Sometimes things get a bit cramped. But when you require emergency ability to access your personal computer, these three apps are able to do the job.

GoToMyPC: GoToMyPC ranks as the grandfather of remote-access services. The people behind the service, Citrix, have been offering users remote use of their PCs and laptops since before the iPad even entered the market. The good news about this service? It’s probably the most robust remote-access app available. It’s also incredibly easy to utilize. PC Magazine, in a recent review, points to the intuitive button system that permits you to easily navigate through your laptop. In addition, it praises the system’s arrows function, which lets you use your iPad to imitate moving your cursor using a mouse. The downside? GoToMyPC isn’t cheap. Depending on your service, anticipate paying about $9.95 a month or $99 a year for the application. For most users who just need to remotely access their PC on rare occasions, that cost could be too high.

SplashTop Remote Desktop: SplashTop Remote Desktop qualifies as one of those lower-priced applications, priced at just $4.99. According to a recent review by CNET, that price is a good deal. CNET’s editors praised SplashTop as simple to use and effective. They also cited its capability to recover movies and music stored on your remote computers. This is a service that many other remote-access apps can’t handle.

LogMeIn Ignition: LogMeIn Ignition is another lower-priced alternative to popular GoToMyPC, though at $30, it’s more expensive than rival SplashTop. This product was also praised by CNET for its ease of use and effectiveness, but also for two nifty features. First, you can utilize LogMeIn to remotely wake up a sleeping or shut-down PC. Secondly, you can utilize the application to remotely relocate files from a PC to your iPad.

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