Turn Taker is a new iOS app from independent developer Malcolm Christie. It’s available now as a free download from the App Store, and carries no additional in-app purchases.
Turn Taker is a productivity app that allows teams to collaborate on various repetitive tasks and easily determine whose turn it is to do something. The examples given by the developer include mundane activities such as buying milk and taking out the garbage, but there’s no reason why it can’t be applied to more complex scenarios which involve repeated tasks.
To use Turn Taker, users must sign up for an account, which may be done using Facebook, if desired. Once signed up, the user then has a number of different options. They may create a new team, join an existing team or manage the tasks and teams they are currently involved with.
Creating a new team is a simple matter of giving it a name, tagging it with a location via GPS and determining whether or not it is “public.” The latter option determines whether or not any other Turn Taker users in the nearby area will be able to find the team and join it — this is good for situations where the team manager would like people to volunteer for the team rather than inviting people directly. The app does allow for direct invites too, of course — this may be accomplished either through the iOS contacts list or Facebook if the user has connected their account. If the team is set to private, inviting users is the only means of adding them — all team members must accept and join the team before they can participate in the activities. (more…)
Haiku Deck is an iOS app from Giant Thinkwell. It is available now as a free download from the App Store with additional in-app purchases, allowing users to quickly and easily build detailed presentations.
When Haiku Deck is first launched, users will be prompted to log in either through social media or with a Haiku Deck account. Once an account is created, users get a quick overview of what the app has to offer, then they can jump right in to making a presentation. For users who want a bit more instruction before making anything, there are two pre-made presentations that further explain what Haiku Deck is and how it works. Once a user is comfortable with the system, he or she can jump right in and begin building a presentation.
Creating a presentation in Haiku Deck is easy because the program is more than happy to guide users every step of the way. When a user first creates a new presentation, they’re prompted to enter a title. Next, the slides are generated and the theme list is shown. There are currently five free themes available, and the level of customization enables users to make each presentation feel unique, regardless of the chosen theme. Once the theme is selected, users can start to add content to the slides. There are four main slide types available: Text, ordered list, unordered list, and charts. Each category has various layouts and settings, and there are three different charts available. In text slides and lists, users can format the content and layout as they see fit. Charts can easily be adjusted by dragging handles to set the desired value. (more…)
Frame My Photo is a new iOS app from Unity Apps. It’s available now as a free download from the App Store with no additional in-app purchases — though the app description suggests it will only be free for a limited period.
As the title suggests, Frame My Photo is a simple app designed to allow users to quickly and easily add a picture frame effect to photographs from their device’s camera, photo library or their Facebook photo albums. The resulting framed images can then be shared via Facebook, Twitter and email or saved to the device’s camera roll.
Using the app is a simple matter of choosing the image source (camera, Facebook or photo library) and then picking or taking the photograph. This process is occasionally interrupted by pop-up advertising alerts offering free games and the like, but not so often as to be too obtrusive. Importing a photo from the camera or photo library is very straightforward — the photo library option also allows photos to be pulled from iCloud Photo Stream if available — but the Facebook option appears to be broken at present. Tapping on the Facebook option opens the Facebook app (if installed) and then should open the app’s permissions page and allow the user to install it to their social network account — however, when tested, this option steadfastly refused to work, instead giving a non-specific error message (“An error occurred. Please try again later.”) and simply returning to the social network’s News Feed when cancelled. It’s not clear if this is an issue with Facebook or the app itself, but the problem persisted regardless of whether the device was connected to Wi-Fi or cellular data, and happened repeatedly.
Spottlife is an iOS app from Gamai LLC. It is available for free in the App Store and carries no additional in-app purchases.
Gamai’s Spottlife is a social networking app that combines the feeds of Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Instagram and sorts the content by the topic of discussion. Gamai’s argument is that there are so many users and so many conversations going on at once, it can be difficult for users to keep track of the issues that are important to them. Through the use of a minimalist layout, Spottlife tries to make finding interesting conversation as easy as possible. While it is a good idea, Spottlife has a few obstacles it needs to overcome before it can compete with other social media dashboards.
When first opening Spottlife, users are prompted to create an account. This process is quick and painless, and can be done entirely within the app. After signing in, users are greeted with an overview of what the app has to offer. The minimalist look to the overview sets the tone for using the app itself, and it works as a nice tutorial to help users understand what makes Spottlife unique. Once the guide is complete, users are asked to sign in with one of the four compatible social networking accounts. After linking the desired accounts, Spottlife will take a few minutes to create the feed and sort entries by topic. Once Spottlife finishes, the rest of the app is fully available for use. (more…)
Phoster is an iOS app from Bucket Labs. It’s currently a free download from the App Store at the time of writing due to its feature spot as Apple’s App of the Week — its normal price is $1.99.
Phoster’s stated aim is to allow its users to create their own posters using a combination of templates, images and text. These posters may then be shared to a variety of social networks or printed out. The app comes pre-loaded with a wide variety of different templates for users to use, many of which use recognizably modern, attractive styles, and each is customizable.
To create a poster, users must first pick a template from the available options. Templates are divided into categories according to the shape of the poster — square, portrait or landscape — and may also be marked as favorites if the user finds a particularly appealing design they would like to reuse. All templates come with placeholder text and space for an image — either in the background of the whole poster or in a dedicated area, depending on the design — which can then be manipulated in various ways.
