iPhone, iPad Games, Apps, Reviews, News Thu, 16 Jul 2015 12:57:54 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Mad Skills BMX Review – Pedal Your Way to Fun Filled Racing Mon, 20 Aug 2012 05:41:35 +0000 Read More]]> Mad Skills BMXIf you’ve been watching the Olympics which just recently finished you may be familiar to the excitement that took place on the BMX track. If so then Mad Skills BMX could be just the game you are looking for as it recreates the experience on your iPhone or iPad in a universal app that is available in the App Store right now for just 99 cents.

If you’ve already played turborilla’s other title Mad Skills Motocross then you will be pretty familiar with the game-play here although it’s a slimmed down version, both in the fact that you are using pedal power and in some of the features.

The game includes 40 different tracks and the first 11 will provide you with all you need to know about how to power and control your BMX. Controls are simple touch screen controls which you control using just two fingers via the left and right side of the screen.

Mad Skills BMX 3

With these controls you get to manage the pedalling and the positioning on the bike which will enable you to wheelie, flip and ride the bumps at the fastest pace you can, and speed is of the essence as each race is against another competitor and it’s winner takes all.

The tracks are set across a variety of environments including the concrete of inner city, the desert and the forest and while the graphics are good it’s the physics of the game-play which really makes this game what it is.

I can’t begin to imagine what it takes to translate the physics of riding a bike in real life to the small screen and it’s obviously not easy as many have tried and failed, however, whatever it is Turborilla have found it as it feels great to ride and even crash in Mad Skills BMX.

Mad Skills BMX a

The art to winning the game is to keep your momentum up, hit the jump to early, or too late will result in giving your opponent all they need to take advantage and disappear off of the side scrolling screen. If you take a considerable lead over your opponent or find yourself behind you can see how far you are in-front or behind them via the gauge in the top left corner. You’ll have to respond quickly though if you are going to catch up.

Completing tracks will ultimately unlock the subsequent Intermediate, Expert and Pro levels through the single player mode of the game, you can upload your scores to compare them against your Facebook friends and post your scores to Twitter also. The Facebook leaderboards do add a degree of competitiveness but the promised GameCenter integration with the next update should improve that even further.

If you are looking for the tournament features that are available in this games big brother title Mad Skills Motocross then you are going to be disappointed as they haven’t found there way into this title yet but that doesn’t take away from the fun that can be had playing with yourself!

Mad Skills BMX 2d

More tracks are promised via future updates and if you don’t want to have to win your way through the existing tracks to unlock them you can unlock them via inapp purchase. You can also purchase custom bikes and riders should it take your fancy.

Mad Skills BMX {App Store, $.99} is an enjoyable game and while the addition of ghost riders to compete against would make the game even more addictive it’s still pretty addictive without it.

[rating: 4/5]

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]]> 0 Replace Your Stock iPhone Camera App With Wood Camera – Review Tue, 26 Jun 2012 19:06:23 +0000 Read More]]> When Facebook purchased Instagram for $1 billion recently the questions were about why and how much and it was easily argued that it was about the user base rather than the technology.

That’s not to say that Instagram isn’t a great app, it is, but there are better apps out there and Wood Camera for iPhone is certainly one of them, do read on though and I’ll tell you why.

Lenses are one of the main things users of camera apps like to use and Wood Camera has 23 of these, they’re your standard lenses but something that is unique about them is the ability to take pictures with the filter enabled. This can save you a lot of time if you have a lot of pictures that you want to take and add lens effects too.

Applying filters is just one of many adjustments that you can make to your pictures with 17 different textures, 12 frames and my favorite features of the vignettes which enables you to highlight specific areas of the photographs.

All of these features come with the ability to apply how big the effect is via a slider which puts you in control of how your photographs looks. Applying all of these features is easy to do with all the options available along the bottom of the screen.

You can also easily take a quick full screen view of your creation via a switch at the top of the screen and from a technical perspective Wood Camera will import your iPhone 4S pictures at the full 8 mega-pixel resolution to ensure that your pictures can look as best as possible.

Of course it’s no good creating this these pieces of art if you can’t share them with the world and there are no shortage of options there either. All of the major social networks are there from Twitter and Facebook to Flickr and even Instagram as well as to your camera roll or via email.

One final nice option is the ability to have Wood Camera launch to the photo taking screen meaning that it can be a true replacement to the stock camera application.

So if you are one of those people who wasn’t happy when Instagram were brought by Facebook or are just looking for a great camera / picture editing app then Wood Camera for iPhone could be just the app for you and is available for $1.99 from Apple’s App Store.

[rating: 5/5]

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What to know

Wood camera-1 Wood camera-2 Wood camera-3 Wood camera-4 Wood camera-5 ]]> 2 Launch Center Pro You’ll wonder how you’ve lived so long without it Tue, 26 Jun 2012 18:01:42 +0000 Read More]]> AppCubby have a range of handy apps available and they have released an update to one of these in the form of Launch Center Pro. While I use the word update this is not in the sense of an update as you may expect from an iPhone app as this is a completely new app so if you already own Launch Center you’ll need to purchase Launch Center Pro again. (You can read the Developers reasoning here.)

With that controversial point out of the way lets move on to the app itself which provides a start menu like interface for all the activities that you do frequently from launching apps, texting, calling, emailing, searching the web and more, you can set all of these actions up and customize them to meet your specific requirements.

One significant change with the pro version of Launch Center is how it looks which sees a significant improvement from its previous incarnation. From the polish of the app icon to the new grid layout the whole application looks like it’s just come out of a car showroom as it glints and gleams as you drill down through the activities that you want to launch.

When you first launch the app it will already be setup with default actions which include the ability to turn on the camera flash as a flashlight, toggle the brightness, search google and dial a contact to name but a few. It’s in the configuration of the app where you can personalize your requirements is where Launch Center Pro starts earning its stripes.

The first thing you’ll want to take advantage of when you start customizing Launch Center Pro is the use of Groups for while the initial grid is set to 4 x 3 squares to set to your own actions the use of Groups open up an additional 12 actions spots for each of the initial 12. Now that adds up to a lot of shortcuts which may defeat the purpose of the app in the first place but it’s a nice option to have!

