Utilities

Just Press Record lets you record audio from Apple Watch

Have you ever wondered why, even though Apple Watch has a microphone and speaker, that there is no Memo app for watchOS? Me too. I use the Memo app regularly and, even if it were just controls to trigger the app on my iPhone, I’d be grateful for Apple Watch support.

Luckily, a clever dev team realized there was a hole to fill and created Just Press Record. It is a simple recording app for Apple Watch that allows you to capture audio, right from your wrist-worn device.

The development team at Open Planet Software told us that, coming in an update very soon, Just Press Record will support Glances and watch Complications.

Summarise – Talking Alarm Clock is like having a personal assistant wake you up

There is a number of different alarm clock apps available in the App Store. If you have trouble getting out of bed, you can ask Carrot to wake you up. If you prefer a lighter touch, Rise is a bit mellower.

Summarise – Talking Alarm Clock is an alarm clock that wakes you up with the news, a list of emails, your day’s schedule, and more. In addition to showing you what is in store for you today, Summarise uses Siri’s voice to read to you, too.

MacID goes free, gets audio controls, Notification Center widget, and more

A few months ago, I reviewed MacID, which is a biometric locking and unlocking utility app for iOS and OS X. Users sync the two devices together and sign in with their Mac’s password. Then, whenever you leave your computer, it locks. The iOS app allows you to unlock it with Touch ID or by entering your iPhone’s password.

MacID version 1.1 recently launched and to celebrate, the company’s developer has dropped the price of the iOS app from $3.99 to free for 48 hours. The update makes this app way more than just a simple unlocking feature.

Tether automatically locks your Mac when you walk away, unlocks it when you return

If you use a Mac in a public place, or around particularly snoopy family members or roommates, you probably worry about leaving your computer unattended and unlocked for prying eyes to see. Locking up before leaving your desk becomes a habit. But sometimes you forget, and it is always a bit of a hassle.

Tether connects your Mac to your iPhone so that it locks up when you walk away and unlocks when you come back. After set-up, you don’t have to do anything else.

Simplify for Mac review: access multiple media players from one controller

A third-party media controller can be very useful. I like having a special widget for Spotify right in my Mac’s Notification Center. What would really be nice is an app that allows you to control multiple players from one widget.

Simplify for Mac is a media player that lets you control the playback of iTunes, Spotify, Rdio, Pandora, and Vox right in your menu bar. We’ve got a detailed app review of Simplify for Mac today.

MacID review: unlock your Mac using Touch ID

Thanks to Bluetooth LE connectivity, users are able to connect their smartphones to their computers to share content between devices quickly, easily, and without being too taxing for battery life. On iOS and OS X, you can even do stuff like lock or unlock your Mac. Mac ID for iOS is one such app. Not only can you set it up to unlock your computer, but you can also lock it and wake the screen remotely. We’ve got a hands-on review of MacID for iOS for you today.

Red Arrow puts a location tracking widget on your Lock screen

I love taking long walks. I know, it sounds like the beginning of a dating service advertisement, but I really do. I love exploring my city to discover new buildings that I hadn’t noticed before. I get lost on my way to my destination, on purpose.

Red Arrow is the perfect location-tracking app for people that enjoy taking the scenic route to their destination. It will always point you in the right direction, no matter how far off you’ve strayed.

Liberate OS X’s Spotlight search with Flashlight

For years now, Alfred has been a staple of OS X workflow applications, enhancing search on the Mac and adding many features in the process. Spotlight search remained rather antiquated in comparison until Apple revived it with OS X Yosemite, but there’s still much to be desired. While Alfred will continue to hold its well-deserved position as a staple Mac app, Flashlight has the potential to reach far beyond the abilities of Alfred to make OS X’s native Spotlight search an incredibly powerful and useful tool.

Imagine using ⌘+SPACE as a text-based Siri, in which typing the phrase “remind me to Write Flashlight review at 2pm” or “text Mike I’m on Steam, wanna play?” will do exactly as expected. However, Flashlight not only allows reminders to be made and messages to be sent directly from Spotlight – its potential reaches much further.

This app tells you what apps are battery hogs

Some days, my iPhone 5 works all day with very little battery drain. Other days, it seems like I’ve run out of juice after minimal usage. I’ve always wondered which activities are the biggest culprits in my battery drainage.

Normal: Battery Analytics is a diagnostics app that uses general information about your device and compares it with that of thousands of other iPhone users to help you determine which apps should be killed and which should be deleted altogether in order to spare your battery life.

Scanbot 2.0 brings iPad support and smart QR code scanner

Scanbot is an awesome PDF scanning utility that allows you to create high-quality PDF or JPEG scans with 200 dpi and higher. You can then upload the images to a number of cloud storage services, share them online and what not.

It’s an indispensable productivity tool for paperless office aficionados and good for just about anyone who needs to scan those receipts, contracts, print outs and other document types. Plus, it’s now available on the iPad.

The new Scanbot 2.0, available as a free update for those who’ve purchased it, is now a universal binary whose UI has been specifically tailored for both the tiny iPhone screen and the iPad’s larger canvas.

Filed as Germany-based Doo GmbH’s biggest release yet, the refreshed software also brings out a smart QR code scanner (more on that later), an improved grayscale filter and a host of other improvements and bug fixes…

1TapVolume makes audio adjustment a snap

I know what you might be thinking right now. Why would we be spotlighting such an ugly looking app, right? This is one of those occasions where looks don’t matter. It’s ability that counts, especially in the case of this volume control app.

1TapVolume is a utility app that makes it possible for you to turn your iPhone’s volume up to full, mute it, or adjust it to any preset level with a single tap, no jailbreak required. No more futzing about with those pesky volume buttons, especially if those buttons have stopped working on your iPhone…

Luna Calculator puts a unique twist on a basic calculator app

I don’t normally focus too much attention on calculator apps. Some of them can be pretty cool. But for the most part, if you’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all. There has to be something special about a calculator app to catch my attention.

Luna Calculator is an app that has something special. In addition to the simple mathematical equations that the average calculator app includes, this one lets you create lists of numbers and save them for future reference…