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Flash Comes To The Classroom iPad Thanks To iSwifter's Rover

Posted by Jennifer Allen on February 2nd, 2012
iPad App - Designed for iPad

Having grown up in a household of educators and now with numerous friends who teach, I've quickly learnt the importance of educating students in new and exciting ways. It keeps information interesting and relevant rather than becoming potentially stuffy and staid.

There are numerous ways to ensure this but one of the latest and most exciting ways is that of Rover from iSwifter.

Rover provides cloud-based streaming through iSwifter's technology, enabling iPads to stream Flash content alongside other useful education tools. Free to download, it's targeted towards the K-12 education sector having partnered with education brands such as Discovery Education, Mathletics and Funbrain. Partnering with such brands immediately makes Rover an immensely useful resource of offering both fun and knowledge without the child even realising how much they are learning.

Fundamentally, it means that children can use a classroom iPad to access such content rather than be restricted to the PC.

The app is easy to set up and offers a firewall-friendly solution to work around existing IT systems in schools while still maintaining the Children's Internet Protection Act (CIPA). It is worth mentioning that a Wi-Fi connection is required to use Rover even for those with 3G iPads. It's a small requirement, however, for an immensely useful educational tool.

Using the app is similarly easy to get to grips with thanks to digital textbook controls including a D-Pad, visual feedback for finger taps and support for a split keyboard form of control. Rover can even be paired with SMART board interactive whiteboards for added functionality. Each cross section of schooling is viewable separately from Elementary School to Middle and High School.

With increasing numbers of teachers using iPads within the classroom environment, Rover ensures that children have the best tools to learn with and in a fun and safe environment, too.

Rover is available now for the iPad and it's free to download.

Act of Fury: Kraine’s Revenge Review

iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
By Jason Wadsworth on December 1st, 2011
Our rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: SEVERE FUN WARNING
Throw a sentient tornado of destruction into a classic shooter, mix it well, enjoy.
Read The Full Review »

Adobe Carousel is a Photo Hound's Dream

Posted by Rob Rich on September 9th, 2011

These days, it appears as though everyone has a home computer. It also seems like most people have iPhones. And I always see a surprising amount of people carrying around iPads, too. So it's not out of the question to imagine that at least some of these folks own two or even all three of these devices. The problem is, in this age of shutter-happy digital photography, it gets a little hard to store all those pictures in one location. Putting them on the phone is a good idea because then they can be shown off at a moment's notice. Keeping them on the pad makes for easy editing. But then, the computer has a lot more storage space. What to do...

Well, Adobe's gone and made a reasonable solution to the issue: Adobe Carousel.

For all intents and purposes, it's basically cloud photo storage. All images will be kept in one spot and will be available on any iOS device with an internet connection. Tweaking a photo from one (i.e. adjusting hues and the like) no longer requires syncing or transferring between systems; the updated image will be viewable by all instantly. Oh, and said editing can be done from inside Adobe Carousel, similar to Photoshop Lightroom. It certainly seems like something the photo-happy iOS user could get a lot of use out of.

Granted, all this convenience and freedom from restrictive storage capacities does have a price. A very literal price. Adobe Carousel will require a subscription which can be either monthly ($5.99) or yearly ($59.99), depending on the user's preference. Granted this isn't all that substantial when compared to various other subscription fees, and it has no restrictions so users can import, edit and browse as much as they want.

There doesn't appear to be a specific release date yet, but according to Adobe's website it should be out "soon." Likewise there's no official word on cost, free or otherwise, aside from the subscription fee. Still, this is an app shutterbugs should keep an eye out for.

Lightning Fast, Collaborative Note Taking With Rocketr

Posted by Rob LeFebvre on September 9th, 2011
iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad

We're not sure what happened to the final "e" in this app's name, but it's hard to fault developers from falling prey to the Web 2.0 naming conventions that seem to be a near constant in our connected world.

That being said, the unfortunately named Rocketr is a note taking app with a few unique features. For one, the app promises to let note takers create note after note, and navigate between them without ever leaving the comfort of the keyboard, something not often seen in the touchscreen enabled app-iverse. In addition, Rocketr allows for collaborative notetaking by adding "Editors" to any note document in the app via the Rocketr website. These named Editors will then be able to see changes sync in real time with all other Editors. Let the team document editing begin! Even more unique, the app allows users to publish public notebooks to the web, tweet or email directly into Rocketr, and download notes from the web at any time.

The app syncs with the Rocketr website, to allow for cloud-based synchronization of Rocketr notes. But wait! There's more!

Note-taking Features
* Create text notes
* Email notes into Rocketr by sending to [email protected]
* Tweet notes into Rocketr by using the hashtag #rkt in tweets
* Auto-synchronizes your notes to the web
* Search notes (only supported on web version for now)
* Download all your notes, anytime, from the web version

Collaboration Features
* Add as many people to a notebook as you like (we call them “Editors”)
* Create an unlimited number of public notebooks that the world can see
* Make notebooks private (viewable by you and your editors)
* Comment on other people’s notes (only supported on web version for now)

Rocketr is free, it's now, it's in the App Store. Why are you still here?


