Recent App Reviews
With almost 2.5 Billion Android and iOS devices in use in the world, and Gartner predicting tablet shipments to outstrip PCs next year, it looks like everyone will be running their business from the palm of their hand before Santa Claus next comes down your chimney. Apple is increasingly being accepted by enterprise IT departments alongside Microsoft, and $50 smartphones are getting closer to reality every day, at least in emerging countries.
As new iOS apps flood the App Store every day — recently topping 1,000,000 — we know it’s tough to tell which ones are worth their salt. But thanks to our Weekly Scoop, you can have the best for free! Here you’ll find a weekly roundup of the coolest apps free or at a discount for a limited-time only. Each week features the best and brightest from websites like Free App Report, AppsGoneFree, appsfire, and more.
Hurry! Get 'em while they’re hot!
As expected, new Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella announced the release of Microsoft Office for the iPad at a press event Thursday. Available are Word, Excel, and PowerPoint apps. You can download the apps for FREE, but the free version limits you to viewing documents created in those programs. If you want to create and/or edit documents, you'll need to subscribe to Microsoft's Office 365 service. Office 365 Home Premium is currently the lowest-cost option, at $9.99/month or $99.99 per year. It lets you install Office on up to 5 Macs or PCs and up to 5 mobile devices. In addition, a subscription comes with 20GB of OneDrive (formerly SkyDrive) cloud storage and 60 minutes of Skype calls per month. Microsoft also recently announced Office 365 Personal, which will let you install Office on a PC or Mac and on one tablet. The price will be $69.99 per year, or $6.99 per month when it becomes available.
Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars
Once in a while, I will stumble on an app at what seems like the most inopportune time, but it turns out to be highly beneficial anyway. That's how I found MapMyRun from MapMyFitness. I actually happened upon this app when I saw their ad while playing a game in my doctor's waiting room. The company is certainly no stranger to the App Store; since their inception in 2007, MapMyFitness has released several apps dedicated to fostering connected fitness among the public.
King, the Dublin, Ireland based game developer, has a great symbol, KING, on the New York Stock Exchange, and at least one very popular app, Candy Crush Saga (free), in a portfolio of 180 apps. Candy Crush represents 75 percent to 80 percent of King's revenue, but usage has peaked and is in decline.
One thing I love about virtual shelves like the App Store is that you can often find items years after they have been released. When they’re good, that’s always a bonus. I wrote this review more than a year and a half ago, but I hate wasting things, so I figured I’d go ahead and publish it despite the age. The Lord of the Roads ($0.99) is still available on the App Store; and when I fired it up again, just to be sure that I wasn’t overinflating things, it turned out the game is still just as fun as it was back then. Plus it runs quite well on my iPod Touch 4. If you don’t get the significance of that, you’ve obviously never had the “privilege” of owning an iPod Touch 4.
Back in college, at Carnegie Mellon University, one of my professors posed the question, who was richer? Our choices were historical figures like King Louis, Julius Caesar, Andrew Carnegie, Napoleon, George Washington... and ourselves. The answer was each of us... None of those ancient figures could access any movie on demand via NetFlix or iTunes. None of them could communicate instantly with someone across the world, by video no less. They couldn't "see" star systems and planets as we can with apps like StarWalk. Modern technology makes our lives richer than the wealthiest people long since gone.
Lots of folks like to fall asleep to ambient sounds or soft music or to run to inspirational music. However, most earbuds and headphones aren't a great solution. Enter the doctor-created SleepPhones ($39.95) and RunPhones ($39.95). These devices embed small speakers in headbands and connect either via traditional wires, or flexible and strong wires, or even Bluetooth, depending on your needs.
As new iOS apps flood the App Store every day—recently topping 1,000,000—we know it’s tough to tell which ones are worth their salt. But thanks to our Weekly Scoop, you can have the best for free! Here you’ll find a weekly roundup of the coolest apps free or at a discount for a limited-time only. Each week features the best and brightest from websites like Free App Report, AppsGoneFree, appsfire, and more.
Hurry! Get 'em while they’re hot!
The Peterson Birds app, which regularly sells for $9.99, is currently available in the App Store for $0.99. This is a great deal on a great app. Having a bird app on your device is so much more convenient than schlepping a book, especially since you typically have your device with you. Plus, unlike books, birding apps also have recordings of their songs. You simply tap on the illustration to hear the song. The Peterson Birds app includes information from eight different Peterson Field Guide Books, such as the very popular Peterson Field Guide to North America, giving you details on over 800 species of North American birds. The app offers illustrations, range maps, bird songs, and nest photos, and claims to give you more detail than any other bird app. It also claims to be the only one that lets you compare similar species by sight, song, and range from one screen. The QuickFind index lets you go to information on a particular bird with a single tap—letting you avoid having to type in the bird's name.