When the iPad launched, there was an inexplicable lack of a couple of core Apple-made apps. There was no Clock, no Weather app and (thankfully) no Stocks. Now, Clocks has been added to the iPad in iOS6, and weather is also in there – kinda.
The lack of a clock app has led me to buy countless third-party apps to wake me up in the morning. I settled on the excellent Due app, with its recyclable reminder and alarms and iCloud sync, but the new built-in Clock is good enough to get me to ditch Due.
Like the iPhone version, you can have multiple clocks showing the time in different places, set alarms and timers and use a stopwatch. One of the reasons people came up with to explain the lack of an iPad clock is that making it look good on the big screen would be hard. The actual app doesn’t disprove this theory: it’s a mess, with each section looking like a separate app.
The World Clock tab is great, with the clocks arrayed across the top and the chosen cities shown on a world map below, complete with Yahoo-provided weather.
Alarms also look pretty neat, with a retro flip clock up top and a grid showing the current week below, with all your alarms plotted on it. It would even be possible to use this as a budget to-do app.
You can also specify different sounds for each alarms, and even choose to wake up to a track from your music library. This last feature immediately kills every music alarm app out there, as none of them can play a music track if they are in the background.
Even the Stopwatch is well thought out, with lap splits showing up in a list below the clock.
When we get to the Timer tab, though, things go south. The familiar time-picker from the iPhone is there, lost and tiny in the middle of the iPad’s big screen. There’s a circle shaded with a gradient surrounding it, but even that can’t help. You can be almost certain that this is a placeholder design that will be changed when iOS6 ships this fall.
And the Weather app? There isn’t one, but if you ask Siri if it’s raining outside, he’ll (Siri is a boy on my British English iPad) pop up the familiar iPhone weather view on the screen. For anything else you’ll need to download a proper weather app. I recommend the excellent WeatherPro.
Another note on built-in apps: The new Passbook app is iPhone and iPod Touch-only.
For a quick look at the new iPad Clocks app in action, check out our own Michael Steeber’s excellent video of the iPad’s new iOS6 features.