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4 years ago

Quick Web App Update: Google Adds Options to iPhone Search

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Quick Web App Update: Google Adds Options to iPhone Search

Search Google.com from your iPhone (or Android or webOS device) and notice the brand-spanking new Options drop-down on the top right. Tap it a list Google's Mobile Blog says:

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4 years ago

App Store Broken or Developers? Losing iReligion vs. the Two App Stores

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App Store Broken or Developers? Losing iReligion vs. the Two App Stores

Is Apple's iTunes App Store broken, a combination of developers racing to the bottom and users getting conditioned -- and feeling entitled -- to pay less than what an app is worth? Or, are some developers not yet savvy enough in terms of planning and marketing to take advantage of the App Store business model?

Since we covered Ramp Champ this morning, it's timely to cover both the thoughts of the developer, Gedeon Maheux, and a response from Tumblr and Instapaper developer Marco Arment that are currently surrounding it.

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4 years ago

Polls: Did iPhone 3.1.2 Fix Battery Life, "Coma Mode"?

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Polls: Did iPhone 3.1.2 Fix Battery Life, "Coma Mode"?

Apple released iPhone and iPod touch 3.1.2 last thursday, and the changelog read like a who's who of bug fixes. But did it fix what ailed your device? From battery life woes to "coma mode", we want to know how you're doing post-update -- if you've updated, that is. Hit up the polls after the break and let us know!

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4 years ago

Apple/Google Ties Completely Broken: Levinson Resigns from Google Board

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Apple/Google Ties Completely Broken: Levinson Resigns from Google Board

Google has just announced that Dr. Arthur Levinson, former CEO of Gentech, has resigned from Google's board of directors. Said Google CEO, Dr. Eric Schmidt:

"Art has been a key part of Google's success these past five years, offering unvarnished advice and vital counsel on every big issue and opportunity Google has faced. Though he leaves as a member of our Board, Art will always have a special place at Google."

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4 years ago

App Review: TwiBit 2.0 Twitter Client for iPhone

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App Review: TwiBit 2.0 Twitter Client for iPhone

TwitBit 2.0 Forum Review by llofte. For more Forum Reviews, see the TiPb iPhone App Store Forum Review Index!

Surprisingly, nearly 3 months after iPhone 3.0's release, there are only a few twitter applications that offer push notifications. Twitbit is one of them. Version 1.x wasn't compelling enough for me to use as my primary client, but the latest 2.0 update is rather impressive and brings Twitbit up to par with other great Twitter clients. The design is clean and simple yet not lacking in important features.

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4 years ago

Regarding iTunes LP Costing Labels $10,000

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Regarding iTunes LP Costing Labels $10,000

Is Apple charging the big record labels $10,000 to create iTunes LP packages for them, and outright refusing to make the service available to the indies? That's the allegation Gizmodo brought forward, based on a conversation with one such indie, who heard it from their labels digital distribution manager. Further, when speaking to their iTunes rep, he was told Apple isn't offering them to indies.

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4 years ago

Quick App: Ramp Champ Brings Skee-Ball Fun to iPhone

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Quick App: Ramp Champ Brings Skee-Ball Fun to iPhone

Ramp Champ [$1.99 - iTunes link] is a skee-ball-like, old school boardwalk arcade or amusement park-style game for the iPhone and iPod touch. Co-developed by the Iconfactory and DSMediaLabs, it's gorgeous. Of course, I'd expect no less from the pixel perfectionists behind it (and behind other well-loved apps like Twitterrific and Frenzic).

The premise is simple: using your finger and the iPhone's multi-touch screen, you flick balls up a ramp and try to hit targets, win trophies, score points, get tickets, and redeem those tickets for prizes. The art is sublime, from the included Clown Town, Breakwater, Spaceswarm, and Icon garden to the in-app purchasable add-on packs like the Ninja Attack and Tiki Island combo ($0.99 each). Other add-ons currently include Voyage, Halloween, and Challenge. This part of the app is implemented particularly well, and there's even a "restore purchases" button should you even need to re-download the add-ons.

In-jokes abound for the attentive as well. Developer Ged Maheux points out the classic icon sizes 16, 32, 48, 64, 128, etc. used as ticket cost for the prizes. And, of course, the first prize I bought was the Twitterrific blue bird itself.

There are three "goals" to each ramp. The first one tends towards the easy, a cookie to reward us for playing. The second and third range from difficult to how-the-frak-do-I-do-this. (Obvious tip: try to time your shots so that you hit more than one target with each ball). That you can often get close works only to make it more frustrating and addictive to play.

The frustrating part may be a double-edged sword, however. Sometimes flicking the ball seems absolutely intuitive and under your complete control, and sometimes it seems like there's no rhyme or reason to where the ball goes relative to how you flick. In the real world, and number of quirks in a ramp could account for chaotic end results. On the iPhone, it might just be a matter of tweaking the physics engine a bit more.

All-in-all, it's a beautiful, engaging, casual time-filler of a game, perfect for occupying interstitial moments. As a test, however, I gave it to an 11-year old to try out. I only got it back an hour and half later. So, yeah, it works for a wide range of players and time constraints as well.

If you give Ramp Champ a go, let us know how how many goals you get, and which prizes you pick up.

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4 years ago

Best of Smartphone Experts, 11 Oct 2009

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Best of Smartphone Experts, 11 Oct 2009

Last week was the CTIA Wireless IT & Entertainment conference. We had coverage at a few of our sites, but Kevin Michaluk and I also sat down with Mickey Papillon of The Cell Phone Junkie to record a podcast about our thoughts on the event - worth checking out. Here's what else went on in the smartphone world this week.

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4 years ago

TiPb on Digital Trends: iTablet, eBooks on iPhone, and CTIA

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TiPb on Digital Trends: iTablet, eBooks on iPhone, and CTIA

Digital Trends and Lief Iverson was gracious enough to have me on their podcast last week, and we took the opportunity to talk:

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4 years ago

Apps for Less: All Chilli X Apps Free Today

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Apps for Less: All Chilli X Apps Free Today

For those of you who are not familiar with our Apps for Less posts, they are a great way for us to point out a few good iPhone (and iPod touch) applications available in the App Store that are currently on sale, or ones that have come down permanently to a price that we feel are worth mentioning to our readers.

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