TiPb Picks of the Week for November 5, 2011
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!
Brodit car mount - @chrisoldroyd
This week I decided to source a car mount for my iPhone 4S. Having previously used Brodit mounts, I was happy to look at them again and boy was I not disappointed.
Brodit mounts are quite simply the best car mounts you can get for any device, they make them for all the popular phones but who cares about that, only the iPhone matters anyway! There are two parts to the mounting system. The first part is called a Proclip and this part is car specific. The clips are all designed to fix in some way to your car’s interior without the need for any fixings and there is never any damage when they are removed.
Once you have your Proclip chosen, you then select your iPhone holder; they come in loads of different configurations, some with chargers and some with simple pass through connectors and others without anything. These holders then screw into the Proclip and that's it done!
The iPhone slots in perfectly and they are solid as a rock, a perfect way to mount your iPhone in your car, I cannot praise these mounts highly enough, they are simply the best!
CatPaint - @sethclifford
"CatPaint is the premier cat-based image editor for the iPhone and iPod Touch."
And with that, my life was forever changed. Cats... and LASERS. That's all you need to know.
I'm having a busy, stressful week and this app makes me smile every time I look at it. Also, the icon is so epic, I want to weep at its awesomeness.
[CatPaint - $0.99 - iTunes link]
AssistiveTouch - @JorjLim
My iPhone 4's Sleep/Wake Button decided to stop working. It doesn't click in and doesn't turn the screen off.
After the Apple Store told me I'd have to pay £120 for an out of warranty repair, I sought other options.
I came across 'AssistiveTouch' in the Accessibility settings. When you turn it on, a little 'floating' dot appears on the screen which opens a new menu. This menu allows you to perform hardware actions, without having the press any physical buttons.
Some of the options include, rotating the device, simulating a shake, pressing the home button and of course, pressing the sleep button.
While pressing the on-screen sleep button isn't as easy as just pressing the physical sleep button, its definitely better than spending £120 on the repair.
Weather Alert USA - @azeis
This past week in the Northeast we had a bit of an unexpected snow storm blow through. It's the first time in all my years I've ever seen such a huge snow storm come through New Jersey in October, and I tried my best to be prepared. I knew I would be out of the house running errands since it was the weekend and wanted to keep up with the latest conditions as best I could, for which I'd obviously turn to my phone. While the stock weather app on iOS is decent for the most part, I knew I'd need something that went above and beyond to keep me updated on the go -- for that I discovered Weather Alert USA.
Weather Alert USA is a great app for weather geeks. Not only does it provide current temperatures and conditions, but it also has amazing depth when it comes to severe weather alerts which is just what I needed. It allows you to easily setup alerts by location and will notify you (with a rather annoying alert tone) of any weather alerts in your area. Push alerts are available for nearly everything you can think of, from hurricanes to winter storm warnings to dust advisories and more.
Day to day weather reports are a breeze as well as Weather Alert USA gives you easy access to weekly and hourly conditions, radars and warnings, detailed weather maps, sunrise/sunset times and much more. Truly one of the best weather apps I had found and more than adequate to keep even the biggest weather buff in the know. Of all the weather apps available to iPhone users, Weather Alert USA definitely gets my pick as number one.
[$3.99 - App Store Link]
Sonos - @jdipane
Music is a huge part of my daily routine, and recently I picked up a Sonos system for my house, and the Sonos controller for iOS makes the whole experience so much more enjoyable. If you have not heard of Sonos it is a wireless speaker system for your house or office which you can use your favorite music channels like Pandora, MOG, Spotify and many others. Being able to control the two different zones in my house, what is playing, and how loud it is all from the comfort of any place I can take my iPhone with me. If you have a Sonos system be sure to check the controller out, and if you don't have a Sonos system yet, check out our reviews.
[Free - App Store link]
Instapaper 4 - @reneritchie
Seth picked Instapaper a couple of weeks ago. Good for him. He got first crack at explaining why he likes it so much, and his reasons are probably much more lucid and reasoned than mine. But I'm taking my shot anyway:
Instapaper lets me read stuff. That's it.
And that's much more than I'd otherwise manage to do. The sad truth is the more I write the less I have time to read. When I come across a fascinating, insightful, provocative, or otherwise interesting article on the web, I almost never have time to read it then and there. And that means, without a way to triage and save them for later, like Kaizer Soze's devil, with a puff -- or in this case a tap -- they'd be gone.