Setting up your actions is easy, after going into edit mode, (there’s no wiggle here!), you can either edit an existing action by clicking on it or tap an empty one to create a new one. From here, after selecting to create an action you can choose from one of the common or installed actions before getting the option to customize them even further.

The level customization will depend on the action, for example if you have Tweetbot installed you’ll be able to choose from launching the app, tweeting, tweeting a specific username, launching a profile or searching, while choosing the Music app only provides the ability to launch it. This is not a limitation of Launch Center Pro however but more how any given app allows it to integrate.

Not only can you set a multitude of actions but you can also set the color of the icon and select one of a plethora of images to identify your icon, similar to the images you can have if you have Emoji enabled for your txt messages.

With your shortcuts all setup you can start using Launch Center Pro for what it was intended for, launching actions. Once you launch LCP you simply tap any shortcut and the associated action will launched, while accessing shortcuts that are part of a group requires you to tap and hold and then drag your finger to the shortcut you wish to launch.

There is also the ability to schedule actions which works more as a reminder than anything, rather than actually launching the requested action they launch an alert that will enable you to launch the action, kind of scheduling lite! This limit appears to be more of a limit of the Apple approval process than anything else however.

Once you’ve been using LCP {$2.99} for a few days consistently you’ll wonder how you’ve lived so long without it, even more so if you are a heavy user of the iPhone with a lot of apps as Launch Center Pro will do away with your need to remember where all your apps are.

[rating: 4/5]

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]]> 0 Parker Planner Review – A Single Place to Manage Your Life Thu, 31 May 2012 21:14:39 +0000 Read More]]> The digital era has signaled the end of many companies, newspapers are the ones bearing the major upheaval as people change the way they consume their news but another industry that is having to re-structure is the paper diary and planning industry as the number of people who have diaries and paper calendars continues to reduce.

One company that is looking to adapt to the changing market is Parker Planners who not only continue to sell the paper variety of planners but have now launched an iPhone version of their planner and for a paper company moving into the technology space they’ve done a pretty good job.

The default view of Parker Planner when you launch it displays not only the day’s calendar but also your todo list and a notes section to jot down ideas that come to you during the day. This is a lot of information to fit onto an iPhone but it works well and gives you instant access to all your key daily information.

The navigation bar across the bottom of the screen give you quick access to 5 different views of your information, you can see your calendar in week and month view as well as the default day view, while there are also links to page views of all of your tasks and notes.

Navigation needs to be easy and intuitive with any calendar app and Parker Planner certainly meets those requirements. Swiping left and right across the top of the screen will jump a day forward and back, while taps of the screen will enable to to edit existing items or add new tasks, notes and meetings.

The week and month views are possible the weakest part of Parker Planner but then again considering the constraints of the limited real estate it’s never easy to get a week or month’s worth of data on to it.

Both these views do give you easy ability to navigate and view large amounts of time/data though and at any time a quick tap of any date will bring up the day view that will show all the data that you need. From all screen though you can quickly jump back to today or any given day using the Today and Jump To buttons.

The calendar integrates seamlessly with your iPhone’s calendars and if you sync your iPhone calendar with your Google calendar or Outlook it will automatically sync with Parker Planner in both directions.

Tasks and notes don’t synchronise with any desktop view though which would have been nice, there is also no iPad version of the app yet and it would be great to see what they could achieve with the additional real estate that the iPad offers.

One of the best things about Parker Planner though is the price point. At $2.99 it’s clearly cheaper than many of the alternatives and works great as a single place to manage your life.

[rating: 4/5]

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]]> 0 N.O.V.A. 3 Review – FPS That Sets the Standard in Mobile Multiplayer Online Gaming Sun, 27 May 2012 14:56:42 +0000 Read More]]> Gameloft have been churning out mobile games for a while now and for the most part they’ve been pushing the mobile gaming envelope especially when it comes to the graphics and N.O.V.A. 3 is no different. Does the gameplay match the beautiful and rich environments though?

N.O.V.A. 3 as the name suggests is the third in the the first person shooter series which follows the explosive exploits of Kal Wardin as he fights for no lesser prize than humankind itself. If you haven’t played either of the previous N.O.V.A. that’s not a problem, (although you may go back to them after playing this), as the game stands on its own and the short intro will soon get you up to speed.

As previously mentioned the whole look of N.O.V.A. 3 is completely immersive as the rich, massive, interactive environments are a pleasure to behold. Starting in and around the derelict buildings of San Francisco, through alien spacecraft and an explosive fire and ice wasteland the worlds look incredible.

As we’ve all come to learn though, games require more than just graphics to be a success and N.O.V.A. 3 is more than just eye-candy, in fact it’s one of the closest experiences to having a console in your pocket that I’ve ever played on a mobile device.

The audio helps this with the overall experience too, from powerful gun-shots and explosions to great voice acting and background music the aural experiences is excellent, especially if you listen with headphones.

The action comes fast and furious, right from the start and you will need fast fingers to keep yourself alive. These fast fingers have to be balanced with the amount of ammunition you have as supplies are limited especially if you don’t want to if you don’t want to increase the cost of the game by stumping up more of your hard earned money to upgrade your weapons and abilities.

The downside of the scarce ammunition though is exacerbated by some less than perfect controls. There’s nothing substantially different in N.O.V.A. 3 from other first person shooters but they feel unpolished and the limited customization ensures that we will have to spend quite a while with them before you feel at ease.

Spending time with N.O.V.A. 3 though is something you will want to do though as the rewards are worth it. A compelling, if short, campaign mode is great to play but the addition of not only a local wi-fi multiplayer but also an online version, via Gameloft LIVE, is going to have you hooked for months.

Six different multiplayer game modes as well as weekly tournaments keeps things interesting and as long as you put in the time to learn your skills so that you aren’t re-spawning every 30 seconds the online modes ultimately make N.O.V.A. 3 {$6.99} a very rewarding experience.

All this comes at a price, not the $7 that it’ll cost you in the App Store, that’s a bargain, but the 1.5 GB of storage space that it will take up on your iOS device. You may need to manage some space before installing this monster!

