100 Of The Coolest Mac Apps For Your Must Try List!

Despite all the great reviews Macintosh computers have garnered over the years, we rarely see it stated that Apple’s groundbreaking platform has attracted some of the best designed software on the market today. In fact, we would venture to say that with few exceptions the Mac offers the best possible software for the task at hand.

And that’s from a former Windows user. That’s partly due to the fact that Apple was first on the market with an integrated smartphone design, pointing the way for Mac developers to create seamless synchronization solutions. But the real story is that the innovation the Macintosh GUI ushered in will celebrate is 30th anniversary next year.

Here are our picks for the coolest Macintosh software:


1Password can create strong passwords, organize them, and insert them in web pages with a handy browser button. Mavericks made me switch to 4.0, which is still in beta. Usability has been improved and the interface is slicker. But the iPhone version also needs to be upgraded for $18.

Publisher: Agile Bits
Website: https://agilebits.com/onepassword/mac/
Version: 4.0.9
Category: Utility
Price: $49.99

Adobe Creative Studio 6

Adobe’s Creative Suite includes four useful applications: Adobe Illustrator, Adobe InDesign, Adobe Photoshop and Acrobat X Pro. If you’re a designer, you can’t get by without these famous tools. Now that Adobe has gone Creative Cloud, CS6 is your last opportunity to own Adobe tools outright. Don’t miss this opportunity!

Publisher: Adobe Systems
Website: http://www.adobe.com/products/creativesuite/designstandard.html
Version: CS6
Category: Design
Price: $1,299.00


This latest version of Aperture now shares your iPhoto library for greater simplicity in use. However, this program’s tabbed sidebar interface is daunting.

Publisher: Apple Inc.
Website: http://www.apple.com/aperture/
Version: 3.4.4
Category: Photography
Price: $79.99


AppDelete is a great uninstaller utility that removes applications and any other associated files that reside anywhere on your Mac.

Publisher: Reggie Ashworth
Website: http://www.reggieashworth.com/
Version: 4.1.1
Category: Utility
Price: $7.99

Balsamiq Mockups

Balsamic Mockups

Balsamiq Mockups is a cross-platform rapid software prototyping tool that lets a UX designer quickly create a mockup of software screens. One minor quibble: no ready-made icons for folders or documents.

Publisher: Balsamic
Website: http://www.balsamiq.com/
Version: 2.2.3
Category: Developer Tools
Price: $79.00

Batch Image Resizer

Batch Image Resizer re-sizes multiple pictures by percent or a fixed size while offering the ability to add watermarks or borders. You can also do some limited renaming, although the program is not as flexible in that regard as our favorite utility, Renamer 4.

Publisher: GOTOES.ORG
Website: http://www.fotosizer.com
Version: 1.5.7
Category: Utility
Price: $14.00


Bontanicula is beautiful game that places you in a wonderland of a garden to venture through and explore. Particularly beautiful on Retina MacBook Pros.

Publisher: Amanita Design
Website: http://amanita-design.net/games/botanicula.html
Version: 1.1.0
Category: Entertainment
Price: $10.00


Breeze is a window management application that is designed for people who want to quickly split-screen a window, or people like us who need to quickly replicate a standard windows size for screenshots.

Publisher: Autumn Apps LLC
Website: http://autumnapps.com/breeze/index.html
Version: 1.5.7
Category: Utility
Price: $8.00


BusyCal is far better than the Mountain Lion or Mavericks calendar because it works just like the Leopard calendar. It can also be shared easily via iCloud or Google. And it shows weather icons for an instant update.

Publisher: BusyCal LLC
Website: http://www.busymac.com/
Version: 2.5.3
Category: Calendar
Price: $49.99


Great solution for backing up and synchronizing files with an external hard disk or other storage device. Company should also be lauded for offering perpetually free upgrades.

Publisher: Econ Technologies
Website: http://www.econtechnologies.com/
Version: 4.4.2
Category: Utility
Price: $40.00


Gives Mac users a nice Windows 7 feature: Drag a window until the mouse cursor touches either left or right edges of the screen, and the window “cinches”s able to send a clippingsto your iPhone. You can specifiy how many clippings are kept, either 10, 20 or 50. A Pro version ($XX) sends unlimited clippings to your phone.

