Going from a scientific calculator to app based solutions can be difficult. It’s seldom due to a learning curve. Standard scientific calculators and the apps based on them tend to be quite similar. The main issue comes from the sheer wealth of choices available.
In this list we’ll make the process easier by examining only the best apps. We’ll judge the apps by effectiveness, cost, speed and overall usability. We’ll give equal consideration to both iOS and Android apps.
7. MyScript Calculator
MyScript Calculator is arguably the most innovative option. The app tries to emulate the experience of actually writing down equations on paper. Except, of course, that it handles all the calculations.
Most people whose lives revolve around math can attest that pen and paper have their uses. Many people find that scribbling out a rough equation on paper is faster than on a calculator. And MyScript Calculator recognizes this and tries to offer the best of both worlds.
The only downside comes from simplicity. It’s faster than using pen and paper. But at the same time it needs to forgo many features found in scientific calculators. As such, it might only be the best scientific calculator app for those who prioritize speed.
6. Calculator +
Calculator + is similar in some ways to Myscript Calculator. The main difference comes from which area the apps compromise on. Calculator + tries to offer the ease of writing equations by hand. And it tries to emulate the experience of a standard scientific calculator. But when there’s an issue between the two, Calculator + goes with the scientific emulation.
However, it’s also held back by this attempt to combine two very different mediums. And it’s also only available on iOS. But despite these issues it’s a fantastic choice for people who need to quickly write out equations. It’s a good match for lower level college courses.
The fact that it’s free is a good match for students who need to carefully manage funds. But it’s also useful as a secondary calculator for professionals.
Calculator + is available for free on Apple’s App Store.
5. Numix Calculator
Numix Calculator is a surprisingly powerful free app for Android users. What makes it such a surprise is how simple it looks at first. The app is quite easy to mistake for a simple calculator at first glance.
But this simplicity is also the app’s most impressive feature. The app’s a perfect match for high school level students who are moving up in grades. It features a pane based layout that can easily change as students grow in proficiency. However, college level students and professionals might find it a bit limiting.
Numix Calculator is available for free on Google Play.
4. RealCalc Scientific Calculator
RealCalc Scientific Calculator lives up to the name. It attempts to perfectly replicate the experience one might find with standard scientific calculators. Everything from button layout to color scheme evokes classic calculator design.
However, this is both the biggest strength and weakness of the app. People moving from a hardware based scientific calculator usually love RealCalc. They can quickly move their usage patterns into RealCalc without much of a learning curve. And it even has an aesthetic familiarity.
At the same time, this might feel somewhat off-putting to anyone who’s never owned a hardware based scientific calculator. As such, it’s the best scientific calculator app for people accustomed to physical calculators.
RealCalc Scientific Calculator is free on Google Play.
There’s little question that Soulver is a good match for anyone who needs a scientific calculator. In fact, it’s often held up as proof that smartphones have surpassed the best that standard calculators can offer.
It can easily perform almost any function supported by even the most advanced calculators. But it does so with screen space far smaller that what hardware based solutions require. However, this power comes with a few issues.
It goes for a streamlined presentation, managed by careful categorization. Functions are carefully grouped together on seperate screens. But many people find that they’re forced to constantly flip between different screens while using the app.
It’s easily among the best scientific calculator app choices. But people won’t really know how well it fits into their usage patterns until they try it.
Soulver is available on Apple’s App Store for $2.99.
Calcbot emphasises elegant simplicity. Many of the candidates for best scientific calculator app have features which no standard scientific calculator could match. But this usually forces people to make use of those apps in ways that are just as foreign to expectation.
Calcbot only has one significant difference from standard scientific calculators. It’s designed around the idea of instant mutability. Calcbot’s what one would get if early scientific calculators could instantly rearrange the keys based on user preference.
Start in portrait mode and it’s a simple pocket calculator. Flip one’s phone around to landscape mode and one can now use it like a scientific calculator. It also comes with some nice usability features like sound and graphical transition effects.
Calcbot should function as a drop in replacement for anyone who uses scientific calculators. But those who value aesthetic design will get a little more out of the experience.
Calcbot is available for free on Apple’s App Store.
PCalc offers an interesting solution to a common problem. A smartphone is far more powerful than a scientific calculator. At least in terms of display and raw computational power. But at the same time this versatility can be an equally limiting factor.
Throwing in every single possible function can make apps difficult to use. PCalc is arguably the most powerful and versatile of the scientific calculator apps. That might suggest that it would be the most difficult to navigate as well.
But even more than the power, what makes PCalc so impressive is the design. Because the designers realized they wouldn’t be able to anticipate everyone’s need or style. So they instead provided the maximum amount of computational power.
But it also includes a framework that gives users the ability to design new interfaces. One can essentially think of PCalc as both calculator and calculator construction set. This style gives it top placement in best scientific calculator app choices.
PCalc is available on Apple’s App Store for $9.99
In the end, the best scientific calculator app isn’t simply about raw functionality. The least powerful smartphone is a supercomputer compared to the most powerful scientific calculator. But what really informs one’s choice is how the app is used.,
This is also why it’s important to discuss the options with other users. Different classes, tasks and even personalities will match up with different options. Sharing one’s experiences with the apps can be a huge help to new users.