iPhone App Avalanche 11: Thumbtacts, TapeMe, iExchange, and Aqua


It's time for App Avalanche 11, and this week we're shaking things up a bit over here at TiPb. Given the App Store is truly an avalanche of apps with more piling up each day, it's just about impossible to keep up. Instead, we'll present to you what's Good, Better and Best in the App Store according to what reviewers have said -- folks just like you and me who downloaded the app, tried it out, and gave it 1 to 5 stars. We're also going to throw in a CrApp -- an app that just seems to stink to high heaven. Let's get started after the break!


Thumbtacts, by Crimson Research, Inc., allows one-handed searching of your contacts. To find a contact, touch an option (letter or character string) and then look for matches. Coming in with a solid 4-star rating from reviewers, here are just a few of the comments: ricol says "nice, effective app, but interface needs improvement." Jim Watson said, "Finally an easy way to access my contacts." Get it here for free.


TapeMe Voice Recorder, from Axel Wolf of Tausendstern Inc., allows you to easily record memos, meetings, reminders, or other audio on your iPhone. It offers a simple 3-button interface and was given a 4-star rating from reviews. Here are some comments: Seeyadude said, "Great little app and worth the price. Very simple to use on the run." iTep says, "Love this application!" Get it here for $.99 cents.


iExchange, from Thomas Garaio (www.garaio.com), is an app for viewing a colleague's Microsoft Exchange based calendars from wherever you are. Check your colleague's calendar to see when they are in the office, when they are available for meetings, etc. Reviewers gave it a 4 1/2 - star rating. Some comments: Bradley36 says, "Very handy app. Get's the job done. No bugs or problems." a odd person says, "Nice icon. Looks promising." Get it here for $9.99.


Aqua, from Alec Bellanca, is an app that simulates the flow of liquid as you tilt and touch your iPhone. See the icon here? That's about as good as it gets. No, you probably don't need glasses or need to change your prescription. Yes, it appears to be THAT bad. You may feel better about yourself giving your $.99 cents to charity. Then again, maybe the developer is seeking charity. The 2-star reviewer rating seems generous. If Apple exercises zero quality control in their App screening process and if some developers insist on submitting their CrApp and put their name on it, well... your CrApp just may end up here, for the world to see, with your name. Don't say we didn't warn you.

That's it for App Avalanche 11. If you agree or disagree with what's been designated Good, Better, Best, or CrApp, let your opinion be known! Leave a comment or two, visit the forum, and come back next week for more!

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Reader comments

iPhone App Avalanche 11: Thumbtacts, TapeMe, iExchange, and Aqua


I vote that you return "Avalanche" to the old format. You used to have info on 12 apps, and now it's down to just 4. That makes it much less valuable to we the readers. Also, we can read App Store reviews ourselves--we want you to add some valuable insight.
In fact, the weekly Avalanche feature is the main reason I came to your site. If you're going to effectively do away with it as you have here in #11, I'm unlikely to keep you bookmarked. Sorry, but that's how I feel.

I don't want to waste my time scouring the App Store's thousands of apps to find the cream of the crop and I really appreciate the fact that TiPB is assisting me in that matter.
I CERTAINLY don't want to waste my money by purchasing apps based solely on novice reviews written by users in the app store (some of which don't even own the app). I would much rather have a power user/professional reviewing and trying the apps out for me so I can save my money if the app ends up being a CrApp. That's where Avalanche comes in play.
I would imagine one of the reasons why there are less apps featured in Avalanche these days is simply because when the App Store debuted, there was a lot to cover because there were many apps available right away. Now that the App Store has been around for a while, there is less new stuff to cover.
Make sense? I know bookmarks don't take up a lot of room. So keep it, you might find something really useful. (Thanks for the PDANet info!)

@JKT and christomapher: thanks for your comments! I appreciate you reading the Avalanche each week. Sometimes a change in format is received well, and sometimes it isn't. I welcome your feedback and the feedback from any other readers. Feel free to comment, folks!

I like the new format, but wish u would inform us about more than 3 good and one bad app. I think the new format works, it just seems rushed, unlike previous weeks. Also I could care less what other reviewers say, I can read that on my own also. Keep up the good work, maybe a free and paid top 3 and crapp section each would work!

I like the new format alot. I used to skip app avalanches because there was to much info. This is great for me - what's hot whats not.