In what appears to be a first for the iPhone, Ad Hoc Labs has released Burner, an app that lets its users create disposable phone numbers, which in turn can be used to place calls or send text messages. Ad Hoc feels that these temporary digits can be used for “ dating, Craigslist, short-term projects, side businesses, bands, and other times when you need to be in touch but want to maintain a little privacy”. How it works is you can create a new number (called a “Burner”) anytime within the app, where all active numbers can be managed. Each number includes voice minutes and a limit of messages that can be sent, along with a set of preferences (choose whether calls get redirected to your main mobile number or go straight to your voice mail). When outgoing calls are made, the recipient will only be able to see your Burner number on their caller ID – otherwise, what’s the point right?
Browse fast with Chrome, now available on your iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. Sign in to sync your personalized Chrome experience from your computer, and bring it with you anywhere you go.
• Search and navigate fast, directly from the same box. Choose from results that appear as you type.
Simple, intuitive experience
• Open and quickly switch between an unlimited number of tabs. On your iPhone and iPod touch, flip through tabs the way you would fan a deck of cards. On iPad, swipe from edge to edge to switch tabs.
As noted before, Chrome for iOS supports multi-device sync, so once you sign in, you’ll have access to all your tabs, bookmarks, passwords and omnibox data from your PC/Mac. Incognito mode has even made its way over so users can browse the web without leaving any virtual trails. This is one (free) app current Chrome users need to have their iDevices. Video trailer after the break.
Google, Inc., Chrome - Free
AVG, one of the most popular Antivirus protection softwares for the PC, has released a new iOS app. No, it’s not a tool to scan your iPhone or iPad for viruses and malware, but rather its purpose is to keep your precious little ones at home away from the web’s widespread filth. Called AVG Family Safety, the app will keep the entire family safe from “scam, fraud, phishing and potentially malicious online content” (not to mention porn). So if lil Johnny’s curious about “boobs” and googles it…Bam!, AVG’s there to block the search. It’s similar to other web browser apps in that you can create bookmarks and enjoy tabbed browsing, but it’ll also allow you to set up a password and manually block sites you don’t wish your kids to visit.
About a month ago, we’d posted a video of a prototype iPad keyboard that would allow the movement of the onscreen cursor left or right by simply dragging a finger in either direction. Such functionality would indeed make it much easier for the user when editing text on the iPad. Well for all you non-jailbreakers out there who want to try out gesture based editing on your iPads, developer iApp have recently released tyype HD, a simple enough app that let’s you do just that. Sliding your finger above the virtual keyboard, you can move the cursor left or right. To quickly select text, use two fingers, while three fingers move the cursor twice as fast. In addition, pinch gestures will scale the font size. tyype HD is available now on the App Store for the intro price of $0.99, and after several planned updates (multiple file support and Dropbox/iCloud sync), it’ll sell for $2.99. Check out the video demo of the app in action after the gap.
iApp, tyype HD - $0.99
Sparrow, the best 3rd party mail app on the iPhone, has been updated with 4 new features. First up is Message Navigation, where you can now swipe up and down between messages (previously only conversions were supported). When moving between messages, you’ll clearly see the email’s subject heading, whereas in conversions, the person’s name will be displayed. Also new in the 1.2 update: compose emails in landscape mode, edit and create folder/labels from within the app and support for 9 total languages, including French, German, Spanish, Italian, Japanese, Dutch, Russian and Chinese. As for the issue with Push Notifications, it appears that Apple will not grant the Sparrow team an exception to use the VoIP API for notifications. From the Sparrow blog:
Note: To setup VPN primarily on a PC or Mac (and even on a smartphone), you can check out Hidemyass, one of the largest VPN providers around.
Setting up and configuring a VPN (Virtual Private Network) on the iPhone and iPad can be a daunting task for many. You can first search online and choose from one of the many providers, pick a plan that suits you, and then manually enter the account details into the Network area under Settings. You can of course use the the recently released Onion Browser for more secure browsing, but relying on the Tor network can be frustratingly slow at times. For those not familiar with VPNs, they’re great for accessing websites or social networks that have been blocked by your company’s (or even country’s) firewall and allow you to surf the web without revealing your true IP address. But perhaps even more important for iOS users, using a VPN while logged onto a public WiFi network — something we’ve all done, be it in a hotel, coffee shop or airport — will ensure that your data (namely usernames and login passwords) is encrypted and protected from would-be snoopers. Let’s take a look at two iOS apps that will easily let you setup a VPN and won’t cost you an arm and a leg.
As I was browsing the Top Paid apps section on my iPad last night, I was surprised to come across an app called Onion Browser. Not because it’s yet another 3rd party web browser app, but the fact that it’s one of the only iOS web browsers that tunnels web traffic over the TOR network (“The Onion Network” for short). What it essentially does is let you surf the web in complete anonymity by routing your connection through multiple servers before reaching its destination. Here’s how wikipedia describes it:
Onavo Extend, an existing iOS app that helps you save up to 80% on your data consumption, has just added support for 4G LTE iPads, and the iPhone 4S on CDMA networks. Using cloud-based technology and some and compression magic, Onavo helps make sure that you don’t go over your monthly data plan. Basically, here’s how it works:
Onavo Extend installs a configuration profile (which includes your operator’s APN settings) on your device so that data you receive from the Internet is compressed in our cloud-based compression service, located in datacenters operated by Amazon Web Services. The compressed data is then sent to your mobile device so that you get a leaner, faster and more efficient version of the web.
A little over a month ago, we saw a video comparing iOS on the iPad and the upcoming Windows 8 running on a tablet. Well, now you too can experience first hand Windows 8 Metro with touch gestures on your iPad, thanks to the release of Splashtop’s Win8 Metro Testbed app. Following in the footsteps of their highly popular remote access app Splashtop Remote Desktop, Win8 Metro Testbed gives you full Metro UI gestures, including swipe from right for the Charms menu, pull down from the top to close apps, swipe slowly from the left to run two apps side-by-side and more. The one big caveat here is that you must be running Windows 8 Consumer Preview on your PC (or Bootcamp on a Mac), with the free Splashtop Streamer client installed. This is certainly a great tool for developers planning on building mobile apps on the Windows 8 platform, without the need to spend hundreds of dollars more on new hardware. The app is currently on sale for $24.99 (50% off) and now available on the App Store. Check out the demo video and more info after the break.
Splashtop, Win8 Metro Testbed - $24.99
Sparrow, hands down the best mail client for the iPhone, has just been updated to version 1.1. New are its Send & Archive feature, a built in browser, dock badge for accounts and ability to show/hide folders and labels. But what’s even more encouraging is that the Sparrow team have announced that “Push is coming. With or without Apple.”:
Thanks to your amazing support, we feel confident that Apple might revise its position on the Push API. We’ll submit a first version of Sparrow 1.2 including it. This might delay Sparrow 1.2 validation but we’re already working with some partners to include Push in future versions of Sparrow without needing Apple clearance.