There are games that push the limit of mobile gaming and make other companies step up, N.O.V.A. 3 is one of those games and you don’t want to miss the bandwagon.

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[rating: 4.5/5] ]]> 1 Tractor Trails Review: Putt-Putting Around Fields of Fun Thu, 17 May 2012 19:09:19 +0000 Read More]]>

Tractor Trails Review

Tractor Trails is a cute and difficult game that harkens back to the skills of Pac-Mac. Get your tractor moving down the trails to plant the trees, but do it in the right pattern or you’ll find yourself in a dead-end before the job is finished!

You’ve got a field (or is it an orchard?) to plant and you’ve only got so much time to do it. The little tractor “Red” is up for the job and is placed in the empty field. You drag your finger to tell Red which way to go and he continues down the path until he reaches the end. Then you drag your finger a different direction to go down another path to continue on. As you travel, you leave behind you trees that serve to both accomplish your task and block your way once they are planted. You have to think ahead to keep an open path so you can plant the entire field.

Tractor Trails {$0.99, App Store} is one of those games that looks easy until you try to master it. It scores you based on picking up objects along the trail, completing the planting, and doing it within a specified time. One out of the three is easy to do. Two of three most folks can handle. Getting all three though, takes some practice and some in-game equipment boosts to master.

The graphics are bright and clear and the music is upbeat and filled with the appropriate farm sound effects. The game has a light-hearted, cheerful feel that makes playing it a pleasant experience, and well suited for kids.

For the $0.99 price, you’ll get plenty of challenge. The in-app purchases can add corn to your stocks or unlock all the levels instantly. But you can also earn these in-game if you take the time.

Tractor Trails is a fun way to challenge yourself and your puzzle-solving skills. It strikes a nice balance between visual appeal, gameplay simplicity, and puzzle difficulty that makes if a compelling app.

[rating: 5/5]

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]]> 0 Spotify Releases iPad App for its Streaming Service Tue, 08 May 2012 20:44:09 +0000 Read More]]>

Music streaming service, Spotify, gained popularity in Europe before debuting in the United States last July, allowing users to stream music from major music labels on their Macs, PC’s, and portable devices. Spotify is one of the first streaming services to combine users music libraries, as well as online streaming and allow them to sync their devices.

Today we’re extremely proud to present our native iPad app in all its green-hued glory. Features include:

– Retina graphics for iPad – dazzling display, razor sharp images, richer colors
– Even easier to browse and explore Spotify’s entire 18 million* song catalogue
– New ‘Now Playing’ full-screen view with high-definition cover art
– Search for playlists, users and music – all from the same view
– Check out what’s hot and find trending playlists & songs amongst your friends
– Inbox grouped by user for easy searching
– Gapless playback and crossfade
– AirPlay integration

Spotify has long been available on the iPhone since its release, operating on a pricing model, as opposed to the free model on the desktop computer. On Tuesday, Spotify announced that their new iPad application is now available in the App Store, utilizing the iPad’s 9.7 inch screen. The app is available via an upgrade to the existing app, which will be downloadable as both an iPad and iPhone app.

Spotify Premium is currently offering a free 48-hour trial for new users , allowing them to extend for up to 30 days if they sign up on the website. Premium users who use the service on the iPad, iPhone, and other mobile devices are the option to sign up for a subscription for $9.99 per month.

{via MacRumors}

]]> 0 Apple Inc. (AAPL) Unlikely to Use LiquidMetal in Its Products for Several Years Tue, 08 May 2012 20:33:45 +0000 Read More]]>

Apple Inc. (AAPL) acquired rights to LiquidMetal Technologies to use in their products back in 2010, but did not utilize the company, except to make a small SIM removal tool for the iPhone 3G. A number of reports have people speculating that AAPL would be redesigning the next generation iPhone 5 with LiquidMetal technology.

However, in a report published by Business Insider, one of the inventors of LiquidMetal alloy, Atakan Peker revealed that Apple will not be using the futuristic metal for at least another two to four years. Peker also mentioned that Apple may use the metal in some smaller aspects of its products, as they did with the SIM removal tool.

Q: I’ve heard rumors that future MacBooks from Apple could use Liquidmetal casing, what would that be like? Is it likely to happen?

A: Given the size of MacBook and scale of Apple products, I think it’s unlikely that Liquidmetal casing will be used in MacBooks in the near term. It’s more likely in the form of small component such as a hinge or bracket. A MacBook casing, such as a unibody, will take two to four more years to implement.

If Apple is to utilize this new technology and decides to use it in one of their major products, they might first use it in smaller consumer products such as the iPod Shuffle, or perhaps the Nano, then move onto larger and more high demand products such as the iPhone and iPad. It’s important to note that Peker does not have actually have any solid references when suggesting this delay in LiquidMetal usage.

However, Peker does believe that Apple will revolutionize some of its products with the metal, utilizing its strength and durability to match the solid feel of some of its unibody products, such as the MacBook Pro.

{via MacRumors}

]]> 1 Burnout Crash Review – A Smashing Way To Wait For the Full Version of Burnout! Wed, 02 May 2012 16:48:00 +0000 Read More]]>

Burnout Crash Review

One of the most eagerly anticipated games has finally made its way to the iPhone and iPad. But while the wait is finally over it may not be what some players of the massively successful franchise want.

Burnouts first journey onto iOS is in the from of the mini game, Burnout Crash, that has already made it onto the PlayStation and XBox Arcade. So instead of a full-on 3D crash-fest of mangled metal, you have the pleasure of playing God, (or should that be the Devil), in a crashtastic onslaught of exploding cars, trucks and every other type of vehicle you can think of.

The 2D top-down view looks great, across a massive 18 different junctions the detail pops of the screen and the whole environment is interactive so not only can you destroy the vehicles but also blow up the surrounding buildings, parked cars and pretty much anything that burns.

Each of the 18 junctions have three different game modes so you’ll have plenty of opportunity to hone your skills and have plenty to keep coming back for as each of the have 5 stars to be collected based on high scores and other side-goals such as performing special moves or destroying certain items.

