It can’t run iOS6 and your friends have started using it as a tea tray. Never fear: Mark Wilson has some apps and accessories that’ll make your first-gen iPad essential again


Turn it into a Windows 8 tablet

Or an OS X Lion iPad, depending on your home computer. Install the free Splashtop Streamer on your Mac or PC, and you can control your desktop remotely on an iPad via the Splashtop 2 app. It even streams audio and video, so you can watch HD films or play games over Wi-Fi or your data connection. Splashtop 2 /

£2.99. iTunes


Make your own mini MET office with it

This weather station’s sensors record humidity, air pressure, noise, CO2 level and temperature . It’ll even suggest opening a window when your room’s CO2 levels get high. Netatmo Urban Weather Station / £140,


Record music on it at pro quality

Combine this stereo mic with Garageband, and you’ve got a mobile recording studio for the price of a battered old acoustic The Spark Digital sports a ‘focus control’ button for emphasising higher frequencies, making it nifty for podcasts too.

Blue Spark Digital / £200,; Garageband /

£2.99. iTunes


Repurpose it as a studio light

Photographers know how useful a ‘soft box’ light source is for close-ups. And that’s what your iPad becomes with this handy app, which packs a mass of diffusers and useful textures to help shed the right illumination on your subject. Pair it with Photo Soft Box Pro Remote (£0.69) for Bluetooth control. Photo Soft Box Pro HD / £1.99, iTunes


Bolster your computer’s screen estate

Desktop screen more packed than a rush-hour tube? Turn your old iPad into a second screen. Install the Air Display drivers on your Mac or PC, download the app and start whizzing things between screens.

If you don’t already have an iPad stand, a Breffo Spiderpodium Tablet (£25, breffo. com) will do nicely. Air Display /

£6.99, iTunes

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