Posts Tagged blog
This week at 148Apps.com, we turkey trotted our way into Thanksgiving and the holiday season with a tremendous list of apps for sale, courtesy of site founder Jeff Scott: “Black Friday is the biggest sale day of the year for the big box stores. And the same is true for the App Store. But the good thing about the App Store is there’s virtually 0% chance of getting trampled while trying to get that $39 laptop everyone is racing for.
This week and into Monday we’ll likely see hundreds of iOS games and apps on sale at some really great prices. We’ll be updating this post frequently through Monday with the best of the sale apps and games.”
Want to know more? Read our full Price Drop list at 148Apps.
The holiday spirit continued at GiggleApps.com, with Amy Solomon’s review of Wombi Toys: “Wombi Toys – a toy workshop for kids is a new interactive app that my son is really enjoying.
My son always get so much out of immersive role-playing apps, be it mini-games or more open-ended adventures which allow my son to cook for animals, plant a garden, pretend to be a doctor, fix a car or play tea party.
For those parents who know exactly the genre of app I am talking about, it is worth getting to know Wombi, a Swedish developer with a wonderful sense of style.
They have developed a series of really fun jigsaw puzzles of different themes and other apps that I have also enjoyed, so I was super-excited for the release of Wombi Toys – a toy workshop for kids which allows children to play toy-themed mini-games, building or fixing a very nice variety of toys such as wind-up car, painting alphabet blocks or using a hand pump to inflate a ball as each of these games are cute and fun, tactile as well as intuitive.”
Released: 2012-10-18 :: Category: Games
Finally, AndroidRundown.com writer Carter Dotson shared some unfortunate news: One of the biggest names of the early days of touchscreen mobile gaming is about to finally fade away: parent company GREE is shutting down OpenFeint, effective in December.
OpenFeint may not be as fondly remembered on Android as it is on iOS. It was the first real service to provide leaderboards and achievements, a much-desired feature. However, the platform failed to expand upon that core functionality once Game Center kicked in and became ubiquitous; while features like cloud saves were implemented by OpenFeint (and seen in games like INC which provided cross-platform saves) they never took off with developers or the public. However, the service was still purchased by GREE, and has been languishing recently as it transitions in to the GREE Platform.”
And, as the tryptophan kicks in, we bid you a fond adieu this week. But make sure you keep track of all the latest sales, contests, reviews and news items by following us on Twitter and Facebook. See you next week. Gobble gobble.
This week at 148Apps.com, we got into the holiday spirit with a review of a gadget that might be on many people’s wish lists this year – the iRig Keyboard. Site editor Rob LeFebvre writes, “IK Multimedia might be trying to take over the music peripheral world. The company has a wide range of apps, instruments, and support items that could, in theory, be used to build a band entirely out of iOS instruments. The latest offering from this prolific manufacturer is titled iRig Keys, a super portable iOS keyboard with 37 velocity-sensitive keys, modulation and pitch wheels, low power consumption, and core MIDI compliance. The iRig is aimed at the portable musician, the composer on the go, the backpack virtuoso, and as such, it succeeds brilliantly.”
Think you might ask Santa for this? Check out Rob’s full review at 148Apps.
The upcoming holidays were also on our minds at GiggleApps.com, as Amy Solomon reviewed Ice is Nice: All About the North and South Poles. Amy says, “As the name may suggest, Ice Is Nice does indeed give a lot of great information about the earth’s North and South Poles, as well as animals found in these areas that children and their adults will enjoy a great deal.
As with the other titles from this series, go on an adventure with The Cat in the Hat, Dick and Sally as well as Thing One and Thing Two, who are all here to learn such topics as the harsh temperatures found at the Poles or why there are six months of darkness or perpetual sun.”
Released: 2012-06-27 :: Category: Education
Finally, 148Apps.biz writer Carter Dotson explored the improvements made in Tapjoy’s latest SDK: “Mobile advertising service Tapjoy has announced version 9.0 of their SDK for iOS and Android. The purpose of this update is meant to expand out and improve their current set of features to improve user engagement with their ads, and to integrate daily rewards, a popular feature that developers can now easily implement. These are meant to provide advertisers ways to developer targeted ads in a better way, and for developers to generate revenue even from non-paying users through incentivized ad viewing, service signups, and app installs.”
