Tip: quickly measure your Netflix streaming speed with this iPhone app

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 10, 2016

Netflix yesterday announced a brand new iPhone app on the App Store which it designed to let you quickly measure how fast your broadband downlink is by testing the connection to Netflix’s servers. The goal of the free app, aptly named Fast, is to give Netflix subscribers a better understanding of the streaming quality they can expect from the service on their Internet connection. It’s not a replacement for SpeedTest or similar software and does not measure the uplink speed because it has little effect on streaming quality. Read More

 

WhatsApp now lets you leave voice messages

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 9, 2016

WhatsApp Messenger was updated this morning with an interesting enhancement in the form of ability to leave other people voice messages on the service. “When placing a WhatsApp call, you now quickly leave a voice message if your call isn’t answered, just like voicemail,” read release notes accompanying WhatsApp’s 2.16.8 update on the App Store. Since enabling Voice over IP (VoIP) calling a year ago, more than 100 million voice calls are made on average every day via WhatsApp, or more than 1,100 VoIP calls a second. Read More

 

Pokémon GO update fixes Pokéball throws, re-adds battery saver, and more

By Anthony Bouchard on Aug 9, 2016

Game developer Niantic has launched an updated version of Pokémon GO for iOS and Android users on Monday that resolves a lot of bugs that were introduced in the previous update and improves the game in various aspects.

Of course, it wouldn’t be a Pokémon GO update without adding something tedious, as it would seem. Read More

 

SketchPlus, Foresee, VOX Free Music, and other apps to check out this weekend

By Cody Lee on Aug 6, 2016

In this week’s edition of iDB’s Apps of the Week roundup, we have selected some great apps for you to check out this weekend. We have a new photo editor with some great sketch filters, a weather app that can help you schedule outdoor activities, an app for discovering music, and two great new games you won’t want to miss. Read More

 

How to watch the 2016 Summer Olympics on your iPhone, iPad and Apple TV

By Cody Lee on Aug 5, 2016

The 2016 Summer Olympics (officially known as Games of the XXXI Olympiad) are finally upon us. For the next two weeks, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil will play host to a number of thrilling sporting events featuring some of the best athletes from around the world.

Despite the various health and social issues going on in Rio, millions are expected to tune-in to watch the Olympic Games. With that in mind, we thought it’d be helpful to put together a quick guide on how you can join them on your iPhone, iPad and Apple TV. Read More

 

How to add photos and videos from your camera roll to your Instagram story

By Sébastien Page on Aug 5, 2016

Instagram launched a new feature this week called Stories, which allows you to post photos and videos that will not appear in your feed, but will be visible by your followers in a slideshow format, for up to 24 hours. This is a great way to share more on Instagram without polluting your feed with dozens of photos and videos you wouldn’t otherwise publish.

When first playing with Instagram Stories, I couldn’t figure out how to upload picture or videos that I had already taken. Instead, it seemed I was forced to first shoot using the Instagram app, and upload from there. After a few minutes, I finally figured it out, and because it’s not that obvious, I thought I should post about it as it may help a few readers wondering the same thing: how do you put photos or videos from your library on your Instagram story? Read More

 

At long last, Instagram is adding much-needed Drafts to save unfinished posts for later

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 5, 2016

You cannot find it mentioned in release notes accompanying the most recent Instagram update which brought out a new Snapchat-like Stories feature, but either that or an earlier update has quietly added a much-needed Drafts feature to the popular mobile photography app.

Called by some fans the best feature that has happened to Instagram in quite a while, Drafts lets you save the photo you’re currently editing as a draft.

This is quite useful, if not essential, in case you just spent your time making detailed edits to a photo, but ultimately decided not to post it until later. Read More

 

Apple gives away Brushstroke painting effects app

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 4, 2016

Brushstroke is one of those image effects app with a unique twist. Not only does it transform your photos into faux paintings, but optionally lets you order mounted canvas prints of your images directly from the app that you can hang on the wall.

Apple named Brushstroke its Free App of the Week in December 2014. If you forgot to grab this nicely done $2.99 iPhone and iPad app for $0 back then, now’s your chance. Read More

 

Google Photos gains 3D Touch shortcuts and storage optimization feature

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 4, 2016

Google today issued a minor refresh to its native Photos app on the App Store, introducing 3D Touch shortcuts for the Home screen and a much-needed new feature designed to optimize storage space on your device. Bumped to version 1.13, Google Photos for iPhone and iPad produces a 3D Touch menu upon pressing its Home screen icon, giving you access to the following shortcuts: I’m Feeling Lucky, Free Up Space and Make Shared Album.

In addition to these 3D Touch shortcuts and the new storage-optimization feature, this edition of the app packs in unspecified performance improvements. Read More

 

Apple’s free app of the week: hocus

By Cody Lee on Aug 4, 2016

Apple on Thursday updated its App of the Week promotion with the game hocus. This means from now through next Thursday, you’ll be able to pick up the minimal puzzler for both iPhone and iPad for free—saving you $1.

