Review: this is my ‘Next Keyboard’ for iPhone

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 3, 2015

In my December 2014 preview of Next Keyboard I wrote the app had the potential to become “the first iOS keyboard done right”.

What started out as the most funded app project on Kickstarter by Toronto-based award-winning studio Tiny Hearts Apps has become a reality.

I’m pleased to report that Next Keyboard is now available for download in the App Store.

Rather than mindlessly pile features one on top of the other like many other developers do, Next enables efficient typing in a stylish environment that’s easy on the eyes, without distracting you from the task at hand.

It’s got everything you’ve come to expect from a software keyboard, including predictive typing, lightning fast editing, playful stickers and colorful themes, instant access to all the emojis you love, including stickers, and much more.

I’ve spent some quality hands-on time with Next Keyboard, here’s what I found. Read More

 

Flick Kick Football goes free as Apple’s App of the Week

By Cody Lee on Sep 3, 2015

Apple has selected Prodigy Design’s “Flick Kick Football” as its App of the Week for this week. This means that from now through next Thursday, you can download the popular football arcade game for both your iPhone and iPad, for free—a solid savings of $1.99.

For those unfamiliar with the title, Flick Kick is a simple football/soccer game that has you scoring goals as quickly and as stylishly as possible by swiping your screen. It has multiple game modes, charming retro graphics, and the physics are smooth and accurate. Read More

 

Google Photos for iOS gains photo reordering, selective backup, better sharing and more

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 3, 2015

Less than two weeks following a refresh that brought out a Timehop-like feature for rediscovering your photos from the past, Google Photos for the iPhone and iPad on Thursday received another noteworthy update.

The new Google Photos 1.3 for iOS introduces four distinct improvements to your photo-management workflow, like the ability to reorder photos in your library and another one letting you selectively back up individual photos and videos. Read More

 

Skype issues a thorough revamp of iPhone and iPad app with new features

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 3, 2015

Microsoft-owned Skype on Thursday announced a major redesign of its mobile application for the iPhone, iPad and Android devices. The new Skype 6.0 for iPhone and Skype 6.0 for iPad (still two separate downloads) features a sleeker look that the company says was “built for both the iPhone and iPad,” includes simpler navigation, a more powerful search and improved multi-tasking when switching between call and chat screens. Read More

 

iPad Pro and iPad mini 4 allegedly in tow for Apple media event next Wednesday

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 2, 2015

Contrary to prior rumors, 9to5Mac is reporting that Apple’s long-expected oversized ‘iPad Pro’ will be formally announced at the iPhone 6s press event after all. The event’s been confirmed to take place a week from today, on next Wednesday, September 9, at San Francisco’s Bill Graham Civic Auditorium.

The publication learned from sources that the forthcoming presentation is set to be one of largest events in Apple’s history. In addition to the iPad Pro and the iPhone 6s/6s Plus, it should serve as a launchpad for a fourth-generation iPad mini, a substantially refreshed Apple TV set top box and new Apple Watch Sport bands. Read More

 

iOS 8 now powers 87 percent of active devices

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 2, 2015

After struggling to gain a single percentage point over a four-week period, the adoption rate of iOS 8 now appears to have accelerated as iOS 8 now powers 87 percent of the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad devices in the wild, as measured by the App Store on Monday, August 31, 2015.

That growth came at the expense of iOS 7, which has gone from powering thirteen percent of iOS devices two weeks ago to accounting for twelve percent of hardware in active use.

A month ago, iOS 8 adoption sat at 85 percent and iOS 7 comprised thirteen percent of iOS gadgets in the wild. Pre-iOS hardware continues to scrape out a mere two percent. Read More

 

Imgur for iOS gains search and revamped interface

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 2, 2015

After relaunching its iOS app and introducing an all-new interface in the Android client three months ago, Imgur today announced a major revamp of its iPhone and iPod touch application, a free download in the App Store.

