TouchMyApps » SteveNaka http://www.touchmyapps.com All Things iPhone and iPad for those who like to Touch. iOS App reviews, News, New Apps, Price Drops and App Gone Free Mon, 21 Jul 2014 18:44:00 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.7.3 Food Processing HD In Review – Produce Processing At A Panicked Pace! http://www.touchmyapps.com/2011/03/23/food-processing-hd-in-review-produce-processing-at-a-panicked-pace/ http://www.touchmyapps.com/2011/03/23/food-processing-hd-in-review-produce-processing-at-a-panicked-pace/#comments Wed, 23 Mar 2011 19:38:31 +0000 http://www.touchmyapps.com/?p=50167 With games like Cut the Rope (TMA Review) and Fruit Ninja doing so well on the App Store, it wasn’t too surprising to see another “slicing” app from Chillingo. This time, perfectly prepared produce is your goal in the recently released slice-and-dice game, Food Processing HD. Similar in style to other games in this particular genre, there isn’t much of … Read more]]>

With games like Cut the Rope (TMA Review) and Fruit Ninja doing so well on the App Store, it wasn’t too surprising to see another “slicing” app from Chillingo. This time, perfectly prepared produce is your goal in the recently released slice-and-dice game, Food Processing HD.

Similar in style to other games in this particular genre, there isn’t much of a traditional story line in Food Processing. Instead your main objective is to reach the highest score possible by slicing, tapping and swiping as much food as you can. There are 2 game modes available to you: the standard mode and Hell’s Kitchen.

In Standard mode, fruits and vegetables slowly make their way down a conveyor belt and your job is to slice and dismember them as they pass by. Points are awarded depending on how you “prepare” the food. So if you manage to cut an eggplant right at the tip of its head, you’ll score perfect points. Stringing together multiple perfects further earn you extra combo and bonus points. In addition, there are secret items that you can unlock by earning combos. The game ends when you’ve lost all 3 lives, where a life is lost for every missed food item or when you mistakenly touch a rotten fruit or vegetable.

The other mode is Hell’s Kitchen, which is unlocked when you score 600 points . Basically, it’s the standard mode all over again, but a lot more challenging (and fun) thanks to the increased speed, intensity and the various power ups at your disposal. It’s is an absolute blast to play and is now my favorite of the 2 modes. Also worth mentioning is that there is no difficulty level to choose from in Food Processing; rather the game gets progressively harder the longer you’re able to stay alive.

The game comes in two versions: Food Processing for the iPhone/iPod Touch ($0.99), and Food Processing HD ($1.99), which is the dedicated iPad version. The visuals on the iPad are spot on; the colors are rich, the “slicing” lines are crisp and the entire game flows extremely smoothly. The music and sound effects are also well done, adding to the atmosphere of frantic food preparation.

As is more often the case with Chillingo titles, this game has both Apple’s Game Center as well as Chillingo’s Crystal Network included. As such, get ready to complete challenges, unlock achievements and show off your high score for other gamers from around the globe.

Cutting to the chase (sorry, couldn’t help it), Food Processing is simply a fantastic arcade game for the iDevice. It’s extremely easy to pick up and highly addictive thanks to the well thought out gameplay mechanics. You’ll soon find yourself going back for more (and more) in an attempt to beat your previous high score. If you are a fan of games like Cut The Rope or Fruit Ninja, you’ll definitely enjoy this one.

Kiss It Rating - 5/5

App Summary
Title: Food Processing HD Developer: Chillingo
Reviewed Ver: 1.1 Min OS Req: 3.2
Price: $1.99 App Size: 28.2Mb
  • Great arcade format
  • Easy to pick up, difficult to master
  • Fantastic Graphics
  • Addictive
  • Social Integration
  • Can’t play your own music

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Collision Effect In Review – It’s Zybble-rific! http://www.touchmyapps.com/2011/03/21/collision-effect-in-review-its-zybble-rific/ http://www.touchmyapps.com/2011/03/21/collision-effect-in-review-its-zybble-rific/#comments Mon, 21 Mar 2011 19:08:55 +0000 http://www.touchmyapps.com/?p=49654 Anyone who’s read my reviews knows I’m a big fan of puzzlers and pick-up-and-play type games on my iPhone. The latest to cross my path is Chillingo’s Collision Effect. Promising unique gameplay and brain teasing challenges, let’s take a look and see why this one’s a winner. The basic premise behind Collision Effect is to bring cosmic … Read more]]>

Anyone who’s read my reviews knows I’m a big fan of puzzlers and pick-up-and-play type games on my iPhone. The latest to cross my path is Chillingo’s Collision Effect. Promising unique gameplay and brain teasing challenges, let’s take a look and see why this one’s a winner.


The basic premise behind Collision Effect is to bring cosmic orbs (named Zybbles) of the same color together. The twist is that you’ll have to plan your paths carefully and avoid orbs of different colors from colliding; otherwise, it’s game over.

There are 2 different gameplay modes and 3 levels of difficulty that will definitely keep you busy. The first is “Action”, a non-stop arcade style game where orbs are constantly flying across the screen. The second mode is “Puzzle”, where orbs are pre-arranged in a specific pattern and you have to move the right ones in the right order. Careful planning and spot-on timing is crucial if you want to solve some of the later puzzles. Personally I preferred the hectic pace of the former. It’s easy to get going and while it poses a good challenge, it’s not so difficult that you’ll want to pull your hair out.