The 3 modes are Rush Hour, Pile Up and Road Block and while they all take place on the same junctions they require slightly different techniques to succeed. Rush Hour puts you up against the clock to destroy as much as you can while Pile Up tasks you to crash as many vehicles as possible and then keep them blazing. Road Block meanwhile is as simple as blocking any vehicles from driving off the screen, lose 5 and it’s game over.

All of the modes provide special vehicles too that offer a variety of challenges. Stop a Pizza delivery truck and you get to spin the lotto wheel a win a bonus item while stopping the bank truck will rain down bags of money on you.

Like all great games Burnout Crash is easy to learn but difficult to master. Controls aid this as all that’s required is a swipe to move your car or truck while a tap of your vehicle will cause it to explode once the burnout bar is maximized of course.

There are 7 cars and trucks to unlock and each one offer a slightly different balance of power and control, switching between these vehicles can offer different opportunities to grab all 5 stars on each level and you will often find yourself heading back to earlier levels with better cars to grab all the available stars.

While causing all of this mayhem you are blasted with a cacophony sound and a great set of songs from the 80’s. I certainly recommend playing this game with headphones in to get the best sound experience and so that you don’t annoy anyone sitting around you!

Unfortunately the multi-player option that they provide in the form of Autolog, is a little disappointing. It certainly works and you can send challenges to your friends but no ability to play against other players in real time is a real disappointment. And while GameCenter integration is included there are no leaderboards, just 20 achievements to be unlocked.

That being said, I do keep coming back to Burnout Crash to unlock more levels and to go back and gain more stars, it could just be so much better if the social aspects of the game worked better.

Burnout Crash is a universal game and is available in the App Store, despite its shortcomings it’s still a recommended purchase.

[rating: 4.5/5]

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]]> 0 Rolling Dice is No Gamble with Dice with Buddies for iPhone and iPad Wed, 02 May 2012 14:14:29 +0000 Read More]]> Dice With Buddies Review

If as they say, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, then the people over at Zynga must be very flattered indeed and must be doing something right. The latest company to be inspired by the success of Zynga’s ‘…with Friends’ series is Stofle Designs with their version of Yahtzee called ‘Dice with Buddies’.

Despite the obvious influences Stofle haven’t rested on their laurels, instead they have produced a highly polished and playable game with both turn based online and local game-play for two-people.

If you have ever played Yahtzee before then you will feel perfectly at home in Dice with Buddies. The game consists of rolling 5 dice to complete different sets. From 3, 4 and 5 of a kind and groups of 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6’s to straights, full house and the always useful chance option if you’ve not played Yahtzee before a basic understanding of the hands in Poker will also see you through.

The game is nicely laid out, you can see all your available combinations listed down the page and your opponents alongside them too. This allows you to easily see what combinations you have remaining and how you are doing compared to your opponents. While the layout is usable yet compact on the iPhone on the iPad with its larger real estate is even better with no scrolling required.

The updates come thick and fast with push notifications working well to inform you when it’s your turn to play and you can have multiple games running at the same time. In game notifications are all well managed meaning that you don’t have to navigate away from the game screen to play multiple games.

The game integrates with Facebook allowing you to easily play with your Facebook friends and brag about your success to your wall. There is no Twitter or GameCenter integration though which is a shame as achievements, if not leaderboards, would be a nice addition. There are in-game stats though so you can see how well you are doing including such as your highest score, average score, wins and wins percentage.

Of course no game would be where it is without in app purchases and Dice with Buddies is no different. You can buy bonus rolls from 99c to $100 (seriously!) and these will enable you to have extra rolls of your dice to get the combinations you need, however, these are certainly not required and not buying them certainly doesn’t make the game any poorer.

Dice with Buddies is a universal game which is a great feature if you have both devices, and the game comes in both paid and free versions. If you’re a fan of these types of social games and prefer numbers to letters then Dice with Buddies is a must.

[rating: 4.5/5]
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]]> 1 Shark Dash Review – A Fun Physics Game with Plenty of Bite Wed, 02 May 2012 13:57:43 +0000 Read More]]>

Shark Dash Review

In the world of gaming anything goes, so a back story of a group of sharks hanging out happily in a bathtub before being joined by a noisy group of rubber ducks and helping them take revenge on them is perfectly normal, right?

Luckily, reality is not a requirement in most games these days, in fact quite often the more bizarre the story the better, and that’s certainly the case for Shark Dash.

The game uses the now traditional 3 star rule to progress through the almost 100 levels over 4 different environments, (i.e. bathtubs), and these are achieved by eating all the ducks, collecting all the coins and doing this within the given number of shots.

Each level is played within the confines of a bathtub and is viewed as a sideways cut through including, bubbles, plughole, and all of the usually bathtime accoutrements that you would expect to see around the side of a bath. The graphics are solid and are certainly in keeping with the cute and fun style of the game as is the music which in is light and jaunty.

Controls are easy to learn but the levels can be difficult to master especially if you aim to get 3 stars in every single level. Collect the coins and stars is a simple task of pulling back on the shark’s tail and launching him in the direction that you desire. Your shark will pick up coins and the rubber ducks as he passes over through them, ducks will also float along the top of the water so as long as you knock them into the water and there is nothing blocking their path then they will willingly swim into your jaws.

As you progress through the 100 levels additional obstacles will be put between you and the ducks, these include salt sticks, soap, pipes, chains and a host of other things which all affect the physics of the game. The physics are additionally affected by the water in the bath so you will have to take that into consideration if your plan of attack takes you underwater, rather than over it.

Some of the objects that you’ll need to overcome will require sharks with different skills and as you progress you’ll get to unlock Sawy, Hammy and Scuby who all have skills associated to their names.

As with the majority of these games, if you don’t want to put the work into unlocking all of the levels by competing all the stars and earning coins then you can purchase coins to spend on unlocking levels, sharks and undo’s that will allow you to rewind a shot it didn’t quite go according to plan.

As if completing the 100 levels wasn’t enough there are 24 achievements to unlock and another 24 missions to keep you entertained. Unfortunately these don’t synchronise with GameCenter so there’s no way to compare your scores and achievements with your friends.

