Hi! Welcome to another session of AA (Appaholics Anonymous).
I’m Vern, and I have an app problem. I have too many apps and not enough space.
At the meeting last week I owned up to my problem and decided to do something about it. I had a public purging and deleted a variety of apps including a goodly number of news and photo adjustment apps. I didn’t realize just how hard it is to purge an app once its found a place in your iOS inventory. I deleted Photoshop Express and several others only to have them reappear on my phone and iPad. It’s like I’m being haunted. Or maybe the apps know best. Maybe they think I really didn’t want to delete them, that it was just a phase I’m going through, like that time in college people never talk about.
These apps need to understand that this is different. This app habit of mine has to stop. Already it’s affecting my job (Angry Birds in the can), my social life (I check news and messages instead of talking to the people I’m with), and my family (Zombie Gunship at 2AM).
The problem goes beyond reappearing apps. One danger is just how insidiously cheap iOS apps are. Real Racing GTI from Fire Mint for instance, is a console quality race game with a variety of tracks, views, stats, upgrades and more. I’m wowed every time I play it yet it’s free! You can buy other versions, but even those top out at only seven bucks. That’s 2 small lattes from Starbucks, or a six-pack of beer, or 2 gallons of gas, none of which offers the depth of fun Real Racing can give.
I went ahead and paid for Real Racing 2 HD so that I could play it on my iPad 2 with iOS 5 running. It’s pretty sweet because now, with AirPlay mirroring, I can throw the video up on my 42 inch plasma TV, and it rocks!!
Real Racing GTI, All you need are bug splats.
So, Real Racing GTI is the first to get the axe this week, but only because I don’t need two versions. If you don’t have it or any other Real Racing games, get this.
While we’re in the games category, I’m letting Billy Frontier survive the boot. Don’t feel bad if you’ve never heard of this very odd Pangea Software offering, it’s not one of their more popular games, but it’s a lot of fun. Billy Frontier is a hodgepodge of SciFi/Western themed games. The graphics are basic, but decent, the games are different (try Swamp Stampede), and now there’s an ad supported free version available.
It’s a good game, but when I play Pangea games I usually wind up playing Nanosaur 2 or Cro-Mag Rally, both AirPlay Mirroring capable. But Billy Frontier is an excellent time waster, so grab the free version.
Billy Frontier Swamp Stampeded. Run Billy!
OK, Since I’m confessing I may as well tell you that there is one app I’ve had since I first talked about it in this column many months ago that I continue to fire up occasionally. It’s not a game, or utility app, it’s not even a magazine, at least not in any conventional sense of the word. It’s a guilty pleasure chock full of eye candy, and, oddly enough, photography tips.
I’m talking about the Victoria’s Secret app. I’m not ashamed. I’m a man and I can appreciate a great body, and the Vicky Sue app gives me lots to appreciate.
What’s surprising is that I’ve learned a bit about what goes on behind the scenes at those high class photo shoots. To say that a lot is done with smoke and mirrors would be an understatement. As an acolyte photographer I can also appreciate the effort that goes into making those beauties beautiful.
Also, it’s a well-made app. It has a slick interface, lots of multimedia stuff to look through, interviews, stories and more. And it’s just not tough to enjoy seeing gorgeous women in their lacy unmentionables.
Because it overflows with feminine beauty, and great articles (wink, wink), the Victoria’s Secret app gets to stay, but it’s not helping my purging efforts not one bit.
OK, moving on to one final app for this week. When Apple released iOS 5 earlier this week it also released a bevy of other apps. All small and seemingly inconsequential to anyone but the makers of similar apps. One such app is iTunes Movie Trailers.
Yawn! Big deal, you say?
Heck yeah it’s a big deal, because the app is freebie sweetness personified. As the name implies, the app shows off iTunes movie trailers on your iOS device of choice, but just look at that interface! Trailers start playing quickly and in the highest resolution your device is capable of, but it doesn’t stop there. Nuh-uh!
iTunes Movies Trailers rocks! But won’t buy popcorn.
You can find out when a movie will be released, check local theater listings (including a Google based map of locations), even buy tickets. Each trailer comes with a synopsis, and if the movie is playing a rating system lets you know if it’s worth your time and money.
Now the only movie related app I need to keep is IMDB. I’m purging Showtimes which I used whenever I wanted movie info. I liked the interface and it was quick enough. Both are freebies and both worth a look.
If I were you I’d compare the three and keep the ones you like best.
OK, that’s a wrap for this week. More free apps below with direct links.