Collision Effect’s controls are dead simple – simply tap a Zybble and all orbs of that color will instantly start to gravitate towards the very one you activated. Upon collision, the entire color group will explode and disappear from the screen. Once you get going in either mode, the difficulty level gets progressively harder and you’ll soon find yourself in an enjoyable panic trying to get the orbs from point A to B without smashing into other colors. Bonus orbs are also thrown into the mix; when used at the right time, they’ll make your life easier AND get you some big points! All bonus items, as well as a very brief explanation of game play are available in the help menu, which is accessible from either the front page or the pause menu.

When it comes to graphics and sound, the game is superb on the iPhone 4. The wide range of colors are bright and vibrant. After each collision, the rainbow effect of particles looks amazing and the accompanying sound effects are terrific. However, as enjoyable as it is to play it on the bigger screen of the iPad (it’s a universal app) it doesn’t quite feel like the devs put as much attention to visual detail in the iPad version as they did on the iPhone/iPod touch. It still looks pretty good mind you, just not as sweet as on the iPhone 4′s retina display.

After each round is complete, your stats are synced online and displayed. And any achievements that you have attained will appear at the bottom of the screen. Having them pop up one after an other is always a nice ego boost. The achievements themselves are available on both the Crystal Network as well as Game Center. For those unfamiliar, Crystal is Chillingo’s own social gaming network, which includes Leaderboards, challenges, achievements, etc. All sorts of goodies to enhance the game.

Collision Effect is a refreshing iOS puzzler that is both addictive and challenging. There’s no doubt that fans of pick-up-and-play games and the genre in particular will enjoy what this one has to offer. The visuals will keep your eyes glued to the screen and the two gameplay modes (and 3 difficulty levels) should provide plenty of hours of play depending on your mood. And of course, the $0.99 price tag makes this an easy buy for your iPhone, iPod Touch or iPad.

Grab It Rating - 4/5

App Summary
Title: Collision Effect Developer: Chillingo Ltd.
Reviewed Ver: 1.1 Min OS Req: 3.1
Price: $0.99 App Size: 15.8Mb
  • Addictive
  • Challenging puzzles
  • Great visuals and sound effects
  • Integrated Game Center & Crystal Network
  • iPad’s visuals not as stunning as that on iPhone/iPod Touch
  • Later levels in Puzzle mode may cause slight frustration for casual gamers

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Halftone In Review – Finally A Comic-Sans Free Comic Style! http://www.touchmyapps.com/2011/03/15/halftone-in-review-finally-a-comic-sans-free-comic-style/ http://www.touchmyapps.com/2011/03/15/halftone-in-review-finally-a-comic-sans-free-comic-style/#comments Tue, 15 Mar 2011 14:02:29 +0000 http://www.touchmyapps.com/?p=49664 I’m a huge fan of iPhone photography. So much so, that I started my own photo blog just to show off pictures taken with my iPhone 4. As such, I’m always on the lookout for new and interesting camera apps. And it is this very search that led me to my latest find – Halftone … Read more]]>

I’m a huge fan of iPhone photography. So much so, that I started my own photo blog just to show off pictures taken with my iPhone 4. As such, I’m always on the lookout for new and interesting camera apps. And it is this very search that led me to my latest find – Halftone by Juicy Bits.

Not surprisingly, there are a great number of camera/photography apps available on the App Store today. They all offer their own tweaks, mods and various other photo editing capabilities. Halftone’s speciality revolves around adding an aged halftone-style printing effect to your images, giving them that vintage look. They also include templates for placing captions on your photos. Overall you have about 162 different combinations available to you (between fonts, paper type, layout etc), which allows for pretty decent customization options. That’s not even factoring in all the various font styles/sizes (some app exclusive) and “dots”.

Controls within the app are really easy to understand and they are pointed out every time the app launches (thanks to a handy intro graphic that pops up). To begin, simply tap the screen and choose whether you are taking a new picture, or pulling one from your existing library. For those opting to take a new photo from within the app, you’ll be pleased to know that they’ve made sure all regular functions are available: front/rear cameras, flash, zoom and tap to focus. I’ve used apps in the past that didn’t allow all these standard features and it can get quite annoying, so it was nice not to be limited in that way.

Once you have your image, editing is really straight forward. Using the buttons along the bottom toolbar – the first Camera icon is of course for selecting your image – you can select your paper style, layout (with or without captions, which type, where) and finally, font style and size. To edit existing text, just tap the area on screen where it’s located and an editor will allow you to do just that. The settings menu (see screenshot above) lets you to tweak how the app handles your photos, as well as the “dot” size in the pic.

The simplicity and ease of use is what really stands out with Halftone. Getting the image to look the way you want can be achieved with several taps. Even brand new users will be able to jump right in thanks to the simple, yet informative intro “tutorial” page. As for the quality, the end result is a unique looking “comic book” style image that looks very nice. Once you are finished tweaking and editing your work, you can save the image (to camera roll), email it to a friend or share it via Facebook. I was a little surprised not to see Twitter as a sharing option, but it appears that this is coming via the next update. And as much as I like the styling effect offered in the app, it’s still somewhat light when it comes to variety. Although it offers many different layouts, Halftone essentially offers one “style”. If it really wants to compete with other premium camera/photo apps, it may need to give users even more styles to sink their teeth into.

