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Monthly Archives: January 2012

WEBOS NEWS [TOUCHPAD] – REVIEW (79%)

webOS News is a news feed gather application releases by SpinBytes, Inc.

“webOS News gathers content from the leading webOS news feeds and blogs and brings it all to you in an elegant and organized way. You can even see a section for each of the major competitor platforms. Scan through the latest headlines or view each article in full screen.”

This application allows your to view news feeds on webOS and the competition. For those of us who are still very interested in webOS information this application pulls from some of the best sources around – including PreCentral (webOSnation), webOSroundup and an excellent review site 😉

The articles are pulled direct from the RSS / XML feeds of the website, so as soon as an article is live it is available in the application to read. The application pulls back the last nine articles for each site. 

Articles are viewed within the application, this does mean that the article is not full screen, so may not look as good as within the browser, but generally most sites look fine.

Once viewing an article you can select to share via email, sms, print, or open the original article in the browser.

It is a shame that you are not able to modify the list of feeds the application pulls from, as I have little interest in RIM and would like to added another webOS site, but that would really undermines what the application is doing by giving you the news without you having to think about the source, especially as several webOS websites have come and gone over the last few months. 

The user interface is very good and easy to get the hang of, making it simply to browse and select an article.

On the upside:

  • Clean and clear interface.
  • The three column view is used nicely to move back to the feeds after viewing the article.
  • They have selected some of the best news feeds around for you.

On the downside:

  • Sometimes has issues showing images, but this may be due to the feeds that are used.
  • Sometimes will fail to load a feed and you need to close and re-open the application to see it again.
  • Lacking a little on the preference side.

Overall, this is a great source of webOS news and information all in one place. There is really nothing here that you could not do with your own favorite RSS reader and a little time and effort, but why bother when this application does it all for you and you know it will be kept up to date for you. If you have any interest in webOS information, this application is well worth having.

Rating: 79%

Size: 3.4 MB

Price (at time of review): Free

Link: webOS News – SpinBytes, Inc.

 
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Posted by on January 27, 2012 in App - Life Style, Reviews, Touchpad, webOS

 

HANK HAZARD [IPHONE] – REVIEW (81%)

Hank Hazard is an puzzle game released by Chillingo Ltd.

So you thought Evel Knievel was the last of the daredevils? Guide Hank, encased in his hamster ball, through increasingly challenging stunt courses while collecting stars and secret coins. Varied game mechanics and incredible level design make Hank Hazard: The Stunt Hamster a supreme arcade-puzzle experience.

Gameplay wise, Hank will appear in a the level. Hank needs to get to the target to complete the level. You need to try and collect all of the stars in the level along the way (3 stars per level) and there is also a NUTS! challenge on each level, these are challenges on the number of moves, time taken or a speed / height reached.

The game offers over 90 levels to play through so this will take some time to complete.

There are various objects on the level that will help you complete the levels and various dangers that will make you die and need to replay the level again.

The early levels are easy to solve and normally the stars are simple to get. However, as the game progresses the levels get harder, stars are missed and some of the levels will stump you. Luckily the game allows you to skip levels, so these hard levels do not need to be show stoppers.

A lot of the levels depend on speed and timing, so if you do not like using your reactions rather than your mind to solving puzzles then you need to consider it.

The game is tapping on objects on the level to remove the object or activate it.

The graphics are cute and nicely done.

On the upside:

  • Lots of levels to play through.
  • Some well designed and fun puzzles.

On the downside:

  • Not Universal.
  • Positioning is vital to complete the level.

Overall, this is a fun game. There is nothing new here, we have seen this type of game before. However, it is well done and generally taken the best parts of similar games. Hank is a loveable character and the puzzles are challenging. It is a real shame that it is not currently a universal app, as I think it would have benefited from the larger screen size.

Rating: 81%

Size: 18.9 MB

Price (at time of review): £0.69

Link: Hank Hazard – Chillingo Ltd

 
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Posted by on January 26, 2012 in Game - Puzzle, iPhone/iPod Touch, Reviews

 

FREE APP ROUND-UP (JAN 26 2012) [TOUCHPAD]

Only two free Touchpad applications get the round up treatment today.

enyo API : 65%

This application is a reference manual for the Enyo APIs. So a bit of a niche market. It allows you to browse the information either by packages or by Index. The information is very useful for anyone using Enyo or have an interest in using it. This is a reference manual, so will not teach how to program Enyo. I could not help feeling the application could have used a search option. Not the most exciting application in the world, but a very good reference manual.

NooNavi HD : 58%

An interesting puzzle game, that looks very nice. You move a shape around a 3D building collecting power ups and points along the way. It can only be played in Portrait mode. Sadly this game is let down by the lack of clear instructions, what is there clears ups some questions, but leaves many more. The biggest issues with the game are the controls, you often zoom in or rotate away from play as you try to interact with the game. It is an interesting idea that needs more work.

 
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Posted by on January 26, 2012 in Free App Round Up, Touchpad, webOS

 

E NOTES [TOUCHPAD] – REVIEW (82%)

E Note is a Evernote based notes application released by PetzApps.

“E Notes is an app for accessing the Evernote® account in webOS tablet, this application uses the Evernote® API for accessing notes.”

Evernote is probably one of the original web based services that allows you to add / edit notes and upload and sync to the internet.

This application is designed to allow you to add and edit existing notes and sync them with the cloud (when you have a connection available).

E Note is not an official Evernote application, so does not have all the Evernote features, but the majority are there. You will log on as normal and then have access to your Evernote account. Considering Evernote have decided not to update their webOS application this is really going to be the only way to use Evernote using an application.

You are able to add notebooks and add tags within the application. Adding a note within the application is simple, and you can read existing notes. If there are attachments then e Note will allow you to view most of these without any issues.

There are one or two features that are still only available on the web based / desktop services, such as adding audio or photos, but in the main this application is fairly fully featured now.

The user interface is very good, which nice use of the three column view.

It has to be said that Evernote has a good web interface which gives access to many of the same features so useability wise this application has only a slight advantage. It is also a shame that this application loses the advantage of being an offline app, as it needs to log in Evernote first.

On the upside:

  • Nice user interface for Evernote.
  • Easy to add plain text notes.

On the downside:

  • Official Evernote Desktop or iOS apps do a better job.
  • The Evernote API does limit some of the features.

Overall, this is a great application to use Evernote, especially as the official Evernote app is going to stay as a limited and emulated phone app. If you are an Evernote user and not keen on the web interface you will love this application. The application does have its limitations and I wish they could find a way to have some offline functionality. The bottom line is this application will do 95% of want you want, so give it a go.

Rating: 82%

Size: 3.5 MB

Price (at time of review): £0.80

Link: E Notes – PetzApps

 
 

I BELONG IN YOUR ARMS (CHAIRLIFT) – S.O.T.W. – REVIEW (66%)

I Belong in your arms by Chairlift is this weeks free single of the week.

This song is a fair release from iTunes.

Apple has this marked as an alternative track.

The music track is fairly bouncy and sounds very much from the 80’s with its drums and electronic keyboard. The music seems to bumble along rather than having real focus.

The song is sung by the female singer, the lyrics are clear most of the time, but sometimes lost to the music. 

This song grow on little on me as I listened a second time, but not that much.

Overall, the track is fair, it was not that bad, but for a 3 minute song it just seemed to go in several directions without getting anywhere other than repeating the song title a dozen or so times.

Rating: 66%

Price (at time of review): Free

Link: I Belong In Your Arms – Single – Chairlift

 
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Posted by on January 25, 2012 in Music, Reviews, Single of the week