Instapaper is that way to triage and save. If an article grabs me, I knock it over to Instapaper and then later, when I'm waiting for something, when I'm between states, when I finally get to take a break, they're waiting for me.
Everything I want to read, all in my pocket.
[$4.99 - App Store link]
Siegecraft - @GeorgiaTiPb
I love Tower Defense games. It's my passion. Siegecraft is my current Tower Defense of choice. It has gorgeous graphics and cool weapons, and it's a lot of fun. It's a little more interactive than most, and you have to aim so that adds to the challenge. Plus, can I say trebuchets and catapults? It's universal, It's adorable, it's enjoyable, and best of all -- right now it's only a buck!
[$0.99 - App Store Link]
Newsstand - @Alli_Flowers
I admit I was one of those laughing loudest when iOS 5 was first introduced with Newsstand. It seemed especially silly on the iPhone. So I never gave it a second look - until yesterday when I got my iPad 2.
I started looking through it to see if they offered anything of any interest whatsoever, and lo-and-behold, there was Wired magazine. I love Wired and already subscribe. Sometimes I don't read it because I'll throw it down with a pile of other mail and just never get back to it. Or it's one more thing I don't want to stuff in my purse. I have a ton of excuses. But I love e-reading, so I linked my account and was up and running in no time.
Newsstand actually makes reading a magazine a pleasant experience, and it's definitely easier to carry around a bunch of magazines on your iPad than in your purse, briefcase, or hands. Side to side scrolling goes page to page, with up/down to read an entire article. I got a kick out of some of the ads and some of the headlines being animated. It's more than just an e-magazine. It should be like this!
The selection is still minimal - there aren't any other magazines that I either already subscribe to, or have any interest in, but that should come with time. If you haven't already done so, take a look and see some of the samples they give you just so you can get a feel for the product. Then just wait for your favorite publication!
Wordpress - @llofte
I used to hate blogging from my iPhone or iPad, but the WordPress app for iOS has come a long way since then. Now, I can make a lot of formatting edits and insert pics at the exact size I want - this was a biggie for me.
Combined with Photo Stream, blogging photos of my daughter with my iPad is quick, painless, and can be done while relaxing on the couch. Wordpress on my iPhone is great for blogging on the go or for correcting a typo that I notice on a TiPb post.
I used to strictly blog from my laptop or desktop, but about 80% of my personal blogging is now done mobile thanks to the WordPress app for iOS. I'll admit that most of TiPb writing is still done on the desktop, but that's because it involves much more and it's just faster and more productive to do it on my iMac or MacBook.
[Free - App Store link]
W.E.L.D.E.R. - @iMuggle
I haven't been playing too many games these days but this one has me hooked. It's currently featured in the App Store and on sale for 50% off regular price. I am definitely glad I stumbled upon it while simply browsing.
If you enjoy games like Words With Friends or Scrabble this is definitely a game you'll want to pick up. It's somewhat of a fusion between Scrabble, Tetris, and the old school slider puzzles. You know, the ones you'd have to slide the pieces around to make a picture with only one free space. You simply swap letters either left, right, up, down, or diagonal to make words. You only get so many swaps though and for every 250 points you score you'll earn an additional 5 swaps. When you run out of swaps the game ends.
It's definitely a great time killer if you need something that isn't fact paced and you can pick up and leave off at your leisure. It also features GameCenter integration where you can unlock achievements as well.
$1.99 - App Store Link
The Great Jitters: Pudding Panic - @mgmiller8693 (Reader's Choice)
Playing this game reminds me of the great funhouse rides at the amusement park when I was growing up, where creepy and sometimes scary characters jump out at you from out of nowhere. I've only played the first few levels so far, but I love the game's music, the fun and challenging gameplay, its sharp graphics, and the amazing sound/visual effects.
As per the game's description in the App Store, your goal in the game is to lead a fearful blob of pudding through a spooky haunted house and scary monsters with freakish weapons and get to the exit as fast as you can.
It's of course a very fitting game for the Halloween season that just passed, but it's so likeable and addictive that I can definitely see myself playing it all year long. It has Game Center built-in, which is nice. I found the first 3 or 4 levels to be fairly easy, but beyond that, it definitely gets more challenging.
[$1.99 - App Store 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!