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It’s common for people to carry a smartphone with them in the car, whether they enjoy listening to music and podcasts or need to take calls for work. With Bluetooth, cars and phones can be connected to work together. With the exception of Tesla Motors’ recent efforts, this integration doesn’t usually go beyond hands-free calling and better music control. The car’s computer still handles how your average miles per gallon and alerts you if parts of the car are failing. Again, there’s a problem: a check engine light means you need a computer to diagnose the problem.

All of these quibbles from average drivers have been addressed individually. One tool will fix this, another that. What if you had a direct connection between your increasingly-smart mobile phone and new, or even old car? Automatic believes it has the solution. (more…)

I really dig Instagram — or I used to. But since the service was purchased by Facebook, I feel like it’s lost its focus. Instagram’s new video features are nice, but they don’t feel as smartly-designed as Vine. And speaking of design, I feel like Instagram’s has suffered recently — particularly on iOS 7, where the app looks like something an arts college dropout would whip up if given the opportunity. And finally, I can’t be alone in saying that I think the filter selection is getting worse with time.

That’s why I’m really excited about Favd. Favd is a photo-sharing app made for iOS 7 that’s designed on the App.net backbone. It offers total ownership of your photos, great filters, and the ability to share them on Twitter and Facebook. Better yet, its design harkens back to the days of early Instagram and uses App.net for its social structure. Read on to find out why I think Favd is a must-have app.

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I love Pinboard. Until not long ago, I was doubting whether or not I thought it would be a valuable purchase, but holy cow, do I love Pinboard. My problem is finding an iOS app that I really like using Pinboard with — one that meets high standards in design and functionality. It has to work and do most of what I need it to, but it also has to look stunning. Whether or not that makes me shallow is trivial — nobody wants to use ugly apps.

Until recently, none of the apps I’d seen or tried — and even some of the heavily-endorsed apps like Pushpin — are aesthetically pleasing to me. On iOS 7, all of them seem too textured or too heavy for my liking. That’s why I was insanely excited about Pincase — a Pinboard app exclusively for the new iOS. Read on to find out if Pincase can be your new Pinboard home.

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We live in a busy world that has us juggling work, school, kids, and so much more each and every day. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could get ten minutes a day to completely relax? Well, that just might be possible with Headspace (on-the-go), a mediation app.

The creators of Headspace are on a mission to get as many people as possible to take ten minutes out of their day to practice mediation. They suggest that Headspace is mediation for the modern world delivered through simple and scientifically proven techniques that aim to give you a healthy mind. But does the app manage to keep you motivated with its design and techniques or does it end up boring you to tears? That’s what we’ll find out.

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In the wake of iOS 7, it feels like the App Store is the Wild West. Every app territory is up for grabs again — it’s no longer about who has the best app, but about who’s made the best iOS 7 app. Camera apps, despite iOS 7’s arguably disappointing camera filters, aren’t excluded from this. In fact, thanks to iOS 7’s renewed focus on clarity, I think that camera apps could benefit more than most.

Landcam requires iOS 6 or higher, but it looks like it’s been made for iOS 7 from the get-go. This is the rare camera app that surprises and delights as often as it snaps a shot. Let’s take a look and see whether or not it can supplant your current favourites.

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I’ve been an Instapaper devotee for a while. When people talk about their “workflows,” Instapaper is a vital part of mine. There’s a few things I really like about it (especially its business model, but I won’t get political). That being said, iOS 7 is bringing about a sea of change. Between that massive update and Betaworks’ acquisition of Instapaper, I was curious about the other offerings.

Although I know that there’s an update to Instapaper for iPhone that’s pretty nice and a bigger update for iPad coming, Pocket beat them to the market. With the newest updates to Pocket, the app is now built for iOS 7 and comes complete with all the new technologies that the update enables. Read on to find out what I think.

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iOS 7 instantly changed the way I do a lot of things on my phone. I was pretty prepared for the OS itself, which was a revelatory experience all the same, but what I wasn’t prepared for was some of my favourite apps becoming instantly outdated. My preferred Twitter app, Tweetbot, suddenly looked dead in the water.

With that in mind, I made the full-blown switch to Twitterrific. I’ve taken a look at the app in the past, but never stuck with it. Today, that’s changed. Let me tell you all about why Twitterrific is the Twitter app for me.

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I can’t be alone in saying that I think cable television is a terrible, awful experience. Actually, I know I’m not alone. Apple CEO Tim Cook has said he feels like he’s gone back in time by ten or twenty years every time he turns one on. Blame the Internet, Netflix or even cable providers, but today’s cable system has gotten too old-fashioned and has got go go.

That being said, I still watch cable on rare occasion and I do like to keep up with what’s on the air. (I’ve got a Mad Men obsession you wouldn’t believe.) And since the cable companies aren’t going to help me, I’ve turned to the App Store. To keep up with what’s coming up next, I’ve been using TeeVee 2, a great little app meant to make those pesky cable schedules easier to keep up with. Read on for my full review.

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Every day, before I go to bed, I grab a pen and my Moleskine journal and take some notes on what I need to do the next day. Usually I’m just writing down some of the things that are in my Reminders list, but it helps me manage my world a little more easily. I could just track it digitally with Reminders — and I do — but I like my day to be fluid, and something about planning it just one day in advance helps with that.

That’s why I was really excited when Kyle Rosenbluth told me about his new todo list for iOS 7, Begin. Begin is meant to be a todo list for today, not longterm planning — just like my Moleskine. Kyle’s also the guy behind Horizon, my favourite iPhone calendar app. And I couldn’t wait to dig in to his new creation. Read on for my thoughts on Begin. (more…)

As an fan of Apple, I’m sometimes bestowed the label of “fanboy” by some individuals. I often find these incidents to be humorous, as most of the individuals bestowing me the title could in fact be labeled fanboys as well — but for another tech company. I have zero qualms being called an Apple fanboy, as I’m proud to support a company that creates stellar software and hardware. Likewise, I’ve often touted my love for Pocket Casts over all other podcast apps, and could very well be branded a Pockets Casts fanboy.

Since my initial review of Pocket Casts way back in August 2011, I’ve continued to utilize it for all my podcasting needs. When Pocket Casts 4 was initially released for Android over iOS, I was disappointed. When the new app was delayed after the announcement of iOS 7 at WWDC, I was disappointed even more so. With the arrival of iOS 7, Pocket Casts 4 has finally found its way to my iPhone. The question is, was it worth the wait? (more…)

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