Publisher: Eric Mann
Website: http://www.cliprapp.com
Version: 2.0.1
Category: Utility
Price: $7.00


Cobook resides in your Mac menu bar and can be called up any time to search, add or edit entries in your Mac Contacts. Indispensable.

Publisher: Cobook
Website: http://www.cobookapp.com/
Version: 1.3.1
Category: CRM
Price: Free


Right now Apple’s menubar battery status reports says there is a 95% charge left. In reality, coconutBattery tells the truth with 90% left. This handy utility monitors battery health, by showing how often the battery was charged and contrasting its current maximum capacity with its original capacity.

Publisher: Chris
Website: http://www.coconut-flavour.com/coconutbattery/
Version: 2.8
Category: Utility
Price: Shareware


Edit HTML code simply and quickly with this nice web development tool. Besides HTML, Coda also handles CSS, Java, PHP and many other development file types. For a limited time, Coda is offering a $75 upgrade price for everyone.

Publisher: Panic
Website: http://www.panic.com/coda/
Version: 2.0.12
Category: Developer Tools
Price: $99.00



Daylite used to be my favorite Mac CRM program, but it has been replaced by Base. The problem: the program is so feature-rich, everthing becomes harder to use. I’m leaving Daylite in this list for now, for people who need a Mac-based CRM recommendation, because it’s definitely nicely designed.

Publisher: Marketcircle Inc.
Website: http://www.marketcircle.com/daylite/
Version: 4.2.2
Category: CRM
Price: $280.00


Decipher TextMessage saves your iPhone text messages, including image attachments, to your computer, so you have a permanent backup.

Publisher: Decipher Media LLC
Website: http://deciphertools.com/tm-mac.html
Version: 5.5.25
Category: Utility
Price: $19.99

Direct Mail

Direct Mail is a freemium program that lets you create e-mail messages and send them to lists using either your e-mail account or Direct Mail’s pre-paid e3 delivery service, which starts at $15 per month for up to 500 e-mail recipients.

Publisher: e3 Software
Website: http://www.directmailmac.com/
Version: 3.5.3
Category: E-mail
Price: Freemium


DiskWave is a utility that scans your hard disk to determine what files and folders consume most of your disk space. A necessity for SSD users who want to free up disk space.

Publisher: Aymeric Barthe
Website: http://www.diskwave.barthe.ph
Version: 0.3.0
Category: Utility
Price: Shareware

Drive Genius

Drive Genius is reportedly used by Apple to check storage devices, and can perform a number of functions, including defragging, permission repair and other optimization tasks.

Publisher: Prosoft Engineering Inc
Website: http://www.prosofteng.com/products/drive_genius_features.php
Version: 3.2.3
Category: Utility
Price: $99.00


Dropbox lets you save documents and pictures to the cloud, so you can instantly access them on other computers, your iPhone or your iPad. A must have. A free tier saves from 2GB to 16GB. A Pro plan stores 100GB for $9.99 per month.

Publisher: Dropbox
Website: http://www.dropbox.com/
Version: 2.4.6
Category: Cloud
Price: Freemium

eMail Extractor

Email Extractor extracts email addresses from text files, which is a great way to build a customer contact list using mailbox data.

Publisher: Maxprog
Website: http://maxprog.com/
Version: 3.5.1
Category: Utility
Price: $20.00

eMail Verifier

eMmail Verifier actually connects to your mail server and checks whether an email address exists or not, and disconnects without sending.

Publisher: Maxprog
Website: http://maxprog.com/
Version: 3.6
Category: Utility
Price: $30.00


Evernote saves notes, images, PDFs or web clippings and lets you access them from any platform. Indispensable for people who do a lot of research, like us here at Social Revolution.

Publisher: Evernote
Website: http://www.evernote.com/
Version: 5.4.2
Category: Cloud
Price: Freemium

Export Address Book

Apple’s Address Book does not let you export contacts by group. Export Address Book does that and a lot more. Totally worth $4, don’t you agree?

Publisher: Stefan Keller
Website: http://www.subclassed.com/
Version: 1.8.2
Category: CRM
Price: $3.99


Need software to transcribe your Sony or Olympus digital voice recordings? Download the freemium ExpressScribe software and you have a good solution.

