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Posts tagged apps

Mashable app list: Really making you a better reader?
November 11, 2013 | 6:37 pm

Social media and technology site Mashable has grouped together "8 Apps to Make You a Better Reader" - and not just concentrating on e-reading, but also bringing in some apps that will be just as helpful for print reading as well. If they help. Because the premise for choosing some seems the exact opposite of making you a better reader - i.e. making you a hastier and less insightful reader by predigesting and dicing up your reading matter. As Mashable's Mark Knoblauch says, the article has been "trying to stray from the obvious reading apps, like e-readers." And yes, as well...

App Sale: SwiftKey is Half Off. Today Only
October 22, 2013 | 10:37 am

SwiftKeyI've tested and reviewed many third-party keyboards for Android, and SwiftKey remains my go-to keyboard on my Nook HD. If you've been thinking about trying SwiftKey, today is a great day. It's half off on Google Play (to celebrate 5 years of Android), bringing it to $1.99, which is an excellent price. Here's my review from earlier this year, if you want to check it out before heading over to buy the app....

Apple allows old iOS devices to install ‘last compatible version’ of newer apps
October 6, 2013 | 6:00 pm

ipadlatestappThis is a slightly old story, but I thought it was worth following up on when I had the chance. A few weeks ago, Apple quietly added a new feature to its iOS app store. It used to be that when you had hardware too old to run the latest version of an app, and you lost the version of it you had, you were out of luck. After OS 7 came out, for example, when I tried to update my 1st-generation iPad’s Zite app, I was told that the new one required OS 7. So if I...

App Review: Afterword for Android
September 23, 2013 | 3:32 pm

Sometimes I like an app that does one thing and does it well. Someone I know tweeted about Afterword, and I decided to give it a try. If you are an author on Kindle, the app allows you to look at your sales data. You can select which country to view, or the app can give you total sales across all countries. You can look the current month or the prior month. That's all it does, but it's a quick and easy way to get up-to-date information on your book sales. I find it easier than going to the KDP site. Which...

Double App Review: MegaReader and QuickReader for iOS
August 30, 2013 | 6:41 pm

I'm reviewing both of these apps together because they're so similar; there's just one feature difference between them. The developer was celebrating five million downloads and in honor of the occasion was offering free versions of the apps to bloggers. Lucky me! Anyway, at their heart, they are both e-reading apps. (Both are also available for iOS only.) Let's start with MegaReader. It has more features than most of the store reading apps (Kindle, Kobo, and Nook), but far fewer features than Marvin. That's either a good or bad thing, depending on the user. While I love Marvin, I can see its...

Edinburgh guides you round its bookshops — if you’re on iOS
August 21, 2013 | 10:45 am

EdinburghTo help mark its status as the first UNESCO City of Literature during the International Book Festival, Edinburgh has put up an interactive Flash map of 53 of the city's bookshops and released a free Edinburgh Bookshops Trail iPhone App—but on iPhone only. The app "shows you all Edinburgh bookshops on a map, with shop descriptions, stock information, addresses, contact details, website links, the works. It even gives you the quickest way to get there! You can also filter by genre, and we have added a quick overview of literary events for the coming 7 days." Unfortunately, Android users will have to...

‘Undownloading’ — the New Geographical Restriction?
August 20, 2013 | 9:18 am

Google BooksFrom Techdirt comes this upsetting but not terribly surprising story about a Georgetown professor who downloaded a Google Books update while travelling, and then had it 'undownload' his books when it detected he was outside the USA. From the article: "What makes this tale particularly noteworthy is the way it brings together a host of really bad ideas that the publishing and distribution industries insist on deploying. There's DRM that means you can't make backups; there's the country-specific usage that tries to impose physical geography on your digital ebooks; and there's the update that spies on you and your system before deciding unilaterally...

Marvin and Calibre: Together Like Peanut Butter and Jelly (video)
July 16, 2013 | 10:35 am

Since I just received a shiny new iPad (fourth generation) as an early birthday present, I've been doing more reading in Marvin, which I reviewed earlier this year. There have been several updates since my initial review, and one of the things I noticed was a "Calibre Connector" in one of the menus. I did some searching and discovered that books can by synced to Marvin directly through Calibre, over a wired sync. Since Marvin has one of the best Dropbox integrations I've ever seen, I wouldn't suggest this for loading one or two books, but it's a great way to sync...

Android app development: Really pricier than iOS?
July 16, 2013 | 9:27 am

AndroidAdam Tinworth, in his oft-cited personal blog "of the transition of journalism, publishing and content in general into the online world," One Man and His Blog, made a post a short time ago about the comparative costs of developing apps for Android platform and for Apple's iOS. In his post, "Android: Triple the development costs of iOS?," he states exactly that, citing a recent BBC blog post by David Berlin, senior product manager with the BBC, about developing the BBC iPlayer App on Android. Tinworth took exception to the BBC blogger's statement that their Android development team was triple the size of their...

Weekend Roundup: Tel Aviv gets a beach library; Miami-Dade County may lose 42 libraries; free productivity apps from Amazon
July 14, 2013 | 10:41 am

libraryTel Aviv Gets First Beachside Library (Gadling) Need a good beach read? Visitors to Tel Aviv's Metzizim Beach can now borrow books for reading on the sand. The city has launched the first beachside library, providing over 500 free book rentals in five languages, including English, Hebrew, Arabic, French and Russian. * * * JK Rowling Revealed as Writer of Crime Novel (NPR) An ex-military man tries his hand at writing, publishes a debut detective novel, and wins critical acclaim. But here's the twist in the tale: The true identity of the author is none other than "Harry Potter" creator J.K. Rowling. * * * Miami-Dade County May Shutter 42 Public...

The New York Times Now Available as a Kindle Fire App
July 12, 2013 | 1:37 pm

Kindle Fire AppLove The New York Times and want to read it on your Kindle Fire? Until this week, you had to settle for the Kindle edition, which gave you the articles but none of the multi-media content. No longer. Kindle Fire users can now run a New York Times app, with the features of the Android and iOS apps that have been available for a while now. The Next Web has a nice roundup of the features and a short interview with Paul Smurl, GM of Core Digital Products at The New York Times. We reviewed the New York Times app for Android and...

Kobo for Blackberry 10 Now Available
July 9, 2013 | 12:08 pm

KoboKobo has announced via their blog that Blackberry 10 users can now download a Kobo app of their very own. Users of the Z10 and Q10 models have a new app available to them with all of Kobo's signature features, including cross-device syncing, day and night modes and Reading Life stats. They also get a free book (Jessica Hagy's "How to Be Interesting After You Graduate" just for downloading. Happy reading!...