Juicy Bits’ Halftone is fun and enjoyable to use, especially if you wish to add that vintage comic book flair to your photos. The pictures turned out great from my experience and creating them is a breeze. Aside from the fact that it could use even more variety in styling options and the current lack of Twitter support, you can’t really go wrong with this niche $0.99 photo app.

Grab It Rating - 4/5

App Summary
Title: Halftone Developer: Juicy Bits
Reviewed Ver: 1.2 Min OS Req: 3.2
Price: $0.99 App Size: 6.5Mb
  • Nice simple controls
  • Unique “comic book” style effect
  • Easy sharing
  • No Twitter support
  • Not a lot of variety (strictly 1 comic style)

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Material6 In Review – Mother Nature, The Sexiest Accessory Of All! http://www.touchmyapps.com/2011/03/07/material6-in-review-mother-nature-the-sexiest-accessory-of-all/ http://www.touchmyapps.com/2011/03/07/material6-in-review-mother-nature-the-sexiest-accessory-of-all/#comments Mon, 07 Mar 2011 21:07:51 +0000 http://www.touchmyapps.com/?p=49114 As nice as it is to look at the iPhone 4′s glass back, the fact is that it wouldn’t really take much for it to break.  Countless stories have been posted online by people who have experienced this heart breaking ordeal. So what do you do if you neither want a case that’ll hide the … Read more]]>

As nice as it is to look at the iPhone 4′s glass back, the fact is that it wouldn’t really take much for it to break.  Countless stories have been posted online by people who have experienced this heart breaking ordeal. So what do you do if you neither want a case that’ll hide the elegant design of the phone nor risk damaging its back side? Enter Material6, a company that specializes in turning the back panel of your iPhone 4 into carefully hand-crafted wood. Yes, wood!

Using actual iPhone parts, Material6 handcrafts each wooden back plate one at a time. The finishes are comparable to what you would expect on a high-end hardwood floor and the quality is just unbelievable. There are 3 finishes currently available (South American Rosewood, Lacewood and White Ash Burl), with the promise of more to come in the near future.

Replacing your stock iPhone glass back with one of the offerings from Material6 is extremely easy. Simply follow the 3 step instructional diagram and you’re done. In personal tests, it took me on average 90-120 seconds from beginning to end. Quick, easy and painless. For those of you who are worried about voiding warranties, don’t be. Since you are replacing the entire back panel and using the original screws from your phone, you can easily re-install the glass back and there’d be no trace of it ever having been modified.

Using the iPhone 4 with the new wooden back feels just as good, if not a bit better than the glass. Heat distribution does not seem to be an issue; no hot areas or increase in the temperature with frequent usage. One thing I do notice however, is that with the finish on the wood, the back can be a bit slippery at times because it’s so smooth.

After 3 weeks of use, I’ve found it to be surprisingly durable. No cracks, scratches or noticeable wear and tear to speak of since I put it on. Being made of wood, it seems to do a better job of absorbing shocks. In addition, thanks to the finish, it’s relatively scratch resistant. On a personal note, I also feel “safer” with the wooden back on my iPhone 4. I have since ditched my case (primarily used to protect the glass back), which was something I’d never have done before my Material6 accessory arrived.

The cost of each of the wooden back panels is currently $89 (USD). Now to some that might seem a bit steep, however, once you realize that you’re replacing an entire backside with one that is handcrafted out of high quality wood and made to fit perfectly, the price seems a lot more reasonable. Not to mention that by using your Material6 back panel, you are saving the original glass back from being damaged, which you’ll now always have available as a backup.

One last thing I’d like to mention is that in the very near future, customers will be able to have their back panels engraved. Using a tool that can engrave details so fine, you’ll need a magnifying glass to read. They are currently in the midst of collaborating with artists of all types to put together some great offerings for customers – so you’ll definitely want to keep your eye out for that.

Material6′s do-it-yourself wooden back plate is a very nice alternative to Apple’s own glass back design. Not only are they beautiful, but they also ensure that you won’t suffer from potential broken glass due to drops or plain carelessness. If you want to impress your friends or simply enjoy tricking out your iPhone 4, I’d highly recommend you take a good look over at material6.com. Their products are innovative, very well made and reasonably priced, especially considering the quality you’re getting.

Grab It Rating - 4/5

App Summary
Product: Material6 Wooden Back Panel Company: Material6
Price: $89.00
  • Innovative Idea
  • Great quality wood & finish
  • Uses original apple/oem parts
  • Extremely easy 3 step install
  • Price a little high for an “accessory”
  • Finish on the wood gets a bit slippery at times

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Friends Plus In Review – An *Almost* All In One Social Network App http://www.touchmyapps.com/2011/02/22/friends-plus-in-review/ http://www.touchmyapps.com/2011/02/22/friends-plus-in-review/#comments Tue, 22 Feb 2011 14:32:44 +0000 http://www.touchmyapps.com/?p=48483 With social networking now so heavily integrated into our lives, trying to keep up with all your accounts can be quite the daunting task. And with so many different apps out there for the various services, one can grow quite tiresome of exiting one and entering the other repeatedly throughout the day. Enter the folks … Read more]]>

With social networking now so heavily integrated into our lives, trying to keep up with all your accounts can be quite the daunting task. And with so many different apps out there for the various services, one can grow quite tiresome of exiting one and entering the other repeatedly throughout the day. Enter the folks from Taptivate with their social tool Friends Plus. Positioned as a one stop shop, Taptivate hopes to help simplify and streamline your social network experience.

