Notion, Owlie, ZIG, and other apps to check out this weekend

By Cody Lee on Oct 22, 2016

Looking to pass some time this weekend? iDB has you covered. The latest edition of our Apps of the Week roundup features some great apps and games for you to check out, including an intelligent email client, an app for polling your friends and family, and a pop culture news aggregator. And of course we’ve got two great new games you won’t want to miss. Read More


Latest Chrome for iOS update comes with a hidden game

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 21, 2016

Google yesterday pushed a small update to its Chrome browser in the App Store, bumping the app’s version number to 54.0.2840.66. In addition to the usual stability improvements and bug fixes, the latest version of Google’s mobile browser for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch packs in a charming side-scrolling mini game that you can play when without an Internet connection. Read More


A watershed moment in App Store’s history: China displaces U.S. as #1 app market by revenue

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 21, 2016

Some quite interesting data points in a new report from app marketing firm App Annie suggest that China has now overtaken the United States as Apple’s top market for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch apps, with a fifteen percent higher App Store revenue than the U.S. in the September quarter.

Chinese users spent more than five times the amount they spent just two years prior in the App Store. Read More


Apple’s free app of the week: Night Sky 4

By Cody Lee on Oct 20, 2016

Apple on Thursday updated its App of the Week promotion with the app Night Sky 4. This means that for the next 7 days, you can get the popular astronomy app for both iPhone and iPad for free—saving you a solid buck.

Night Sky 4 is pitched as the most advanced and beautiful stargazing app ever created. With it you can identify stars, planets, constellations and satellites above simply by holding your iPhone, iPad or Apple Watch to the sky. Read More


Data Saver mode is reportedly coming to Facebook Messenger in a few weeks

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 20, 2016

I use Facebook Messenger literally every single day to message my friends and family and have always hated how the mobile app discriminately downloads media content regardless of whether I open the message or not.

Sometimes my friends would attach really long videos or high-resolution shots to their messages, prompting me to completely disable cellular access for Messenger on my iPhone, but then I don’t receive their texts on the go.

Wouldn’t it be better if Messenger handled data-hungry attachments more intelligently when the user is connected to a cellular network? As per a report by The Next Web a few days ago, a new data saver option is indeed coming to Messenger in a few weeks. Read More


WhatsApp update enables drawing on photos and videos, new camera features & more

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 20, 2016

WhatsApp’s latest update, which surfaced this morning on the App Store, brings the ability to draw on photos and videos and adorn your media with text or emoji. You can also express yourself by sticking huge emojis on top of photos and videos. Users automatically see the new editing tools when capturing a new photo or video or sharing one that’s already on their phone. Coming soon: support for Retina flash for the selfie camera, zooming during video capture and a shortcut for quickly switching between cameras. Read More


Scanbot 6 is out: PDF editing, on-demand OCR, enhanced annotations & more

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 19, 2016

Scanbot, the popular PDF, document and QR code scanner for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch, received a major update this morning billed by its developers as “our biggest release yet”. And it certainly is. In Scanbot 6.0 for iOS, you can now add, rotate, delete and move pages in a PDF at any time, use a new pen tool to annotate scans, print documents with one tap, run OCR on existing documents and much more. Read More


Facebook gains food/ticket ordering, collated friends’ recommendations for restaurants

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 19, 2016

Facebook today announced a new update for its iPhone and iPad mobile app focused on discovering new things in the world around you, deciding what to do or where to go and connecting with local businesses in easier and faster ways.

For starters, the app will now automatically collate recommendations for restaurants that your friends post on the service, identify posts asking for recommendations using artificial intelligence and even help you make reservations or appointments from within the app. Read More


Google’s iOS keyboard gains 3D Touch trackpad, new themes, iOS 10 emojis & more

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 19, 2016

Google’s Gboard keyboard for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch was bumped to version 1.2 on the App Store this morning, gaining a few new features such as more than a dozen new themes, support for trackpad-like functionality on 3D Touch devices akin to the stock QuickType keyboard, the ability to search and share your contacts without leaving the conversation and support for the new iOS 10 emojis. Read More


Get your green thumb on with Flower Power by Parrot

By Steffen Reich on Oct 19, 2016

Flower Power, an iOS app that promises to help you get the best out of your favorite indoor or outdoor plant, has undergone a major face lift this August. The app, developed by Parrot SA has been around since 2013, but both looks and functions have been overhauled in-depth recently. While the app is and has always been free, it requires a hefty upfront investment for the wireless plant monitor itself to supply the app with critical data. So let’s posit you want your beloved indoor plant to live up to its maximum potential – Should you pounce for it? Read More


How to enable Automatic Downloads for Apple TV apps

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 18, 2016

A handy Automatic Downloads feature has been available on the fourth-generation Apple TV as of tvOS 10. However, tvOS editions of the apps you purchase on your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch won’t automatically download to the Apple TV unless you manually turn this feature on.