Shark Dash is a universal app and is available from the App Store now for just 99 cents. Grab it now for hours of fun, with a bite!

[rating: 4.5/5]
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]]> 0 Madcoaster Review – A Fast Paced Roller Coaster Ride Wed, 02 May 2012 13:44:44 +0000 Read More]]>

Madcoaster Review

If you are one of the millions of players who downloaded and lost hours of their lives playing Jetpack Joyride then I may have a new game to break that addiction.

Madcoaster from App Store dominators Chillingo is a new universal game where you control a roller coaster train on a never ending journey through multiple lands in order to collect as many coins and travel as far as you can with all your lives intact.

The game has a great cartoon look to it and the multiple lands look great as you speed through them. The game starts with just a few ‘themes’ enabled which you travel through for 1,000 meters at a time. Should you complete 1,000 meters you will continue on through another ‘theme’ until you run out of lives.

The themes are based on different events and locations, so one moment you may find yourself zooming past panda’s in a Japanese themed environment and the next past pumpkins in a Halloween inspired theme. Additional themes can also be unlocked via in app purchase or by reaching 10,000 meters in the game. The in-app purchases are nicely positioned meaning that you don’t have to keep on buying them.

Your roller coaster carts have no speed control but things get pretty crazy straight out of the traps and you’ll need fast fingers as you leap gaps, loop the loop, and move up and down tracks.

As you fly along the rails you can pick up coins and smash though a variety of animals, the only thing that can kill you is falling off the track though, in fact smashing through the animals that are standing on the tracks or hitting birds that are flying past the tracks earn you rewards rather than hinder you.

All these things contribute to the variety of objectives that are set for you on each run and clearing these objectives will provide upgraded carts for you to ride. Not that these carts have any additional features, instead they just look different to prior carts, it would be nice to have power ups to make your cart faster or jump higher.

The game has that addictive quality that makes you want to try one more time to beat your current high-score or complete one more of the 30 achievements that are available via Chillingo’s social gaming network Crystal, or the GameCenter integration.

Madcoaster is a Universal app and is available from the App Store for just 99c so grab it while you can.

[rating: 4/5]
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]]> 0 Windowed Apps? On an iPad? Say What? (Jailbreak) Tue, 01 May 2012 16:52:08 +0000 Read More]]>

So we have all found ourselves searching for ways to use our iPad as laptop replacements. There are always a few hang ups that you can’t get past, say… Windowed Apps? Quasar, developed by Pedro Franceschi, allows you to do just that on jailbroken iPad.

Quasar is tackling something that I have heard repeated throughout much of the tablet world, where is my windowed apps? It allows you to resize windows, switch orientation and move apps freely around the screen. I mean, lets be honest, windowed apps is great but without those things we’d all be a little put off by it.

Quasar could make those pesky iPhone only apps somewhat usable on your iPad. I have always had trouble giving up my entire screen for apps that don’t bother to put together something for my iPad as well as my iPhone. The app runs $9.99 in the Cydia Store, which to me is a bargain.

Apps like this is what make having a jailbreak a pure necessity. Adding functionality like this is invaluable for those of us who strive to find even more uses for the already powerful iPad. Help support this app by checking it out on those jailbroken iPads!

{via Gizmodo}

]]> 3 GeoHot – Hacking, Morals and Law Makers Tue, 01 May 2012 16:33:00 +0000 Read More]]>

In the world of hacking, there are few polarizing figures. Few decide to step out of the shadows in any sort of formal way. GeoHot is one of the few that is a fairly household name at this point. Most folks in the world of iOS and Playstation hacking know his work. GeoHot, George Hotz, was the first to unlock the iPhone and also busted the PS3 security. Two epic hacks will get you attention, not all of it positive.

GeoHot was sued by Sony shortly after the release of his Playstation hack. The official charge was for violating the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, but really because he exposed a major weakness in their security. Playing bootlegged games was one of the things that came from GeoHot’s hack. He was able to settle his case outside of court with Sony without admitting any wrongdoing, which many view as an absolute win on his part, myself included.

Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple, commented on the matter saying, “It was like a story out of a movie of someone who solves an incredible mystery.” Woz went on to say, “I understand the mind-set of a person who wants to do that, and i don’t think of people like that as criminals. In fact, I think that misbehavior is very strongly correlated with and responsible for creative thought.”

A quote from GeoHot has struck much intrigue. GeoHot was quoted as saying, “I live by morals, I don’t live by laws.” Finishing the thought by saying, “Laws are something made by assholes.”

This quote has left some thinking of the hacker as smug and cocky. I disagree with that sentiment in that, I believe GeoHot is simply saying that he believes more in the spirit of the law instead of the letter of the law. I tend to agree, I understand that many laws don’t explicitly state something but we are humans and the laws were meant to be interpreted by humans.

George has openly condemned the attacks on Sony by Anonymous. In his comments, he made the distinction between someone who like to see how things work as opposed to trying to cause harm on others. GeoHot is now an employee of Facebook. He has since sat down with a team of engineers at Sony to explain how he was able to topple their security. Pretty impressive story for a guy who simply wanted to dig into devices he purchased and see what he could get in to. I can help but think of the book “Ghost in the Wires” by Kevin Mitnik when i heard stories of GeoHot. Check out the book if you dig stories such as this one.

{Image – flickr}

]]> 2 Apple Inc. (AAPL) to Bring EPIX movie streaming to Apple TV? Mon, 30 Apr 2012 20:04:50 +0000 Read More]]>

Apple Inc. (AAPL) has long been selling movies and television shows on its iTunes Store. Now, according to a Reuters report, the company is reportedly planning to bring EPIX movie streaming to the Apple TV, and likely the new rumored Apple television set. AAPL has been rumored to be in talks at this point, with no specific dates as to when the service will be available, if it ever does happen.

One of the sources told Reuters that any discussions would apply to its set-top box and also to upcoming devices that stream content. Apple is widely expected to unveil a full-fledged TV product later this year or in early 2013 to drive its next phase of growth and potentially revolutionize the industry.

