iMore Picks of the Week for April 1, 2012
Every week the editors at iMore carefully select some of our favorite, most useful, most extraordinary apps, accessories, gadgets, and websites. This week's selections include a unique photography app, a solution for reading sheet music on the iPad, an alternative to iBooks, an awesome flying game, a web app alternative for a popular native iPhone application, and a new way to view your Instagram feed.
To see what we picked, and to tell us your pick, follow on after the break!
Paper Camera -- Alli
This is another one of those apps that's available on both Android and iOS. Of course, it has a few more options for iOS right now, but that could change at any time in the continual game of cat and mouse between iOS and Android.
Paper Camera gives you new views of your world. View it in pastels, black and white, or as a cartoon. The filter above is called Comic Boom, and makes everything look hand drawn. There are bunches of filters, and half the fun is just looking at things through the different filters.
One of the really nice things with Paper Camera is that you're not limited to taking new photos through the Paper Camera filters. You can put a filter on an existing photo from your album.
I should mention the big feature that the iOS version has that Android hasn't caught up with yet - you can shoot video through these filters on iOS. Sweet, eh?
$0.99 - Download Now
GoodReader -- Gary Mazo
I find that I use my iPad more and more in ways I would not imagined just a couple of years ago. One of my favorite uses of my iPad is as a repository for all my sheet music.
I am an avid piano player and have amassed literally thousands of pieces of sheet music over the years. Most was in loose-leaf format or in old piano books from when I was younger and lots was through digital music delivery or scans of music I had borrowed from friends.
I needed a way to get it all in one place and the iPad was going to be that place. Enter GoodReader from Good.iWare.
GoodReader is an app that supports PDF files, all Office files, iWord files, web archives and high-resolution images. Files are transferred either via iTunes document transfer or (and this is my favorite way to do it) via wireless transfer. Just touch the wireless transfer button and it finds your computer (if you are on the same Wi-Fi network) and you use the computer as a server. Select a file on your computer and – like magic – it shows up on GoodReader.
Once in the app, I can adjust the sort order, annotate PDF files (which is great for music) change the orientation, layout, jump around, search and more. I just swipe to the left to advance pages - which is so nice in a long piece of music – and can even pinch to zoom in on hard to read sections.
The only downside to GoodReader is that when I go to visit friends with pianos in their homes and they say “too bad we didn’t ask you to bring music with you” I can no longer say “that is too bad” if I have my iPad around!
Are you using GoodReader? Do you have other ways of viewing sheet music on your iPad? Join in the discussion in the forums!
$4.99 - Download Now
Kindle for iPad -- iMuggle
My new iPad has really gotten me more interested in reading on it than any other device has. The iPhone is just too small and I've always had some type of vendetta against eBooks. That's starting to change and I've been enjoying sitting back with my iPad and reading.
The Kindle and iBooks apps are both great for reading. I've found myself using the Kindle app a lot more often for some reason. I think I just prefer the interface. It's easy to use and since it was updated to support the new iPad's retina display, it's better than ever.
I still find myself using iBooks for PDFs but switching over to the Kindle app to read actual books. I like the idea of being able to read Kindle books on multiple devices on more than one platform. If I ever decided to purchase another type of device, I'd most likely be able to use my books on that device too.
If you haven't checked out the Kindle app or what they have available for purchase, I'd highly recommend it.
Free - Download Now
Air Wings -- Bla1ze
Looking for a pretty awesome flying game? Air Wings is where it's at. The concept is to fly around gathering up coins and weaponry to use against other players as it is a multiplayer game. You have multiple planes you can choose from to purchase, it offers in game voice chat with 6 multiplayer levels to play through. In addition to all that, it was recently updated with new graphics for the new iPad as well, so it looks great. Air Wings is available for free in the iTunes store with in-app purchases starting at $.99 -- I make this clear because you'll want to grab at least one additional airplane pack in order to really get into the game.
Free - Download Now
SoundBest Player -- SimonSage
A non-game iOS app caught my eye for a change this week. Rather, it caught my ear. SoundBest Player is a sharp, simple music player that mostly replicates the native music player in both layout and function, with one significant difference: within it is built a custom equalizer. When you first start up the app, it takes you through a short hearing test, and builds a a custom listening profile which changes the way your songs sound. You can save multiple custom profiles, and turn the equalizer off and on very easily. There are also presets for different genres of music, but aside from that, you have access to your usual library of playlists and songs sorted by album, artist, or by individual track. There's full compatibility with playback control from the dock, lock screen, and headphones with in-line hardware.
SoundBest just came out this week, but there are a few alternatives already available that I haven't tried out, like EQ 10 and Equalizer; the latter actually looks pretty good. It's hard to describe the difference between music played through SoundBest versus the vanilla music app, but if you've ever played around with the equalizer in iTunes on your Mac, you'll know what to expect.
$2.99 - Download Now
The YouTube Web App -- JorjLim
As a frequent vlogger, Youtube is my second home; and the built in Youtube app, is quite frankly, rubbish! It lacks simple functionality, like autocomplete, and replying to comments, it doesn’t offer any functionality that a video creator would want, like editing video info or checking channel stats and its really slow!
An alternative is the Youtube web app, and if offers all the functionality that the native app is missing, and so much more.
As a viewer, you get all the standard functionality of ‘liking’ and ‘disliking’, adding to favourites and commenting. The search even has autocomplete! You can also reply to other comments directly, share on more social networks like Facebook and Google+, and you can select to play the video in high quality or low quality regardless if you’re on 3G or Wifi.
As a content creator, you can view, and respond to your mail, edit video details and remove videos on the go.
One of the greatest features that I found in the web app, is the leanback remote. You can connect the iPhone to the youtube leanback experience, and ‘airplay’ your Youtube videos and playlists to your TV or computer without the need for an AppleTV.
I’ve switched totally from the native app to the web app, and I have never looked back!
Gramory -- llofte
I love Instagram, but the native Instagram app isn't exactly awesome. The scrollable timeline is cool and all, but sometimes I'm forced to scroll through a lot of "meh" photos that I'm not particularly interested in. I love Gramory because it lets me see 20 photos at once as thumbnails so that I can pick and choose which ones I want to see bigger. It also has a very nice multi-plane UI.
The other feature that a lot users like is that you can filter photos by trends -- something that the official Instagram app doesn't allow.
Free - Download Now
Comics - Rene Ritchie
Comics was the best way to buy new comic books for iPhone and iPad, and now that the new iPad is out with it's killer Retina display, Comics has updated to take advantage of it. Comics hasn't just updated their own user interface, mind you, they've launched CMX-HD, a new format to best show off the content as well. What's more, since Comics' developer, ComiXology also makes the official Marvel, DC, Image, and other apps, all of them benefit from the new technology. Win. Win. Win. (You get the idea.)
And yeah, this stuff looks fantastic on the new iPad.
FREE - Download
Tell us your pick!
Those were our picks, iMore Nation, so now it's your turn! Tell us your pick of the week below. Give us the name of your favorite app, site, or accessory, and tell us why it made your life more productive, more informed, more entertaining, or just plain more fun. Jump into the comments and let us know your pick of the week!