Civilizing The Discovery of iPhone Apps

Image representing AppsFire as depicted in Cru...
Image via CrunchBase

With more than 200,000 apps in the App Store, finding the best of the best is becoming increasingly difficult. iTunes and Genius are not of much assistance and third party sites and services have leaped in to fill the void.

A credible competitor in this field is AppsFire (link here) .With a newly revamped page, desktop tool and download-able iPhone application, AppsFire really streamlines the process of discovering, demoing and sharing iPhone apps and presents a very real challenger to the iTunes monopoly. You can search for apps yourself, or, if you are in need of some expert advise, check out the VIP section on the Web – lists compiled by tech elite and power users. AppsFire also will recommend apps based on your app downloads and history.  The iPhone app lets you compare apps with other iPhone toting friends via Bluetooth.

The AppsFire interface looks great on the iPad. The team is also developing a similar product for the Android marketplace. Take a look at what the tech press has to say:

“there needs to be a way to filter out what you don’t want and find what you do [….] AppsFire may offer just that”
“Appsfire is a service that makes it easier to share your favorite iPhone apps with your friends”
“The must-have App Sharing app”
“AppsFire is an interesting idea [..] It then generates a list you can share with friends”
“The app is a breeze to use on both desktop and the iPhone, and takes app sharing to a new level”
“[Appsfire is] Helping solve the discovery of relevant applications”
“The Perfect Merge of iPhone Apps and Social Media”
“AppsFire is a nice little software piece that[..] can be counted upon for finding apps that might interest you”

And, check out their demo video below:

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More About iPhone OS 4

Apple Inc.
Image via Wikipedia

I followed the live cast of the introduction of iPhone OS 4 last Thursday. Interesting stuff coming down the road. I plan to do a post on the new Enterprise-friendly features that are pushing iPhone closer to the business user group in a later post. I thought I might give a run down here of all of the features I can glean from articles and news sources across the web.

Multitasking: it’s the big news. Double tap the home button to activate. This activates a multitasking tray at the bottom of the screen which swipes to reveal more apps. Closing multitasking apps is similar to how you would delete an app, with a press-and-hold.

Folders: the next big news, in my inventory. If you drop one icon on top of another, they fill a folder button (which can hold up to twelve  icons/apps). Folder name defaults to the category of the first app, but you can edit it.

Mail: third biggest news. Now your mailboxes default to an integrated all-in-one mailbox view. You can still select one of the individual accounts and see all of the relevant folders for that inbox. New option threaded view, kind of like Gmail. Email from contacts will show the image associated with that contact. You have the option to keep or delete shared media before sending.

Search: it won’t say “Google” anymore next to the URL in the browser – it will only say “search.” Spotlight search on the phone will allow you to access the Web or Wikipedia within the search screen.

Screen: there are some visual changes that hearken to the iPad, and you can select your own wallpaper for the home screen.

Ipod: you can see your folders and subfolders from iTunes now on the iPhone. There are some editing and display tweaks as well.

Messages: search field added. Character counts can be toggled in the settings.

Calender: now you can select any number or all calendars, rather that all or one.

Photo: will support the iPad “Places and Faces” with syncing based on people identified in the photos. Geotagged images will shop maps of the area. You will be able to rotate pics before emailing or messaging.

Camera: now has digital zoom for camera and video and touch to focus in video.

Notes: wireless sync, multiple accounts. IMAP email, as well as MobileMe.

Location: you can now select on or off for various services in Settings.

Passcode lock: has been beefed up with alphanumeric password support.

Game Center: not sure how this will implement, but it is apparently an on-line gaming community tool to facilitate games-based communication and competition via the iPhone OS. Will support push notifications, which is already found in many iPhone game apps.

There are other minor details and cosmetic changes in OS 4, but I hit the bigger features here. All in all, not a bad set of upgrades.

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Mobile PDF Manipulation

Zosh IconAnother tip for the mobile warriors – pull PDF’s into an iPhone application that allows you to annotate the document with text and to even sign it. Handy stuff for PDF forms. The app is called Zosh and requires that you sign up with a free account. The account permits you to email the PDF to Zosh’s servers so that it can be sent back to you in an editable form. You have control over colors, fonts and text treatments, like bold and italic. When done, either request that the finished form be sent back to you or forwarded to someone else. Sign on the iPhone screen itself to create an electronic signature via the app’s ingenious scrolling function.

I can’t count how many times I have been sent a PDF that I first opened on my iPhone, which I then tabled for later attention because I could not deal with the PDF at that time. For $2.99, Zosh seems a pretty bargain and a decent add to your business tool kit.

Hat tip to iPhone J.D., and hit the link here for a comprehensive review, screenshots and demo video.

Zosh Screen Shot

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The Morning After: Apple’s 9-9-09 Event, Care of iPhone JD

Some of you may be aware that Apple held an iPod event yesterday in advance of the holiday season. There were a lot of new features rolled out, with implications for both iPod and iPhone owners and purchasers.

Sometimes the better part of valor is to simply step aside and let someone else do the talking. I cannot improve on the scope of Jeff Richardson’s comprehensive post on the new features and updates to the iPod, iPhone OS and iTunes software so I will simply point you to it here. Thanks Jeff for a great overview of what Apple has in store for its little mobile devices (until the next big announcement, anyway).

The Morning After: Apple's 9-9-09 Event, Care of iPhone JD

Some of you may be aware that Apple held an iPod event yesterday in advance of the holiday season. There were a lot of new features rolled out, with implications for both iPod and iPhone owners and purchasers.

Sometimes the better part of valor is to simply step aside and let someone else do the talking. I cannot improve on the scope of Jeff Richardson’s comprehensive post on the new features and updates to the iPod, iPhone OS and iTunes software so I will simply point you to it here. Thanks Jeff for a great overview of what Apple has in store for its little mobile devices (until the next big announcement, anyway).

Early Summer Cleaning – Mac-Style

Since I highlighted the Windows version of this Lifehacker list of essential free downloads, I think it only fair that I also include the companion list for Macs, even if I am not personally a Mac user. I will cop to being a Mac wannabe, though, and that counts for something.

There is definitely overlap between the Windows and Mac list, including Firefox and iTunes. There are also plenty of other offerings addressing productivity, communication, utilities, multimedia, and file backup/syncing.

Enjoy the free!

From Lifehacker.

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