Apps Fo Life

As I promised in an earlier post, I bring to you my first app reviews. I thought it would be good to start by reviewing my favorite apps. A favorite app for me is one that I use on a daily basis and require it to be functional and look bad ass. The first three apps I use to fill my social networking needs…Twitter for the iPad, MyPad+, and Instagram.

I don’t really need to say anything about the Twitter app since everyone uses it and there is hardly a competitor out their as far as I’m concerned. I am/was a diehard Tweetie fan so I love the interface, however I do miss the customization or personalization that the website gives you. What I mean is, maybe having some kind of customizing options available e.i. background picture…maybe. Also I did discuss with some friends about how it isn’t easy to find old tweets. We thought about maybe a calendar option that allows you to see your followers and your tweets from a selected day. I think it would be a nice feature.

The next app I use quite a bit is the Facebook app, MyPad, which looks literally like the Twitter app. Before I found this app I used to use the website and other various apps like Friendly…and all were horrible experiences. The website works fine, but is kind of annoying at times with notification and uploading pictures. Friendly was decent for a time, and had the chat integrated into it too, which was very nice. However it broke way too often and one update completely changed the whole look and feel and was filled with bugs. They finally went back to the old layout, but it was too late, they lost me. There are bugs with MyPad+, but they are less annoying and less frequent, and I LOVE the chat they just added.

Now Instagram isn’t a iPad app…but it still works great on the iPad and still fun to use. However taking pictures can be a pain with the iPad, it’s still fun to be a part of the exclusive iPhone community and enjoy sharing creative photographs.

The next couple apps are hard to categorize, a weather app and a radio app. I check the weather everyday to see what the week will look like for mini golf, frisbee golf, and if I will be skipping work for the beach. AccuWeather is a free weather app that has a beautiful UI and has so many great options. You can see the weekly forecast, the hourly forecast (24 hour), video reports, maps, etc. I highly recommend this app purely because of the UI and how it utilizes the touch interface to the fullest.

The next app I use is another iPhone app that serves it’s purpose on the iPad with no problems. The Rock102 app is an online streaming app for my favorite radio station in the MA/CT area, and it plays only the best classic rock. The radio station has great DJs and has Alice Cooper on at nights (syndicated), which is awesome. The app itself is pretty basic, volume controls, shows the song title and artist, but it also gives you a form to make requests on. If you like classic rock, you need to get this app.

My last batch of favorite apps are games. I found a lot of sweet games on the iPad, but only a few kept me playing weeks after I downloaded it. Those games are Carcassonne, Words With Friends, Tiny Wings, and Ticket to Ride (new)!

Carcassonne is board game adapted to the iPad and is just as fun. I won’t go into how it is played (far too complicated), but it is a game I can sit down and play on the fly and enjoy myself without too much of a commitment. You can play games with the AI or online with other players.

Another great game is Words With Friends, basically Scrabble, but a very colorful and playful UI. You can play with friends and it has a basic chat so you can smack talk. However their word library is pretty liberal as far as I’m concerned…allowing words like “CaCa” and “Prez”.

Another sweet game is Tiny Wings, I was just recently introduced too…and I was hooked from day 1. Not only is this game fun and addicting, but it changes everyday. The levels changes slightly in layout and color/patterns. It is, however, for the iPhone, but it still looks pretty good blown up on the iPad. Worth the $1 to download.

My newest favorite game is a classic board game by Days of Wonder that just recently made its way to the iPad. The illustrations are just like the box and board art giving it a very nostalgic feeling for those who played the board game. I won’t go into the details of the game, but trust me when I say you will enjoy it. Ticket to Ride isn’t hard to learn and the online multiplayer is great, with an already established online community from the desktop online play.

You can also buy the expansions of the game with an in-app purchase for 99 cents each, which is pretty reasonable. I have one little problem with the app however…at each post game screen where all the scores are added up, chat is disabled and you can’t go back to the board and examine it further. I would also like to be able to have the option of re-matching 1 or all of the same people, because right now you just exit and have to start another game. Overall, it’s worth the $7 to download.

I hope you check out all of these apps and I hope you enjoy them as much as I have. More app reviews to come, so stay tuned. Let me know if you find better Twitter, Facebook, or photo-sharing apps!

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About Kevin Coté

I am a graphic design consultant and freelance designer by trade. I have been working for M&R Liquors for 5 years now and have enjoied the liquor industry. Here my thoughts that will range from Design and Liquor to Politics and Movies...but mostly Design and Liquor.
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