The Weather Channel for iPad Adds ‘Test’ Message

The Weather Channel for iPad received an interesting addition to its app icon today. Version 3.5  installed several new features and bug fixes, yet it also added the word “Test” to the app icon.

The rest of the app appears to function as normal. The update promised additional Flu information, a better news section and visual improvements. However, it nixes the visual weather background, citing the need for “performance improvements.”

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Orc Vengeance Update Improves Controls

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One of the best games of the year has a significant new improvement to its control scheme. Orc: Vengeance, my favorite game to hit iOS in 2012, now has a virtual control stick and on-screen button layout that greatly improves the gaming experience. I found one can quickly attack enemies and maneuver through the game with much greater ease.

I find it more natural to play with the joystick, as the previous method of tapping where you wanted to go to become a little tiring over time. The new controls are positions so one can easily hold the iPad with two hands, much like a game controller. [Read more…]

The Room is Mind-Challenging Thriller for iPad

The Room evokes many of the dark, mind-bending puzzle games that long dominated PCs. It is a beautiful game for iPad that will engross you with its tricky puzzles and excellent graphics.   [Read more…]

Google Search for iPhone Updates with Snazzier Interface

Google Search for iPhone was updated to 2.0 today, bringing over many features that were previously only on the iPad version. It brings a more elegant search experience and quick access to Google apps.

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WorldCard HD Review

If you’re tired of picking up business cards only to lose them to the wash, WorldCard HD – the Intelligent Business Card Manager is the app for you.  Powered with an advanced version of Optical Character Recognition (OCR), it saves you the time and frustration of typing names, addresses, phone numbers, and email addresses into your iPad manually.  [Read more…]

Google Revamps Search on Tablets

Google is rolling out a redesigned search page for tablets, the company announced today. The new features are available for the iPad or Android 3.1 devices. The new look features larger text, a simplified layout and touch-friendly buttons. [Read more…]

Battlefield: Bad Company 2 Launches on iPad, adds Multiplayer

Battlefield: Bad Company 2 has been one of the most popular first-person shooters for iPhone. This week it launched on iPad and added some impressive multiplayer gaming options. Those who already own the iPhone version should hit the App Store for the update.

Battlefield: Bad Company 2 was originally a console game before it launched on iPhone last year. For those who are unfamiliar with the original, there is an excellent amount of action, weapons choices, terrain and battle scenes. [Read more…]

Create a Monster HD Review

Create a Monster HD is the Mr. Potato Head for the iPad generation. Kids (and of course adults) have limitless options for creating their own monster masterpiece and sharing via social networks.

The app lays out a ton of different eyes, horns, mouths and other monster accessories. The creature can be tweaked into several different shapes and sizes. It is highly recommended that new users walk through the tutorial; while some of the steps are intuitive, others are not as obvious. For example, going back to change a previous feature requires tapping on that feature set from the bottom row, then selecting the corresponding part. Children especially could probably use some adult supervision to walk them through the initial steps before set loose to do their own monster experimentation. [Read more…]

Quixey Leads the Way in App Search

Searching for apps can be a frustrating experience.

While both the App Store and Android Market have made strives to improve app  search and discoverability, much work remains.

Finding apps by function within Google or Bing can also be irritating, as you usually just get a list of links that is only sometimes relevant.

Enter Quixey. The app search engine, currently in private beta, identifies apps for iPhone, iPad, Android, Mac, Windows, the web and and specific browsers. It seeks to synthesize the fragmented information about the app ecosystems within one site. [Read more…]

Prezi Viewer for iPad Review

Prezi will make you bid PowerPoint goodbye.

Prezi takes the old-school slide show and tosses it out the window. Instead of presentations that bombard the audience with boring text and unending bullet lists, Prezi has an engaging, modern approach. The presentation zooms and zips to key words and phrases. [Read more…]

Follow March Madness on your iPhone or iPad

Forget paying exorbitant fees to your satellite company for watching the NCAA tournament. CBS, Turner Sports and the NCAA this week announced that live streaming will be free from an iPad or iPhone.

The forthcoming app and all games will be live streamed both online and through dedicated iPhone and iPad apps. Last year’s iPhone app was $10, and there was no option for viewing on the iPad. [Read more…]

Apple Set to Unveil Next iPad

If there is at least one lock for today, it is that a new iPad is on its way. Beyond what happens at today’s Apple event in San Francisco is anyone’s guess.

Here is what to watch for:

  • An incremental iPad update: Expect stronger internals and perhaps some design tweaks. But this won’t be a major overhaul, unlike last year’s iPhone 4.
  • Ramped up MobileMe: Apple’s cloud-based syncing service has had moderate success, but power users can still get far more for free using Google’s sync tools. There is buzz that music, an improved interface and larger storage could be in the works. A dark horse: Apple may reduce the price or make the service free altogether. [Read more…]

MLB At Bat 11 Returns for New Season

Baseball is back, and so is the popular MLB At Bat app for iPhone, iPad and Android.