Drop-It! Offers Cloud Storage for iPhone Photos

Posted by Phillip Levin on August 2nd, 2011
iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad

Drop-It! is a new app from Voxygen Limited that enables users to take photographs and automatically have them stored on Dropbox's cloud server.

Anyone who regularly takes photographs with their iPhone or iPod touch can relate to the truth that the files can add up quickly, taking up valuable space that could otherwise be devoted to a larger iTunes collection. Drop-It! addresses this issue by automatically sending all photographs to the all-covering cloud in the sky – or, really, just an account on Dropbox. This does two things for users. First of all, it saves space on their device. Second, it allows them to view their photos on any iOS device, Mac or PC. Like with all other cloud-based services, users can essentially take their photos with them anywhere they go.

The app has a few other extras in addition to its cloud services that make it worthwhile. For instance, users can name their photo files and create separate folders for optimum organization. They can also specify to save photos as either a PNG or JPEG file type.

While the iOS Drop-It! app costs $0.99 to download, access to the cloud itself is free. Users can sign up for an account on Dropbox, which Drop-It! uses, for free within the app itself.

"We built Drop It! because we needed an easier way to photograph sketches and whiteboards to share with the rest of our team," Voxygen Limited says of its app. "Using DropIt! we can now do this with one tap."

Drop-It! offers a promising service, but one can't help but wonder how useful it will be once Apple releases its iCloud this fall. Furthermore, this is hardly an original idea. There are numerous other apps already on the iTunes App Store that offer similar cloud storage, such as QuickShot. Only time will tell, of course.


Turn An iOS Device Into A PC With PocketCloud

Posted by Jennifer Allen on June 28th, 2011

Wyse is a company name that might be familiar to many. Around for the past 30 years, Wyse has been responsible for numerous personal computers back in the 1980s and now it's most well known for its desktop virtualization and cloud computing.

Cloud computing is something we've discussed before and for a very good reason - it's not only hugely useful but also potentially the future of a lot of technology. In the case of Wyse PocketCloud, it enables users to have access to their Windows or Mac based computer through their iPhone or iPad. Users can then access any file they wish, browse the web (including all important Flash sites) and run any applications they wish on their desktop. We already covered much of what PocketCloud is capable of previously but this potential has been extended further.

Having just reached the all important 1 millionth download of the app, PocketCloud has had further enhancements added to it. Version 2.1 now offers optional Premium subscription services which give the user the ability to download, print and email files. There's also the capability of streaming videos and music from a home desktop to PocketCloud and a file browser to make searching for the ever useful files that bit easier. Priced at a mere $1 per month, that's some pretty extensive functionality for the price.

For both the personal and business user, PocketCloud offers a great way of always being near to the home PC. Easily set up either via a Gmail account or manually, it takes seconds to set the system up and then professional users could securely access files for a presentation or business transaction. Personal users could use it to access their music collection or videos that they haven't previously stored on their iOS device.

Wyse PocketCloud is out now in two varieties. There's a free version and a professional version priced at $14.99 and offering extended functionality. Plus of course in-app purchases to carry on the subscription.

Favorite Four: Apps that iOS 5 Could Replace

Posted by Kevin Stout on June 9th, 2011

With the iOS 5 announcement, many have been speculating on the “death” of certain apps that provide some of the same features that iOS 5 will be coming out with. This week I’ll talk about four categories and specifically four of my favorite apps that might be killed off by iOS 5.

Dropbox - Cloud Storage
iCloud was a huge announcement. While it contains more functionality than just cloud-based documents, iCloud offers 3GB more free storage than Dropbox does. With my documents, calendars, pictures and more being automatically synced between all of my devices (Mac/iPad/iPhones), I doubt I’ll continue using Dropbox once iOS 5 is released.

Camera+ - Photo editing
Camera+ was the must-have, quick photo-editor for the iPhone. If anyone is even remotely interested in doing quick touches to his or her pictures, Camera+ was the app to buy. The Photos app in iOS 5 will now add quick touch-up features like cropping, red-eye removal, and an auto-enhance feature. Unless an editor is incredibly powerful or has specific features that I would want, I’m likely to just use the Photos app after the iOS 5 release.

Wunderlist - To-do
There are so many varying types of to-do apps on the App Store that I doubt Reminders (iOS 5’s to-do app) will kill off to-do apps. But there’s a specific to-do app that I just started using, Wunderlist, that does exactly what Reminders will do - cloud-based to-do. With a free, to-do list app synced with all iOS devices, I find it hard to believe that to-do list apps will be as popular as they once were.

Instapaper - Offline Reading
Instapaper isn’t the only service that provides an offline reading list (another popular one is Read It Later), but both services cost money. Built into the new and improved Safari on iOS 5 will be a reading list feature. The offline reading list in combination with the new “Reader” view (which presents text in an easy to read format) presents an experience similar to Instapaper. I’m a huge fan of Instapaper, but I tend to prefer native Apple apps over third-party apps if they’re available. I’ll definitely be checking out the reading list feature in the new Safari and I have a feeling that it may win me over.