When you first open Friends Plus, you are prompted to add your social networks (Facebook, Twitter, MySpace and LinkedIn). Tapping the “Sign In” button will get that started for you. Afterwards, if you have to add other accounts, simply tap the gear icon located in the top right and you’ll see all available networks listed. Then on all subsequent app launches, you are presented with options to visit your contacts, view posts, as well as a short list of recent posts that involve you (think twitter @mentions, Facebook comments, etc).

One of the aspects of Friends that stands out is the User Interface. It’s slick and well designed. And navigating around the app is a breeze. So you’re just in the mood to look at photos. By going into the “Posts” section, you’ll have the option of doing just that (videos as well). You’ll also be able to view by a particular service or everything mixed in at once. Some other great navigation features include linking directly to albums in Facebook, viewing post comments inline and opening links up within the apps internal browser.

Another great feature that I use a fair bit is the inclusion of Instapaper and Read It Later. For those unaware, these are services that allow you to save things like websites, articles and more for viewing later. So being able to pull articles from my feeds is a big plus for me. That said, it would have been nice to be able to access/read those clippings within the app, however the fact that I can at least use it to save things for later is useful.

Now one of the biggest features missing from the app is the integration of push notifications. Personally, completely replacing all my other social apps with this push is a necessity. Although I was a little disappointed that it isn’t present at this time, Taptivate has said that it will be compatible with Boxcar with it’s next update (v1.6). Another feature currently absent but coming in the next update is, search. Within the app you’ll be able to search all your social networks and timelines right from within the app. Useful if you’re looking for certain topics.

The last feature I want to touch on is the integration with your contacts. Once you’ve added your networks, the app will link up any names that match entries in your contact list. So what you end up with is a contact card with all their regular info, along with tabs to view their latest activity and network related stats.

Overall, Friends Plus really is a handy way to merge a handful of all your social apps into one neatly designed package. Taking into account the upcoming features in v1.6, this is certainly a great tool for all of us who have let the world of social networking embed itself so deeply into our lives.

App Summary
Title: Friends Plus ~ Facebook, Twitter, MySpace & LinkedIn! Developer: Taptivate
Reviewed Ver: 1.5 Min OS Req: 4.0
Price: $0.99 App Size: 6.9Mb
  • Combines many social networks into one app
  • Interface clean and easy to follow
  • Can view items/posts however you want (combined or grouped by service/type)
  • Upcoming push notifications won’t be native (requiring 3rd party app boxcar)
  • No reading/viewing access to Instapaper/ReadItLater items

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NBA JAM In Review – EA Is The Bus Driver & They’re Taking You To School! http://www.touchmyapps.com/2011/02/14/nba-jam-in-review/ http://www.touchmyapps.com/2011/02/14/nba-jam-in-review/#comments Mon, 14 Feb 2011 17:03:22 +0000 http://www.touchmyapps.com/?p=48032 For all you gamers who grew up during the ’90s, NBA JAM should be quite familiar to you (Boomshakalaka!). One of the most popular arcade titles to have ever been released, it was THE game to play back in the day, and now thanks to the folks at EA, it’s back with a vengeance on … Read more]]>

For all you gamers who grew up during the ’90s, NBA JAM should be quite familiar to you (Boomshakalaka!). One of the most popular arcade titles to have ever been released, it was THE game to play back in the day, and now thanks to the folks at EA, it’s back with a vengeance on the iDevice.

Anyone who’s ever played NBA JAM knows that when it comes to fun, this super charged arcade-y basketball game has it in spades. Seasoned JAM players will feel right at home on this portable iteration – the sights, sounds and gameplay have all been faithfully recreated. And if you’re new to the experience, then get ready for giant heads, flaming nets and backboard smashing dunks. The acrobatics alone would impress even the crew over at Cirque du Soleil.

Like all sports games, your goal is to out score the opponent. Where it differs here, are the rules – or lack thereof. Instead of the usual 5-on-5, you play in a schoolyard-esque 2-on-2 game of basketball. The only rules that apply are goaltending, and the shot clock. So be prepared to fly high above the rim for rim-rocking dunks and nasty blocks, swipe away for ferocious steals, and shove your opponents’ behind to the ground. To spice things up, you also have challenges that you can accomplish, which will in turn unlock extra features like zany in-game tweaks and cheats and some of the best basketball players ever known. If however, you want to skip all the challenges and unlock all the extra features and players without putting in the time, you can do so via in-app purchases. There are multiple packages available ranging from $0.99 to $2.99

With all the ups NBA JAM has to offer, unfortunately there is also a down, and a rather big one at that – the lack of multiplayer. One of the biggest draws of the arcade hit in its heyday was the heated competition with friends. The in-your-face-dunks, accompanied by the non-stop trash talking really made the game. Needless to say, it is a downer that EA completely left out this feature. Hopefully, this key ingredient will make its way via future updates. If not online multiplayer, at the very least the ability to connect with a second player via WiFi or Bluetooth.