It will set you back $14.99, but it is the most comprehensive baseball app for multiple devices (it also is available for BlackBerry). For MLB.tv subscribers, it is a no-brainer as a way to watch your subscription content.

Unfortunately for iOS device owners it is not a universal app, so you must purchase it separately for your iPhone and iPad.  [Read more…]

DirecTV Teases iPad App

Tired of losing the remote? DirecTV has a solution with its forthcoming iPad app.

The satellite company teased an iPad app with a “coming soon” section on its web site today. All the DVR controls from the mobile apps are present, but there are also additional features to take advantage of the larger screen.

Users will be able to create a customized control screen with access to favorite content. The remote control feature is designed to look similar to the current remotes.

DirecTV is playing catchup, as Comcast, FiOS, Dish and TiVo have already launched an iPad app. Unlike some of its competitors no streaming of content appears planned yet. There is also no word on whether the iPad app will be subject to any 771 errors.

 

Get Organized with Pouch for iPhone, iPad

Stay on top of your Backpack files

Those who use and rely on the popular Backpack small business management software will love the access provided by Pouch.

A universal app for both iPhone and iPad, Pouch has strong integration with Backpack’s services so users can stay up to date on the various accounts and content they need.

You have visibility of all your Backpack pages, notes and to-do lists. Notes and lists can all be created, deleted or edited from the Pouch app. [Read more…]

Review: Notability for iPad

Notability rises to the top of the crowded field of iPad note-taking apps with its smooth interface, solid performance and excellent syncing options.

Notability is like a hybrid of other popular note-taking apps. It has the familiar “notebook” styling and feel of OneNote. Yet it has the cross-device appeal and flexibility of the popular Evernote or Springpad.

To really unlock Notability’s potential sync it with a Dropbox account. (If you don’t have Dropbox, you should really consider changing that). By doing so you can access your notes from the desktop on a PC or Mac. Plus you will gain the ability to sync 2 GB of other documents across all your computers and smart phones for free.

Note-taking with Notability can be accomplished through typing, ink or voice. If you try to write with your finger, be sure to use the flat part for better results. One very useful addition is the ability to record voice and save the audio inside of a note. [Read more…]

Review: Photo Delight for iPad

This shot of the Maine coastline gets some artistic touch-up.

The iPad is a blank canvas. Photo Delight captures this by creating a unique art application with clever photo design.

Photo Delight imports a photo and turns it black and white. Then use your finger to add color anywhere on-screen for a more artistic effect.

Just keep in mind that you can’t go Jackson Pollock on any photo. Instead of adding various colors to wherever you want, Photo Delight returns the original color over the areas you “brush” to give it a distinct look. Once you have this concept down, creating artwork with Photo Delight should be a fun experience. [Read more…]

TheAppPlanet’s Official Super Bowl Guide

The Super Bowl. That unofficial American holiday dedicated to body-breaking hits, excessive drinking, overeating and wardrobe malfunctions.

Now that everyone has a smartphone or an iPad (or like me, both) the NFL has decided to make sure all your devices can enhance the Super Bowl experience.

Here are some apps to follow along with today’s action. Since your buddy’s house may not have a decent Internet connection, hurry up and download them now.

Super Bowl XLV Game Program

A true multimedia game program with video and profiles of key players. The home page begins with nostalgic music that does get a little annoying after a while. However, the menus are very user-friendly that make navigating the program easy. This will definitely impress your friends at that Super Bowl party.

Download Super Bowl XLV Game Program

Super Bowl XLV: The Official Guide

This app, which is built for both iPhone and iPad, is a guide to the stadium and Dallas metropolitan area. If you can’t make it to the game (like most of us) this helps create the experience with panoramic stadium views that let you zoom in and out of the field by pinching and swiping.

Download Super Bowl XLV: The Official Guide

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Android, Google Battle for Spotlight

Two big announcements from the world of apps today: Google gave a detailed look at Honeycomb, the tablet-friendly version of Android. The search company also showed off the new web version of Android Market.

Apple joined Rupert Murdoch to unveil the long-discussed news app The Daily. A full review of each product is in the works.

Toshiba Readies iPad Competitor

This is what you find when viewing the site on an iOS device.

Toshiba is the latest company to jump on the anti-iPad bandwagon. This week it launched a web site pimping its Flash-playing, camera-equipped tablet.

It just doesn’t have a name yet.

The “Toshiba Tablet” joins the Motorola Xoom as the most anticipated major competitors to the iPad. The real question is how Android Market will evolve to include apps designed specifically for the larger form factor.

Even with the success of the Samsung Galaxy Tab there are very few Android apps built for such tablets. Expect this to change once Honeycomb-powered devices begin to roll out this year.

What Android tablets must do is appeal to a wider audience beyond the tech enthusiast. Android phones grew in popularity because of the absence of an iPhone on multiple carriers. Now that the iPhone is on Verizon, expect many customers to dump Android handsets for the iPhone. Most consumers just don’t have the brand loyalty to Android that they do to Apple. And with tablets not tied necessarily to a single carrier, it will be an open fight for new buyers. [Read more…]