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When Freemium's Good, It's Very Good and When It's Bad, It's Horrid
December 19, 2013
When I read a new report on app store trends for 2013 recently, my most irritating fear was confirmed: The freemium app business model has not only won the app sales model, it has handily crushed the paid app model -- squeezed it down into a tiny sliver of relative revenue. The results are so tilted that even more new apps will apparently be written entirely with the freemium model in mind.
Ahrendts Pick Bodes Well for a Fresh Apple Store Experience
October 17, 2013
I never would have imagined that I would jump on the bandwagon for the CEO of a British luxury fashion company, but here I am preparing to gush over Angela Ahrendts, who will take over Apple's retail store operations in early 2014. Apple CEO Tim Cook made the announcement Monday, and the first thing that came to mind was that the massively male executive team at Apple was finally choosing a woman.
All Things Appy: 5 Best Geo-Oriented Tracking Apps for iOS
October 04, 2013
This week's All Things Appy takes a look at the five best, free geo-oriented apps for the iOS platform. To keep your costs down, we're concentrating on those tracking apps that don't require additional hardware, like sensors. Not all mobile Apple hardware products have GPS satellite location, which many of these apps require for best results. The iPod is one of those.
Apple's Blowout Launch Weekend Wasn't About the Phones
September 26, 2013
After Apple topped analyst expectations by selling more than 9 million iPhones in its opening launch weekend, it didn't take long for the Apple haters and naysayers to scramble for some negative spin: iPhone buyers are just cult fanatics, destined to buy the latest incremental update again and again until the rest of the world wakes up and realizes that Apple is just another fading tech company.
Apple Could Pay Staggering Price for E-Book Shenanigans
August 02, 2013
The U.S. Justice Department and 33 states' attorneys general have proposed remedies against Apple for its conviction on e-book price-fixing that could dry up a large portion of the company's revenue stream while benefiting Amazon and, possibly, Google. The proposed final judgment seeks to have Apple terminate contracts with the five codefendant publishers in the case.
Blinding Light and Deep Dark Evil: Apple's App Store After 5 Years
July 11, 2013
The iTunes App Store is one of the most transformative Apple innovations ever, perhaps the most important to the world, and yet, despite its shiny bright flickering light of goodness, it's freakin' evil. I've been reflecting on the 5th anniversary of the App Store, and in some ways, I'm blinded by the staggering numbers and pure joy certain apps have brought to my life.
Apple Forfeits Claim to the 'App Store' Name
July 10, 2013
Apple has ended its lawsuit against Amazon over the right to use the "app store" name. U.S. District Judge Phyllis Hamilton dismissed the case at Apple's request, heading off a trial that was scheduled to begin in August. Apple has been selling apps for its iOS devices via its iTunes App Store since July 2008. Apple alleged that Amazon's use of the "appstore" name violated its trademark.
The Clock Is Ticking on 30/30's Simple, Powerful Task Manager
May 20, 2013
I'm a sucker for productivity management -- too much to do, never enough time, and there is always, it seems, some sort of flashing distraction. There are plenty of people out there with similar problems: Even if they survived a round of layoffs, there's usually a business need to get more done with fewer resources and people.
Twitter #music Tops the Charts for Song Discovery
May 06, 2013
The new Twitter #music app for iOS is the coolest app I want to love forever. However, it still gives me the nagging feeling that its slick graphics and fast play might leave our relationship just an empty shell of glitz and hope. Like those hot-and-heavy relationships that defy explanation, #music is a hard app to truly love -- or let go.
Google Now Could Steal Siri's Voice on iOS
April 30, 2013
In yet another challenge to Apple on the mobile front, Google has made its Google Now intelligent personal assistant available for iOS devices. Google Now is part of the Google Search application. It recognizes repeated actions that a consumer performs on a device to learn about usage patterns. The app displays more relevant information as cards that can be swiped on and off the screen.
