Truly audiophiling an iPod touch is no mean feat. It takes no less than a Cypher Labs AlgoRhthym Solo DAC, and a Vorzüge or ALO Rx class headphone amp. Throw in some shielded interconnects and your’re done. But at what cost? The once slim touch is now a knobby and unholy hamburger of aluminium and winking LEDs. Personally, I’m tired of ordering sides with the main meal. The iBasso DX100 is a single-box solution that will outperform most if not all audio stacks without sacrificing much of what makes the iPod touch worthwhile.
And how pray tell were iBasso, an amplifier maker, able to retain most of what makes the iPod touch worthwhile? Android.
Have you ever played one of those games in the arcade where you drop a coin in and hope to be able to push enough coins that are in the machine forward so that they fall out and you win a “jackpot” as it were? Yeah, you know those machines that are almost as annoying as the “grab something with a claw” ones? Well, it turns out that’s what Coin Army is. Amazingly enough they’ve managed to present the concept in such a way that not only is it not annoying, but it can actually become addictive. Just make sure you play responsibly so that you don’t end up paying an arm and a leg for IAP.
Fans of the game Diversion from Ezone.com are going to feel a sense of déjà vu here, assuming you haven’t already with the several other Diversion-derived projects they’ve released in the last couple of years. Thankfully the formula’s still addictive, and there are enough differences to be found in Team Awesome that it still seems like its own game. Unfortunately (depending on how you look at it) you won’t find any deep game play here, but if you’re looking for a simple diversion that could turn into an addiction, Team Awesome is your game.
Flexibits, developers of the excellent Fantastical app for Mac OS (my favorite calendar app by far on the Mac thanks to its beautiful and unobtrusive design), has finally released the long-awaited Fantastical for iPhone. What makes Fantastical special? For starters, its natural language engine rocks, and this feature has made its way on to the iPhone. So you can type (or dictate if your iDevice supports it) events like “Have lunch with Bob at 123 Awesome blvd. next Monday at 1pm” and the app will enter all the appropriate details for you. In addition, Fantastical’s unique DayTicker UI makes it a breeze to view your past/upcoming schedule at a glance.
One sign that you’re getting older is when things you remember from your childhood start having their 30th anniversaries. Such is the case for me and the Fighting Fantasy gamebook series. Granted I was only 10 when the first one debuted, but you get my drift. In this year that marks the third decade of the series’ existence the man himself, Ian Livingstone, has penned a new entry called Blood of the Zombies. Thanks to Tin Man Games we can enjoy this milestone adventure on our iOS devices, and enjoy is being quite conservative. I’d say this is probably one of the best electronic gamebook adventures yet.
When it comes to iPhone cases that offer the most protection, Otterbox’s Defender series cases are among some of most popular. From the iPhone 3G to the iPhone 5, the Defender has no doubt saved countless devices from accidental falls and drops. Slim and elegant it is not, but it’s added bulk and built-in screen protector will give users even more peace of mind – especially when it comes to the iPhone 5, a beautifully crafted phone whose sides are highly prone to scuffs and scratches.
A couple of years ago apps that remembered your business cards and scanned your papers were the rage. It’s not so much that time has changed, it’s that the smartphone really is a computer replacement. Now, the haphazard storing of files in Notes and pictures doesn’t cut it. Lunabee Pte. ltd., makers of oneSafe, seem to think so. And after a over month of use (yep, rather overtime this review is), I think so, too.
I first tasted of the intrigue that Phosphor Games could produce as I wandered the creepy halls of Dark Meadow. It had its issues, but overall it was a captivating game with wild creatures and a unique control scheme. That was, of course, until I played Infinity Blade and realized that I had suffered Déjà Vu in reverse. Now Phosphor Games has released Horn, and while the fantasy theme is reminiscent of Infinity Blade, it actually has a lot more to it then either of the aforementioned games in terms of things to do besides combat. At first I was a bit skeptical about it just because I was afraid it would be a clone of the Chair Entertainment Group’s franchise, but every time I load up Horn I manage to get lost in its mystery and grandeur.
The concept of combining the RPG with match 3 mechanics seems to be pretty popular, though few entries come close to either Puzzle Quest for a more hardcore experience or Dungeon Raid for the casual folks. Still, many of the options at least offer a few things that make them worth giving a chace, and Dungeon Story is no exception. While there are no quests to speak of, it’s more persistent than Dungeon Raid in that you can build up your character between plays. It still provides a more casual experience than Puzzle Quest, however, because even if you get “stuck” in a dungeon all you have to remember between sessions is that when you come back there is another monster to fight.
With the release of the iPad mini, Apple has finally entered the small tablet market. Much has changed since the first iPad ushered in a new era of mobile computing, as tablets like the Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire HD have become even more portable, with higher resolution displays to boot.
And so with great expectations, it’s somewhat strange to find the mini to be one of the most polarizing Apple iDevices ever. It’s beautifully crafted, extremely light and fun to use, and yet, it also houses the same A5 processor from the iPad 2 and a display with a resolution of just 1024 x 768 pixels . That said, after a week of using the mini, these initial concerns have been put to rest and I’ve come to love this 7.9-inch iPad.