Looking at an iPad's lock screen is about as fun as eating wax. Nobody, save for a few psychopaths, enjoys it. Notifications are neat, kind of, sort of. Really, though, an iOS lock screen is just a flat, lifeless digital ghost town, devoid of useful information. All that space and nothing to show for it. Not even weather.
Like many instances of iOS's glaring shortcomings, a developer has stepped up to fulfill missing potential. Is that Apple's endgame? If so, what a phenomenal business model. Maybe, who knows, iOS 7 is coming one day. For now, you can use Status Board, available for iPads big and small—only if you're willing to part with $10. It's not a complete lock screen replacement—you still need to boot the app up. But once you do, no more boring lock screen staring back at you.
Put it this way: you're probably not using your iPad as a digital picture frame. And, if you are, stop. Status Board is a beautifully customized application that gives users at-a-glance information of things like weather, calendar appointments, email, Twitter timelines and RSS feeds, among other things. If you really want to dig deep, there are Pro options so you can view JSON or CSV data in neato graphs. If you're unhappy with the stock experience, you can even apply some HTML wizardry to dress it to your liking.
You don't have to keep staring at your iPad thinking, "Why is it just sitting there, doing nothing?" Bring it to life with something that's actually useful, and quit jumping through dozens of apps to get the information you need. For businesses, there's even a fullscreen HDTV out option so you can project that information to a lobby TV. Or stream using AirPlay, either one. Look: profits are up this month!
It might not be something that's essential for the iPad to function. But it once again shows there are better ways, without the help of Apple, to manage lots of information on your mobile device. Status Board is available now in the iTunes store.