Sources for the Reuters report suggest that negotiations between Apple and EPIX are still developing and that no deal should be expected in the near future. Bringing EPIX content to Apple TV and future Apple devices would allow the Cupertino company to develop and sell exclusive content, not available on a number of other devices.

Apple may also be waiting out a contract between EPIX and Netflix, which doesn’t end until later this September. Once this contract has ended, Apple will likely go ahead and secure a deal with EPIX.

{via MacRumors}

]]> 0 Apple Retail Stores Replace iMac with the new iPad in Kids Section Mon, 30 Apr 2012 18:30:57 +0000 Read More]]>

Apple has replaced the popular iMacs at the kids section of the Apple Store with iPads. First noticed by iMore, Apple appears to be taking a more compelling approach to drawing in kids and essentially starting them off with a product that a number of children are familiar with.

Apple Stores have been using iMacs in the kids section for quite some time now, loaded up the screens with kid friendly applications and games. Apple’s strategy behind replacing the iMacs is an excellent way for the company to appeal to a younger generation and build relationships with their future customers.

Apple has also replaced the display cards next to products with iPads, as well as the Macbook Pros at the Genius Bar previously, the kids section being the latest change. Apple may also look into replacing the Genius Bar registration computers with iPads.

The iPad is no doubt the future of Apple’s line-up and will be leading Apple into a whole new era of portable computing. The iPad is slowly becoming a bigger part of the daily operations of Apple’s retail stores.

]]> 3 Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC 2012) Scheduled for June 11-15 Fri, 27 Apr 2012 19:48:42 +0000 Read More]]>

It’s here again. Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC 2012) is back and is scheduled for June 11. Apple announced early Wednesday that WWDC 2012 would be held from June 11 through the 15 in San Francisco, as it is every year. Tickets for the conference sold out in under two hours this year, beating out WWDC 2011 tickets sales which sold out in under twelve hours.

“We have a great WWDC planned this year and can’t wait to share the latest news about iOS and OS X Mountain Lion with developers,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “The iOS platform has created an entirely new industry with fantastic opportunities for developers across the country and around the world.”

This year’s conference will likely focus on OS X Mountain Lion, which is due for release later this summer, and iOS 6 which will probably appear during the conference in the form of a developer preview. Apple mentioned in their announcement that they would have about 100 technical sessions for developers, with over 1,000 Apple engineers to help attendees of the event.

The time frame for the event isn’t very surprising, when considering the fact that Apple typically holds the conference during this time of the year, in order to announce its product releases chronologically; Mac OS X release, iOS with iPhone, iPod and then the iPad at the beginning of the following year.

WWDC is Apple’s premier event, of which other events eventually derive, such iOS 6 and the Apple’s iDevices following up the announcement a few months later. Developers who currently hold tickets to the event may encounter higher than usual prices on flights and hotel bookings, not only because of the massive increase in flight purchases, but because of the U.S Open golf championship being held in San Francisco, as well as the slew of vacationers who head west during this time of year.

{via MacRumors}

]]> 4 Sprint Confirms Plans for Unlimited Data, Even After LTE iPhone 5 Release Fri, 27 Apr 2012 19:32:02 +0000 Read More]]> Sprint iPhone 5 4S

Sprint’s CFO, Joe Euteneuer earlier this month suggested that Sprint could offer 4G LTE iPhone 5 on its network if Apple was to release one down the line. At that moment, questions as to whether Sprint would still offer unlimited data plans arose and many wondered if Sprint would switch to a tiered data plan. On Wednesday, in a report from CNET, Sprint confirmed that they will continue to offer unlimited data plan, even after they set up and release the 4G LTE network.

“If the next iteration of the iPhone arrives with LTE, Sprint will continue to offer a no-strings unlimited plan, CEO Dan Hesse told CNET. The company is already sticking with unlimited for its first batch of LTE phones, but it was unclear whether the offer would apply to next iPhone.

“I’m not anticipating the unlimited plan would change by that point,” he said. “That’s our distinctive differentiator.”

Sprint’s Unlimited Data has been the focal point of its advertising and its strategy in drawing in potential new customers. Even Dan Hesse, CEO of Sprint mentioned that the offering of unlimited data plans has brought over customers from other carriers to Sprint. On a similar note, during Sprint’s earnings call earlier Wednesday, it was reported that 44% of all iPhone sales on Sprint were sold to customers new to the carrier.

During the release of the iPhone 4 and 4S on Sprint, a number of users complained that the data speeds were relatively slow, however, LTE would give a major boost to the slower network speeds, allowing users to download and upload data much faster.

{via MacRumors}

]]> 1 Photos of Next-Gen iPhone 5 Home Button Surface Fri, 27 Apr 2012 16:00:02 +0000 Read More]]>

Apple is known for being secretive when it comes to announcing new products, however, parts leaks for the company’s popular products are also very common. The latest product part to be revealed is possibly the next generation iPhone 5 home button. On Monday, a report from Apple Bitch revealed images from parts vendor TVC-Mall, which is currently selling iPhone 5 home buttons, in both black and white.

The new home buttons have a rounded shape on the outside, but retain the same depression currently seen in the other iOS devices, such as the iPhone 4S. Since the home button is not attached to a device itself, it is hard to tell whether the new home button would be visible to customers. It has also been noted that there is the possibility of the home button being flush with the screen of the iPhone 5, which would give the face of the phone a seamless appearance.

This is very likely because of Apple’s attention to minor details such as home button location, appearance and the overall sleekness of the screen. Rumors in recent months have also suggested that Apple may be replacing the classic home button with a large gesture area, similar to the Palm Pre, however, it has yet to make an appearance on any iOS devices.

This rumor was rampant prior to the introduction the of new iPad, which received multi-touch gestures that added onto the features of the home button in iOS 4.3, and after the invitation for the iPad 3 media event were sent out. The new home buttons are likely only one of the many parts of the next gen iPhone that will make an appearance over the coming months. The next iPhone is expected to be announced in Fall, likely in the same October timeframe as the iPhone 4S.

