Best Apps For Macbook Air 2018

There’s really no surprise that there are many fantastic applications available for your Macbook Air, but it can be hard, if you have amassed a large number of apps, to quickly find the one you want. There are also great reasons to use these apps on a daily basis; indeed, they can change the way you work and help you be more productive. Whether you are looking for apps for editing video and photos, or want games to keep those long waits in line or at the airport fun and engaging, we have narrowed down the field from hundreds of thousands of different apps to come up with a set of 20 which we believe will appeal to every type of Macbook Air user

The 35 Best (Must-Have) Mac Apps (Essential for 2022)

Best Apps For Macbook Air 2018

Dropbox
Dropbox Screen
Source: iMore

Dropbox is a cloud storage service that lets you easily backup vital documents, files, photos, videos, and other things, making it one of the essential must-have Mac apps. While your stuff is stored in Dropbox, you can access it across any other device, as long as you’re logged in to the same account. Any changes to your files get saved automatically, though you can also check older versions on the web interface if needed. Everything you upload to Dropbox is encrypted, and there are also collaborative features that make it easy to share files with others. One thing I love about Dropbox is how it integrates with pretty much any other app I need, so my stuff is accessible from anywhere and in anything.

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Dropbox Mac Icon
Dropbox
Online backup for all of your files, with integrations in almost every app.

Starting at $11.99 a month at Dropbox
Tweetbot
Tweetbot Screen
Source: iMore

I’m on Twitter pretty much all day, every day. My app of choice is Tweetbot from Tapbots. I use Tweetbot over every other Twitter app because I love the interface, as it’s easy to use and provides plenty of powerful features. You can quickly search for topics that interest you, filter and mute hashtags and people that are annoying you temporarily (or permanently, it’s up to you), create lists, and there is support for a multi-column view. I’ve been using Tweetbot on my iOS and Mac devices for years — there’s no other app that I would rather use. Plus, you don’t see promoted ad tweets or other annoying features, like Spaces. It’s one of my absolute must-have Mac apps.

Tweetbot
Tweetbot
Tweetbot has plenty of powerful features that make it the best Twitter app on Mac.

$10 at Mac App Store
Microsoft Edge
Microsoft Edge
Source: iMore

While I use Safari as my default browser on my Mac, it’s always good to have an alternative, especially since some things don’t always work correctly in Safari. For my alternative, I use Microsft Edge. It syncs with your Google account, has numerous plugins and extensions to enhance the browser experience, and works better with certain Google apps than Safari. And yes, it’s much better than Google Chrome.

Microsoft Edge Logo
Microsoft Edge
Edge is a great alternative browser that syncs with your Google account and has a ton of plugins and extensions.

Free at Microsoft
Fantastical
Fantastical Mac Screen
Source: iMore

I have a lot going on daily, so my schedule gets hectic at times. That’s why I need a calendar, and I continue to use Fantastical on my Mac. Fantastical has a beautiful interface that is easy to use, and you have several different views on how to look at your calendar. It integrates with your iCloud, Google, Exchange, or local calendar, so any changes are saved and synced automatically. The agenda list view is a great way to see what’s coming up in your schedule, and it’s easy to create events with the natural language input support. Fantastical also integrates with Reminders, so your calendar and tasks are in one place. While it has transitioned to a subscription model, it is free to download and try out, and as one of our must-have Mac apps, there’s no reason not to give it a go.

Fantastical
Fantastical
Fantastical provides a beautiful interface for your schedule, and natural language input makes it easy to schedule events and reminders.

Free with in-app purchases at Mac App Store
1Password
1password Blurred Screen
Source: iMore

One of the most important things you can do to protect yourself online is to have secure passwords. For this, you’re going to want a good password manager which can track your passwords and other sensitive data while also helping you generate randomized passwords to use. With 1Password, you can create different vaults for personal and work accounts (or whatever else you need), sync your data across multiple devices (it’s available on everything), and even store things like bank info, credit card numbers, and other things that need extra security. 1Password encrypts everything so that it’s safe, and you can’t even get in without a master password. I’ve been using 1Password for years, and it’s one app that I cannot live without. If you need a great password manager, 1Password is a must-have Mac app.

1Password
1Password
Generate safe and secure randomized passwords, track all of your passwords and other sensitive data, and sync everything on all of your devices.