Graphically the game is stunning. Retina Display is supported and the visuals are crisp, clean and vibrant. Even your favorite players are instantly recognizable on-court. The sounds are also true to NBA JAM, from the swoosh of the net, the hoop catching fire to the squeaks of the sneakers on the hardwood. Oh yeah, it even features the voice of Tim Kitzrow, the original play-by-play announcer. “He’s on Fire!!”

So to basketball fans young and old, I highly recommend you go and grab NBA JAM for your iDevice. It’s every bit as fun as the beloved arcade game you’ve come to know and love. It paved the way for other “arcade” sports games to follow and to this day, the universal appeal remains. Addictive, challenging and easy to pick up, NBA JAM is perfect for quenching your hoops thirst no matter where you are. The only thing holding back a perfect score is the lack of multiplayer. With it, this would have been an easy “Kiss It” rating. Hopefully EA will fire out an update in the near future, so the trash talkin’ can commence once again.

App Summary
Title: NBA JAM Developer: EA SPORTS
Reviewed Ver: 1.0.0 Min OS Req: 3.0
Price: $4.99 App Size: 262MB
  • Awesome graphics
  • Insanely addictive
  • A great refresh of a classic
  • Extremely easy to learn and play
  • Lack of multiplayer
  • No Game Center integration

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TMA iBallz Originals Giveaway! http://www.touchmyapps.com/2011/02/08/tma-iballz-originals-giveaway/ http://www.touchmyapps.com/2011/02/08/tma-iballz-originals-giveaway/#comments Tue, 08 Feb 2011 19:13:00 +0000 http://www.touchmyapps.com/?p=47832 Recently I reviewed some great iPad accessories by Friendly Integration LLC. The first was their unique signature iBallz Originals, followed by their iBallz Lid and Hard Case offerings. I thought the products were innovative and definitely filled a need. In fact I love them so much that I am giving away a free set of … Read more]]>

Recently I reviewed some great iPad accessories by Friendly Integration LLC. The first was their unique signature iBallz Originals, followed by their iBallz Lid and Hard Case offerings. I thought the products were innovative and definitely filled a need. In fact I love them so much that I am giving away a free set of iBallz to one of our lucky readers! Full contest details on how to enter after the break!

Contest Details

  • Prize: 1 Brand new set of iBallz Originals for the iPad
  • This contest is open to All.
  • Follow us on Twitter
  • Retweet the entire caption below. Be sure to include the hashtag so that your entry will be counted.
    • TMA iBallz review: http://bit.ly/frnlvr … AND now they have a giveaway!! http://bit.ly/fdWJxt – Hey @touchmyapps @i_Ballz #IWantMyiBallz!
  • You may retweet this message up to 3 times a day (no more than once during any given hour)
  • The more you retweet, the better your chances of winning
  • The contest will close Feb 13th @ 23:59 PM EST
  • The winner will be randomly picked and contacted on Feb 14th for their mailing address.

Good luck and as always, thanks for being a part of the TMA community!

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iBallz Lid and Hard Case In Review – ‘Cuz Sometimes Your iBallz Need Protection Too! http://www.touchmyapps.com/2011/01/25/iballz-lidcases-in-review/ http://www.touchmyapps.com/2011/01/25/iballz-lidcases-in-review/#comments Tue, 25 Jan 2011 19:44:41 +0000 http://www.touchmyapps.com/?p=46421 Just recently, I reviewed a great protective device for your iPad called iBallz. Not only is their design amazingly innovative, but they also provide for a surprising amount of protection for the magical tablet. Today I’ll be taking a look at a couple cases that are designed to work with AND without your iBallz: the iBallz … Read more]]>

The iBallz Eye Lid Case

Just recently, I reviewed a great protective device for your iPad called iBallz. Not only is their design amazingly innovative, but they also provide for a surprising amount of protection for the magical tablet. Today I’ll be taking a look at a couple cases that are designed to work with AND without your iBallz: the iBallz Lid and iBallz Hard Case.

First up is the Lid. Think of it like a fuzzy protective gift wrap. The sleeve has a vinyl material on the exterior, lined with a soft plush surface on the inside to prevent possible scratching.

iBallz Lid Case

To use it, simply lay the device in the middle, slide the 2 side flaps between the iPad and the elastic iBallz rope. Then fold it all inwards (just like wrapping paper!). Once done up, your iPad will have double protection with the iBallz preventing possible damage from drops and the sleeve keeping scratches and other hazards at bay. Not content with just being a protective cover, there are a couple other ways you can use the sleeve that I think are just genius. First off, start by wrapping the device in the opposite direction that I just described. What this does is it creates an opening on the backside and you can slide your arm through to better grip your iPad. This can be handy for everything from gaming to reading, even typing. The steadiness provided by resting the device on your entire forearm is great.