Publisher: NCH Software
Website: http://www.nch.com.au/scribe/index.html
Version: 5.50
Category: Writing
Price: Free


Fantastical has become our go-to calendar program. Sure, we use BusyCal too, but Fantastical can be called up from the menu bar when one needs it, and its scheduling intelligence is great. It looks beautiful and there is an iPhone app.

Publisher: Flexibits
Website: http://flexibits.com/fantastical/
Version: 1.3.10
Category: Calendar
Price: $19.99


Fetch is file transfer utility that is easy of use and supports FTP and SFTP, the most popular file transfer protocols used to manage your web site or blog.

Publisher: Fetch Softworks
Website: http://www.fetchsoftworks.com/
Version: 5.7.1
Category: Developer Tools
Price: $29.00

FileMaker Pro 12

FileMaker Pro is fully programmable database design tool that can be used to create custom relational databases and that can be deployed on all platforms, Mac, iPhone and iPad. This listing of products was originally created in FileMaker.

Publisher: Filemaker
Website: http://www.filemaker.com/
Version: 12.0v4
Category: Database
Price: $299.00


Want to write a screen play or Broadway book? FinalDraft lets you approach it the right way, seamlessly formatting your script as you type.

Publisher: Final Draft Inc.
Website: http://www.finaldraft.com/
Version: 8.0
Category: Writing
Price: $249.00


Need to organize and repair your fonts? FontDoctor does this very well.

Publisher: FontGear Inc.
Website: http://fontgear.net/fontdoctor.html
Version: 8.1.3
Category: Utility
Price: $69.99

ForkLift 2

ForkLift is now our favorite FTP program, superceding Fetch, which still has not been optimized for Retina displays. ForkLift is fast and features two main windows that can either display your server files or your local disk files, so you can simply drag and drop between the two. You can, of course, also drag and drop between desktop and any window. The program does have a few interface idiosyncracies, like finding your Favorites, but it’s the best FTP file transfer program today.

Publisher: Binary Nights
Website: http://binarynights.com/forklift/
Version: 2.5.6
Category: Developer Tools
Price: $29.95

Free Ruler

Free Ruler is a floating horizontal and vertical ruler that measures on-screen items in pixels, inches, picas,or centimeters. A must-have for web designers.

Publisher: Pascal
Website: http://www.pascal.com/software/freeruler/
Version: 1.7b5
Category: Utility
Price: Free


As Apple puts it, GarageBand is a whole music creation studio right inside your Mac — complete with keyboard, synths, orchestral and percussion instruments, presets for guitar and voice, an entirely redesigned sound library, and virtual session drummers. Now nothing is holding you back from becoming the next Daft Punk.

Publisher: Apple Inc.
Website: http://www.apple.com/mac/garageband/
Version: 10.0.1
Category: Creative
Price: Free With New Macs



Now here’s a tool for today’s economy. GarageSale is basically an eBay management tool. Use pre-designed templates to make your stuff look good and GarageSale manages uploading of the content and seller communication. Slick.

Publisher: iwascoding GmbH
Website: http://www.iwascoding.com/GarageSale/
Version: 6.6.5
Category: E-commerce
Price: $39.99


If you use GitHub, and what technocrat doesn’t, you already know about this app.

Publisher: GitHub
Website: http://mac.github.com/
Version: Drum ‘n’ Rebase (150)
Category: Developer Tools
Price: $0.00

Google Chrome

Google Chrome has become the most popular browser because it’s frequently updated in the background, lighting fast and easily extensible.

Publisher: Google
Website: http://www.google.com/mac/
Version: 30.0
Category: Browser
Price: $0.00

Google Earth

Put the world at your fingertips. Fly to any place around the globe and see maps with 3D buildings and street-view terrains. Mindbendingly fun.

Publisher: Google
Website: http://www.google.com/earth/index.html
Version: 7.0.3
Category: Mapping
Price: $0.00


If you produce or attend webinars or online presentations, GoToMeeting is definitely one of the gold standards of the online meeting world. Work with anyone, anywhere, as long as you can afford the monthly $49 entrance fee. A cheaper monthly service is Join.me, which starts at $13/mo.

