This app has been around for months, yet I’ve come to use it only a few weeks ago when several readers pointed out on Twitter that it was a better alternative to Remote Conductor. Rowmote Pro, which is a universal app for iPhone and iPad that requires a server component to be running on your Mac, is an elegant multitouch trackpad that comes with other functionalities such as quick volume / pause / next shortcuts, an app launcher and a virtual keyboard. Rowmote Pro won’t display the screen of your Mac computer on your iPhones and iPads, but it provides access to a plethora of commands that can come quite in handy if you’re controlling your Mac from the couch, watching a movie or listening to some music.
Rowmote isn’t meant to access your Mac remotely, over the internet: in fact, it only makes sense locally, while you’re still able to see your Mac’s screen but you don’t want to get up and control it with your mouse and keyboard. From this perspective, Rowmote is one of the most solid virtual touchpad apps I’ve tested recently: the touchpad is large, buttons for media control have been placed at both sides of the iPad so you can quickly tap on them with your thumbs. That’s a great idea. A smaller surface in the Trackpad tab also allows you to adjust the Mac’s volume by sliding your fingers. A series of modifier keys placed in the same toolbar let you easily perform keyboard shortcuts assigned to certain OS X applications.
Together with its elegance and sexy design, the most interesting feature of Rowmote is the “Applications” menu. Tapping on the menu item will open a popover that lists some default apps you may have installed on your machine (iTunes, Finder, Firefox, etc.) and all the ones available in your dock. Tap on one, and the Mac will open it; switch to Trackpad, and you’ll be able to control it with Rowmote.
At $4.99 in the App Store, Rowmote Pro will also control your old first-gen Apple TV. If you’re looking for an iOS touchpad with a few more functionalities, this one is a good choice.