The second method is even easier to do and just as useful. By flipping the flaps behind the iPad into a stand like formation (see image above), you’ll have a perfectly tilted display for watching movies, TV shows or any other desired tasks without having to hold it. Both of those aforementioned features, along with the fact that it does shield and protect your iPad make this a handy accessory to the iBallz.

iBalls Hard Card

Unlike the iBallz Lid, the Hard Case is essentially a molded sleeve and is unique in that it works with OR without the iBallz. It’s got a sturdy outer shell and the same soft “iBallz blue” inner lining as the sleeve. For those with iBallz, there are half circles carved into all the corners so that the case will fit around them perfectly. For those without, there is a strap that your iPad will fit into and will hold it snug inside the case. I tend to carry around a duffle bag and the Hard Case kept my iPad perfectly safe while on the go. Test drops in both scenarios (with or without iBallz) performed as expected and resulted in no damage to the case or iPad. Now using both the iBallz and Hard Case together, I felt it provided more protection (and peace of mind) than some of my other cases that cost 2-3 times as much.

Strap to hold iPad for those without iBallz

Overall, I’ve enjoyed using both cases and they each bring something different to the table. Those who already love using their iBallz will find that they’re great complimentary additions for your iPad. The only problem I have is that as a secondary accessory (they are primarily designed to work with the iBallz after all), the prices are a little more than I like to see (both the iBallz and a combo of these cases will run you between $50-$55). That being said though, the Lid and Hard Case are both well designed and provide more than adequate protection for your beloved device. For existing iBallz users, I’d definitely recommend you pick up at least one that suits your tastes.

Summary
Product: iBallz EyeLid Manufacturer: Friendly Integration
Price: $29.95
  • Slips easily around iBallz
  • Adds great dust/dirt protection
  • Clean & simple design
  • Price a little high for a secondary accessory

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Product: iBallz Hard Case Manufacturer: Friendly Integration
Price: $34.95
  • Works both with AND without iBallz
  • Offers great added protection
  • Easy to use/Handy wrist strap
  • Durable outer design
  • Price a little high for a secondary accessory

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iBallz Originals In Review – Testicular Fortitude For Your iPad! http://www.touchmyapps.com/2011/01/18/iballz-original-in-review-testicular-fortitude-for-your-jesus-pad/ http://www.touchmyapps.com/2011/01/18/iballz-original-in-review-testicular-fortitude-for-your-jesus-pad/#comments Tue, 18 Jan 2011 20:47:46 +0000 http://www.touchmyapps.com/?p=46412 We all love our iPads. This supposed “consumption only” device has become an important part of many of our digital lives. It’s no wonder then that we want to keep it safe. Cases are great and I’ve got a few myself. However there are times when you don’t want to have it all wrapped up, … Read more]]>

We all love our iPads. This supposed “consumption only” device has become an important part of many of our digital lives. It’s no wonder then that we want to keep it safe. Cases are great and I’ve got a few myself. However there are times when you don’t want to have it all wrapped up, and the bulk it adds makes the tablet seemingly less convenient. Enter iBallz, easily one of the most uniquely designed (and eye catching) accessories for the iPad. And with a name like that, I had to get my hands on a pair.


The design of the iBallz is quite minimal actually. It’s just 4 balls with notches carved out to accommodate the iPad and an elastic cord running through them all. Admittedly, when I first saw the product online, I honestly wasn’t sure what to expect from a performance standpoint. Well, after having had sometime to play around with them (the iBallz of course), I’ve found that it works surprisingly well. After numerous test drops, my iPad was perfectly fine, with no scratches or any other damages to speak of. Even without a “regular” case now to protect the iPad, I’m definitely not as worried about dropping it thanks to the iBallz.

One of my favorite features of the iBallz is the ability to prop up the device for reading or typing (much like a mini kick stand). By removing one of the corners and placing it behind your iPad, it’s elevated at a nice angle. Perfect for when you’re working at a table. That being said, it also works perfectly fine with all sides attached. It’s just nice to have options available to you.

A couple neat things I did notice while using the iBallz on my lap is that the 2 balls on the bottom make perfect hand/wrist supports while typing (which I am doing right now!). Another is preventing possible liquid damage. While working at the table the other day, I accidentally knocked over a can of soda. Had my iPad been placed flat on its back, Pepsi would have been all over that like white on rice. Thankfully the iPad was elevated from the table just enough so that the soda ran underneath and past it without incident. Awesome!

The actual “Ballz” are made of a hard foam material. They are attached to an elastic rope that has just enough slack for you to be able to slide your iPad into the carved out spaces, all the while keeping them hugged snugly against the device. Prior to testing the accessory, I had wondered whether the cable running around the edges would quickly become annoying. Surprisingly, I have barely noticed it since day 1. It should also be noted that there is one designated ballz that has a special cut out to accommodate the Sleep button on the top right hand corner of the iPad (I found out the hard way after it kept going to sleep intermittently). So don’t be like me. Read the instructions and look first. Other than that, installation was quick and painless.

Although the design of the iBallz is way out there, I truly think that anyone who gives them a chance will enjoy using it with their iPad. Available in black or blue, they allow you to use your iPad practically bare while still offering plenty of protection. The price point ($19.95) in my opinion is perfect and coupled with some of the other accessories they offer, the iBallz is the perfect suite of protective materials for your Jesus tablet.