And that sets us up for a week of pre-Thanksgiving hysteria here in the States. Join us on Twitter and Facebook to keep track of holiday app sales, news and reviews across all of our sites…and do yourself a favor and start thawing that turkey now.
iPad Only App - Designed for iPad
News wire service Reuters released a new iPad-only news photography app today. Get it while it’s hot.
The Wider Image is an unprecedented photography experience from Reuters, the world’s largest news agency. Created exclusively for the iPad, this immersive app reimagines news photography to bring images and information to life.
Start with over 100 compelling stories by Reuters photographers across the world, with new stories added daily. Get the wider story. Transform the way you see.
iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
Circa is a new news processing app that hopes to break down the news, remove the fluff, and present what matters to you. They do this with a bunch of editors rather than an automated process, so the results have the potential to be pretty good.
This week at 148Apps.com, we gave the Editor’s Choice award to Organ Trail: Director’s Cut. Reviewer Rob Rich had this to say about the game: “There’s something timeless about The Oregon Trail. Gearing up and heading west across the country in order to settle in some promising new territory, braving all manner of hardships and diseases along the way, it’s a game that just about everyone loves. Wait a second, the “E” is missing. It’s not Oregon Trail? It’s actually Organ Trail? Well I don’t see what the big difference-OHMYGOD ZOMBIES!!!
Organ Trail: Director’s Cut is a throwback to the classic era of computer gaming. Back when we had to load these things using floppy disks, and in-game sounds consisted entirely of varying forms of *BOOP*. Much like its pioneer era inspiration, the game tasks players with preparing for a cross-country road trip and naming party members after friends in order to make them feel bad when they inevitably die in horrible ways. Only this time it’s during a modern zombie apocalypse, and instead of hunting for food and fording rivers they’ll be scrounging for meager supplies while fending off the walking dead and creeping through zombie hordes.”
Released: 2012-08-09 :: Category: Games
Everything was about back to school at GiggleApps.com, where reviewer Amy Solomon had this to say about Murky Reef 1st-2nd Grade Reading, Science and Math: “Parents will appreciate how this app incorporates the Common Core standards for Grades 1 and 2 while keeping children engaged and entertained, especially as children prepare for school to start again soon and need to begin to get back to the business of focusing on school work.
Murky Reef is a collection of 22 interactive games which teach a great deal about the animals of the coral reef as well as include math, logic and language exercises.”
Released: 2011-09-30 :: Category: Education
Finally, on 148Apps.biz, Carter Dotson reported on the rise of the app developer middle class, saying, “While there’s often much pessimism among developers as far as the challenges of money making on mobile apps goes, analytics firm Flurry’s latest report discusses how the revenue among mobile apps is being distributed. With it, there’s evidence that an app developer ‘middle class’ is forming, as with more revenue being spent on mobile apps, developers do not need to reach the kind of high ranks that they did in the past to make the same kind of revenue. As well, the ‘long tail’ of revenue is getting longer.”
HipGeo has already proven itself as a great travel blogging app since its launch earlier this year. The latest update should cement that even further.
The update provides full video capability as well as the ability to convert all the photos, video and text uploaded to the service into virtual ‘storytelling journals’ that can be shared on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest, as well as shared with the HipGeo community and via email. Consolidated, it should prove a great tool for avid travellers.
The app groups together photos, videos and texts into a location, so it’s simple to browse what’s going on and where as part of a coherent album. A Trip Player and Day Map ensures that movements are clearly shown between the photos, videos and writing, making it easy for viewers to catch up on the traveller’s progress.
Alongside the ability to create such journals offline, before uploading when inside a Wi-Fi zone, HipGeo is a great all-rounder for those who want to blog their travels.
Released: 2011-08-15 :: Category: Travel
Good news for those who use CoPilot Live, version eight. The developers, ALK Technologies, are offering a big upgrade free of charge to version nine. The new line of CoPilot Live GPS apps for the US and Canada still have access to live navigation, but now with more perks. The biggest addition is voiced turn-by-turn directions, no doubt a response to Apple’s iOS 6 announcement, but there’s more. The new routing features give you three different ways to find where you are going, each with information not only on distance but on mileage and with the year of free live traffic they are offering to new subscribers on their website it’s even better.