Publisher: Citrix Online LLC
Website: http://www.gotomeeting.com/
Version: 5.4
Category: Online Meeting
Price: $49.00


Createw invoices and estimates using a customized design. Automatically attaches a PDF invoice to email for quick sending. Great for consultants.

Publisher: Stefan Fürst
Website: http://mediaatelier.com/GrandTotal/
Version: 2.1
Category: Finance
Price: $90.00

iBooks Author

iBooks Author

iBooks Author lets you create sophisticated e-books with video, photo gallery widgets and more. Download your free copy now.

Publisher: Apple
Website: http://www.apple.com/ibooks-author/
Version: 2.1.1
Category: E-books
Price: $0.00

Icon Slate

Do you need to design a favicon for your website? Then you must use Icon Slate, which is an easy-to-use tool that generates favicons, including Retina versions.

Publisher: Jeremy Marchand
Website: http://www.kodlian.com/apps/icon-slate/
Version: 3.51
Category: Developer Tools
Price: $4.99


I’ve been a very happy camper since I began using iDraw a few months ago. iDraw is the first truly viable alternative to Adobe Illustrator. This vector design and illustration program reads both Illustrator and Photoshop files and can export in a host of formats. If you frequently need to create buttons or logos for websites, iDraw should be your first choice. And, best of all, it’s Retina compatible.

Publisher: Indeeo Inc.
Website: http://www.indeeo.com/idraw/
Version: 2.3.1
Category: Design
Price: $24.99


iMovie lets you edit camcorder and iPhone movies and organizes them for easy browsing and watching. Totally Apple, totally ubercool.

Publisher: Apple Inc.
Website: http://www.apple.com/ilife/imovie/
Version: 10.0
Category: Video
Price: $14.99


iPhoto grabs photos from your digicam, organizes them by event or import date, lets you retouch photos and sends them to your friend’s inbox or mailbox.

Publisher: Apple
Website: http://www.apple.com/ilife/iphoto/
Version: 9.5
Category: Photography
Price: $14.99


If you code you know how often you have to compare two pieces of code to see the differences. Kaleidoscope makes this easy and sports a beautiful interface too. Unfortunately, Black Pixel decided to nearly double its price to $70. Not totally ubercool but worth it if you compare files a lot.

Publisher: Black Pixel
Website: http://www.kaleidoscopeapp.com/
Version: 2.0
Category: Developer Tools
Price: $69.99


Keynote was the program that made yours truly switch back to the Mac. It’s that good. Outstanding ease of use and power, makes PPT fans green with envy.

Publisher: Apple
Website: http://www.apple.com/iwork/
Version: 6.0
Category: Presentation
Price: $19.99

Kindle for Mac

Want to read Kindle books on your MacBook? No problem with the free Kindle for Mac app makes, which can now be also downloaded in the App Store.

Publisher: Amazon.com
Website: http://kindle-for-mac.en.softonic.com/mac/
Version: 1.10.1
Category: E-books
Price: $0.00


Do you dislike having to plow through your application folder, or like me, hate endlessly scrolling the toolbar with 72 app icons that, after a while, all start looking alike? LaunchBar lets you hit Command-Spacebar and enter one or two letters to quickly summon an application.The only thing I don’t like about Launchbar is that it’s too expensive for what it does.

Publisher: Objective Development Software GmbH
Website: http://www.obdev.at/products/launchbar/index.html
Version: 5.6.1
Category: Utility
Price: $35.00


Need to take screenshots of entire web pages, i.e. more than is shown on your screen? LittleSnapper not only takes these screenshots but organizes them too.

Publisher: Realmac Software
Website: http://www.realmacsoftware.com/littlesnapper/
Version: 1.8.3
Category: Design
Price: $39.99


What can I add about Apple’s built-in email program that you don’t alread know? It’s flexible and fast and, with a few exceptions, it does just about everything well. I live in it.

Publisher: Apple Inc.
Website: http://www.apple.com/osx/
Version: 6.6
Category: E-mail
Price: $0.00


MailSteward archives huge volumes of email by storing them in a database that offers sophisticated searches plus the ability to extract mail addresses.