Free with in-app purchases at Mac App Store
DaisyDisk
DaisyDisk Mac
Source: iMore

Need to do a bit of hard drive cleanup? DaisyDisk is another must-have Mac app. This app lets you quickly see what is cluttering up your hard drive, thanks to bright and colorful blocks, so you can see what’s taking up the most space. You can delete stuff directly from DaisyDisk to free up space, and it’s all done in an intuitive interface that’s a joy to use. Decluttering has never been prettier.

Daisydisk Mac Icon
DaisyDisk
DaisyDisk lets you easily visualize what’s on your hard drive, and you can delete useless files directly through DaisyDisk’s intuitive drag-and-drop interface.

$10 at Mac App Store
Bartender
Bartender Prefs Screen
Source: iMore

Once you start installing many apps, you may find your Menubar cluttered with a bunch of icons. Bartender is an app that helps you tidy up that Menubar by tucking away unwanted icons into a kind of sub-Menubar. With Bartender, you can choose to rearrange your icons into an order that makes more sense to you, as well as choosing what is shown in the main Menubar and what to hide in a secondary Menubar. Or, you can hide some items entirely because they’re unnecessary — it’s up to you. This is a must-have Mac app that would be one of the first things I put on a brand new Mac. It’s also great for new MacBooks because you can regain a lot of menubar space on that smaller screen.

Bartender
Bartender
Tidy up your Menubar by rearranging and hiding app Menubar icons as you see fit.

$15 at Surtees Studios
Alfred
Alfred Prefs Workflows Screen
Source: iMore

The Spotlight Search in macOS is alright, but you can do much more with Alfred. Alfred is essentially Spotlight on steroids. You can do your basic search functionality, but you can also create workflows to make your life easier, access your clipboard history at any time, view contact info, have app integrations, text expansion, search the web, and more. You can download and use most of the basic features for free, so there’s no reason why you would miss out on this must-have Mac app.

Alfred 4 Mac Icon
Alfred 4
Boost your productivity like never before with Alfred and its many magical wonders with the keyboard.

Free at Running with Crayons
Pixelmator Pro
Pixelmator Pro Screen
Source: Pixelmator Team

Whether you’re an amateur or professional, you may have to do some photo editing at some point. Pixelmator Pro is one of our favorite apps to get the job done. It’s a powerful photo editor that will have all of the tools you need, but it’s intuitive and easy to use, unlike Photoshop, which some may find intimidating. With Pixelmator Pro, you have many professional and non-destructive editing tools, allowing you to bring the best out of your photographs. And the image editing is enhanced by Pixelmator’s machine learning, so you get the absolute best-looking photos quickly. Plus, the price is reasonable and affordable, especially compared to the competition.

Pixelmator Pro
Pixelmator Pro
Pixelmator Pro brings professional-grade tools in a simple and easy-to-use interface for everyone.

$40 at Mac App Store
BBEdit
Bbedit Screen
Source: Bare Bones Software, Inc.

If you’re looking for a professional text, code, and markup editor, you should download BBEdit. It’s often used by web application developers, writers, and software developers who need powerful tools for editing, searching, and manipulating text, code, and HTML/XML markup. Some features of BBEdit include grep pattern matching, search and replace across multiple files, project definition tools, function navigation and syntax coloring for a wide variety of source code languages, code folding, and more.

Unsure if BBEdit is what you’re looking for? The app has a 30-day trial for you to put the app through its paces, and then you can decide whether or not to purchase the full package, which has even more advanced features. But you can continue to use the free version of BBEdit too.

Best free apps for macbook air

Slack
Slack
Slack
Slack is a must-have app for anyone working remotely with others. It is the best business chat app around. The Mac app is a chat window, so you can keep your conversations going without having to log into a web browser every time. You can have multiple accounts running at the same time and there are dozens of helpful bots that you can add to any chat room.

Download now

Wave
Wave
Wave
Wave is one of those exceptions to the rule of no services without a dedicated app. It is a free software tool for small businesses. You can use it for invoicing, receipts, accounting, and more. You can also add credit card processing and payroll for a small additional fee. It is set up to work with what your business needs are. If you don’t need a feature, you aren’t paying for it. If you only need a feature sometimes, you only pay when you use it. Because Wave is dedicated to making small business tools work the way small business owners need them to, I’ve included it on this list.

See at Wave

Developer tools
Xcode
XCode
Xcode
Xcode is the macOS, iOS, tvOS, and watchOS developer’s handiest tool. It supports coding for Swift, Objective-C, Python, and a whole lot more. It can build universal binary files to run on PowerPC and Intel-based computers, and developers can create apps for 32-bit and 64-bit architectures. It’s got everything an Apple coder needs.