The new design is less distracting, with lane assist arrows and what they call “ClearTurn” display. There is also “Tap and Go” navigation which lets you literally just tap on a location on the map to get directions. It even has “social navigation” allowing you to check into Facebook and Twitter with your locale or to search Wikipedia or Bing’s Local Search from within the app. If you upgrade or try V9 for the first time, let us know what you think in the comments.
Fan of the BigStar Movies app and those looking for a new subscription-based video streaming service will be happy to hear about the latest update. Along with their catalog of lesser known titles including some gems, the app now supports AirPlay for HD streaming, and HD upscaling on iOS devices happens faster. Also added is a new “collections” section to help find specialty items, with five categories to start and the promise of more to come. The movie info now shows in a side panel and the whole app was rebuilt for increased stability.
BigStar Movies is a lot like Netflix, but it doesn’t replicate the service. There aren’t tons of mainstream movies here and practically no TV, but there are lots of smaller film festival award winners, and lots and lots of indie across genres. The pricing plan and payment methods are also different. Netflix and similar services require you to sign up and create an account online. They use their own billing services and cost a bit more. BigStar Movies allows you to do the same, and you’ll even find a good discount through online sign-up right now – three months for $4.99, the price of one – but the app also allows you to subscribe via iTunes, nice for those who don’t have credit cards.
The app has the requisite social media integration, enhanced in this update, along with trailers and user ratings. The catalog of movies is the same in Canada as the US, which is unusual and suggests the app’s service is available in its entirety wherever the app is available for download. BigStar is definitely for a certain type of movie lover, so be sure to check out their selections before subscribing. If underground and small indie films are your thing, though, this is a great time to give BigStar Movies a try.
It’s July 4th, so we hope most Americans are out celebrating and reading this on an iPhone or iPad or between activities. But if you are still looking for apps to help make the day even better, we’ve rounded up four of our favorties that commemorate everything from US History to the traditional BBQ for you here.
Weber’s On The Grill
An instant classic last year, this grill guide from the masters at Webers has become an iOS standard for the BBQ set. They’ve added 27 new recipes since July 4th 2011, which makes around 300 total – 40 just for marinades and rubs. There are tutorial videos, tips on cuts of beef, and even a section to take notes. The app also makes creating last minute shopping lists a breeze.
Released: 2009-07-12 :: Category:
This American Life
The popular public radio show has an app that features podcasts. It’s not easy to describe the content, it’s a grab bag of people, places, historical tidbits put together expertly to create an immersive listening experience, perfect for setting the tone on your way to the beach or the fireworks. The app has easily searchable shows dating back to 1995, making it something of a living, speaking American history museum. Look for easy social network sharing for those stories that inspire your patriotism.
Released: 2010-02-01 :: Category: Entertainment
What’s the 4th of July without a few drinks? All-American beer is in most coolers, but if you’re looking for cocktails (easily turned into mocktails for those driving or little drinkers) you can spend hours searching online or just grab iBartender. It’s something of an App Store classic with recipes, shopping lists and pictures that will make you want to start the party early, and it was just updated to support the new iPad’s retina display along with new drinks to keep things fresh.
Released: 2008-07-31 :: Category: Reference
Presidents vs Aliens
Kids are an important part of Independence Day celebrations, and while it’s great for them to be excited about picnics, swimming pools and amusement parks, somewhere between those activities and the fireworks, you probably want them to know a little about what they are celebrating. President vs Aliens is more than just a US history app, it’s a silly Executive Branch showdown with E.T.s that will capture imaginations and have grown-ups wanting to take a turn. Kids won’t notice they are learning, and you’ll have more time to relax while waiting for the big light shows to start.
One of the most popular blogging platforms out there, Tumblr has recently updated its iOS app.
Version 3.0 comes with all manners of new features, most notably a completely revamped and sleeker dashboard. Increasing compatibility with the iOS format, tap based functionality is improved and swiping through the composing interface has been introduced. It should all make for a much simpler app, ensuring users can blog content even faster than usual.
High resolution photo support is now included, proving particularly beneficial to those of us with the new iPad and iPhone 4S, although the app isn’t Universal just yet.
For those without a consistent internet connection or those currently abroad, offline support will be a great hit with users able to post new blogs, reblog content and comment on others’ work all while offline.
Spotify support and the ability to search tags is also supplied.
The Tumblr update is available now.