Hocus is described as a perspective illusion puzzle game. Players are tasked with moving a red cube through a maze of gray beams—very similar to Monument Valley. There are 85+ levels, and you can even design your own. Read More

 

Apple Store app updated with new design and ‘For You’ recommendations

By Cody Lee on Aug 4, 2016

As expected, Apple on Thursday released an update for its Apple Store app, bringing the online shopping client to version 4.0. Fulfilling previous reports, the update includes a redesigned interface, and a new ‘For You’ recommendation feature that offers you suggestions on products to buy based on your previous purchases. Read More

 

Will overhauled Apple Store shopping app launch today or next Thursday?

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 4, 2016

Welcome to Thursday, when Apple typically refreshes its app and content stores with new apps, games and media. Bloomberg said last week that Apple was working on a totally overhauled Apple Store shopping app that should include a “For You” tab and have the same basic features and interface across the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.

Reports on Twitter and MacRumors reveal that a banner for the new Apple Store app has now gone live on some international App Stores, suggesting imminent launch. Read More

 

Square Enix releases free-to-play Mobius Final Fantasy on App Store

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 4, 2016

Developer Square Enix yesterday announced availability of Mobius Final Fantasy, its new free-to-play role-playing game set in the Final Fantasy universe and created by producer Yoshinori Kitase and writer Kazushige Kojima, who are both known for their work on the Final Fantasy VII and the upcoming Final Fantasy VII Remake.

The iPhone, iPad and iPod touch game is available on a free-to-play basis with optional In-App Purchases and can be played with just one hand as it was “custom-tailored for mobile platforms”. Read More

 

Google’s iOS keyboard gains dark theme, GIF suggestions & expanded language support

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 4, 2016

Following its debut on the App Store nearly three months ago, Google’s gesture-driven predictive keyboard for the iPhone and iPad—called Gboard—today received its first feature-focused update. Gboard 1.1 for iOS, a free download, includes a darker keyboard theme, smart GIF suggestions and increased global availability with language support for English, French, German, Italian, Portuguese (Brazil and Portugal) and Spanish (Spain). Read More

 

Telegram for iOS gains personal storage, group previews and trending/archived stickers

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 3, 2016

Telegram, a secure instant messaging service that supports rich media attachments and optional end-to-end encryption, today refreshed its mobile app on the App Store with a few new features. Telegram for iOS, now bumped to version 3.11, offers some interesting new sticker packs and lets you archive those you no longer use.

You can now preview groups before joining them and store your messages and media in the new storage chat.

Telegram is available free on the App Store and Mac App Store. Read More

 

Dropbox Paper enters public beta, iPhone and iPad app now available

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 3, 2016

As of today, Dropbox Paper, a collaborative document editor akin to Google Docs and Apple’s iWork for iCloud suite (only better!) is in public beta after spending about a year in private beta, the cloud storage startup announced.

In addition, the mobile Paper app for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch launched today, too, so you can immediately download it at no charge from the App Store. Read More

 

Snapseed update adds Text filter, image resizing when exporting and sharing & more

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 3, 2016

Since buying Snapseed from Nik Software in September 2012, Google has been somewhat neglecting this once popular mobile image editor, issuing maintenance updates that were light on new features. Today, the search firm announced that Snapseed, at long last, is getting some interesting new capabilities via an update on iOS and Android. The Text filter is now available and you can configure the app to resize photos when sharing/exporting.

UI adjustments and bug fixes are included in Snapseed 2.8 as well. Read More

 

Snapchat rolls out city-specific stickers that mock local trends and highlight landmarks

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 3, 2016

Snapchat for iPhone, an ephemeral image messaging app, yesterday announced a new feature called Geostickers. Basically special stickers available in some of the biggest cities around the world, they can be applied to images and moved around before sending them. You can also stick these city-specific stickers on your Snaps.

Geostickers are available now in Los Angeles, New York City, San Francisco, Washington DC, Honolulu, London, Sydney, São Paulo, Paris and Riyadh. Read More

 

iDB app update brings our latest stories straight to your Apple Watch

By Sébastien Page on Aug 3, 2016

If you’ve been staring at your wrist for the last four months hoping to one day be able to read iDB stories straight for your Apple Watch, then I have some good news for you.

The good news is of course that we have added support for Apple Watch, letting you browse our latest articles without even having to unlock your iPhone. Welcome to the 21st century! Read More

 

Astropad graphics tablet app for iPhone and iPad is now a lot faster and uses less battery

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 3, 2016

Astropad is a very cool app from former Apple engineers designed to let you draw into Mac apps by connecting your iPad or iPhone to the computer via USB or Wi-Fi. You can then draw into most Mac apps directly on your iOS device’s screen, using your finger as a replacement for a professional graphics tablet. In fact, it’s too good that people are replacing their Wacom tablets with Astropad and an iPad.

I’ve been using Astropad quite extensively and it works like magic, really.

There’s very little discernible lag, courtesy of the proprietary Liquid engine providing nearly three times more fluid responsiveness than Apple’s AirPlay. That’s why I’m happy to report that in its most recent version 2.0 update, Astropad is now even faster and more fluid than before and a lot less taxing on the battery. Read More