Welcome to this week’s Game Time, where we’ll take a good hard look at everything the Universe has to offer, and what it means to be truly sentient. We always keep it interesting with iOS GAAAAAMETIME.
It’s been a wild ride for native Google Voice apps on the iPhone: After getting booted out of the App Store more than a year ago for reportedly “duplicating existing functionality,” they’re back with a vengeance this month -- and if the rumors are true, an official app from Google may soon join the fray.
Everyone believes that the iPad and all the copycat tablets that are sure to hit the market around the holiday season will save publishers. Newspapers seem to think so, magazines seem to think so, even book retailers think so, just like everyone else. Inevitably, the big names will hit the ground running with great apps, like The New Yorker. And today, they are off to the races.
There is nothing more important than your documents and files, which is why you should always make sure that they're backed up on an external hard drive somewhere in a fireproof safe. Because you never know when the robots will rise up and destroy your computer. However, if you want to access your files in a more organized manner, check out these two apps that are absolutely essential. Not only are they free but they do the wonderful duty of keeping your files in tip top shape--and accessible!
Our trusty TiVos can’t be everywhere at once. Sometimes, something great will happen that we didn’t record, and we won’t catch the snappy references at the next day’s staff meeting. For instance, did you see Neil Young sing the “Double Rainbow” song? For missed moments like these, Hulu Plus serves up a massive roster of TV shows and a smattering of movies to quell our pop-culture needs. You’ll be able to quote lines from old favorites--“It’s a floor wax and a dessert topping”--and recent hits. But before you mumble, “I want to go to there,” be warned that Hulu Plus still might leave you out of the loop at that meeting. In spite of the great iPad and iPhone apps, it omits certain episodes and other crucial features.
This week we'll take a look at how handy folders can be in the iOS Dock, learn how to create a special Apple logo folder, and practice a few tricks that make iTunes 10 a bit more palatable, Plus, we'll teach you about the new iPhone Field Service test in iOS 4.1.
The world of smartphone app development is a frustrating, constantly changing place. To get a feel for what developers have to put up with, you needn't look any further than the iTunes App Store. For the longest time, developers were allowed to churn out their creations using third-party software... until they weren't. Out of the blue a little while back, they were once again. Should they be victorious in the long uphill battle to complete an application, that app has to go through a stringent approval process, where it could very well be disallowed, forcing the developer to either scrap her project or tweak it to Apple satisfaction. Throughout this process, developers make no money from the sweat of their brows. Worst of all, should the developer want to deploy his wares to a number of App Stores, she'll be forced to jump through a number of similar hoops once again. With such a development environment, nobody wins. Innovation is stifled by strict and oft-times frustrating App Store rules, consumers yearning for an application available on one platform to come to another often goes unsated, as developers spend so much time fighting through red tape that they're too busy to transfer their work to a different OS ecosystem. Fortunately, things may be looking for individuals interested in cross-platform mobile application development, as a number of players in the mobile telecommunications game have banded together to sort out a universal web-based approach to application development. Their solution is one that will seem very familiar to long-time iPod touch or iPhone users: Web Apps.
Augmented reality. It's that future tech we've all been waiting for--point your phone at something in the real world, and gain all the cyber knowledge the interwebs can provide. Wondering what species of tree you're looking at? Just direct your iPhone camera to it, and Wikipedia fills you in with a textual overlay.
Of course with the neat comes the not so neat too, so we at Mac|Life have done you the service of sifting out the junk. We've gone through just about every augmented reality app we could find, and here are our four favorites. They may not be the first apps you think of when you think about augmented reality, but they're actually useful. In fact, we'd say they're the best. And, iPhone 4 users, they're all updated for viewing on that gorgeous Retina Display.
If you prefer to take your daily dose of out-and-about with a hearty helping of headphone-funneled music, you'll know that from time to time, some of the finer points of the great outdoors, such as blaring truck horns warning you of the possible end of your life, might escape your attention. As tired a phrase as it is, we have to say, there's an App for that.
Of the various cloud storage services out there, we're most partial to Dropbox. The interface is simple, the uploads fairly quick, and the app works beautifully. Plus, with their open API, Dropbox can sync with tons of our other apps and software making it our number one floating hard drive. Today, it seems, is update day.