Download now

TextWrangler
TextWrangler
TextWrangler
When it comes to coding, nothing keeps your characters more organized than TextWrangler. The text editor works with a wide variety of coding syntax and even has color coding for different programming languages. You can easily access files on FTP and SFTP servers. It is also a fantastic app for non-programmers for its many smaller details, like line wrapping, email templates, and quote styles. It is one of the best free code editors around.

Download now

Atom
Atom
Atom
Atom is another fantastic, free text and code editor for the Mac. This one is not available in the Mac App Store, but is highly rated among programmers. It has a built-in package manager with wide support for a number of different packages. It integrates with HTML, JavaScript, CSS, and Node.js and allows programmers to code across platforms. It is highly customizable so that you can create the most ideal coding atmosphere to help keep you working quickly.

See at Atom

Education
Khan Academy
Khan Academy
Khan Academy
Khan Academy is another exception to my rule that a service must have a dedicated app, but it is such a fantastic learning website, rich with online study courses of all levels — for free — that I had to include it. You can learn the colors of the rainbow or the Pythagorean Theorem. It covers basic subjects and works you into deeper involvement, just like you would start off taking basic classes in school and move into more advanced curricula. You can also prepare for the SAT, MCAT, GMAT, IIT JEE, and NCLEX-RN with excellent study guides. It is a great resource for getting started or back into your education.

See at Khan Academy

iTunes U
iTunes U
iTunes U
Right inside the iTunes app on your Mac is a universe of knowledge. There are thousands of specialized courses, which you can download for free, that are lead by professors at some of the most popular colleges in the world. You can learn statistics from Harvard, business from Stanford, psychology from Yale, and much more. Subjects cover architecture to women’s studies, with practically everything you can think of in between. To access iTunes U, open iTunes on your Mac and select it from the menu.

See the subjects

Entertainment
HandBrake
Handbrake
Handbrake
HandBrake is a free, open-source software program that lets you convert practically any media file to MP4, M4V, or MKV. You can convert your entire DVD or Blu-ray collection into digital form to watch on your Apple TV without having to pay someone to do it for you. You can quickly choose which type of device you want your file to be transcoded to support (like iOS or tvOS) and then get to converting within just a few seconds. For more advanced file conversion fans, there are a number of great features to help you perfect your digital movie catalog.

See at HandBrake

VLC media player
VLC
VLC
VLC is the best free, open-source media player for the Mac. With it, you can play nearly any media file, including MPEG-2, MPEG-4, MKV, WebM, WMV, and much more. It has a number of customizable features so you can create your ideal viewing situation or set up your music listening experience the way you want. It does support DVD and Blu-ray decryption through the libdvdcss library if you are so inclined to use it.

See at VideoLan

Spotify
Spotify
Spotify
If you’re not using Apple Music (actually, even if you are), Spotify is the next best music streaming service for the Mac. With the Mac app, you can listen to thousands of songs across all genres. It includes a useful playlist section so you can keep track of your favorite music. It also has a great music discovery section where you can see what’s trending or music you might like based on what you’ve been listening to. The social aspect makes it one of my favorite free social media apps for the iPhone, too.

See at Spotify

See also
Best music controllers for the Mac

Finance
Debit & Credit – Personal Finance
Debit and Credit
Debit and Credit
If you prefer to keep track of your finances manually, Debit & Credit is a great checkbook balancing app (I know, no one balances a checkbook anymore). You manually enter every transaction and income, and you can keep track of what you’re spending with the budget list. The report feature is the best. You can view your spending habits by category, where you spend, your income and expenses differences, whether you are able to save, and more. There is an in-app purchase to unlock more than two accounts, but if you only have two bank accounts, you don’t need the premium service.

Download now

Money Wiz 2 ~ Personal Finance
Money Wiz 2
Money Wiz 2
Money Wiz is a great personal finance tracker for balancing your bank account. The free version lets you manually add account information like income, expenses, and account transfers. If you sign up for the monthly subscription, you can connect your online bank accounts and have the work done for you. You can also create a budget (though you can only track one budget before being asked to upgrade). You can also set up a schedule reminder to keep you on track for paying bills that are due at the same time each month. It features a few more customizable features, like creating a new category for income and expenses, as well as creating financial reports based on your net worth, cash flow, and balance over time. Money Wiz works better with the subscription upgrade, but is very useful for keeping your checking accounts balanced.

Download now

Graphics & Design
GIMP
GIMP
GIMP
GIMP is pretty much the open-source version of Photoshop. You can fix minor photo errors, like light balance and contrast, or manipulate your image using the masking and removing features, similar to that of Photoshop’s. You can also add filters, resize, create layers, mix up background objects, and a whole lot more. It’s the best free version of Photoshop you can use on the Mac.

