A little over a year ago I started using Naturespace: Relax Meditate Escape Sleep (TMA Review) – one of the best ambient nature sounds apps out there. Unique in the way it makes a fully engrossing surround sound experience even through the stock Apple earbuds, it has saved my nerve endings from countless deaths. And as we all know – nerves don’t regenerate. Well, I’m glad to say that shortly before Christmas (yes, I Know I’m a bit late on this but still) the developers informed me that they’d just rolled out a massive update, not only making an additional 15 tracks available for purchase but a few nifty features in the catalogue as well.
For the longest time, one of the most frustrating issues with the iPhone was its inability to play anything other than pre-converted MP4 video. Of course, this has changed with the introduction of the iPhone 4 and a number of apps by 3rd party developers have arrived on the platform ever since. That said though, a glaring issue still has been streaming support. I have reviewed AirPlayer (TMA Review) – the only contender I could find some months ago and was appalled by it’s horrible performance, both connected to the TV and not. Then, I came across GoodPlayer – Movie Player & Downloader & Streaming Media Player…
Devoid of decent multimedia players for the longest time, the iOS saw a tidal wave of such apps hit the App Store with the release of the iPad and iPhone 4. With the hardware finally up to the task of managing the real-time decoding of the wide array of video formats available today, we’ve seen everything from UPnP streaming AirPlayer to the short-lived incarnation of the crossplatform legend VLC, to the jailbreak-only XBMC. But one thing still out of reach has been smooth HD playback, especially for MKV encoded video. Until GPlayer hit the scene that is.
With those huge data caps in the US, it’s often easy to forget that users in other countries are often stuck with a measly allowance of 200 MB per month. And that for roughly $30 – not too shabby for the carriers eh? With such a plan, it’s vitally important not to go over the limit, as the surcharges can cost you an arm and/or leg. But there is no longer a need to fret with DataMan – Real Time Data Usage Manager with Geotag, an app that allows you not only to keep the data at bay, but to see where you’ve used it as well!
How do most people start their day at the office? With a morning dose of coffee and check-up of their favourite news feeds, right? I don’t know about you but among mine is a daily dose of Dilbert. The mishaps of his office life that often dangerously remind me of my own experiences certainly give me a boost of optimism about the future. And this daily check-up has just got much easier with Soya Comics ~ Social RSS feed reader for all your favorite web comics.
For the longest time, even considering the iPhone camera to be a viable solution for taking everyday photos was out of the question for me. But that all changed with the release of the iPhone 4. The larger sensor, advocated by Steve Jobs, does indeed make a difference, and despite its somewhat slow focus, the latest iPhone has essentially replaced my point-and-shoot camera for most occasions. After all, they say the best camera is the one that is always with you! That said, its performance is not quite perfect (in spite of the touted built-in HDR photography feature) and if you really want to get the most out of your i-photos, the optimal solution involves dedicated photography apps like iCamera HDR: All-in-One.
I know many of you were left with a VLC shaped hole in your iOS souls when the original developers of the open source media player filed a complaint to Apple and had it removed. And all that for a technical inconsistency with the GPL license! Still, life moves on and other developers have moved in to grab at the now empty spot. Some time ago I reviewed AVPlayer (TMA Review) – quite a strong contender for the crown of universal multimedia players on the iPhone. Most recently I had the opportunity to take a nab at DOTORI PLAYER, a similar all-in-one media player app from a Korean developer.
With communication devices getting more powerful by the day, it’s not uncommon now to see a system administrator huddled over his smartphone somewhere in the subway, fixing an urgent issue on one of the company’s servers remotely. Keeping the herd of PC’s in check is often a challenge in this day and age, and sometimes the IT guys have to work day and night to ensure everything is running smoothly for us end users. That said, I bet our IT guys would love something like PC Monitor to ease their mind…
With the fast-paced business life of today, it’s often easy to forget the little things. And sometimes those things turn out not to be so little. Of course any sensible person knows the preferred way to keep track of all the stuff to do and remember is a post-it note on your desktop monitor. But this way, although awesome in many respects, presents an issue when you need to look up something while away from your desk. I know the obvious way out is to haul around your monitor with you, but a smart person would probably opt for something like Todo.
For those with nagging girlfriends and high maintenance wives, Valentines Day and its spendy accouterments: flowers, chocolate, cards, pricey dinners, and lingerie (hey, it ain’t all bad), can tear a man apart. If the cold February chill doesn’t kill you, your bruding-er half will. Recently, my church, The Globe’s English Evangelical Papal Ministry Synagogue, has been handing out iPod touches loaded with My Virtual Girlfriend to stem the tide of February divorces, and good thing, too: every man here has at least two girlfriends AND a wife. It can get messy.