Publisher: Publog.com
Website: http://www.mailsteward.com/
Version: 9.2
Category: Database
Price: $49.95

Mint QuickView

This Macintosh application is a companion program to the Mint website. It brings the same beautiful graphics to the desktop but adds another nicety: a menu icon that tells you when a bank transaction has occurred. Great tool for organizing your financial life.

Publisher: Intuit Inc.
Website: http://www.mint.com/
Version: 2.0.1
Category: Finance
Price: $0.00

Mountain Tweaks

Mountain Tweaks, and Lion Tweaks, lets you customize and correct certain features in Mac OS X 10.7, many of which are undoubtedly annoying. After you download this free app, donate to developer Fredrik Wiker, so he can get a college education. Mountain Tweaks will probably lose its relevance once I upgrade Mavericks, but we’ll see if Wiker releases a Mavericks Tweaks. ;)

Publisher: Fredrik Wiker
Website: http://tweaksapp.com/
Version: 1.1
Category: Utility
Price: $0.00

Name Mangler

Need to rename a large set of files, like for instance add a file’s pixel dimensions and/or file size to the file name? Name Mangler will do this chore. It can also remove characters from file names starting at a certain position, or add suffixes and prefixes to file names. It can also “dumb down” file names for Windows, trim white space, convert AM to am, and add a time-stamp to file names.

Publisher: Many Tricks
Website: http://manytricks.com/namemangler/
Version: 3.3
Category: Utility
Price: $19.00


Numbers is the Excel of the Mac. It offers much of its power, but some might think that’s not enough. Now that Apple has finally upgraded the suite, a new Numbers has appeared that has fewer features than its predecessor. Still we like its new skin a lot and will transition over.

Publisher: Apple
Website: http://www.apple.com/iwork/
Version: 3.0
Category: Finance
Price: $19.99 (Free with new Macs)


OmniOutliner is our favorite tool for creating to-do lists, data lists, or any task that requires outlining. The good news is that The Omni Group is betatestng version 4, which has a much cleaner inteface.

Publisher: The Omni Group
Website: http://www.omnigroup.com/products/omnioutliner/
Version: 3.10.6
Category: Writing
Price: $39.99


How about a versatile utility with a nice interface that handles system maintenance tasks and is shareware? That is OnyX, and it’s only available on the Mac. We don’t know if it’s compatible with Mavericks, will let you know.

Publisher: Titanium Software
Website: http://www.onyxmac.com/
Version: 2.7.1
Category: Utility
Price: Free


Need a free tool that can open Microsoft Office documents? Look no further, OpenOffice is helps you word process, spreadsheet and present to your heart’s content.

Publisher: Apache Software Foundation
Website: http://www.openoffice.org/
Version: 3.4.1
Category: Productivity
Price: Free


Pacifist is a shareware application with a suggested donation that opens Mac OS X .pkg package files, .dmg disk images, and .zip, .tar, .tar.gz and .xar archives and allows you to extract individual files and folders. This is useful if an application installed by the operating system becomes damaged and needs to be reinstalled without the hassle of reinstalling all of Mac OS X.

Publisher: Charles Soft
Website: http://www.charlessoft.com
Version: 3.2.2
Category: Utility
Price: $20.00


Pages is the Microsoft Word of the Mac. Like Numbers, Pages has outstanding layout capabilities, as exemplified by its built-in templates. Well worth $20 or getting it free with every new Mac you help sell. Was updated to 2013 versions, see our review of Numbers.

Publisher: Apple
Website: http://www.apple.com/iwork/
Version: 5.0
Category: Writing
Price: $19.99 (free with new Macs)

Panorama Sheets

Need to manipulate data? Like join two fields or clean up a database marred by sloppy data entry? Panorama Sheets parses your data fast by doing all its work in RAM. If you don’t need to manipulate more than a few hundred records, you can keep using the demo version, since Panorama Sheets works for free on small databases.

Publisher: ProVUE Development
Website: http://www.provue.com/
Version: 6.0.0
Category: Database
Price: $39.95


Paparazzi captures screenshots of websites but goes beyond the call of duty by grabbing the entire page, as far as the eye cannot see.

