Every week a few of us from team TiPb will bring you our current favorite, most fun and useful App Store apps, WebApps, jailbreak apps, even the occasional accessory, web site, or desktop app if the mood strikes us. As long as they’re iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch related, they’re fair game.
To see what we picked, and to tell us your pick, follow on after the break!
My pick of the week is the calculator app for the iPad - "Digits Calculator for the iPad + iPhone". Yes, as you can guess, this is a universal binary, but I was trying it out on the iPad since (for who knows what reason) the iPad doesn't come with a calculator. The app is pretty straightforward - you have the numbers for entry, you have a "tape" to track what you have done, you have standard options for things like percent, change the sign, memory. But the app also has a few advanced features I like. For example, you can email a copy of the tape and you can put a new "roll" of paper tape in to start a new set of calculation (while keeping the old roll intact). In addition, there are some advance math features available: square root, square function, cube function, reciprocal function, etc. Okay, maybe "advanced" was the right term...commonly used features that may not be on most simplistic calculators. But in the end, it winds up being a simple, easy to use calculator for the iPad.
[$1.99 - iTunes link]
This happens to me all the time. I'm listening to a podcast, something else demands my attention -- a bit of work, a phone call, an email, whatever -- and so I pause my iPhone and then... a couple hours later I realize it's still paused. All. The. Time. It happened so often I just learned to accept it.
And then I saw Take Five.
From the typically genius minds at the Iconfactory], Take Five lets you pause a podcast, music, or any type of audio playable by the iPod app, and then automagically resumes playing it later. The default is five minutes but you can start, stop, and adjust as you like.
And because it comes from the Iconfactory, it's as good looking and well thought out as it is smart.
If you have to deal with the culture of constant interruption, Take Five. You deserve it.
[$0.99 - iTunes link]
This week I have chosen a games package that is wrapped in nostalgia. Atari Greatest Hits is a fantastic compilation of early console and arcade games that drags you from 2011 back to the 1980's.
If you are over 30, this is a must buy game, it has loads of original games (0ver 100) to play and literally takes me back to my childhood. Sure the graphics are basic, it stays true to the originals; I wouldn't want it any other way.
The app is free to download but the games are all purchased in-app. They can be bought as packages of 3-4 games at $0.99 a pop or you can have them all for $14.99.
Look, I can't say this any clearer, go and get it now!!!
[Free – iTunes Link]
My New Years resolution this year was to lose a couple lbs. My mom had done Weight Watchers in the past and it was extremely successful for her, so I figured I would give it a try. The Weight Watchers iPhone app has definitely helped me be a lot more rigorous about keeping track of my points and really making better decisions about what I choose to eat. If I questioned what I was eating, I didn't have to eat it and look it up later to find out it was worth a ton of points, I'd just look it up on my iPhone and know before I made an eating decision.
Not only does it have a built in points tracker and calculator, it also has a large database of restaurants with pre-calculated point values. My only peeve is that the Weight Watchers app has not been updated once in the time I've been using it and there are a lot of major places missing from the restaurant portion of the app.
Overall the app does make sticking with Weight Watchers a lot easier. It syncs with your Weight Watchers account online for easy access from your iPhone or computer. The app also contains recipe suggestions, success stories, and of course, a built-in weight tracker. Since January, I've managed to lose a little over 20 lbs. So besides the lack of updates for point values for common restaurants, I'm extremely happy with the app. If you own an iPhone or iPod Touch and are doing Weight Watchers, I highly suggest checking it out!
[Free, with active Weight Watcher subscription - iTunes Link]
I've been using iBooks to read a lot lately. I think iBooks is the best ereader in the App Store. I know many people will disagree with me on that point, but let me try and persuade you. Please keep in mind that my pick is about the app and not the iBooks Store. iBooks is simple and looks stunning. It doesn't rely simply on the store for content. All the books I've been reading lately haven't come from the iBookstore at all. Now you are probably asking yourself why doesn't she just use Stanza to read her DRM-free ePubs? Well the reason is simple, Stanza doesn't sync my place between my iPhone and iPad. There are other apps that sync your place but none, that I know of, sync your content that hasn't been purchased from them. That is iBooks killer feature.
There are some things I don't like about it app though. I wish the status bar would disappear so there could be a fullscreen mode. Tapping the center of screen to calls up the settings. That action could also bring up the status bar. Finally, I wish there was a night mode. You can get around that by turning Sepia off and setting your Accessibility triple click to White on Black. iBooks' killer feature trumps these very minor complaints. Give iBooks and its killer feature a try and tweet me to let me know what you think!
[Free - iTunes link]
Best discovery at CTIA 2011. SafeSync is the newest offering from our friends at TrendMicro - the antivirus people. While the service is not free, the iPhone app is. Why is it better than Dropbox? You don't need to have copies of the files you want stored in the cloud. You don't need to create separate folders to sync. If you want your music folder sync'd, just put a check by it in the settings.
SafeSync syncs in the background, and while the initial sync takes a while (depending on your connection speed and the number of files you're backing up), once the initial backup is complete, it will automagically back up changed/added files without your having to do anything. Of course, you can access your files from anywhere. You can log on to your SafeSync account from any desktop (pc or Mac) or your iPhone, via the app.
From the iPhone app, you can view your photos, or even listen to the music you have stored. This is cloud computing at its absolute finest.
[Free - iTunes link]
My pick this week is the Apple Wireless Keyboard, not only because of its simplicity and mobility in nature (thin is in!), but also because it's built like a tank and can take a real beating without showing any signs of abuse. I've been using it over the past six months after I got the first iPad and realized I needed something more than the software keyboard for certain tasks that required heavy text input.
Every morning before heading to work, I throw the keyboard into my bag along with a number of other items. I won't hesitate to say that if this were any other standard keyboard, it'd probably be broken by now. Yet my Apple keyboard doesn't even have a scratch on it! The build quality is top-notch, as with anything you'd expect from Apple, and I'd highly recommend picking one up if you're looking for a better way to type on the iPad. And yes, it works with the iPhone too!
[$69 -- Apple Store]
SoundTracking is a new an exciting way to explore, discover and share your taste in music. It allows you to share music from iPod library or "Shazam" a song you have heard on the radio. You can also search for a song using their database to share. One of the really cool things about soundtracking is that like iTunes it gives your a friends a 30 second preview of the song you are listening to. If they feel like buying the song, they are one tap away!
You can sign in and share using Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare. If geotagging isn't your cup of tea, you can choose not to sign into Foursquare. Once signed in, let the world know the soundtrack of your life. You can use the album art of the song or take a picture and add a comment for some individuality!
Soundtracking is like Instagram for music and a great alternative for Ping. You can comment, like and love a friend's musical taste without the clutter of Ping! The best thing about this app is that its free!
[Free- iTunes link]
You’re part of the team as well, so we will be choosing one reader to make a submission each week! Just look for the announcement on [twitter](http://www.twitter.com/llofte] or our Facebook page each weekend for a chance to be picked! In the meantime, jump into the comments and let us know your pick of the week!