Ipad Apps

Appigo talks Todo for iPad - TiPb at WWDC 2010

Boyd Timothy and Calvin Gainsford from Appigo show off Todo on the iPad, its features and how using the iPad is different from using the iPhone. And, of course, tell TiPb what they think of iOS 4 and iPhone 4.

(It's possible they like it a lot.)

Video after the break!

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Line2 brings iPhone, iPad calls into 21st century - TiPb at WWDC 2010

Peter Sisson, founder and CEO of Toktumi talks Line2, their premium, business-optimized calling solution for the iPhone and iPad (with optimized iPad UI coming soon). While many forms of communications have leapt forward in the digital age, our telcos have been content to keep telephony in the relative dark ages. Line2 is one of several services hoping to pull them kicking and screaming forward, with both cell and VoIP based solutions.

Currently you can conference call over VoIP -- which is really nice on an iPad -- with full call waiting and real SMS functionality. With iOS 4 VoIP will work in the background meaning apps like Line2 could just be first-class telephone solutions (and strangely carriers don't seem to be as afraid of this as they used to be).

Line2 competes with free-as-in-Google voice by offering a more user-centric app, with lots of features and a focus on customer care. They're US/Canada only at the moment but will be expanding into the top 7 international iPhone markets soon and especially for business users, they think their offer will be compelling. (Enough that Peter suggests a MiFi rather than device data plan might just be the way to go forward...)

Check out the video interview after the break!

[Line2 on iTunes]

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New York Times has Pulse RSS reader pulled from App Store

The Pulse RSS reader for iPad, featured just yesterday during Steve Jobs' WWDC 2010 keynote, is reportedly being removed from the iTunes App Store following a copyright complaint from the New York Times/The Boston Globe.

The gist of their demand letter is that Pulse comes pre-loaded with the NYTimes.com RSS feed and features it in screen shots, is a paid app, and thus commercially using their RSS feeds, and that it reframes the NYTimes.com and Boston.com websites, both of which the New York Times Company says is in violation of their copyright.

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Documents to Go for iPad- app review

As a user of Dataviz's Documents to Go product for years, I was ecstatic for the iPhone release and now even more so for the universal binary for iPad. Documents to Go is a mobile office productivity suite that allows you to create and edit Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint formatted documents and file types on your iPad.

Let's first look at how we can access our documents, there are a few different ways. First, you can create documents on the iPad. Next, you can sync with your desktop (PC or Mac). You can install a free desktop sync tool. This allows you to pick a folder on your computer and sync those documents to the iPad, or use the built-in iTunes sync if that is your preference. Last but not least you can connect to a few different web services in the "cloud" and edit your documents and save it right back to the cloud. Documents to Go supports these services:

  • Google Docs
  • Box.net
  • Dropbox
  • iDisk
  • Public Disk (iDisk)
  • Sugar Sync

Syncing your documents to the cloud is truly fantastic and is something Apple's own iPad iWork suite does not offer beyond iWork.com.

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New and notable iPhone and iPad apps for June 4, 2010

Sure, new and notable iPhone and iPad apps isn’t a theme, but with so many new and such a large swathe of notable, who needs a theme? Join us after the break to see what’s going on in the iTunes App Store this week!

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Galactic Untangle HD for iPad - app review

Galactic Untangle HD for the iPad is a puzzle game. It is simple, yet challenging, and can easily keep you occupied for hours.

In each level, you are a given a bunch of points connected by lines, and your goal is to move the points around until there are no lines crossing. In mathematical terms, you are given a graph and it is your job to rearrange the vertices until no edges are crossing, i.e., result with a planar representation of the graph. This game is very strait-forward and simple, but not generally easy to beat. As you progress, the graphs become much more complicated and difficult to beat.

There are two modes in Galactic Untangle HD. In "free mode", there is no stress of being timed and you can relax and play at a leisurely pace. In "challenge mode" you are being timed and you have an option to submit your score to the world scoreboard. However, even though you are asked to enter your name, the world scoreboard does not display names. As someone who holds a few of the records, I find this annoying.

Galactic Untangle is an excellent game. It is designed well and looks beautiful on the iPad's screen. It has a simple objective, yet challenging gameplay. And best of all, it's a fun way to give your brain some exercise!

Video and screenshots after the break!

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Why Apple may be removing desktop/dashboard/widget apps from the App Store

Since the iPad launch on April 3, TiPb's been getting tips about desktop/dashboard/widget-style apps being removed first from the iPad App Store, then from the iPhone App Store as well. There are a number of examples, some well known by now, some relatively unknown. The commonality between all of them is that they've tried to somehow make the iPad or iPhone into a Mac- or PC-like screen filled with mini-apps like browsers, email clients, calculators, weather, etc.