In this quick tutorial, we’ll show you how to enable and use Automatic Downloads on your fourth-generation Apple TV. Read More


Your Stories to begin appearing in Instagram’s Explore tab beginning today

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 18, 2016

After launching Snapchat-esque Stories two and a half months ago, Instagram today started promoting these auto-dissapearing slideshows within the app’s popular Explore tab.

Instagram’s been surfacing recommended Stories in the Explore tab for a subset of its users since August. Today, Recommended Stories in Explore has officially started rolling out to everyone.

“Starting today, you’ll begin to see Instagram Stories on Explore,” announced the Facebook-owned service in a blog post Tuesday. Read More


Facebook enhances 360-degree photos with initial viewport selection, album support & more

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 18, 2016

Facebook yesterday announced some overdue new features designed to elevate the user experience when it comes to posting 360-degree photos, which you have been able to upload to the service since June 2016.

Initially, the experience with these panoramic photos left a lot to be desired: you couldn’t upload them to albums nor could you select the area in a 360-degree picture for others to see in their feed.

Both of these omissions have been addressed in the latest version of Facebook for mobile and desktop, the social networking behemoth has confirmed. Read More


Facebook getting ready to ape Snapchat with Messenger Day, a visual storytelling feature

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 18, 2016

If you live in Poland or Australia, you might have stumbled upon a brand new feature at the top of Facebook’s Messenger app, called Messenger Day. As reported by Mashable on Tuesday, Facebook has begun expanding this new feature across the globe following launch of Instagram Stories last month. Available in the mobile Messenger app for iOS and Android, Messenger Day is about sharing what you’re up to in the form of auto-dissapearing updates, stickers and sketches. Read More


CallKit issues reportedly force Apple to put some call-directory extensions reviews and approvals on hold

By Andrew O'Hara on Oct 16, 2016

If you’ve tried any of the call blockers, or spam identifiers in iOS 10, you’ve surely been disappointed. I’ve tested out a number of them and they really haven’t seemed to do anything at all. Most of the time not blocking, or even identifying calls. It appears we may now know why.

It looks to be an underlying issue with CallKit, Apple’s new framework that powers these types of apps. Read More


Spoil, Chartistic, Serial Box, and other apps to check out this weekend

By Cody Lee on Oct 15, 2016

It’s the weekend again, and you know what that means. That’s right! It’s time for another Apps of the Week roundup. This week we have some great selections, including an app for easily ordering same-day gifts, a great new chart and graph-maker, and an app for creating awesome lip-sync videos. Read More


Early App Store Search Ads adopters seeing $0.40 CPA and 49.4 percent conversion

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 14, 2016

Announced in June of this year, first ads started cropping up in search results on the App Store beginning October 5. Aside from a few launch hiccups, App Store search advertisements seem to be performing pretty well in their early days.

A new study by mobile data intelligence firm Mobile Action—based on a random and anonymous sampling of 77 Search Ads campaigns—has determined that the average Conversion Rate (CR) is 49.4 percent while Cost Per Acquisition (CPA) sits around $0.40.

Search Ads, the survey concludes, is “the biggest opportunity in app marketing right now.” Read More


Instagram now has an app for Windows 10 tablets, but still not for the iPad

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 14, 2016

Popular photo-sharing service Instagram yesterday catered to the ‘Other’ category of mobile users by releasing an app for Windows 10 tablets. So what the heck is going on here? Last time I checked, Apple was still king of the hill in terms of tablet shipments and iOS (26 percent) was second only to Android (65 percent) in terms of tablet operating system share, while Windows tablets captured the remaining nine percent share. Read More


Apple’s free app of the week: Shadow Bug

By Cody Lee on Oct 13, 2016

Apple on Thursday updated its App of the Week promotion with the game Shadow Bug. This means that for the next 7 days you can pick up the popular platformer for free on both iPhone and iPad—a handsome savings of $4.

In Shadow Bug, you play an underdog ninja hero that must save your home forest from the evil factory by taking out monsters. The game has been praised for its mesmerizing, parallax graphics and breathtaking soundtrack. Read More


You can now stream Facebook videos to your TV while browsing your News Feed

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 13, 2016

Facebook today announced that users of its mobile app for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch can take advantage of some newly expanded options that let them stream any native video from Facebook to their television through devices like the Apple TV or Google’s Chromecast HDMI dongle.

Wait, haven’t we always had the ability to stream any video from an iOS device to the Apple TV or an AirPlay-enabled device via Apple’s AirPlay feature?

Yes, but this is different in that you can watch Facebook videos on the big screen while browsing the News Feed on the device you’re streaming at the same time. Read More

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