Yet again, the weekend brings with it some discounted (and even free) iOS games and apps. Here’s a roundup of apps you might want to try on the App Store.
Whew! That’s a whole lot of games for cheap or nothing. Isn’t being an iOS user great?
Over the years, I’ve had the opportunity to try out a number of products from OtterBox. The company, based in Fort Collins, Colorado, is well known for their protective cases for iOS and other devices. The company has four main series of products: the Defender, a multi-layer design which is designed for rough conditions; the Reflex, which uses a lighter design that emulates the automobile crumple zone concept for protection; the Commuter, which is designed for protection from day-to-day drops and scrapes; and the Impact, which is made up of simple silicone sleeves. OtterBox is about to ship the new Reflex series case for iPad 2 (US$69.95), and I had a chance to try it out. Read on for more details on this new iPad 2 case.
As with all of the OtterBox cases in the Reflex series, the iPad 2 case is lightweight protection. The case consists of what appears to be a polycarbonate shell with a stiff, flexible material around most of the sides and corners of the iPad 2. That material flexes on impact and then returns to its original shape, protecting the iPad 2 while not adding a lot of bulk to the case.
The case itself comes in two pieces that slide onto the top and bottom of the iPad 2. As you’d expect, there are openings for the speaker, the Dock connector, the headphone jack, the microphone, the camera, and the mute / orientation lock switch. Two other buttons — the volume toggle and the on/off/sleep/wake button — are covered by more of the flexible material. There’s a slight bulge on the case over the lower two corners of the iPad 2, which provides a outlet over the lower right corner to channel sound from the iPad’s speaker.
To provide screen protection while in transit, there is a screen shield / stand made of a combination of clear polycarbonate and the flexible material. The cover frankly doesn’t look that attractive, but when the goal is to protect your iPad screen from damage, who cares about looks? OtterBox also throws in a stick-on screen protection film and screen buffing cloths.
The screen shield doubles as a stand; to do so, you take it off, bend it slightly, and then insert a tab into a slot in the cover. It takes only a few seconds to set the stand up, after which the iPad can be placed on it in any of several different orientations.
OtterBox cases always feel sturdy, and the Reflex series for iPad 2 is no exception. I personally like the fact that it’s providing very good impact protection without adding either bulk or weight to the iPad 2. With the case on, the iPad 2 / Reflex combo weighs in at about 1 lb., 15 ounces, while the iPad 2 weighs 1 lb., 5 ounces on its own.
Hey, it’s an OtterBox. Of course it’s going to protect your iPad 2 like a junkyard dog! I did not deliberately drop my iPad 2 to test it, but looking at the various videos on the OtterBox site that show how the case technology works, I have little doubt that the iPad would survive just about any situation that I could put it into.
The case was a cinch to put on and take off — when I was weighing the iPad with and without the case, it took me about 5 seconds to take it off and another 10 seconds to put it back on. The “ears” on the case cover flex just enough to make snapping the cover onto the front of the iPad easy (note: you can also stow the cover on the back of your iPad).
The stand capability is great, as it holds the iPad in both a “keyboard” tilt and a “movie-watching” position. Those two positions cover about 95% of my iPad stand use cases, so I’m set. The only negative I can really think about the Reflex series case is that it doesn’t provide water resistance, but there are splash proof cases available from other vendors if that’s a requirement for you.
For those who are seeking a higher level of protection for their iPad 2 than can be accomplished by clothing it in most cases, the Reflex series case from OtterBox will make your day. If you think that you need even more protection, the company’s $89.95 Defender case offers two layers of protection that keep your iPad 2 safe under just about any conditions.
OtterBox makes fine products, and the Reflex case for iPad 2 is another example of the company’s commitment to excellence in design and manufacturing. The case will be available within the next few weeks, and interested iPad owners can sign up to be notified when the site is open for ordering.
A report from Polish newspaper Rzeczpospolita claims Apple is preparing to launch its iTunes music store in ten new countries throughout Europe. These new additions may include Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic and seven other unnamed locations.
If Rzeczpospolita’s report is correct, this rollout will significantly boost the reach of Apple’s music store. Apple currently operates its iTunes music store in a little over 20 countries globally. Its reach is hindered by music licensing agreements that limits sales to select countries. As a result, the iTunes Music store only logs about 12 million song downloads each month. It is outpaced by Apple’s App Store which has a wider reach and over 31 million app downloads each month.
Report suggests iTunes store coming to additional European countries originally appeared on TUAW – The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Wed, 28 Sep 2011 19:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
It’s not like we needed more reasons to love brothers David and Ian Marsh of NimbleBit. First off, they make terrific free (and lucrative) games like Pocket Frogs and Tiny Tower. Second, they’re super nice and very supportive in the developer community. Third, they’re humble and smart, keeping their company small and focusing on just developing good games rather than growing into a megacorporation. And now there’s another reason to love NimbleBit: They’re darn generous. Sign on San Diego reports that the pair have gifted over $30,000 of equipment, including 35 iPad 2s, to an elementary school in their hometown. The principal of the school is the Marshes’ old technology teacher, and he inspired them so much that they wanted to give a little something back, by putting this tech in the hands of elementary school students early.