Publisher: Nate Weaver
Website: http://derailer.org/paparazzi/
Version: 0.6.7
Category: Utility
Price: Shareware


Manage all your recipes on the Mac and then sync the recipe and shopping list to your iPhone. Paprka is one of the best recipe managers out there today.

Publisher: Hindsight Labs LLC
Website: http://www.paprikaapp.com/
Version: 1.4.2
Category: Food
Price: $19.99

Parallels Desktop

Run Windows apps on your Mac in a separate window. Drap and drop text between Mac and Windows applications, all feats made possible by Parallels. The progress in the field of virtualization is remarkable. Parallels 8.0 is so much easier to use than previous versions. We are planning to update to 9.0 soon.

Publisher: Parallels IP Holdings GmbH
Website: http://www.parallels.com/products/desktop/
Version: 8.0
Category: Virtualization
Price: $79.99


Need Photoshop but don’t want to pay Adobe any more money? Pixelmator does what you absolutely need: resizing, retouching, layering and more. We have totally fallen in love with the latest version Pixelmator 3.2. Its ease of use, clean interface and very attractive price make Pixelmator a viable alternative to Photoshop.

Publisher: Pixelmator Team Ltd.
Website: http://www.pixelmator.com/
Version: 3.0
Category: Creative
Price: $14.99

Presentation Prompter

Presentation Prompter turns your Mac into a teleprompter, offering full control over display preferences, including scrolling speed and character size.

Publisher: NextForce Software
Website: http://www.nextforcesw.com/presentationprompter.html
Version: 4.3.1
Category: Video
Price: $65.00


We created the weekly publication, MacWEEK, using Quark. It would not have been possible to publish a 50,000-circulation weekly in 1987 on the Mac without it. Enough said.

Publisher: Quark
Website: http://www.quark.com/
Version: 10.0
Category: Design
Price: $799.00

Quicken Essentials

Here’s one case where a Windows program still outshines the Mac, but if you want balance your checkbook the Mac way, Quicken Essentials is good enough.

Publisher: Intuit
Website: http://quicken.intuit.com/personal-finance-software/mac-personal-financial-software.jsp
Version: 1.7.4
Category: Finance
Price: $39.99


Silvio Rizzi has written the most gorgeous RSS reader bar none. Reeder syncs with Google Reader feeds but showcases articles beautifully and simply. UPDATE: We’re still waiting for an update from Rizzi for this great app. He has updated the iPhone and iPad Reeder and promises to update this one too, some day.

Publisher: Silvio Rizzi
Website: http://reederapp.com/
Version: 1.2
Category: RSS
Price: $9.99

Renamer 4

Renamer lets you batch rename many files and folders at once. Renamer can even combine multiple operations in one single task. You can batch change file extensions, like changing JPEG to .jpg or change names of pictures from IMG_0051.jpg to something that is easier to recognize.

Publisher: Incredible Bee
Website: http://renamer.com
Version: 4.2.5
Category: Utility
Price: $19.99


Certain extensions, like ResizeMe 2, are only available for Safari, so for those with consistent window size capturing needs, Safari is the only way to go. (Chrome has no setting to get rid of its toolbar, which is why all advertising screenshots are taken in Safari.)

Publisher: Apple
Website: http://www.apple.com/safari/
Version: 6.0.4
Category: Browser
Price: Free



Scrivener is perhaps the most amazing writing organizer and thought outliner. Designed for book authors, Scrivener lets you organize your writing and thoughts by folder or sub-folder. It can even attach a document to a document. We have started moving all of our writing, wheter for book, site, collateral or anything else into Scrivener. Highly recommended for anyone who does any writing, whether for business plan or brochure.

Publisher: Literature & Latte
Website: http://www.literatureandlatte.com/
Version: 2.5
Category: Writing
Price: $45.00

Search & Replace

Search & Replace is a powerful batch-processing utility that replaces content in text files, renames or trims file names, adds prefixes or suffixes, or changes text to upper and lower case with just one click. It will also provide you with a count of changes, if you like to keep track of things.

Publisher: Dorian Chapeau
Website: http://search-and-replace.en.softonic.com/mac/
Version: 1.8
Category: Utility
Price: $9.14


Since its launch in August 2003, Skype has reshaped the chat and internet calling market. The Mac version, while radically different from its Windows counterpart, is pretty nifty.