Summary
Product: iBallz EyeLid Manufacturer: Friendly Integration LLC
Price: $19.95
  • Unique/innovative design
  • Heavy duty shock protection
  • Non-invasive
  • Great price
  • None to mention

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Golf Cart Ranger In Review – More Balls Than You Can Shake A Stick At! http://www.touchmyapps.com/2010/11/30/golf-cart-ranger-in-review/ http://www.touchmyapps.com/2010/11/30/golf-cart-ranger-in-review/#comments Tue, 30 Nov 2010 19:31:33 +0000 http://www.touchmyapps.com/?p=43565 The latest pick-up-and play title to come across my iPhone is n-Space’s Golf Cart Ranger. Promising to be “more fun than a bucket of balls” and offering almost 40 levels out of the box, I was definitely intrigued by its simple premise. Read on to see if it scores a hole-in-one, or a double bogey. … Read more]]>

The latest pick-up-and play title to come across my iPhone is n-Space’s Golf Cart Ranger. Promising to be “more fun than a bucket of balls” and offering almost 40 levels out of the box, I was definitely intrigued by its simple premise. Read on to see if it scores a hole-in-one, or a double bogey.

In Golf Cart Ranger, you’re tasked with collecting golf balls from a driving range before your cart runs out of gas; all the while avoiding course hazards and flying golf balls. By tapping the arrows on each side of the screen, you control the direction of the cart left or right. Handling of the cart works surprisingly well and the controls are responsive. You can either tap the arrows to slightly move left/right or tap and hold it for a sharp turn. If anything it makes the game a step easier not having to worry about the accelerate and brake buttons.

There are 36 levels split into 2 differently themed areas, with another 18 levels in “Snow Job” – an icy and slippery course available as an in-app purchase. Similar to games like Angry Birds, each level is more or less the same except for slight changes in environment, that if improperly played can have a negative impact on your score. There are 3 different modes of play that change from level to level, which adds to the fun. The overall difficulty level should be moderate for beginners, but even seasoned pros will find themselves challenged to try and shave precious seconds off or gather more balls before they’re running on empty.

Visually the game is in good shape. From the splash screen to the in-game graphics, the colors are vibrant and the golf courses look solid. The devs have also taken the time to integrate GameCenter achievements into the game, with 10 different achievements available and 3 leaderboards to compete on. Another bonus – once you download the DLC you’ll also get an additional 4 achievements and 1 more leaderboard.

With its simple yet addictive gameplay and excellent graphics, I am giving Golf Cart Ranger a solid Kiss. It’s fun, easy to jump right in and the high scores will make you want to go back for more. I am also hopeful that it won’t be too long before we see more courses and levels added, either out of the box or via DLC. Fans of pick-up-and-play games should definitely grab it, especially at its current intro price of $0.99. At the very least, you can check out the free lite version (includes 9 levels) before making the jump.

Note: Golf Cart Ranger is only compatible with later iDevices, so the game won’t run on the iPhone 3G and iPod Touch 2G.

App Summary
Title: Golf Cart Ranger Developer: n-Space, Inc
Reviewed Ver: 1.1 Min OS Req:
Price: $0.99 App Size: 47.50MB
  • Great game play
  • Nice graphics
  • Game Center integration
  • Game might seem “flat” or “bland” to some

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HiFutureSelf In Review – The Future Is Now…Going To Remind Us Of Something http://www.touchmyapps.com/2010/11/19/hifutureself-in-review/ http://www.touchmyapps.com/2010/11/19/hifutureself-in-review/#comments Fri, 19 Nov 2010 10:29:22 +0000 http://www.touchmyapps.com/?p=43159 Todo apps are great. They can help you stay on top of all the things that need getting done and as far as your iDevice goes, there are thankfully plenty of options available. One “problem” however, is that most of them are very much “list” based. There are times when you just want to keep … Read more]]>

Todo apps are great. They can help you stay on top of all the things that need getting done and as far as your iDevice goes, there are thankfully plenty of options available. One “problem” however, is that most of them are very much “list” based. There are times when you just want to keep things simple, like when all you need is a reminder for something – this is where HiFutureSelf comes into play.

For me, most of my ” Todo’s” lately are individual things. Not so much a list of items, it’s more like miscellaneous stuff: “pick up milk”, “hit the gym”, or “pick up the dry cleaning”. Now a regular Todo list type app would most certainly do the job, but at the same time it can be a bit overkill. dBelement’s HiFutureSelf app on the other hand, won’t over complicate things and it can just be as useful. The app helps keep track of all your individual items you need to remember and it’ll then message you the reminder (thanks to handy push notifications) at the date/time you specify.

To add an item, simply launch the app and you’ll immediately be able to enter your reminder text, along with the title. Tap the “edit time” bar and select exactly when you’d like it to be sent. That’s it. Now the app is free, and it’s completely functional as a reminder app. However, if you decide to upgrade for $0.99, you get additional features – the option to delete all messages at once, set up/edit recurring messages and soon, the ability to view all messages that have ever sent. As small as these added features may seem, they do come in handy if you plan on using the app regularly. Not to mention that if you need to be reminded of a particular task on a regular basis (say every week), the dollar upgrade is well worth it.

