In other words, you won’t be seeing Firefox for iPad anytime soon, but browsers that—to appropriate the ever-relevant car metaphor—use the same engine as MobileSafari with a different chassis and paint job—are now available for iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad.
Apple insists that browsing the web on an iPad is already pretty magical, but there’s always someone ready to step up and demonstrate stronger magic. Atomic Web Browser is one such contestant.
It’s not easy to bring a real photo editor to the iPad, but that’s what GhostBird has tried to do with Photoforge for iPad. In addition to standard photo-editing features like smudge, crop, and filter, it offers basic painting features that make it very useful for editing and annotating photos and screenshots.
Photoforge isn’t Photoshop for iPad; that kind of app isn’t likely to be available on iOS for a while, and it wouldn’t be fair to make the comparison. It makes much more sense to compare Photoforge to Preview or even Pixelmator on the Mac, so that’s what I’ll do.
One common complaint about the iPad is that it is good for consumption—watching movies, listening to music, reading books and so forth—but not capable of much in the way of production. Apple has challenged that idea with its iPad versions of the iWork applications, but relatively few other developers have stepped forward with apps for creating content. One of those developers is Übermind.
Übermind bills Masque as “powerful photo editing at your fingertips”. In more direct terms, it’s a layer and effect-based image-editing program that allows you to import photos from, and share photos to, Flickr and Facebook, as well as your iPad’s photo library.
Jubilee is an iPad application with a very narrow focus: it aims to help you remember birthdays and send electronic birthday cards. No more, no less. It’s wrapped up in a lovely interface, and makes the whole process of congratulating someone on their birthday a really fun process.
If you regularly find yourself sending a “belated” birthday card to your own family members, it’s definitely worth reading on to find out more!
Reeder for iPhone hit the App Store in September of 2009. Although it initially lacked some key features, it quickly became popular and is now one of the best RSS readers for the iPhone. Since the iPad’s release, many Reeder users have been waiting with bated breath for an iPad version. They’re finally in luck; the developer submitted Reeder for iPad last week, and it should be available soon.
For those not familiar with Reeder, it’s an RSS reader that syncs with your Google Reader account. Since it’s obviously not the first app of its kind on the iPad—NetNewsWire is the big-name competition—I’m going to talk a little bit first about what separates Reeder from all the apps already in the App Store.
Now that Apple has entered the mobile eBook market with iBooks, it’s a good time to look at Amazon’s offerings. While Amazon originally released the Kindle strictly as a hardware platform for reading eBooks, that changed with the release of an iPhone app in March, 2009 – a full year and a month before Apple would release the iPad and the iBooks platform.
Today we’re reviewing both the iPad and iPhone version of Kindle, and drawing some in-depth comparisons to Apple’s latest offering in the form of iBooks.
Let’s get this out of the way up front: a great application should do one thing, and do it very, very well. Bento for iPad is not a great app. All the same, it deserves a full review, partly as an iPad app created by a subsidiary of Apple and partly in the hope that I’ll have the opportunity to review a much-improved version somewhere down the line.
Bento for iPad is a mobile version of FileMaker’s consumer-oriented Bento database app. It’s meant to contain information about any collection, series of events, or other information that can be expressed in the form of a database. That information can either be entered directly on the iPad, or synced to the iPad app from the desktop app. Using the latest version of the desktop app, databases can even be synced between a Mac, an iPad, and an iPhone.
Stephen Fry—British writer, actor, and geek extraordinaire—recently wrote of the iPad, “One melancholy thought occurs as my fingers glide and flow over the surface of this astonishing object: Douglas Adams is not alive to see the closest thing to his Hitchhiker’s Guide that humankind has yet devised.”
That is a sad fact indeed; apps like Articles and Wikipanion have essentially made The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy a reality, and Douglas Adams, who died in 2001, missed seeing the fantastic mesh of software, hardware, and network that made his dream real by only a few years.
Human ingenuity being what it is, though, the capabilities of the iPhone and the iPad have already begun to overtake the capabilities of The Hitchhiker’s Guide, and WolframAlpha is a great example of that. Today we’ll be looking at how this knowledge and functionality is packed into a simple iPhone app.
I should probably preface this review by telling you two things about myself. The first is that every application on my iPhone’s homescreen—with the sole exception of Settings—is devoted to acquiring, organising, or sharing information. The second is that I’m an interface snob. The only good software is pretty software.
Articles is a Wikipedia app. It lets you search, surf and share Wikipedia articles. It doesn’t allow you to sign in or edit those articles, but I have a hard time holding that against an iPhone app; editing Wikipedia on a device with a 320×480 screen would be a nightmare no matter how elegant, useful, and attractive the rest of the app is.
I’m not an insomniac. Not really. I just picked up an unfortunate habit in college of not getting to sleep until 3am, and I haven’t quite managed to get rid of it yet. Partly as a result, I’ve been wishing vaguely for a FitBit for some time now. $100 is a bit much to spend just to feel guilty for not exercising enough, though, so I haven’t acquired one yet.
Then a friend told me about Sleep Cycle, an app that claims to track your sleep patterns and wake you at the optimum moment in your sleep cycle, resulting in a more natural and restful awakening. At $.99, testing it was a no-brainer. Here’s what I found.