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Droid to compete with the iPhone

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The big news today is the announcement of the Droid, a new smartphone from Motorola and Verizon that uses Google's Android software. As Todd posted yesterday, the iPhone market share is surging ahead. But the Android market really seems to be heating up too. A press release out today from Wirefly says that five of the top 10 most-anticpated smartphones right now are Android phones, with the Droid leading the list. And clearly these devices are going to push the envelope.



Great new app for musicians

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Sorry but I haven’t posted lately as I’ve been preparing my materials for tenure review here at West Chester University of PA.

But, after attending a recent conference hosted by the Association for Technology in Music Instruction (atmionline.org) I have some great new apps to share with you. I’ll roll them out over the next few weeks. Here’s the first.



Review: imPig from iPho Game Development

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I’m not really quite sure who the target audience for this game is. With the whole “three little pigs” motif you’d almost think it was a kid’s game, but the atmosphere seems a bit violent. When you shoot the wolves with an arrow they bleed, and in the intro cartoon the pig comes off as kind of a gruff, mean protector. Not to mention the fact that this game gets tough rather quickly. That being said, it is a somewhat amusing game that will definitely keep you challenged. Did I mention it was tough?



iPhone marketshare grows! Where it stops, nobody knows!

 A new report shows Apple's marketshare of the smartphone market continues to grow, at the expense of the entrenched suppliers.

The iPhone now accounts for 30%, up from 25% and trails market leader RIM (BlackBerry) by ten points, as RIM slipped one percent to 40%.  Considering that BlackBerry includes a variety of platforms, touchscreen and non-touchscreen, and that Apple's iPod touch sales aren't included, it's clear that the iPhone platform is on its way to becoming the dominant platform for smart devices.



Yes, you can put several hundred applications on your iPhone!

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The iPhone operating system has never allowed for listing more than 9 (SpringBoard) pages of 16 applications each, which has severely restricted the number of applications you can install on a phone. (Actually, the number of third-party apps you can display is even less as the built-in applications take up one tab – around 14-16 icons.)

The problem was slightly cured by the introduction of OS 3 this June. It allowed for both slightly more (11) SpringBoard pages so that you could see a bit more applications. However, additional programs you synchronized did not show up – even when they are there on your phone.

Fortunately, there are several solutions for the problem.

1.



AT&T Navigator Winners!

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 Want to thank everyone for the great support and comments in our recent giveaway of AT&T Navigator software. Want to especially thank Telenav for sponsoring it. The winners are listed below along with instructions on claiming complimentary subscription services. I wish everyone could have won, but if you didn't this time, remember to please tune into our blogs regularly for more great contests in the future.

WInners:

wazzucoug

jediteej

misterlab



Vocalia voice recognition for the iPhone

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We all want voice recognition. What could make things simpler? You just ask your iPhone to call one of your hundreds of contacts, and it does so. No searching, no flipping through the list. That's the promise. The reality is, of course, a bit short of that. Still, there are a number of applications that are trying to make this a reality. Vocalia is among them, and it claims to be the only 100% hands-free speech recognition app for the iPhone that enables speech access to your address book, iTunes library, and Safari bookmarks. Some users, seemingly the more savvy ones, find that it works really well.



Gloves for using iPhones

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Here in Iowa there's a distinct chill in the air. Have you ever tried to use an iPhone wearing gloves? It doesn't work. What you need are gloves that expose just the tip of your thumb and index finger. And the Etre Touchy website offers exactly that. Might make a nice Christmas gift for the iPhone lover in your family. Or for yourself.



Rumor: Apple developing FM radio app for iPhone and iPod touch

Well, you know about rumors: they're sometimes baseless. But this one seems to make sense. After all, both the iPhone and iPod touch already have an FM receiver built in. Why not an app to let you tune in radio stations? According to 9to5Mac, Apple is working on just such an app. So what's the holdup? They're trying to program it so that you can purchase music from within the app. Of course, you can already get streaming radio stations via apps such as Wunder Radio. But the FM app will be over-the-air, such that you can tune in local radio stations.



Final Day to Win AT&T Navigator!

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 There is still one day left in our giveaway of free AT&T Navigator subscriptions. Get your navigation-related comments up here or on the original post by Saturday, 24 Oct 2009 (11PM EST) for a chance to win one of 3 copies. See original post and rules here...