I actually now find myself using the app to remind me about everything from daily workouts to laundry, even birthdays. It’s nice to know that I have a backup that will send me a reminder before it’s too late.

Design wise it’s pretty simple and it works. Soft colors mixed with white backgrounds keep the app nice looking and not too busy. Focus is paid on the area needing your attention and while some may find it bland, I really like it.

HiFutureSelf works as advertised and it does its job well. Entering messages and setting its reminder time is easy and swift. More importantly, the push notifications are timely and reliable. If you’re one to find that many of the todo apps are too complicated to use and have way more features than you actually need, be sure to give this free app a spin. You can then decide later if upgrading to the Pro version via in-app purchase is the way to go.

App Summary
Title: HiFutureSelf ~ Send messages & reminders to your future self Developer: dBelement, LLC
Reviewed Ver: 1.4.4 Min OS Req:
Price: Free App Size: 0.41MB
  • Easy to use
  • Clean/minimal design
  • Free to use (with ads)
  • “Pro” upgrade could use more features/options/added value

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iPhone 4 Defender Series Case In Review – The Perfect Protection For Your Precious Portable! http://www.touchmyapps.com/2010/11/12/iphone-4-defender-series-case-in-review-thanks-for-the-tank/ http://www.touchmyapps.com/2010/11/12/iphone-4-defender-series-case-in-review-thanks-for-the-tank/#comments Fri, 12 Nov 2010 23:05:03 +0000 http://www.touchmyapps.com/?p=42352 For the last couple weeks I’ve been using the iPhone 4 Defender Series Case by Otterbox, who’ve long been referred to as one of, if not the best providers of durable cases for mobile phones. With all the horror stories about the phone’s supposed “gorilla glass” breaking and cracking, I was extremely eager to test … Read more]]>

For the last couple weeks I’ve been using the iPhone 4 Defender Series Case by Otterbox, who’ve long been referred to as one of, if not the best providers of durable cases for mobile phones. With all the horror stories about the phone’s supposed “gorilla glass” breaking and cracking, I was extremely eager to test one out and protect my own Jesus phone.

One of the first things I noticed about the case was the size, especially when compared to other typical cases on the market. The length and width are only slightly larger than the iPhone, though the depth (thickness) is almost double – the iPhone is 0.37″ deep and the case comes in at 0.66″.  Now you may think an increase in size like that maybe cumbersome. That would be true if this were a normal case. Seeing how the main purpose of the Defender case is to utterly protect your iPhone though, the slightly extra bulk is actually welcomed and it certainly does a good job protecting it.

Putting your phone in the case is a bit of a process. All together there are 4 pieces (front, back, sleeve, holster). You slide the phone into the front piece, the back then slides in and snaps into clips along the side and finally, there is a silicone cover that goes over the back and sides, thus providing a nice cushion like support that’s also pleasant to hold. On their own, the pieces feel a little flimsy, but together the case feels nice and sturdy.

The other accessory is the belt clip, which allows you to sit the phone in the holster facing inwards or out. The Defender case also comes with a protective screen protector, one that gives your iPhone 4 screen added protection and prevents finger prints on the surface. While it is nice to have the plastic film, I did find that the extra layer caused the phone to be unresponsive at times and typing can result in a light tapping sound as the film bounces ever so slightly against the screen. After a while you learn to drown it out, but it can still be pretty annoying.

Usage of the phone isn’t affected too much with the case on (other than the occasional response issues) and you do get used to the increase in size rather quickly. The casing also provides protection for all the ports and plugs in the form of flaps, though I’m always a little worried that I could end up tearing the one covering the headphone jack as it stays pushed up while earphones are plugged in. The silicone material that covers the case also makes holding it extremely comfortable and I never once worried about my phone slipping. That said though, the silicone can pick up flecks of dirt or dust depending where you leave it (i.e lining of pocket).

As for everyday use, the Defender Case does provide adequate protection from the usual things like keys, spare change or coat zipper when it’s in the holster or pocket. During test drops on carpet, tile and hardwood up to 2-3 feet high, it came through without a mark. I didn’t try any higher since I really didn’t want to go from testing the case to trying to break my iPhone 4. From what I’ve seen though, it should stand up just fine for the average user and provide more than enough protection compared to many of the flimsy cases out there.

Aside from just functionality, the Defender Series Case also comes in 8 color combinations. At its MSRP of $49.95, it can be a little on the high end for some. However, considering that it provides quite a bit more protection than your average case, as well as the fact that it includes a holster, you certainly get good value for your money. After spending a considerable amount of time testing it out, I am definitely pleased with the Defender case. It provides plenty of protection without adding too much bulk and with all the color combinations offered, you should have no problems finding one you fancy. For those of you looking to keep your iPhone 4 safe (without compromising its good looks), OtterBox’s Defender series case is an easy recommendation.

Note: Amazon is currently selling the Defender Series Case (Black only) for $29.51.

App Summary
Product: iPhone 4 Defender Series Case Manufacturer: OtterBox
Price: $49.99 (MSRP) App Size: 0.6 MB
  • Multi-layer phone protection
  • Scratch resistant screen film
  • Added belt clip/holster
  • 8 color combinations
  • Screen occasionally unresponsive due to film
  • Tapping sounds from film when typing

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