Some look almost exactly like Apple's Mac Dashboard, other like Windows of various flavors. Others don't look like desktops at all but rather place widgets on top of photos or other, more specific backgrounds.

Devs have worked around this by using a much more restricted metaphor, like a double tiled display, or by going the Jailbreak route, or they haven't worked through it and just gotten frustrated at the opacity of the App Store review process and not known how to proceed.

I can't claim any special insight or information on this, but my best guess is that Apple is removing (or advising they will be removing since not all of them have been pulled yet) the apps for the same reason they originally didn't include cursor (arrow) keys on the Mac. It's a pretty well known story and one that's been used a few times in different commentaries on the iPhone and iPad and Apple's direction thereof, but it bears repeating.

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The Early Edition for iPad hits 1.1 - Give-away

One of the things many of us have been waiting for when it comes to iPad apps is a great RSS newsreader and with The Early Edition for iPad 1.1, a contender is here. It includes the same great newspaper look and page-turning feel as the launch-day version but adds what amounts to a must-have feature for many -- Google Reader feed import. Here's the full changelog:

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The Elements for iPad- app review

The ultimate in interactive elements has arrived in the form of The Elements for iPad. I was a little late getting to this app seeing as how it came out at the iPad launch, but I am really soaking up what the Elements has to offer now. It's is basically an interactive book made by the folks at Periodic Table. They make printed books, etc for the education market around the world. This is their first foray into the iPad/iPhone and I have to tell you; wow. I wish they had this stuff when I was a kid.

The way The Elements works is you have a complete listing of the periodic table of elements in front of you. These objects are not just photos of the elements, but actual 3D renders that move. Tap on an element and it takes you to that element's custom page of discovery.

The element page consists of a big render of the element or an example of it's use on the left of the screen and all the information you could want to know on the right including the atomic radius, structure, weight, density and more of the element. WolframAlpha provides additional information and proves to be an awesome resource.

The bottom right corner gives you additional navigational tools. Tap the right arrow to bring up more information about the element along with even more 3D renders of the the element or it's uses. You can spin/rotate all of the element examples in real-time; there are over 500 renders in this app. You also get a detailed history and story about each element to give even more insight. Of course just having interactive 3D renders aren't enough. No, double tap a render and you are presented with a fullscreen object. Tap the double circle icon and you can view the object stereoscopically. Focus your eyes, you can see a "real" 3D render of the object. Of course, some of us just can't do that. So The Elements gives you a convenient link to order the special 3D glass for $4.95. That is rather cool. I can imagine students sharing the glasses to examine all of the elements in this way and it is really exciting to see the future of interactive education for students.

Alas, there is always another side to the story and regretfully this app has crashes constantly even with the most recent update. I so am looking forward to a few more updates to make it ultra-stable.

The newly formed company TouchPress is responsible for creating The Elements and are on a mission to make more books like this one. What is on my wish list? The human body and the universe, I can't wait.

[$13.99- iTunes Link]

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BN eReader for iPad - app review

Barnes & Noble has released BN eReader for iPad as an alternative to Apple's iBooks and Amazon's Kindle app. It is an excellent ebook reader and offers many customizations as well as the ability to share books with friends and family.

Reading on BN eReader is a pleasant experience. You can read either in landscape in portrait. In portrait, eReader displays the book as one page. However, in landscape, reading in a two column or one column format depends on what your font settings are (both style and size). If this is not a bug, it is very annoying. I'd much rather see a toggle to turn two columns on or off. You can enhance your reading experience by choosing between one of Barnes & Nobel's five professionally designed themes, or create your own theme by editing the page, text, highlights, and links colors.

One of the big features BN eReader offers that iBooks does not, is the ability to add notes. Just highlight a block of text by dragging with your finger and select "add note". After you've created the note, you can quickly get back to it at any time. In addition, you can highlight text and look up words in the dictionary.

The other huge feature of BN eReader is the ability to share books with friends and family. Barnes & Noble refers to the technology as LendMe. With supported books, you can access your iPad's address book and select which contact you wish to share the book with. Upon accepting the offer, your friend will be able to enjoy the eBook for 14 days. If someone lends you a book, BN eReader will add the book to your library and display the message from your friend.

If you have BN eReader on your Mac, PC, iPhone, and Nook, the last page read will sync across all devices. All notes and highlights will also sync to your PC and iPhone (coming soon).

To purchase a book, BN eReader will launch the Barnes & Nobel eBookstore in Safari. After purchasing a book, you much exit safari and reopen BN eReader; you will see your book automatically add to your library and begin to download. The process is simple, but not completely painless. I'd much rather see BN eReader open an in-app browser because switching between apps isn't very elegant.

Barnes and Noble did an excellent job with their eReader and offers many things that iBooks does not. Having the world's largest bookstore in your hands is definitely a welcomed addition to the iPad.

Video and screenshots after the break!

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