What a great story. The school will use the iPads to manage their own small businesses that the kids are learning to run, and even to shoot video for the school’s TV station. And Ian Marsh says just having the iPads around might be inspiration enough: “When I was in school, I would have died if someone handed me an iPad. … I definitely think that technology can be useful in education.” Agreed. Kudos to the Marshes for their fine work, and applause to them for their generosity.
Any medical student or professional will instantly recognize the name “Netter.” Frank H. Netter was a physician and artist who drew over 500 plates, or individual medical illustrations, covering virtually every aspect of human anatomy. Netter’s Atlas of Human Anatomy, the book, is a classic in the field of medical reference. It outshines Grey’s Anatomy, not only in its depth and accuracy, but also because of the detail of the images (not to mention, they’re in color). If you’re a medical student, Netter’s is a must. However, the biggest problem with Netter’s Atlas of Human Anatomy, as with most medical reference books, is medical students might break their backs carrying the book around. It’s a tome that weights close to ten pounds. The extra weight has now been alleviated however, thanks to Elsevier Health Sciences finally bringing Netter’s Anatomy to the iPad.
Netter’s Anatomy Atlas for iPad offers users all the benefits of the book and more. Because it’s an app and not an ebook, Netter’s Anatomy Atlas offers interactivity that could never be obtained in paper format. You still get all 531 Netter plates, but the app also gives you the ability to bookmark individual plates, add notes to the plates, customize and toggle labels, and offers a search functionality that allows you to quickly find a plate by plate number or keyword. The app also features some cool extras, like an additional 40 Netter plates once you register the app.
Though I’m glad Netter’s is finally available on the iPad (my copy of the 4th edition is literally falling to pieces), there is one major drawback to Netter’s Anatomy Atlas for iPad. In a baffling move, the app only works in landscape view. You can’t look at the images in portrait orientation even though that’s how they were drawn. This means you’re scrolling a lot through some of the taller images. I imagine this landscape-only limitation will be addressed in a future update (at least, I hope it will be).
Besides that landscape orientation problem, the rest of the app is solid and I highly recommend it for anyone in the medical field. Like the book, the iPad app isn’t cheap. Netter’s Anatomy Atlas for iPad costs US$89.99. But there is also a free sample version, Netter’s Anatomy Atlas Free, for those of you who want to try out the app first. If you do buy the full app, be warned: because of all the highly detailed plates it takes up a whopping 1.35 GB of space on your iPad.
Gallery: Netter’s Anatomy Atlas for iPad
Programs that offer corporate some latitude and personal discretion in their technology choices are growing, said the NYT on Friday, and while the relaxing of IT standards mandates means there are plenty of market losers (HP, Dell, Lenovo, RIM and other enterprise-centric vendors), there’s one big winner: Apple.
At companies like Kraft Foods, rather than providing some employees with a standard laptop configuration, a stipend is offered to let staffers simply go out and get what they want. This shift toward a ‘bring your own device’ policy, also in place at companies like Netflix and Citrix, provides a substantial advantage for those technology companies that know how to market to consumers instead of corporations.
A Forrester Research study cited in the article also shows how IT’s ability to lock down the ecosystem has been challenged by smartphone preference, with 48 percent of the surveyed information workers buying their phones with no regard for corporate standard-setting. Forrester’s Ted Schadler sees this shift in the balance of device-approval power being driven by change at the top: “What broke the camel’s back was the iPad, because executives brought it into the company and said ‘Hey, you’ve got to support this.’”
The full measure of the Mac’s benefit from these moves toward IT openness may be hard to quantify, but in the case of Citrix, it’s there in black and white: 46 percent of the nearly 1,000 participating BYOD employees chose to buy a Mac. Citrix’s CIO, Paul Martine, delivers the understated quote of the day: “That was a little bit of a surprise.”
If you’re an enterprise employee or an IT leader, please share your Apple integration experience or your BYOD stories in our comments or our feedback page.
‘Bring your own device’ programs give Apple a boost in the enterprise originally appeared on TUAW – The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Sun, 25 Sep 2011 19:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
It’s only fair and right that one of the world’s most popular content management/blogging platforms should have a snazzy and capable iPhone app to go with it. The WordPress app has been updated to version 2.9, adding three new features for mobile users.
The new version adds handy styling buttons right above the keyboard, so you no longer have to put in your markup manually for bold or italic text, links or lists. Full-screen editing gives you more real estate to view what you’re working on, especially handy on the iPhone’s screen. You can also now follow other subscribed Wordpress.com blogs directly in the app.
WordPress for iOS is free on the App Store.
WordPress iOS editing app gets styling buttons, full-screen mode originally appeared on TUAW – The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Sun, 25 Sep 2011 00:45:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
To keep up with Cablevision and Time Warner, Comcast is working on a product called AnyPlay, which will allow Comcast subscribers to watch television on their iPads.
AnyPlay will use something like the Motorola Televation cable box to stream live TV to the Xfinity iPad app. The app currently only allows owners to watch On Demand programming and search TV listings. Users can register up to 10 devices, but will only be allowed to use one iPad at a time to watch TV. The AnyPlay box will also work with Android tablets and will include “most” channels.
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