After a rather long break, we are back with our list of the best iOS apps we came across over the past week. Personally, it feels good to be back with iOS, with iPhone 6 Plus and iOS 8 bringing fresh new feel to the experience. Technically, nothing much has changed since iOS 7. The App Store continues to get pounded with several new apps and games from old and new developers, most of which are run-of-the-mill. It has become increasingly difficult to spot quality apps from the rest (not sure if it’s because I was away from iOS for almost an year), but thanks to the personal suggestions from some of you, we have managed to collect some real good apps and games released (or updated) over the past week or two.
We don’t usually rank the apps in any order while listing them out here, but this one deserves to be highlighted right away. PhotoMath is a fresh free app for iOS which is described as the world’s first smart camera calculator. It uses your smartphone’s camera to scan math equations and solve them, but it will also show you the steps involved. It’s obvious that many of you are wondering if this is bad for the students, but the sheer idea to use OCR for something like this blows our mind. Deliberate on the use case later, but go ahead and download this free app first.
Inbox by Gmail (Free)
A pretty significant release this week is from google, which has tried to reimagine the way we handle Emails. While keeping Gmail as-is, Google has released a new app (developed by the guy who made Sparrow app) that bundles in reminders, and collapses similar messages together. Inbox does the heavy lifting and bubble the most important messages on top for you. You can also snooze e-mails and reminders, so you can tune out from threads you aren’t directly involved in, or tasks you can get to right now. It’s still invite-based.
Flickr for iPad (Free)
Yahoo has woken up from slumber and has finally launched the Flickr app for the most sold tablet in the world. It’s intact an universal update for Flickr, which now works as one app for both iPhone and iPad. The app looks beautiful with its full screen images and large-touchscreen interface. If you’re an active Flickr user, it’s a no brainer to update. Even otherwise, it makes a beautiful viewing thanks to thousands of beautiful photographs featured there.
Alien Blue (Free)
Alien Blue has been around for a while as one of the best unofficial Reddit clients. But recently, Reddit bought Alien Blue and made it the official Reddit client. It’s a clean, mobile-friendly version of the site, allowing users to keep up on threads and receive notifications as well as discover new subreddits. For a short while, you can even upgrade to the Pro version for free. If you like to browse Reddit frequently, this is the best mobile app you can get.
NBA 2K15 ($7.99)
2K is back with their latest NBA iteration, and this time it offers substantially improved graphics while playing, and a new MyCareer mode that has players work through a storyline by doing stuff like answering questions at press conferences and training their custom-made character. It’s compatible with iPhone 5+, iPad 4+, iPad mini 2+ and will not run on earlier devices. The sound track is composed by Pharrell Williams. 2K has also released NHL 2K if you like Hockey.
From the good folks at Hipstamatic comes a brand new photo editing app called TinType. Inspired by daguerreotypes, tintypes, and other photographic processes from over a hundred years ago, TinType faithfully reproduces these amazing images with stunning accuracy. You can completely tweak stuff like depth of field, eye intensity and colors, and can easily share to Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and more.
Rovio has had a tough time to replicate the humongous success they got with Angry Birds. They have deliberately moved away from the franchise and are trying new stuff, one of which is Retry. It features the one-touch controls and sensitive impact areas of the insanely difficult physics game Flappy Bird. Fly through treacherous obstacles, and earn stars to unlock new worlds. Try and Retry till you get that best score!
Pixelmator for iPad ($4.99)
Pixelmator has been a runaway success on Mac with its beautiful and powerful image editing software. The developers have now brought the same to iPad. The Pixelmator app works seamlessly between an iPad and Mac, so you can keep working on your projects while on the go or at your desk. And even work effortlessly with people who use Adobe Photoshop. We weren’t able to test drive this app, but the initial reviews have all been positive and encouraging.
Facebook’s latest experiment is an iOS app based on the good old chat rooms. Aptly named Rooms, it lets you join live discussion groups about any number of topics without having to register an account or anything. You’ll be able to share text, photos and videos with the room. It’s an interesting way of allowing anonymous discussion with like-minded set of people.
Drop by Jawbone (Free)
Jawbone, popular for its Jambox speakers has rolled out an interesting app called Drop which allows users to manage group playlists with tweets. Unveiled at Twitter’s Flight conference, Drop takes advantage of Twitter’s newly announced Fabric platform so that Rdio and Spotify playlists can be controlled by groups of friends with tweets. We have seen crowdsourcing can work wonders, so this can very well be a hit. Give it a try.