Status Board Gives You a Stylish Dashboard for Your Life
April 29, 2013
Executive dashboards are now common in business environments -- graphical interfaces that show managers key metrics about their enterprises like sales activity, inventory or financials. They tick and update in real time, and they require hooks into business data to work. Panic, Inc., has created a simple dashboard for real people. Status Board lets you create a snazzy widget-based iPad screen.
Reeder's a Comfy Refuge for Google's RSS Orphans
April 23, 2013
When Google announced it was killing its Reader app July 1, it not only annoyed hordes of users, it pulled the rug out from under app developers who built their livelihoods on the web software. One of those app makers is Silvio Rizzi, maker of Reeder. a free RSS program for iPhone, iPad and Mac. Like all the developers that plugged into Reader, Rizzi is facing extinction. However, he's not quite ready to go into that good night.
PopAGraph Dazzles With a Little 3D Magic
April 15, 2013
Because the iPhone has turned into one of the world's most popular cameras, there's no shortage of photo editing apps in the iTunes App Store. Many of these apps are great, and many have overlapping features with similar special effects. So how does one photo editing app rise above the rest? What makes it great? Do-it-all apps are good, and I have several collected inside a Pic Tools folder.
The Masters iPad App Is Worthy of the Green Jacket
April 12, 2013
While I'm not a golf fanatic, I get onto local courses just often enough to enjoy the sport, the fresh air, and the skill it takes to send the little white ball home. Fortunately, you don't have to be personally talented to appreciate a great sporting event, and the Masters Tournament is one of the best in the world -- a place where skill and pressure collide on the artistic canvas of a challenging golf course.
Apple Lags in Apps Sold, Leads in App Gold
April 10, 2013
Apple's App Store may not sell more apps than its top competitor in the space, Google Play, but it is gaining more revenue off its sales, according to research from Canalys. App downloads across the four major stores -- Apple App Store, Google Play, the Windows Phone Store and BlackBerry World -- are up 11 percent worldwide during the first quarter of 2013.
CaptureAudio Will Make You Shout Its Praises
April 08, 2013
Sometimes I hang on to using the Apple-bundled iPhone apps with a maniacal fervor. Unfortunately, this means that I get into a rut with an Apple app -- despite its limitations -- and I avoid trying new apps. Yes, this means I can keep better track of what Apple is up to. On the flip side, why should I create extra work, just so I can identify when Apple ditches the skeuomorphic microphone from its solid but utterly lifeless Voice Memos app?
Instant Heart Rate: A Cool Way to Track Your Ticker
April 01, 2013
Every now and then I'm surprised and delighted by the utter ingenuity I stumble upon in the iTunes App Store. I really like it when someone utilizes common technology for a unintended purpose -- in this case, using the camera on your iPhone to track the beat of your heart. Crazy, I know, but Instant Heart Rate - Heart Rate Monitor by Azumio does it in just a few seconds.
Acquisition Could Chart a New Course for Apple Maps
March 27, 2013
Apple's purchase this week of GPS startup WiFiSLAM is the latest attempt by the company to put some distance between it and the 2012 debacle that was the launch of its own high quality maps feature. The tech giant paid about $20 million for WiFISLAM, according to published reports.
March Madness App Brings Its 'A' Game
March 25, 2013
I've previously avoided most big sports and event streaming apps for simple reasons -- they tend to bombard you with glitchy ads or make you jump through hoops to view the content, such as proving that you're a cable or satellite subscriber. In March, however, NCAA basketball grabs my attention.
Year Walk Is a Creepy Yet Delightful Stroll
March 18, 2013
Year Walk -- an iOS game by Simogo -- is a story-adventure-puzzle that creepily evokes what it might be like to wander the Swedish countryside in the middle of night, in the middle of winter, after spending a full day without food in a very dark room. That is, of course, if you're some dude from 1894 desperately in love with a woman -- and you embark on a Swedish folklore "Year Walk" in the hope of seeing your future.

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