AMITIAE - Thursday 20 March 2012
Updates to Even More iOS Apps: ArtRage, In Class, SketchMee Lite, Kindle, OSnap!, Huffington Post, Photo&Pic Collage, Flipboard and Times of India
By Graham K. Rogers
ArtrageA second update this week for the useful drawing app, ArtRage, has arrived bringing it to version 1.4.1. I made some comments on version 1.4.0 on Tuesday.
There are now some minor adjustments and fixes reported:
In ClassThis scheduler for students enables schedules to be organized, notes to be shared and has a good set of features that would be useful for a student in full-time education.
The latest update of inClass, to version 2.3.2 is optimized for the Retina display. There is also an optimization for Facebook that allows cross-posting of notes and sharing with friends. The bug that hid text behind a keyboard has now been addressed.
SketchMee LiteWhile SketchMee Lite HD for the iPad was updated Tuesday to version 1.8, the iPhone version, SketchMee Lite has now also been updated (version 4.4.1) and reports more responsive menus on devices with iOS 4 installed.
KindleIt says something to me that, despite rivalry within the digital book market, that Apple still allows the Amazon Kindle app to be installed on the iPad and on the iPhone. I also have a version for my Mac.
The Kindle app was updated this week to version 3.0.1 and there are several changes:
The recent update to version 3.0 optimized the app for the iPad Retina display, introduced a new library design and also gave users a "Cloud View" to show all of a user's content in a single panel.
OSnap! Ultimate Time LapseLike a couple of other apps, we see that the information on iTunes shows this at a reduced price: $0.99, down from $2.99. I had an extended look at this app (and other photo apps) in December last year.
OSnap! has a number of tricks up its sleeve and we are able to expand the ways in which the iPhone cameras can be used. When the app opens there are two options to create a project: we may create a new project, or choose a preset project. There are four presets: Rapid shot, which takes more photographs than I thought the iPhone was capable of; Daily portrait; Group photo, and: Onion Skin.
Version 2.5.1 has several useful additions to the app most especially, an option for 16:9 photos with 960x540 and 1280x720 output. Another extra is the ability to create albums in the Camera Roll when exporting images as well as the ability to import from the Camera Roll into OSnap! projects (in-app purchase - $0.99).
With the changes there is also an upgrade to the speeds at which this app works when managing projects. A change to rendering means that all output is at 30fps and this will take care of an occasional frame rate problems. The developers also report enhancements to stability as well as a host of other bug fixes and improvements.
Huffington PostLike SketchMee, the iPhone and iPad apps for the Huffington Post are different and follow slightly out of sync updating schedules. While the iPad version was updated yesterday (here), the app for the iPhone has now been updated to version 2.8.6 and there are similar changes.
The addition of "verticals" to the Huffington Post app follows in the same way as for the iPad app (Good News, Science, Money, Teen, Stylelist (sic), and Stylelist Home). The app also has a number of UI improvements as well as improvements to the overall stability and performance. The developers also report some bug fixes too.
Photo&Pic CollageThis is a useful enough app for grouping photographs and coming up with a nice looking collage of the collection. Output from Photo&Pic Collage can be rather effective in something like a poster format or on a web page. The update to version 1.1.5 has a brief (almost terse) comment: "fix one issue!" So there.
Flipboard: Your Social News MagazineYes, that really is the full title of the app as shown in the iTunes App Store.
This app was a revelation to me when I first found it with the way it displays news -- from feeds, Facebook accounts and Twitter -- all of which can be fine-tuned to suit the user. I was delighted with the way my own online items would be shown in Flipboard and think that this (and like apps) are a step forward in content delivery.
The update here, to version 1.8.3, has a number of useful additions to the networking that is available using the app with the developers having added access to the Chinese Sina Weibo and Renren. There is also expanded Retina support (initially provided in version 1.8.2) and additional worldwide access to Chinese content. Users of Flipboard are advised to tap the red ribbon and pick China Content Guide Edition.
The Times of IndiaThis is one of a couple of newspapers that have really excellent iOS apps. While this works well enough on the iPhone, the iPad display is far more effective. When I first reviewed The Times of India app (on AMITIAE) last year, it was only for the iPad and there was a separate iPhone version. It now appears that the developers have joined hands and it is one app to show on all.
There are only a couple of minor changes for the 1.5.1 update with "bug fixes" and "Optimization" reported.
Graham K. Rogers teaches at the Faculty of Engineering, Mahidol University in Thailand. He wrote in the Bangkok Post, Database supplement on IT subjects. For the last seven years of Database he wrote a column on Apple and Macs.
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