For starters, the app has at last gained a Search feature so you can search for specific viral posts on the service. The app’s grid view has been redesigned to show bigger thumbnails, push notifications have been improved and profile screens revamped for a more pleasing appearance. Read More

 

Review: ReBoard keyboard boosts your productivity and cuts down on app switching

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 1, 2015

The biggest thing about iOS 8 for me is a productivity boost stemming from new technologies such as pervasive inter-app communications, third-party actions in system-wide Share sheets and more. But for all the good work Apple’s done from a productivity standpoint, iOS (version 9 included) still has some way to go before it’s capable to exceed multitasking features on Microsoft’s Surface tablets or Samsung’s Note phablet, for example.

ReBoard, a new software keyboard for the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad created by India’s independent developer Gursimranjeet Singh, puts useful actions for performing common tasks and all sorts of look ups right into the keyboard itself so you won’t need to switch back and forth between apps like an animal.

By embedding useful third-party shortcuts within the context of the keyboard, ReBoard can save you a lot of time and boost your productivity. Read More

 

How to untrust connected computers and devices from your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 1, 2015

Upon connecting an iPhone, iPod touch or iPad to iTunes through USB for the first time, a prompt pops up asking you to confirm access to the iOS device. The same prompt appears when another device is attempting to access the files of your iOS device for the first time.

But what if you accidentally trusted a computer? Is there an easy way to untrust it? Prior to iOS 8, you needed to reset an iOS device to its factory settings in order to remove all trusted connections.

But there is a more elegant way of doing this on iOS 8 and iOS 9. In this tutorial, we’re going to cover untrusting computers and devices you trusted from your iPhone or iPad. Read More

 

Twitterrific for iOS improves accessibility, tag autocompletion, muting, translation and more

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 1, 2015

Twitterrific, The Iconfactory’s freemium Twitter client for the iPhone and iPad, was refreshed in the App Store this morning with a bevy of enhancements, including improvements to username and hash tag autocompletion, a feature introduced in Twitterrific’s previous update.

Among other changes, this edition of Twitterrific includes some new quick actions, support for quoted tweets in muffle and muting rules and much more. Read More

 

Bing for iPhone picks up Interests and News, gains private searching, Apple Watch app and more

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 1, 2015

Microsoft’s Bing for iPhone app was updated last evening with several new features such as Bing Interests, Bing News, a private searching mode, the Popular Now section on your Apple Watch and other enhancements.

I typically use Google’s native search app on my iPhone, but Bing saw some rather interesting improvements in recent months. In my personal opinion, Microsoft’s search-based app is better designed than Google’s with richer descriptions and prettier images.

More importunely, Bing’s popular searches feature produces way more relevant results than Google, at least for me. Read More

 

Apple TV’s NFL Now channel revamped, rebranded and enriched with Game Pass subscriptions

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 31, 2015

Right on cue, the official NFL channel on the Apple TV got updated with support for Game Pass subscriptions, as first noted by MacRumors. The new Game Pass service has replaced NFL’s Game Rewind. With Game Pass, sports fans can subscribe to premium NFL content directly on their Apple TV set-top box.

Game Pass subscriptions are also available through the NFL Mobile app on the iPhone and the iPad. In addition to supporting Game Pass on the Apple TV, the updated NFL Now channel has been rebranded as just NFL. Read More

 

Apple and Cisco form partnership to ‘deliver fast lane’ for iOS enterprise users

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 31, 2015

In a press release issued Monday, Apple announced a partnership with network giant Cisco designed to deliver “fast lane” for iOS enterprise users. The initiative strives to optimize Cisco networks for iOS devices and apps and integrate the iPhone with Cisco enterprise environments.

The goal is to “provide unique collaboration” opportunities to enterprise customers on the iPhone and iPad. Read More

 

Google+ Collections are now available within Google’s native application for iPhone and iPad

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 31, 2015

Google+ Collections are now available within the just-updated Google+ app for the iPhone and iPad, which also contains performance improvements and bug fixes.

