iPad Apps For Parents

My 61-year-old parents are fairly computer literate. They each use laptops and my dad has an iMac on his work desk that’s used by both of them. My mom refuses to upgrade from a flip phone and my dad loves his iPhone 3GS that we bought last year. They can both take pictures, transfer from the camera and send them in a manageable size to each of us kids.

Neither spend more time on than the computer than they have to, as they’d both rather read hard copies of information or watch TV for their entertainment.

But my god, give them an iPad and they might as well be kids again. My “mom’s” iPad, which was purchased in August 2010, may as well be a Christmas present. They just discovered folders, only recently were explained the difference between POP and IMAP mail settings and can’t seem to get enough games. Not just any games mind you, but a few particular ones that makes me realize how most of the mainstream audience views this magical piece of technology.

To them, it IS magical. Here are a few of their favorite apps:

Doesn’t matter which version, whether it’s ad-supported or a few bucks or what it’s theme is. They both NEED solitaire. As a guy who doesn’t have solitaire installed on anything he owns, I’m always floored at how damn popular this game is. I think my mom has three versions of it installed on her iPad right now. THREE.

Angry Birds HD
I blame myself for this one. I transferred my purchases to their computer (I don’t own an iPad anymore) in hopes they’d get some use out of the apps I don’t use anymore. My dad hasn’t stopped playing Angry Birds HD since. The constant sounds and yelps of frustration are bad enough, but add in his questions about how to pass levels (how the hell would I know? Does anyone ever remember?) and I’m beginning to slightly regret installing the game. We’re all to blame here, people. That damn game was made popular by early adopters like you and me. Dear god, be sure you also buy headphones.

Decent local news app
My parents currently use the KOMO and KIRO iPhone apps and, while they look horrible blown up on the iPad, they still get used every single day. Seems they are more interested in local news in the morning on the iPad and national news at night on the TV. Wish I knew if that was a widespread trend.

Not chess, just normal checkers. Woohoo. The one my mom loves doesn’t even have cool animations or fun sounds, it’s just a checkers game played on a 3D-looking board. Red versus black. I so wish I had a funny joke about this.

The Weather Channel
The app itself is pretty fancy, but an app that shows the weather? That’s cool? Apparently so, because both my parents love it. I was hoping for some kind of fighting game where storm fronts and heat waves could face off against each other, but alas, it’s not to be. So…how cold is it where you are?

What are your non-techie, 60-plus family members favorite apps?