Multiplayer game news

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I dedicate a brand new article to this news item as I have a lot of great news and I don’t want them not to be noticed when posted to the original article. (NOTE: I’ve posted at least one update a day to the original article in the last two weeks, announcing new games, videos, price drops etc.



How the iPhone changed motherhood.

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I have four kids. The changes in technology since the first one was born - 19 years ago - to when the last one was born - 6 years ago - is astounding. The technology of the iphone completely blows my mind.



Review: WiFi Photo

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I don't normally write about non-game apps, mainly because I quite frankly don't do much with my iPod besides play games and listen to music.  However, I recently ran into a problem with my computer where Windows Explorer won't recognize my iPod, so I cannot copy images to my computer.  This usually isn't a problem except for the fact that I will often take screen shots of games that I am reviewing, and I really don't have the patience to email those screen shots to myself to get them off of my device.  Thankfully there's an app for that, and it's called WiFi Photo.



100 apps to boost your brain power

Sometimes app lists are useful, sometimes not. This one's excellent. 100 iPhone Apps to Seriously Boost Your Brain Power is a categorized list of apps that are oriented toward helping you learn things. The categories include: 

• General Knowledge Triva, Quizzes, and Games
• Science and Mathematics
• Biology
• Literature, Arts, and Culture
• Test Preparation and Study Tools
• History and Geography
• References and Guides
• Languages
• Vocabulary and Grammar



Book Reader - a nice read, but not all that it's advertised

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The graphics on Book Reader are stunning when you first turn it on. The sample book included on the app beautifully displays on a wooden shelf and appears to have a gilt-edge, leather cover. Tap to select the book and it opens to an antique white page with easy-to-read text. It’s very pleasant on the eyes. The pages turn in a way that simulates page turning in a print book. There are even some black and white illustrations included in the sample, which adds to the reading pleasure.



301+ Short Stories — a lot of great classics for only 99 cents

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I've found it surprisingly convenient and fun to read books on my iPhone. So I was delighted to see the recent release of 301+ Short Stories for $.99. The app offers hundreds of stories by 89 of classic short story writers, including Charles Dickens, Kate Chopin, Ambrose Bierce, Defoe, Joseph Conrad, Jack London, Arthur Conan Doyle, Mark Twain, Poe, O. Henry, and H.G. Wells. Lots of my favorite writers here. And now all in the palm of my hand. Plus, you can adjust the text size for easier reading.

 



Thundergod — listen to the relaxing sound of thunderstorms

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I've always loved the sound of thunderstorms, and now I have some great ones on my iPhone. A company called Naturespace has recorded 65 thunderstorms from around the U.S. and put them into the Thundergod app. They use stereo effectively to track the thunder across the sky so that you feel like you're actually in a thunderstorm. There's a sleep timer so that you can fall asleep to these relaxing sounds. The app isn't cheap, at $9.99, but the quality of recording is excellent.



Most cell phone users don't notice unicycling clown

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In case we needed another reminder of why it doesn't matter that the iPhone can't multitask, a study published in Applied Cognitive Psychology indicates that most of us can't, either.

Specifically, 75% of people walking down the street while talking on their cell phones did not notice a unicycling clown passing them.  (Oddly, neither did 50% of the people who were not talking on cell phones, so really the phone conversation only cuts our attentiveness by an additional half.)

Read about the study in



Win a Free Copy of AT&T Navigator for iPhone!

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Telenav, the developers behind the AT&T Navigator application have released an update that now incorporates landscape view and also integrates iPod controls into the application. They have generously offered up 3 one-year subscriptions, so get a related comment up here about your favorite GPS services/apps to have a chance to win a copy (deadline: Saturday, 24 Oct 2009, 11PM EST). YouTube video and contest rules after the break...



A Developer's View on In-App Purchases for Free Apps

 Apple recently announced a major shift in how they treat free apps and I have been mulling over what it means to developers, in addition to end users.

In the past, "In-App Purchases", or the ability to add features to an app, were only available for paid apps.  Free apps could not be upgraded, short of purchasing the paid version separately.  Now, users of these free apps can purchase upgrades.

On one hand, more choices are a good thing.  But I have some concerns.



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