The 15 Best Programs for Your Mac

Every Mac comes standard with many useful programs for emailing, keeping track of contacts, creating PDFs, watching movies, and taking screenshots or screencasts. However, there are some things that require you to install additional programs. We have selected 15 must-have programs for the Mac.

01 iWork

iWork is the direct competitor of Microsoft Office. iWork is available as a physical disk for 79 euros, but it is more convenient to purchase the Pages, Numbers and Keynote components separately in the App Store for 16 euros each. Pages is the equivalent of Word, Numbers is similar to Excel and Keynote is used for presentations. The three programs are not as comprehensive as the Microsoft alternatives, but offer you beautiful templates and are extremely intuitive. You can simply open Microsoft documents with the iWork programs and files can even be saved as .doc, .xls or .ppt.

iWork is Apple's Office suite.

02 TextWrangler

The default word processor on your Mac is a handy tool if you occasionally want to type plain text. But if you often write, edit and save texts or codes, you cannot do without TextWrangler. This free program is a must-have for web designers and programmers, but also normal users can benefit from TextWrangler. This way you can easily compare hundreds of texts, search lists of data and clean corrupt Word documents of unnecessary codes. TextWrangler also has a big brother called BBEdit, this program is available for fifty dollars.

For a free program, TextWrangler offers an incredible amount of features.

03 iLife

When you buy a new Mac, you get the iLife package for free. Inside the package you will find iPhoto, iMovie and GarageBand. These three creative programs are great for creating a photo book of your vacation, editing a video or composing a piece of music. If you have an older Mac, you can purchase the latest versions separately in the App Store. The programs are all intuitive, and GarageBand, in particular, transcends the feel of an entry-level program, allowing you to learn how to play instruments with instructional videos and have access to countless virtual instruments, guitar amps and effects.

GarageBand teaches you to play instruments, among other things.

04 Pixelmator

Pixelmator is the alternative to Photoshop on the Mac. And that for a fraction of the price. For less than twenty-five euros you have a serious Photoshop competitor at home. In addition to editing photos, Pixelmator has more than 150 effects and filters on board and you can easily adjust things like contrast, brightness and saturation and save them as jpg, png or other formats. Pixelmator even takes over vector tasks from Adobe Illustrator, although this functionality has not yet fully crystallized. For the average user, Pixelmator offers enough to edit photos, you can try Pixelmator for free for 30 days.

Pixelmator, the alternative to Photoshop.

05 Skitch

With Skitch you take, share and edit screenshots. From the program you take a screenshot or an image of a part of the window. With a few clicks you can resize the image and save the image in the desired size. Shooting with the internal camera in your Mac is also possible and you can rotate or add text to all images. Sharing images is done via the mail program on your Mac or via the Evernote service. From the menu, you can send a file directly via bluetooth.

You take, edit and share screenshots with Skitch.

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