Google Translate is an Android and iOS app from Google. It was recently updated to version 2.0 on most Android devices, while the iOS and older versions of Android continue to run a previous version. It is available for free on Google Play and the iTunes App Store and carries no additional in-app purchases.
Google’s ability to translate words, phrases, and webpages has become a useful tool for users of all interests and professions. The Google Translate app presents all the same functionality of Google’s web translator on a mobile device, allowing users to translate text and voice in over 70 languages on the go. Android users get the added bonus of camera functionality, which allows the user to take a picture of text, and have it translated on the spot.
Disney Interactive today launched Story for iOS, a storytelling app that accesses a user’s camera roll of photos and videos on their mobile device and automatically organizes their media into stories, which can be personalized, saved and shared.
Disney senior director of engineering Scott Gerlach told Inside Mobile Apps that “We realized that parents were collecting media on their phones at a rate even greater than the typical smartphone user. They were drowning in this sea of personal media and feeling pressure from their family and friends to share that.”
Gerlach, who works for Disney’s parent-oriented group called Women and Family, explains that although Story is geared toward moms and parents, the app is for everyone.
Story is broken up into two sections — Moments and Stories. Moments are pieces of media from a user’s camera roll that is automatically pulled together based on a piece of media’s time stamp and location tag by Disney’s proprietary algorithm. The developers classified a moment as something that can’t span more than a calendar day, and no piece of media in a series collected within that time span can have a gap of more than a certain amount of time or distance. Once a moment is collected, a user can turn it into a story. Users can drag and drop media around, edit a title, add captions, and give their story a theme, which consists of fonts, colors, backgrounds and photo treatments. Gerlach says Disney will later allow users to add vocal annotations, music and other forms of media, to their stories. (more…)
Postale is an iOS app from 7twenty7 LLC. It’s available now as a free download from the App Store, and carries additional in-app purchases.
Postale’s remit is simple: it allows users to create virtual postcards, then send them to people via Facebook, Twitter or email. Postcards may have one of four different layouts — a portraitwise image with text to the right; a landscape image with text to the right; a vertical layout with a photo at the top and text at the bottom; and a “panoramic” layout featuring a letterboxed image with text above and below.
The first time the user fires up Postale, they are walked through the rather simple process of creating a postcard a step at a time. The tutorial is relatively unobtrusive, but it’s questionable if it’s even necessary, since the app is extremely easy and intuitive to use.
Creating a postcard consists of several steps: choosing a layout, choosing a visual theme from those available — additional packs are available via in-app purchase for $0.99 each — and then customizing the layout with a photo, title and message. Photos can either be taken with the camera or imported from the camera roll, and the app makes use of Aviary’s SDK to allow for fine-tuning and adjustment of the photograph in various ways. Titles and messages can be entered independently, and each may have their own style set by changing the color, size and font of the text. There are a fairly wide selection of commonly-used fonts available in the app, though the widely-despised Comic Sans is nowhere to be seen.
Moovee is a new iOS app from the company of the same name. It’s available now as a free download from the App Store, with no additional in-app purchases.
Moovee is a very simple app indeed: its sole purpose is to allow its users to shoot short video clips of up to 10 seconds in length, then share them online both via Moovee’s own mobile-social network as well as Facebook and Twitter.
Upon starting Moovee and signing in using either a proprietary account or Facebook, the user is immediately taken to the service’s main feed. From here, videos are displayed one at a time, automatically advancing to the next when the previous one is finished. Each video shows how many times it has been viewed along with any likes and comments it has received, and also provides the viewer the opportunity to do either of these things. A simple double-tap on a video quickly provides a “like”, tapping starts and stops the video and tapping and holding restarts it from the beginning. All content may also be shared via Facebook, Twitter, email, SMS/iMessage or the iOS clipboard with the tap of a share button in the corner of the screen.
Shooting and submitting video is a simple matter of tapping the camera icon in the corner of the screen, which immediately takes users to a standard-looking iOS camera display. From here, the user may shoot as much video as they like and subsequently “crop” it to 10 seconds or less using the standard iOS video-editing interface. After the video has been saved and compressed, the user may add a short description, their location data and decide whether or not they would like to include audio. Once this step has been completed, the video is posted online for everyone to see. It’s a quick and simple process with a lot of immediacy.
HitMeUp is an iOS app from the company of the same name. It’s been available for a while now, but has recently released a major update to version 3.1.0 of the app, which has caused it to be featured in the “New” section of the App Store’s Lifestyle category. The app is available now as a free download.
HitMeUp doesn’t make its purpose particularly clear, either in the App Store description or in the now-obligatory pictorial “tour” it displays before prompting users to sign in using either Twitter or their email address. It appears to be an app designed to allow users to see photos in an area along with where they were taken and then vote them as either a “hit” or a “miss,” but the exact reasons for doing this are not made particularly clear.
In order to use HitMeUp, as previously mentioned, the user must register and/or sign in to the service using either a Twitter account or their email address — the latter option was newly-added in the version 3.1.0 update. Once into the app proper, they are shown a map of their current location and are then able to snap a photo, which must have a caption attached to it — the app won’t allow photos to be posted without at least something being written in the caption box. This captioned photo is then recorded at the user’s current location for any other HitMeUp users to stumble across should they be browsing that particular area.