See at Gimp

Autodesk Sketchbook
Autodesk Sketchbook
Autodesk Sketchbook
Autodesk is famous for its artists’ apps, which feature a rich selection of brushes that seem hyper-realistic. You can use it to create vector graphic images, illustrations, and photorealistic works of art. There are dozens of customizable pens, pencils, and paintbrushes, and the color palette is so robust that you can perfectly match practically any color in the world. The free download comes with dozens of amazing tools, but you can upgrade to the pro version to unlock even more options. It is a graphic artist’s best tool on the Mac.

Download now

Health & Fitness
Time Out – Break Reminders
Time Out
Time Out
Taking a moment for oneself is one of the most difficult health and fitness steps to take. We get so caught up with our busy schedules that we forget to stop for a moment. Time Out forces you to take those little breaks by dimming your screen so you can’t use it for a specified amount of time. You can set up small breaks every hour, micro-breaks every 15 minutes, and lunch breaks to get your eyes off the screen for a half-hour or so. You can configure how long the breaks are and how often you take them. It’ll make your eyes, your muscles, and your heart a little bit healthier every day you use it.

Download now

Relax Lite – Stress and Anxiety Relief
Relax Lite
Relax Lite
When the stress of the day starts to overwhelm you, use Relax to help you take things down a notch. It is a simple window with relaxing visual images and calming music that includes special tones to help cue your breathing exercises. There are guided meditation sessions you can take part in and deep-breathing exercises that will help you focus and reduce stress. Sometimes, you just need to check out for 10 minutes in order to be a more productive person.

Download now

Lifestyle
iBooks Author
iBooks Author
iBooks Author
If you fancy yourself a writer, Apple’s iBooks Author is the perfect app to get your work published without having to sign a publishing contract. You can use Apple’s pre-made templates to help facilitate the perfect design. Add images, a video introduction, book cover, and more for a more immersive experience. With the multitouch widgets, you can make your pages interactive. Add photos, audio, Keynote presentations, and 3D objects. When you’ve finished you can upload it to the iBooks Store with the in-app export tools. You’ll be a famous author before you know it!

Download now

Trillian
Trillian
Trillian
How many chat and messaging programs are you signed up with? If it’s more than one, you need Trillian. It combines all of your chat and messaging accounts into one simple interface so you don’t have to switch between apps to talk to your friends and family. You can chat through Facebook, Twitter, Google Chat, Yahoo, Bonjour, and more, all in one window. Chat services are delineated by color coding, so you know where a message is coming from. If you have too many chat channels and want to keep them all in one place, use Trillian to keep them organized.

Download now

Medical
Complete Anatomy
Complete Anatomy
Complete Anatomy
You’ve never seen the human body the way it is presented in this medical book. It shows you the entire make up of the body’s systems. For free, you can examine, in interactive 3D, the entire skeletal and connective tissue layers, including names of bones, surfaces, insertion points, and more. You can zoom in on specific areas of the body for detailed interactions and animate muscle movements. You’ll learn more about human anatomy than you ever thought possible.

Download now

Music
Audacity
Audacity
Audacity
Audacity is one of the best free audio editors. You can record live audio for podcasts, turn tapes and records into digital music, and edit tracks. If the original recording is a little too bright, you can add a filter to bring down the highs. Trim the excess off of the front or back of a recording, and even blend one track into another. It is very easy to use, so you don’t have to be a professional recording artist to get into it.

See at Audacity

Cross DJ Free
Cross dj
Cross dj
DJ programs can be a pain in the pocketbook. If you’re just learning the ropes or want to have a homegrown dance party, don’t spend the heavy cash. Cross DJ makes it possible for you to spin the beats without the expensive software. It features waveforms, beat sync, track cueing, loops, digital scratching, and more. It accesses your iTunes library directly, so you don’t even have to load up new music. You may eventually upgrade to a more robust DJ app, but this is definitely a great starter program.

Download now

Shazam
Shazam
Shazam
The popular song identification program that was folded into Siri on the iPhone is also available on the Mac. Shazam listens to your music and tells you what you want to know about it. While it’s running, it will tell you the name of a song and artist. While you’re listening to tunes, it will automatically create a playlist of tracks you can listen to with Apple Music (when available), even if you are currently listening to music with a different service. Click a track to see lyrics and watch music videos on Shazam’s website, too

Conclusion

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