Popular iPad blogging app, Blogsy has just been updated to version 4, adding a variety of new features. This update comes only 2 months since the last major update, which worked hard at making WordPress functionality work even better for users. It should prove a fine update for users not quite satisfied with the previous build.
This time round, there’s support for new platforms such as Squarespace, MetaWeblog, Joomla and Instagram. New for all services include image captioning and word count checking facilities. It’s also possible to adjust video alignment and size, with it generally much easier to deal with videos on the whole. WordPress features now include the ability to deal with post excerpts.
Numerous bug fixes have also been included and while it’s not quite perfect yet, Blogsy is a much more attractive proposition to bloggers who are regularly on the move.
The Blogsy update is freely available now for existing owners. New adopters can pay up $4.99 for the privilege.
In the world of couture it’s already Fall/Winter 2012-13, but here in reality, summer is hot – literally. With the season came Time Warner to Newsstand, which got us poking through their offerings and finding ourselves drawn to lighter beach fare like fashion magazines. This week we look at our favorite four fashionista periodicals for those planning what to wear now and to see what’s on the catwalk for Autumn.
ELLE US has couture, trends, and very readable articles. On top of the high-end glossy magazine, there are some really cool features. Enjoy an ELLE “Personal Stylist” – just upload your image and try on looks directly from the app. There is also a great Inspiration Board where you can put your favorite pieces to create a digital, sharable collage – perfect for Pinterest. The July issue just came out and features a look at Selena Gomez in a TDF top, a huge spread on instant outfits for any occasion, and a guide to vacation dressing and packing.
Released: 2010-09-25 :: Category: Lifestyle
This venerable Conde Nast publication, Vogue, made its iPad debut in May and each issue is packed with all the great fashion and articles you’ve come to expect on top of some cool interactive features including videos. The July issue has a fantastic one of Emma Stone doing a special photo shoot where she reveals her “vampy” side and talks about her role in the latest Spiderman summer blockbuster. This issue also looks at what every girl needs on her summer fashion checklist and peeks down the runway at the haute-couture for fall.
We were happy to see Time Warner bring InStyle to Newsstand. The magazine is a fresh lighter look at fashion. The monthly has lots of tips on how to get the hottest styles for less, and how to put them together to make eyes pop and jaws drop when you make your entrance. The new July issue downloads really quickly, has stories on Salma Hayek and Justin Bieber, great hot weather makeup looks and tips, and over 150 “chic steals” to love for under $50. Oh, there’s also some frozen treats that would make any “it” girl want to risk the calories.
Released: 2011-12-12 :: Category: Lifestyle
NET-A-PORTER, from the website of the same name is a weekly that’s part magazine, part shopping portal and part fashionista web haven. The app is simple to use, and full of great looks. This week, the editors have an article on the hottest one-piece swimwear. Check out Issa London by Daniella Helayel (of Kate Middleton now Duchess of Cambridge’s engagement dress fame), who reinvents mod on the runway. Then, after drooling and possibly buying, go discover the secrets of the summer sundress. The best part of the app is that you can touch on an item to get more details, the price, and purchase your must-haves right from your lap.
Released: 2010-07-21 :: Category: Lifestyle
How many music cloud storage apps does it take to fill an iPhone or iPod touch? We’re not sure; they roll out so often it’s hard to keep track. On Tuesday there was a noteworthy addition – Amazon Cloud Player arrived on the App Store. It didn’t get much attention from Apple, but that’s likely because the service is very much like iTunes Music Match.
If you are a U.S. subscribers to Amazon’s music service you can now access your cloud-locker to stream your collection of MP3’s to your device. You can also download music to save bandwidth when you don’t have a Wi-Fi connection or for offline listening. Cloud Player also allows you to upload your existing music collection and access your iPhone or iPod touch music library. You can create and edit playlists, but you have to buy the songs and albums, or own them already, to store them in Amazon’s corner of the sky.
Cloud Player devotees get 5GB of free stooge. Add-on storage plans start at $20 a year for 20GB. Be sure to enable automatic downloads if you want your collection to stay current – the default setting is “off.”
The only limitation to Amazon Cloud Player on iOS is that Amazon doesn’t want to give Apple a 30% take on all sales, so like their Kindle app, content must be purchased on Amazon.com and then it gets synched to your device. Look for an iPad release soon.