Publisher: Microsoft
Website: http://www.skype.com/
Version: 6.9
Category: Chat
Price: Free


I have yet to find a simple text editor that does what Smultron does, which is quick-and-dirty CSS or text editing. I really like its search and replace facility. It also has a great uppercase to lowercase to title case, etc. feature. Glad to see that Smultron is now compatible with Mavericks.

Publisher: Peter Borg Apps AB
Website: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/smultron-6/id692204913?mt=12
Version: 6.0.2
Category: Developer Tools
Price: $4.99

Snapz Pro X

Mac designers create a lot of user manuals, so taking great screenshots is key. Snapz Pro X works the same way as Apple’s Grab but offers more options, like saving directly to a PNG or PSD files.

Publisher: Ambrosia Software Inc.
Website: http://www.ambrosiasw.com/utilities/snapzprox/
Version: 2.5.4
Category: Utility
Price: $69.00

Sol Basics Solitaire

If you’re addicted to Solitaire, specifically Spider Solitaire, you will like Sol Basics. For 10 bucks, you get Sol Basics Solitaire, Spider, Free Cell and Klondike.

Publisher: Smallware LLC
Website: http://www.solbasics.com/
Version: 1.2
Category: Entertainment
Price: $9.99

SplashID Safe

We have two password keepers in this list. That’s because SplashID does a better job of organizing, while 1Password is better at inserting. Both could be far easier to use. UPDATE: Splash has taken a lot of heat for its latest update, which forces people to hand over their password to enable its new cloud synch feature. we do not recommend upgrading either the desktop app or the iPhone app until we can find an alternative. Unfortunately, the built-in Mavericks solution is not great either.

Publisher: Splash
Website: http://www.splashdata.com/splashid/desktop/
Version: 6.2
Category: Utility
Price: $19.95

Suitcase Fusion 4.0

The bane of dealing with a lot of fonts is that the one you need is not always available. Suitcase Fusion makes it easy to manage a huge font library by turning fonts on and off when needed. Not cheap but definitely worth it.

Publisher: Extensis
Website: http://www.extensis.com/suitcase-fusion-4/
Version: 15.0.6
Category: Utility
Price: $99.95

Text Expander

Here is another program that we wished we had acquired earlier. Text Expander saves so much time typing repetitive things like URLs and return addresses, simply amazing. It even handles embedded terms that require further input when you type. Highly recommended.

Publisher: SmileOnMyMac LLC
Website: http://www.smilesoftware.com/TextExpander/index.html
Version: 4.1.1
Category: Utility
Price: $34.95


Things is a well-executed to-do list manager and was one of the first apps that allowed users to synch between Mac and its iPhone app ($10), perfect for list checkers. What we really like about Things is that it has a Helper app that lets you add tasks from any program (as long as Things is running).

Publisher: Cultured Code GmbH
Website: http://www.culturedcode.com/
Version: 2.2.3
Category: Task Management
Price: $49.99


While Time Machine is a great backup solution, it has one annoying habit, it backs up all the time, slowing your Mac down. TimeMachineEditor solves that.

Publisher: Time Software
Website: http://timesoftware.free.fr/timemachineeditor/
Version: 2.5.3
Category: Utility
Price: $0.00


Would you like to surf the new Silk Road 2? The TorBrowser is a secure web browser that allows you to access web sites completely incognito. Take that NSA!

Publisher: Tor Project
Website: https://www.torproject.org/projects/torbrowser.html.en
Version: 1.0
Category: Browser
Price: Free

TuneUp Gold

TuneUp will parse your iTunes music library and find song duplicates, cover art and correct information, including artist, track name, album name, etc. While it is not Retina-optimized, particularly galling given its $50 price, it does what work well.

Publisher: TuneUp Media Inc.
Website: http://tuneupmedia.com/
Version: 2.4.8
Category: Utility
Price: $49.95

TurboTax Home Business

Intuit makes great tax preparation software. While you can choose between filing taxes online or the software version, the software offers more features.

