Major infrastructure improvements typically occur in the denser populations of cities. So were tipping our hat to AT&T for deploying fiber-to-the-node in at least some rural areas to deliver its U-verse broadband Internet service. Its not as fast as cable, but its almost twice as fast as conventional DSL service.
58. Turntable.FM (online music service)
This online service graced our Top 100 last year. When we heard the company had a mobile app, we fell in love all over again. The social music service works perfectly on the go, and it's fun to DJ while riding the bus. Play on, party people!
59. Netgear NeoTV Max (media streamer)
The year 2012 wasnt a big one for new media streamers, but the NeoTV Max is a honey. It can stream nearly anything over your network (with the exception of DVD and Blu-ray ISO images); plus, you can send audio and video to your TV from any laptop outfitted with Intels WiDi technology.
60. Scrivener for Windows (word processor/project organizer)
Few writers can brain-dump an entire novel or research proposal straight into a word processor. Scrivener for Windows, a PC version of the popular Mac program, helps you organize your ideas and notes. You can switch between corkboard, outline, and continuous-flow "scrivening" views to see how your opus is shaping up.
61. ADT Pulse Premier (home control/security system)
ADTs home security and automation system is almost as good as Vivints; plus, ADT will install in-wall lighting controls if you prefer. The company added electronic door locks, a new touch-screen control panel, and more advanced cameras, too. ADTs up-front costs are higher, but its contracts are shorter.
62. Intuit QuickBooks Pro (accounting software)
Woe to the small-business owner who doesnt balance the ledger. QuickBooks isnt the most powerful software for the task, but its very easy for novices to set up and use. If it doesnt handle a function you need, a third-party add-on probably does.
63. Epson WorkForce WP-4540 (multifunction printer)
This fast, capable, business-minded inkjet multifunction is a leader among the new generation of no-regrets inkjets for the office. The best-balanced among many strong contenders, it brings swift performance, spiffy output quality, and a whopping 580 sheets of standard input. Ink is cheap, too. Low-end color lasers should be worried.
64. Lytro Light-Field Camera (digital camera)