The ADAs, as the Apple Design Awards are known, were presented for the 16th year at yesterday’s WWDC. The winners are those whose interface best exemplified the innovation the Cupertino elite hope to see on their platforms. Along with the honor and an inevitable boost in sales, winners receive a actual physical award complete with glowing Apple logo. This year there were three categories dedicated to iOS. Three apps were chosen for iPhone and iPad respectively and two student-developped apps were honored as well. We’re got the list for you below, but if you think Apple missed a great choice let us know in the comments.
Company: Halfbrick Studios
Released: 2011-09-01 :: Category: Games
National Parks by National Geographic
Company: National Geographic Society / Rally Interactive
Released: 2012-04-19 :: Category: Travel
Where’s My Water
Compnay Disney Interactive
Released: 2011-09-22 :: Category: Games
Paper by Fifty Three
Company: FiftyThree Inc
Released: 2012-03-29 :: Category: Productivity
Bobo Explores Light
Released: 2011-09-15 :: Category: Education
DM1 – The Drum Machine
Released: 2011-07-06 :: Category: Music
Company: Reality Twist GmbH, Mimimi Productions, Mediadesign
Highschool of Applied Sciences
Little Star (iPad)
Company: BiBoBox Studio, Dalian Nationalities University
Take a look at the latest news one day and it’ll be clear that there is tons to take in. Every day, a huge number of different events and stories occur and it can be tough to keep track of everything without spending a lot of time catching up.
Scoople is a new app that hopes to make it fun and easy to find the news that you’re interested in. The app offers users a series of yes/no based questions to assertain what stories the reader is interested in. Hundreds of different articles are organized every day, covering numerous different subjects ranging from politics to celebrity gossip.
Adding a gaming twist to things, Scoople assigns points to each answer, determining how others voted and providing leaderboard facilities. It’s simple stuff but a convenient addition to an app with a great idea behind it.
News junkies will enjoy a fresh new way of keeping track of the latest news.
Scoople is out now and it’s free.
This week, 148Apps was all about Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) 2012. Take, for instance, Carter Dotson’s report on new Xbox 360 features that may allow iOS integration: “At Microsoft’s E3 press conference, they revealed an interesting new feature that will integrate smartphones and tablets to the Xbox 360. Called SmartGlass, this is designed to operate a second screen during games, movies, and TV shows. This means that hypothetically, a game could display a map on the tablet screen, or even integrate interactive game elements like maps and play-calling in sports games.
Our kids-centric site, GiggleApps, reviewed Give A Day HD, which, as reviewer Amy Solomon states, “is a thoughtful children’s book app that helps create discussions between children and their adults about the world bigger than their families, as this app brings the topic of less fortunate children to the attention of young readers. This app is also available as an app for iPhone as well and is also part of the PlayTales Reader application.”
And finally, 148Apps.biz covered the big news that Google acquired iPad app QuickOffice. Writer Kevin Stout states, “Quickoffice, the mobile document editing software (that particularly handles documents from the Microsoft Office suite well), has been acquired by Google. Announced on Google’s official blog, Google plans to intergrate Quickoffice‘s technology in to their own Apps product suite.”
Our week that was is now did and done. If you’d like to keep up with the latest reviews, news and contests, all you have to do is click the links to follow us on Twitter or Like us on Facebook. That wasn’t so hard, was it? I didn’t think so. See you next weekend, fellow chupacabras!
Taptu, the social news reader for the iPhone and iPad (also known as the service “DJ-ing the news”) has expanded its service to be usable on any browser. The new HTML5 Taptu app will let users create and share their personal Taptu streams just like they can on their iOS devices.
Even if a user has Taptu on both iOS devices and wants to view it on the web, all of those streams will be synced across every device. Taptu even has plans to update the service with a mobile web app so that nearly any mobile user can be in sync with the Taptu service on nearly any device.
In an update to both the iOS, Android, and new web platforms, Taptu has added the ability for users to create a stream based on a search term. So if a user wants to keep up on “Justin Beiber” news, they can make a stream for that.
Taptu is a social news reader app that aggregates all of a users important streams (like Facebook, Twitter, RSS feeds, and more) into one, visually focused app. Like most news readers, users can save articles to read for later on their favorite services (like Instapaper and Pocket).
Taptu is a free, universal app.