Publisher: Intuit
Website: http://turbotax.intuit.com/
Version: 2013
Category: Finance
Price: $74.95


Heard the bad news? After taking Facebook out of Tweetdeck, Twitter has announced the end of the road for TweetDeck, a very popular preferred Twitter client. So get it while you still can. Perhaps we will make the older version available here, so you can still download what was once the best social media client.

Publisher: Twitter
Website: http://www.tweetdeck.com/
Version: 3.3.3
Category: Social Media
Price: Free


Some online repositories like compressing files in a weird format called rar. UnRarX lets you expand these rare rar archives. ;)

Publisher: Alexander Roshal
Website: http://www.unrarx.com/
Version: 2.2
Category: Utility
Price: Shareware

VLC Media Player

VLC lets you watch videos encoded in formats QuickTime player cannot handle, including MKV, WMC and AVI. As CNET puts it: If you want a player that can be totally customized and configured to suit, and is not only updated frequently but also regularly offers new features and options created by a huge community of programmers and users, the answer is VLC Media Player.

Publisher: Twoflower
Website: http://download.cnet.com/VLC-Media-Player/3000-13632_4-10267151.html
Version: 2.0.9
Category: Video
Price: Free


One area where the Mac suffers in comparison to the PC is bookmark management. Webbla organizes bookmarks the way iTunes does, either visually or as lists.

Publisher: Celmaro Ltd.
Website: http://www.celmaro.com/
Version: 1.5.6
Price: $22.99

White List

White List will parse your Apple Mail folders and provide stats on e-mail addresses you have communicated with and ranks them in order of number of e-mails sent. An invaluable tool for making sure your e-mail lists contain the people you correspond with frequently.

Publisher: Patrick Stein
Website: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/whitelist/id412034673/
Version: 1.14
Category: CRM
Price: $0.99

Wondershare AllMyTube

There are many utilities that claim to be able to download videos from YouTube, but most don’t work very well. Even iLivid, which we recommended last, stopped working. Wondershare AllMyTube downloads the higest resolution videos available from YouTube, and even Vimeo. A welcome tool for presenters.

Publisher: Wondershare
Website: http://www.wondershare.com/pro/mac-allmytube.html
Version: 4.5.0
Category: Utility
Price: $29.00

Wondershare Video Converter Ultimate

Despite the fact that Macs are hugely popular among video pros, you rarely find good info on the best video converter utility. Search no more, we think Wondershare is it.

Publisher: Wondershare
Website: http://www.wondershare.com/mac-video-converter-ultimate/
Version: 3.0.1
Category: Video
Price: $69.00


If you need to write without distractions, WriteRoom is a full-screen writing environment that eliminates clutter. WriteRoom even lets you mimic those word processors of yore. Fun!

Publisher: Hogbay Software
Website: http://www.hogbaysoftware.com/products/writeroom
Version: 3.0
Category: Writing
Price: $9.99


Xee is an image browser that lets you turn any folder into a slide show. It will open any format Preview can open, plus a few esoteric ones, like PCX.

Publisher: Dag Agren
Website: http://wakaba.c3.cx/s/apps/xee
Version: 2.2
Category: Photography
Price: $0.00


XMind is a brainstorming and mind-mapping software program that lets you diagram web site structures or org charts. It’s priced using the freemium model, so no arguments here.

Publisher: XMind Ltd.
Website: http://www.xmind.net/download/mac/
Version: 3.4.0
Category: Design
Price: $0.00

Lainie Liberti
Lainie Liberti is a recovering branding expert, who’s career once focused on creating campaigns for green - eco business, non-profits and conscious business. Dazzling clients with her high-energy designs for over 18 years, Lainie lent her artistic talents to businesses that matter.  But that was then.

In 2008, after the economy took a turn, Lainie decided to be the change (instead of a victim) and began the process of “lifestyle redesign,” a joint decision between both her and her 11-year-old son, Miro. They sold or gave away all of of their possessions in 2009 and began a life of travel, service, and exploration. Lainie and her son Miro began their open-ended adventure backpacking through Central and South America. They are slow traveling around the globe allowing inspiration to be their compass. The pair is most interested in exploring different cultures, contributing by serving, and connecting with humanity as ‘global citizens.’

Today Lainie considers herself a digital nomad who is living a location independent life. She and her son write and podcast their experiences from the road at Raising Miro on the Road of Life.
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