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!
If you're reading this review on TiPb, you probably read the TiPb forums too. And you've probably tried perusing the forums on your iPhone...which is admirable, but can be a a less than pleasant venture.
Tapatalk gives you the large screen experience on your iPhone's small screen. Not just a mobile view, Tapatalk has to be activated on the forum server - and it's been activated on TiPb. So when you view the TiPb forums from Tapatalk, you see everything you would from the desktop, but neatly arranged rather than just squished into a smaller space.
You can choose to view avatars, and they will appear in tiny thumbnails above the posts. Of course, Tapatalk gives you the option to turn them off. I rather like having the avatars on. I recognize them and know who's posting from viewing the picture.
Do you view only certain sub forums? You can choose just the ones you want to see. I prefer to read all new, and there's an option for that as well. Anything you can do from the desktop, you can do through Tapatalk. The latest update even gives you all the moderation options, so I can zap spam from anywhere!
Tapatalk comes with a wide variety of forums listed. You just have to navigate to the one you want. I'm hoping that at some point they add in a search feature to make it faster to go straight to the forum you want. Available for both Android and iPhone, you can read all the forums you want, provided their admins have activated the Tapatalk plugin.
[$2.99 - iTunes link]
One of the frustrations of moving your iPhone from the O2 network in the UK, is that it is currently the only network to support Visual Voicemail. Vodafone, T-Mobile, Orange and 3 all skipped this really nice feature. So what are your options? Well HulloMail does a really good job of filling the gap. It is basically Visual Voicemail with loads more additional features.
The HulloMail iPhone app offers an easy way to manage your voicemails visually, send, receive and share voicemails, instant voice messaging to mobile and email, no matter which operator you use. There are two versions of HulloMail, a free version which is ad supported and a paid version which costs $6.99 a year. The paid version gives you some extra features like an ad-free service for a year, individual greetings, longer voicemails of up to 5 minutes and priority access to more features in the coming months.
If your network does not support visual voicemail, give HulloMail a try, it is an excellent voicemail management tool.
Ok, it isn't an iOS app but it's still awesome. This past week I've been digging through Mac OS X Lion more and more. AirDrop is one of my absolute favorite features. I bought a new MacBook Pro recently and I prefer syncing my devices to that instead of my iMac since I always have it with me. AirDrop easily allowed me to copy certain pictures, files, and other items I want on my Pro quickly and easily.
The interface is dead simple. All you do is drag the item you want to transfer to another Mac to their circle and they accept the transfer. Easy as can be. I can see myself using this a lot at home when family or co-workers need to transfer files quickly. Dropbox is great but for quick access to files you need on your hard drive, AirDrop is a much better solution that's built-in.
[$29 for Mac OS X Lion - Mac App Store link]
Leanna - Now with push notifications, my favorite Twitter app of all time is even better! I haven't been using Tweetbot exclusively because of lack of push, but now that it's here, I've deleted all other twitter apps from my phone. Such a great Twitter app!
Seth - I'm doing a Twitter Two-Fer this week, mostly because they're apps that other writers have either chosen as previous picks of the week, or covered in reviews already. However, they're both getting heavy use from me this week, and they're both useful.
Tweetbot, as everyone knows already thanks to Leanna, is a gorgeous Twitter app made by Tapbots, who are collectively responsible for some of the nicest looking apps in the App Store. I wasn't sure how I felt about it initially when it launched because I felt like there was too much shoved into the interface, even though some of it was hidden in cool, little easter-egg-y ways. I've since changed my tune, as the recent addition of Twitter push and my tiring of the native Twitter app coincided this week and I gave Tweetbot another look. It is solid. I'm still finding cool little functions as I play with it, and the UI makes complete sense to me now. As with so many things in life, sometimes you just need to walk away and give something a second look later to truly appreciate it.
Birdbrain is an app that Ally reviewed a long time ago, and it hasn't had a ton of updates since then, but I love using it regardless. It's basically a statistics dashboard for your Twitter accounts, showing you all kinds of useful stuff: followers, who you follow, replies, retweets, et. al. in the frame of changes over time. So you can see a chronological history of your Twitter activity and perform all kinds of actions from within the app relating to your account. If you've turned off the Twitter email follow notifications (and who hasn't at this point?), it's a cool way to see what's changed on your account and who's currently listening to you spew nonsense into the void that is the interwebs.
Both great apps, especially in tandem. Have at 'em.
You might have heard about this new podcast we're doing, Superfunctional, which is all about dealing with the wrist, neck, and other pain we geeks are often prone too, including using cool stuff like standing desks and Vibram shoes (of course!). The host of the show, Geoff Gluckman, likes to say that if we get ourselves functional, feed our bodies the motion they crave, and move through our lives, we'll be able to sprint across the street when we're 90. I plan on taking him up on it and finding out.
Geoff has another side to him, however -- he's an author and his novel, Deadly Exchange, is now available on iBooks and Amazon Kindle. I've just bought. If you're looking for some summer reading and like spy thrillers, give it a try. It can be like a book club. Only totally disorganized.
My pick of the week is Command & Conquer Red Alert for the iPad. This is a real time strategy game, where you undergo a variety of missions with various objectives. As you progress through the levels, you get more skilled units to asset in your objective. Starting out is easy - you have simple tasks and relatively little opposition. You move your pieces around the board and try to outmaneuver, outthink, or just out-muscle you opponent (although I have found that luck is limited in the long run). As you progress through in campaign mode, however, it becomes more and more difficult. The large iPad screen makes this game easier to play (easier to control your units) as well as visually more appealing. As an added bonus, there are multiple game play modes as well - I was mostly playing campaign mode, but there is also a multiplayer mode (for head to head action). There is also a skirmish mode for a quick battle. I have found myself spending too much time this week with this strategy game - it's one that can suck you in easily!
[$4.99 - iTunes link]
I just love Pocket God so much! It is very very addicting and fun. In the game, you basically try to kill pygmies or save them from getting killed. The pygmies like us playing with them, so now it seams like mean is the new fun! My favorite mini game in Pocket God is the underground runes.
[$0.99 - 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 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!