ALO Audio’s The International headphone amp/USB DAC in review

ALO The International BW

It’s off to the races again. This time, ALO have suited up their youngest and most exciting audiophile offspring, The International. This amp features at 24/96kHz USB DAC, discrete analogue/digital sections, a powerful battery, extremely low noise floor, and the must-have feature of the decade: balanced input and output. With all that under the bonnet, you can be sure this youngster will turn heads as it swishes by.

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Metal Slug 2 in Review: Who Needs 3D?

I’m all for the latest trends in technology.  In the end, though, I just want my games to be fun.  If there’s one thing the METAL SLUG series has proven over and over again it’s that you don’t need the latest 3D accelerated graphics or quad core processor to make an enjoyable game.  In fact, as a whole it seems like ports of older games provide some of the most intense scrolling shooter experiences available on the iOS platform.  Besides, there’s something about awesome pixel art and classic 90’s video game tunes that’s hard to beat these days.

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10 New App Store Games In Review [February 11 - 17]

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This week had a lot of titles that were both entertaining and cute, starting with the new puzzler Goats and Gadgets.  Your task in each of the 40 levels is to get one goat to the desired apple, mastering all the different gadgets at your disposal and dealing with things like yetis and trolls.  If platform action is more your style you might want to give Burt Destruction a shot.  Spending just a little bit of time with this game was enough to realize the developers have some familiarity with classic platforming romps, and the sense of humor is actually quite funny.  Now if you want something that’s just downright silly the Bunny Hill is the game for you.  This 2D side view racer takes place between a bunch of cube shaped animals, and while there’s really not a whole lot to it before long you’ll find yourself tilting your device in a vein attempt to make your rabbit go faster.
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Fleksy gets update, price drops to free forever

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While iOS’ autocorrect feature is fairly competent, there are undoubtedly times when users have wished that its text prediction was much improved. Enter  Fleksy, the iOS app released last year where the developers called it the “most powerful text prediction engine out there”, has been embraced by thousands of users who are able to type on their iPhones and iPads without having to even look at the keyboard. The app was after all designed with the visually impair in mind. With its most recent update (new gestures, new menu and increased accuracy), the devs have also announced that the app has gone free (the full version was previously $4.99) – now and forever.

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Splashtop 2 – Remote Desktop for iPad now Free for a limited time

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Splashtop 2, the popular remote desktop app for the iPad (there’s an iPhone version as well), has gone free on the App Store for the very first time. For the uninitiated, the app lets you control your PC/Mac remotely right from the comforts of your iDevice. Once connected into your home/work computer, you’ll then be able to view your files, work on your Word/Excel documents, watch a movie that’s been stored locally and much more.

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Mushroom Wars in Review: Spores Are Fungis Too

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I’ve always been partial to turn based strategy games because I tend to have difficulties processing everything that’s going on all at once when the action is real time.  However, I began taking an interest in the real time side of things again when I was introduced to what I call “strategy lite” games where you basically have one screen full of stuff to deal with and the action is mostly relegated to simply trying to take over your opponents’ structures.  With no resource management, no complex troop management and advanced quests providing fun but unnecessary diversions, games like Mushroom Wars still provide a decent level of strategy but supply it in a nice pick up and go package.

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Glove.ly touchscreen gloves in Review – Don’t let a snow storm stop you from using your iPhone

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If you’ve ever been out in the bitter cold and wanted to use your iPhone (or smartphone in general), then you already know just how much it sucks to do so as your fingers feel like they’re about to fall off. Thankfully, there’s a solution to this and it involves non other than a pair of touchscreen compatible gloves. Some simply have cutout holes at the fingertips, while others are actually made with conductive fabric and no digits need to be exposed. One such pair is the Glove.ly touchscreen gloves, and they’re designed where the entire glove can interact with the iPhone’s display. They’re smartly designed, look great and even have two magnetic points that help keep the gloves together.

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iOS 6.1 Security Hole Found: Access phone module from locked screen

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Remember the major security hole found in iOS 4.1 from a few years back that would allow someone to access your contacts even though the phone was locked with a passcode? Well it appears someone has figured out another way to exploit a serious flaw in iOS 6.1 that would enable them to have access to your phone module – where they can then view/edit contacts and make calls. As per Gizmodo:

First you have to pretend to turn the phone off, then make an aborted emergency call, then a quick bit of off button and cancel pressing. That boots you into the full phone app where you can pretty much call or message anyone you like.

Until Apple patches this in a future update, your safest best is to keep your iPhone close by 24/7. Check out the video on how the hack is done after the break.

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Infographic: Pixel People by the numbers

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To celebrate both the successful launch of Pixel People and Valentine’s Day, Chillingo and LambdaMu Games have released a fact-filled Pixel People Infographic. The highly addictive town building sim (which Eric touched on in the recent New Games roundup) is the latest on the block to drain the iOS population of their productivity. If you’re already deep into the game, you’ll appreciate the numbers found within, like how in the past 2 weeks, 232 years were spent playing Pixel People, or 19,680,022 clones were spliced. And as a V-Day’s special, all in-game Utopium prices have been slashed for a limited time. If you’ve yet to check it out, you have nothing to lose (other than your time) as the sim builder is completely free to play.

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音茶楽 Flat4-楓 Ocharaku Flat4-KAEDE earphone in review

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I have a hunch that Mr. Yamagishi, the former Sony headphone and speaker designer behind Ocharaku was drinking tea before he ever sipped into the idea of the Tornado Equaliser. That singular technology has since revolutionised the upgrade earphone market among price-conscious portable audiophiles in Japan. And with the introduction of Flat-4 SUI – and TE’s successor, TEE – in 2011, the technology has found itself in a new, better pot. Twin Equalised Elements (TEE) is the new leaf that Mr. Yamagishi turned over to create SUI and now KAEDE. If you’re interested in a few different views of KAEDE, check out Ω image’s KAEDE post.

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