Every week, the editors and writers at iMore carefully select some of our favorite, most useful, most extraordinary apps, accessories, gadgets, and websites. This week's selections include a few games, an Apple service that is easy to take for granted, an awesome iPhone dock, and a fitness app.
iCloud - Chris Oldroyd
This week I have chosen a built in service provided by Apple that up until recently I totally took for granted. This week, iCloud totally saved my bacon after a disastrous problem with a jailbreak app update rendered my iPhone 5 unusable, first thing in the morning, 60 minutes before heading to work.
I am a casual jailbreaker, I did the jailbreak a couple of days after it was released and all I had installed was Lockinfo and BiteSMS. They both had updates that morning and after the updates, something went seriously wrong. The iPhone 5 restarted and the screen was all distorted with multi colors everywhere and the actual iPhone home screen was in the top corner a quarter of its normal size; it was all a bit weird to say the least.
I managed to get into the Settings and initiate the Erase All Content and Settings function but that wouldn’t complete so I had to do a complete restore via iTunes on my PC. I then ran out of time and had to leave for my meeting. Thankfully, I had all of my apps and settings backed up to iCloud and by using a MiFi wireless network in my car I managed to get all of my apps, settings, contacts and pictures restored on route and my iPhone 5 was back to normal just before I got to the meeting…..what a relief!
iCloud is so underrated, it works in the background backing up your device every night when it’s connected to power and WiFi and is a real life saver when something goes wrong like it did for me. I have learned my lesson with jailbreaking for now at least ad I am so grateful to iCloud for making the whole process of getting things back to normal as painless as possible!
Moviegram - Joseph Keller
Moviegram is a great way to look up movies when you’re trying to decide which one you go see. By pulling in ratings from three different sources, Rotten Tomatoes, Metacritic, and IMDb, Moviegram can give you a comprehensive picture on whether or not a movie is worth seeing. You can either search for movies or select them from an available list. Each movie’s page will display basic information such as a synopsis, the cast, and a trailer if one is available. Tap on a cast member to see their other films. Moviegram is a universal app, and available for free, with a $0.99 in-app purchase to remove the ads.
- Free - Download Now
Elago M2 dock for iPhone and iPad - Ally Kazmucha
I've been on the hunt for a dock for my iPhone 5 ever since Apple didn't release one. I'm not a fan of cases so I've never had a problem with the stock Apple version. After coming up empty handed several times, I finally found one that looked like not only would it work for my iPhone, but my iPad mini and regular sized iPad as well, and that was the Elago M2.
When you spend as much time as I do with apps and reviewing them, it's nice to dock your iPhone or iPad next to your computer so you don't have to keep picking it up time and again to view something. I've found it supports any device in any orientation extremely well. The Elago M2 dock is not only versatile, but super sharp looking. It comes in both black and silver so regardless what iPhone or iPad you have, you'll have one that matches. It's also a lot cheaper than some options out there.
The only issue I've found is that the back is flat metal which made me a little nervous when it comes to scratching. I didn't have any issues but I also easily remedied that by sticking a small rubber circle on the back to add some extra cushion. Not necessary but a cheap way to add a little extra padding and grip. If you're a dock fan and haven't found a perfect one yet, I'd highly recommend checking out the Elago M2.
- $25.00 - Buy Now
Metal Slug 2 - Chris Parsons
If you're looking for a run-and-gun action shooter, then there is nothing really better than the classic Metal Slug. Unless of course, you're speaking of Metal Slug 2! Ported from the original NEOGEO, Metal Slug 2 is builds off of the classic while adding some new great features into the mix called "Mission Mode". New characters, new weapons and more will keep you pounding away at Metal Slug 2. It's $3.99 right now but it has tremendous replay value.
- $3.99 - Download Now
Spaceteam - Rene Ritchie
I was sitting at a party at Macworld|iWorld 2013, minding my own business, when Arnold Kim from MacRumors broke out Spaceteam and began to play it with some of the designers and game developers there. Everything went straight to hell from there.
Here's why -- Spaceteam is a multiplayer game where you connect two iOS devices over a shared Wi-Fi network, or a direct Bluetooth connection, and then go into co-op chaos. The goal is to take your ship to collective warp, and you're given instructions -- convoluted, gobbledegook instructions -- on how to do so, but the buttons you have to press and levels you have to adjust might be on your device… or they might be on someone else's.
And so the yelling begins. Soon everyone is barking out directions, hunting furiously to act on what they see, and what's being screamed at them, in an effort to get to hyperspace.
It gets faster and more furious as you go on, and the interface starts falling apart on you.
It's not pretty. But it's pretty awesome.
- Free - Download now
Two Hundred Situps - Leanna Lofte
Three weeks ago, I gave birth to my second daughter and it's time for me to get back into shape. One of the big problem areas is my core, so I've turned to Two Hundred Situps to help get toned up. I've only started using it today, but I've gone through the One Hundred Situps app by the same developer and it was great.
The way Two Hundred Situps works is that you take an initial "test" which is simply to do as many situps as you can. The app then develops a program for you that will have you doing 200 consecutive situps in six weeks -- and all it takes is 30 minutes a week!
Now that we've chosen our favorites for the week, we want to hear yours! Did you pick up a killer app, accessory, or game this week? Let us know in the comments below!