Introduced back in May of this year, Collections is basically a feature of Google+ that allows you to group your posts around shared interests and passions. After going live in the official Google+ app for Android and on the web, Google+ Collections can now be browsed on your iPhone and iPad. Read More

 

Parts shipments for 12.9-inch iPad Pro likely to begin in September

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 31, 2015

According to a J.P. Morgan investor memo, a copy of which was obtained by AppleInsider, parts shipments for Apple’s mythical 12.9-inch ‘iPad Pro’ are most likely to begin in September. J.P. Morgan’s analysts reaffirmed claims that the iPad Pro will use an improved touch panel design.

Dubbed Glass-Film-Film (GFF), as opposed to the Glass-Film (GF) panels found on the iPad Air and iPad mini, GFF tech allows for greater touch accuracy and performance. These two prerequisites would be crucial for an Apple-built stylus accessory that the rumor-mill believes might sell as an optional accessory as soon as the iPad Pro arrives. Read More

 

Latest Vine update brings Snap to Beat feature and new audio discovery tools

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 28, 2015

Twitter-owned Vine has rolled out two major new features to its mobile app which are aimed at improving audio discovery and help “bring the magic of perfect-looping music to everyone.”

For starters, a brand new Snap to Beat feature lets you create Vines with With seamless audio looping. And in an effort to make music a core part of Vine, users can now take advantage of enhancements like a new Featured Tracks section and another new feature that allows them to find out what they’re listening to as they watch Vines. Read More

 

Nighty Night Circus goes free as Apple’s App of the Week

By Cody Lee on Aug 27, 2015

Apple on Thursday named “Nighty Night Circus” its featured App of the Week in the App Store. This means for the next 7 days, you will be able to download the popular bedtime story and lullaby app for kids for free—saving you a solid $3.

The sequel to Apple’s 2012 App of the Year, Nighty Night!, Nighty Night Circus allows children to play with a variety of circus animals and tuck them in as they go to sleep. The app features beautiful imagery, great narration and lullaby music. Read More

 

Apple to live-stream September 9 media event

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 27, 2015

Those not in attendance will be happy to learn that Apple just confirmed it will provide a live-stream of its upcoming September 9 media event.

Like the company’s major events held in the past two years, the September 9 event should be presented at the www.apple.com/live micro-site in the blog format, with cherry-picked tweets, juicy photos and quotes updating in real-time right below the video stream.

The iPhone maker sent out invites for the press conference earlier today. Invite graphics sports the colorful Apple logo and a tagline reading “Hey Siri, give us a hint”. Read More

 

iOS automation app Workflow picks up Today widget, Health actions, syncing and more

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 27, 2015

Workflow, the powerful software that makes it relatively simple to automate iOS by chaining multiple actions together, has picked up a Today widget and support for Apple Health actions in its most recent update which hit the App Store this morning.

In addition to the ability to activate your saved workflows directly from the Notification Center’s Today view, Workflow 1.3 for iOS has gained yet another useful feature to back up and synchronize your workflows across multiple devices. Read More

 

Review: Lara Croft GO is the essence of adventure that feels unmistakably Tomb Raider-y

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 27, 2015

It only took a few minutes for me to get hooked on Lara Croft GO, a new premium title from Hitman GO creators Square Enix Montréal.

Created in partnership with Crystal Dynamics, this gorgeously done puzzle-solving adventure takes Hitman GO’s turn-based strategy concept and simplicity of action to a whole new level while managing to incorporate several marquee aspects of the traditional Tomb Raider formula and gameplay.

But Lara Croft GO, a $4.99 download in the App Store, is hardly the same game as Hitman GO. More than the collection of its impressive parts—mesmerizing soundtrack, artful animations and gorgeous visuals—Lara Croft GO manages to distill the famed series down to its essence.

I spent a few hours playing and reviewing this game in the days leading up to its release, here are my hands-on impressions and findings. Read More

 
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