Elements Dropbox Powered Text Editor for iPad Review

+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
By Chantelle Joy Duxbury on August 23rd, 2010
Our rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: NOT PERFECT
A simple text editor with the built-in power of Dropbox syncing. Not quite perfect, but still very useful.
Read The Full Review »

New iDisk App Allows Music Streaming From Cloud

Posted by Chris Hall on August 4th, 2010
+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad

Apple's latest update to its iDisk app, on top of some other upgrades, allows music streaming for the first time. It isn't quite the full iTunes sync like some people want, but it will allow you to stream any music that you have stored on your iDisk to any devices that have the software. It even allows for background streaming, which is quite nice for those on the move.

There are some drawbacks, such as the lack of music auto syncing and the lack of playlists and album artwork on the service, but if you are just looking for a way to get a ton of music in the cloud, this is great.

The funny thing is that this music streaming feature is not included in the bullet list of added features that shows up on the main screen, it is almost like Apple is hiding the functionality. One reason may be that "Apple's service allows unlimited sharing (no username or password required) and now background streaming - all without a license from the record labels" which is apparently a big no-no in the industry.

Regardless, you can pick up your free update to iDisk today. Have fun!

[Source:Michael Robertson]

Rdio Review

+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
By Chris Kirby on June 28th, 2010
Our rating: starstarstarhalfstarblankstar :: STILL WAITING FOR SPOTIFY
Rdio is a promising service and app that still needs quite a few tweaks before coming out of beta.
Read The Full Review »

iTunes Streaming Not On The Cards Just Yet

Posted by Ben Harvell on May 5th, 2010

After Apple acquired music streaming service Lala Media at the end of 2009, many believed it would be bringing this cloud-based technology to its iTunes service very soon. While Lala will shut down on May 31st it appears that it may still be a while before a streaming version of the iTunes Store for both desktop computers as well as iPhones and iPads will be launched.

Lala offers a catalog of over 7 million songs that stream directly to users over the internet. In order for listeners to listen to a specific song at any time and as many times as they wish they are required to pay a $.10 fee. Songs are also available to download at prices similar to the iTunes Music Store. Apple acquired the company in December 2009 for an undisclosed fee thought to be around $17 million.

However, after initial excitement at the Lala Media shutdown announcement, it appears not to denote an imminent launch of Apple's own streaming product.

Apple is said to be talking to record labels regarding a streaming service but these discussions have been pegged as "preliminary at best" according Peter Kafka writing for MediaMemo at All Things D.

The success of streaming music and video applications like Spotify and Pandora for the iPhone and the new ABC Player for iPad have added weight to the rumours that Apple will begin to deliver music and movies in the same way via iTunes but it appears this move could still be a way off.

Apple is well aware of the demand for streaming music services after showing Pandora's application streaming music while making use of the new multitasking feature found in the upcoming iPhone OS 4.0.

One of the key factors in such a service is the method in which payment would be made by consumers. While Apple has strong ties with the major record labels it took a long time to thrash out a mutually beneficial deal. Changing the landscape for music delivery may introduce further issues. Streaming music a user already owns on iTunes is one possible outcome however a subscription model may also be made available which would tie in to an iPhone and iPad application.

With Apple's World Wide Developer Conference only a month away, those hoping for an announcement on the topic will likely be disappointed, with many sources claiming the launch of a streaming iTunes service won't happen before the third quarter of this year.

[via MediaMemo ]

MobileMe iDisk Application Released

Posted by Kyle Flanigan on July 30th, 2009

Apple has posted an iPhone and iPod Touch version of its online file storage system, iDisk, to the App Store. In an unexpected move by the company, the application gives users the ability to view and send their files that are stored remotely on MobileMe servers. Rumours had recently surfaced suggesting that an iDisk application would only be available in iPhone 3.1, of which Beta 3 has recently been released to developers.

The application, free, supports viewing of "iWork, office, PDF, QuickTime and more [file formats]". Files can be shared publicly and an e-mail with a link to the file can be sent.

Apple are inexplicably late to the game with the iDisk app, as the mobile version of www.me.com stated "You can access this information directly from the applications on your iPhone or iPod touch." Several third party developers have already built applications that allow access to a user's iDisk. Notably, Air Sharing Pro were quick to offer iDisk support and QuickOffice offered full iDisk viewing and editing, an important function, from within their app. Both applications were approved by Apple to the App Store with no fault.

It is not all bad news, though. The video playback feature alone warrants installation on any iPhone or iPod touch, where users can view video of any QuickTime supported file format (this includes the much-lacked AVI).

Cloud Girls

By Jeff Scott on October 11th, 2008
Our rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: RECOMMENDED
Cloud Girls is a great, simple, beautiful little diversion
Read The Full Review »