{via MacRumors — Image Credit: TVC-Mall}

]]> 5 Apple Inc. (AAPL) Reports Q2 2012 Earnings: $39.2 billion in Revenue Fri, 27 Apr 2012 15:56:23 +0000 Read More]]> Apple Grand Central Store

Apple Inc. (AAPL) on Tuesday reported their Q2 2012 earnings results. As always, AAPL is showing record numbers from revenue to profit and is seeing great increase in the sales of their mobile devices. The company reported quarterly revenue of $39.2 billion and quarterly net profit of $11.6 billion. That’s roughly $6.40 per diluted share, which is up almost 94% from the previous year.

Apple sold a whopping 35.1 million iPhones, 11.8 million iPads, 4 million Macs, and 7.7 million iPods in the quarter. This represents an 88 percent growth for iPhone sales a massive 151 percent increase for the iPad, a 7 percent increase for Macs, and unsurprisingly, a 15 percent decline in iPod sales. iPod sales have been steadily declining for the last two years, and decreased by about 21% just last quarter.

Even with this decline, Apple is surpassing its expectations from last quarter, where revenue for the second quarter of fiscal 2012 was projected to be $32.5 billion, with an earnings per diluted share of $8.50. Apple CEO Tim Cook spoke about the earnings, noting that he is pleased with the profit margins and sales:

We’re thrilled with sales of over 35 million iPhones and almost 12 million iPads in the March quarter. The new iPad is off to a great start, and across the year you’re going to see a lot more of the kind of innovation that only Apple can deliver.

Apple has not been resting on their laurels with meeting their expectations and has continued to go above and beyond their financial projections. Following Apple’s earnings calling, CFO, Peter Oppenheimer even went as far as to say that he expects revenue of about $34 billion and diluted earnings per share of about $8.68.

{via Apple}

]]> 6 Apple Inc. (AAPL) Rumored to Discontinue 17-Inch MacBook Pro Tue, 24 Apr 2012 19:45:10 +0000 Read More]]>

Apple Inc. (AAPL) MacBook Pro model has been around for quite some time now, serving as the perfect combo between a consumer and pro product, in accordance to the vision of late CEO and Chairman of Apple, Steve Jobs. AAPL introduced MacBook Pro in 2006, and replaced the Powerbook G4, launching the Cupertino company into a wave of success for many years to come.

In recent weeks, rumors have been floating around the web that suggest Apple is going to drastically redesign the MacBook Pro and introduce a design very similar to that of the MacBook Air.

On Monday, Ming-Chi Kuo with KGI Securities, predicted that Apple may discontinue the 17 inch MacBook Pro indefinitely. Kuo noted that declining shipments from Apple were the main cause of speculation. It is very likely that Apple may discontinue the high end Pro, possibly because of the high price tag, and the company’s obsession with making their products thinner and lighter.

Kuo has a solid track record, previously indicating the discontinuation of the 13.3 inch polycarbonate MacBook, which was phased out of Apple’s product line and educational offerings last July. Apple’s redesign of the MacBook Pro, and discontinuation of the 17 inch model shows Apple’s dedication to simplify their product lineup and keeping the original vision for their products, making them more portable without sacrificing usability.

{via AppleInsider}

]]> 5 Apple Airs iPhone 4S TV Ads Starring Samuel L. Jackson and Zooey Deschanel Mon, 23 Apr 2012 18:42:40 +0000 Read More]]>

Apple is not known for use of celebrities to endorse their products. Of course, there were a few promotions a number years back, with The Black Eyed Peas and popular band U2 promoting iTunes and the iPod. However, Apple has never done a celebrity advertisement that showed faces and instead focused mostly on silhouettes.

Apple recently released two advertisements with actor Samuel L. Jackson and actress Zooey Deschanel. Samuel L. Jackson, known for his roles in movies such as Pulp Fiction and Snakes on A Plane and Zooey Deschanel, known for her role in the movie, 500 Days of Summer are both depicted as users of Siri.

Date Night iPhone 4S TV Ad

Rainy Day iPhone 4S TV Ad

Jackson and Deschanel ask Siri for a number of different things, including scheduling appointments, searching recipes, and playing music. The ad focuses on the celebrities using Siri in everyday situations, something that Apple has started to do recently, particularly with the introduction of Siri. This allows Apple to take a more personal approach to drawing in customers for the iPhone 4S and make it attractive to potential users. Siri launched last October with the iPhone 4S, and is still in beta stage, according to Apple’s website.

The ads were made by TBWA\Chiat\Day, who worked closely with Steve Jobs and other Apple executives on hundreds of Apple ads over the year. The ads feature branding for AT&T, Sprint, and Verizon at the end, as there are no brands mentioned in the ad itself. It’s interesting to see Apple begin to use celebrity endorsements for their products and reach even more customers, who are represented brilliantly by Apple’s choice of Jackson and Deschanel.

]]> 3 Clear Review – A List Management App for iPhone that is Simply the Best Fri, 17 Feb 2012 16:14:20 +0000 Read More]]> Clear Review

There appears to be a new darling of the iOS world, certainly according to Twitter at least, and that is in the form of Clear, a brand new ToDo management app for the iPhone and iPod Touch.

As with all good apps it launches with quick 7 step overview of the app that gets you started and gives you the tools to explore the app. Clear for iPhone also starts you off with 7 items that help train you on how to interact with them.

Swipe left or right to delete or complete a task while you can pull down on the list or pulling apart to add a new task to the top or in the middle of your existing items.

There are 3 levels to the app that you can drill through. The uppermost level includes the settings, tips & tricks and themes which will come back to later. From this level you can drill down to your lists either by tap the list bar or by swiping up on the screen.

The same can be done to access the individual items in the list, either tap them or swipe up on the screen. After just a few minutes on the app it all becomes very intuitive and you’ll find it becomes second nature in next to no time.

As mentioned previously Clear also has multiple Theme’s installed including a bonus one for those of you who have Tweetbot installed, and after all why wouldn’t you? The default theme is called Heat Map and your items are prioritized using color, The darker the red the more important the task is and as you re-order them by tapping and dragging them up and down the screen the color is updated too.

As I am colorblind I always get a little concerned when ever an application uses color as a navigation tool. However, because each of the themes simply uses different shades of the same color it works perfectly, even for those inflicted with color site deficiencies!

It’s the simple things that make Clear for iPhone {$.99} so easy to pick up and make it so usable, such as the fact that if you create a list or item that is blank it will automatically delete it and the fact that there are multiple ways to navigate the app.

Clear is not going to be for you though if you want to track large tasks as each item can only be 28 characters long and there is no ability to add notes. Not that it ever claims to be such a thing, it’s just worth noting that Clear is going to help you manage the little things in life and not projects!

But it’s that simplicity that makes Clear for iPhone so great, adding, clearing and deleting tasks has never been so easy and enjoyable, you’ll end up creating tasks for yourself just so that you can complete them!

[rating: 4.5/5]

What we like:

What to know:

]]> 1 My Little Garden Review Wed, 04 Jan 2012 21:32:53 +0000 Read More]]>

Create your own magical garden with My Little Garden for iPhone.

Brought to you by Qubic Games My Little Garden is a fun garden simulator for your iPhone. Plant and grow flowers in your magical garden completing tasks and achievements along the way.

You are in control of the little garden fairy. Help her plant flowers and vegetables that she can sell or use in tasks to earn coins. To start with you are given a small piece of the garden. In this area start planting flowers to sell.

When you have a flower starting to grow then you have to start looking after it. You do this by giving it water, light and fertilizer. When you tap on the plant you are growing it will display icons for you to choose what action you want to do. Tap on the one you need and the little fairy will help.

You then look after the plant keeping it happy until it is fully grown. When it is ready you then have the option to sell the plant or if you have accepted a task, use it for that. You do not have to do tasks but they will earn you coins which you can use to expnad your garden and buy more items. So for example one of the tasks I had was from a visiting hamster who needed some carrots to be delivered. So once you have accepted this task you then need to start growing that product and be ready to give him his order. Once you do you will be rewarded for it and also unlock more plants.

The coins you earn can be used to buy from the range of 18 different plants. You can also choose to decorate your garden with stones and ornaments like gnomes and a magic bench. There are many to select and all costing different amounts. There are also pets that you can purchase. These are all very friendly and helpful in their own unique way. The cat helps increase the water, light and fertilizer a plant has and then there are other pets like frogs who will sprinkle the plants with water for you. You can also use magic on your plants which speeds up the growing process. Magic rain, Magic sun and Murky mist.

All the meus for each section are kept on a side bar to the right and it is very easy to use and follow. If you do need some help or forget a task then there is a diary. There you will find a help section and a reminder of the current task you are doing. You can also use this menu section to purchase more coins, gold or hearts via in-app purchases.

The game is suitable for all ages. The animals and plants are animated and make great cheery, happy noises. It would definitely appeal to a young person. You can design the garden as big or as small as you like. So how challenging you make it is up to you. It is a great game to play that is a refreshing change from the usual farmville type of games currently available. There is no need to be popping in and out of the game constantly to see if your plant is growing. You can play it at your own pace.

The only thing that I could see players requesting is the ability to visit friends and their gardens. This could be done by adding Game Center integration and then tasks and achievements could be added in there to compete with your friends.

Touch Reviews [rating: 4/5]
What we like:

What to know:

]]> 0 Mini Motor Racing Review: A Pocket Full of Mini Racing Perfection Thu, 22 Dec 2011 14:34:35 +0000 Read More]]> Mini Motor Racing Review-1

[rating: 4.5/5]

Mini Motor Racing Review: I’ve always been a fan of racing games, especially on iPhone and iPad, the realism of Real Racing 2, the frantic action of Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing and the top down rocket-fest that is Death Rally, I’ve liked them all but also always looking forward to seeing the latest thing. In this case it’s Mini Motor Racing from The Binary Mill.

Mini Motor Racing (MMR) is another top down racer where it’s all about speed, speed and more speed and small but detailed tracks in a variety of surfaces and weather conditions.

Mini Motor Racing Review-2

Obviously I wanted to dive straight in and after a visually impressive intro sequence I jumped into a quick race. There are a couple of control mechanisms and the first I was introduced to was a virtual steering wheel that I didn’t get on with and sadly came last in my first race. After that though I changed to the second control option and the wins started coming.

Moving into the Career Mode I choose my first car, gave it a paint job and headed out onto the track again. This time each race rewards you with a cash prize and extra money can be picked up along the way along with additional nitro’s that can help give you the edge over your 5 virtual opponents.

The tracks look great, they are full of detail and the light reflects off of the track and cars beautifully, not that you will have to much time to look at it as your speed around the track fighting for first place. The range of weather and day/night affects add extra quality to the overall look of the game too.

Mini Motor Racing Review-3

Each cup consists of 4 tracks, with the game containing 20 different tracks in total, and completing the cup will move you onto the next one. While I was able to progress though many of the cups without having to spend my hard earned winnings on upgrades I soon found that I was unable to keep up and had to splash the cash on both better cars and upgrades.

Each car handles differently and so a couple of races may be required to pick up the feel of the new car. Add the car upgrades and the paint jumps and you get a car the looks and handles just as you like.

As you progress through your career you’ll unlock tracks and cars inspired by Fruit Ninja and the holiday season, the Fruit Ninja tracks especially are awesome and it’s great to see game cross-overs.

While the huge career mode will keep you going for quite a while as will the local wifi and bluetooth multi-player modes which will enable you to race your dream machines against your friends for Mini Motor Racing bragging rights.

Mini Motor Racing Review-4

Those bragging rights can also be fought over via the Game Center integration which provides leaderboards for all 22 tracks and 16 achievements, all of which means you should find yourself playing Mini Motor Racing for quite a while.

One news new feature for those of you playing MMR on iOS 5 is the ability to synchronise your data to the iCloud so that you can play between multiple devices and not lose any progress. Unfortunately however as this is not a universal application you won’t be able to sync your data between your iPhone and iPad and with no obvious differences between the two versions that is a little frustrating.

Mini Motor Racing Review-5

At $1.99 Mini Motor Racing will provide a fun, challenging and entertaining addition to your iPhone collection of games and comes highly recommended.

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