App of the week: Pocket Casts

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If you’re like me, you listen to a lot of podcasts, and you will know that it can be quite hard to keep track of what you have or haven’t listened to or what episodes are new. This week’s app of the week, Pocket Casts by Shifty Jelly, is perfect solution for Android users who want to keep track of all the different podcasts conveniently and easily. It automatically checks for new episodes and notifies you when new episodes pop through via RSS, and presents you with options to either stream or to download. The app will even delete any episodes which you have listened to automatically, and use smart playlists to isolate those episodes that you need to finish first. All this comes alongside a plethora of other useful features such as cross-platform subscription sync.

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On Android, the new version 4.0 follows the Holo guidelines to the letter, but manages to add its own flavour of red and white to the mix, making this one of the best looking apps I have ever used. While not quite as good-looking or feature-rich, the iOS version of the app still looks great. All in all, I seriously recommend this app to anyone who listens to podcasts.

Pocket Casts, Android (£2.70), iOS (£1.49)
Download from Google Play or the App Store

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App of the week: Boid for Twitter (Beta)

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When Android 4.0 came out, Matias Duarte, Google’s head of Android design, laid out a set of rules for ‘Holo’ style applications to go with the sweeping UI changes brought in by Ice Cream Sandwich. The guidelines have been adopted slowly, but the apps that have adopted them have risen to the top of their respective categories. One of these apps is Boid, a free Twitter client.

Team Boid set out with one objective – to make the best Twitter client. It makes effective use of the space on the screen, providing a tabbed interface that covers the entirety of Twitter. It also follows the Android design guidelines to the dot, making it a pleasure to use. The app is currently in beta, but don’t let that deter you from downloading it. The app is stable and packed full of features. The only notable omissions are autocompletion of usernames and push notifications, although both of these are planned for future releases. The team keeps users updated constantly through their Twitter account, and they have promised to push on with development (and a Chrome version) in the face of Twitter’s API changes.

Boid is available on Google Play for free, and I have been assured by the team that it will stay that way, and it is ideal for casual tweeters and power users alike.

Boid for Twitter (Beta), Android, Free
Download it from Google Play or visit the website

App of the week: Epic Meal Time

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Om Nom Nom EMT

Here at Digixav we all love some bacon strips and as such we all love Epic Meal Time, the YouTube show that brought you the Turbaconepicentipede and the candy pizza among other bacon-ridden crimes against health. Now Harley and the team have released a mobile game in conjunction with Molecube, and I believe it is great enough (ie. it has enough bacon) to be our app of the week.

When you play this game a variety of food (bacon strips, gay bacon strips, candy bacon, Turbaconepicentipedes etc.) come flying in from the side of the screen and it is your job to make sure that Sauce Boss eats as much unhealthy food as possible while avoiding the healthy stuff like carrots and broccoli. As you eat you gain points in the form of calories and grams of fat which get transformed into the in-game currency of Internet Money. This can then be used to buy upgrades and more food for Sauce Boss to devour. If you commit the cardinal sin and eat a vegetable, you lose a life, rather like Homer in Treehouse of Horror XI.

This is by far one of the best games that I have downloaded on Android or iOS. It is addictive, a great time waster, and all around hilarious for both those who have and haven’t watched the YouTube series. I would recommend it to anybody.

Epic Meal Time, Android (£1.24) and iOS (£1.49)
Buy it from Google Play and the App Store or visit the website

 

Windows Phone App of the Week: Ilomilo

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This week’s Windows Phone app of the week is Ilomilo by SouthEnd Interactive and Microsoft Game Studios.

In this game you play as two cute little creatures called Ilo and Milo. The story says that these two are best friends and as such they love to spend time together in the park, however they are always getting lost and as such they are constantly separated. It is your job to help them find their way back to each other. As you probably guessed, this is a puzzle game but, trying not to sound too clichéd, it is the most original puzzle game I have ever played. To get the two back together you have to use a combination of skill, teamwork and the help of very noisy box creatures to brave your way through the park and reunite probably the two cutest game characters I have ever had the pleasure to control. The game looks great, with simple yet good-looking graphics, that do nothing but add to the cuteness of Ilo and Milo. The gameplay itself is great, detailed, well thought out and incredibly simple to get the hang of, even if the controls can be a bit fiddly at times. Ilomilo is now my favourite game, not just on Windows Phone but across all mobile platforms, and although it is a pricey Xbox Live title, I thoroughly recommend it to all Windows Phone owners as it is £4 well spent.

Ilomilo, Windows Phone, £3.99
Download from the Marketplace or visit the website

App of the Week: Monsters Ate My Condo

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This week’s app of the week is Monsters Ate My Condo, a game from Adult Swim for iOS and Android. The game is simple – various monsters want feeding, and you do that by feeding them apartments. If you make a chain of 3 or more condos of the same colour, you get a shiny bronze combo condo, and then you gradually get all the way up to diamonds. Feeding shiny condos to the monsters activates special powers, and the game ends when a monster is neglected and goes on a rampage or your tower block falls over. Add in some seizure-inducing colours, wacky animation, a blue unicorn that vomits rainbows and a fat lady that sings when the game is over, and you have yourself a ridiculously addictive game.

Monsters Ate My Condo, iOS and Android, 69p
Download from the App Store or Google Play

WP7 AOTW: YouTube Pro

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Henry Hunt:

A while ago I did an app of the week post about an app called YouTube Pro, but due to the use of the YouTube name the app was removed from the Marketplace. Eager to enable people to get the best YouTube experience on Windows Phone, the developers just changed the name to SuperTube and re-submitted it. The two apps are basically identical save for the logo, but make sure you download SuperTube even if you already have YouTube Pro to ensure that you get the latest updates and features on your phone.

Originally posted on Digixav:

I’m sorry that I haven’t done an app of the week for a while, but I’ve been busy at this thing called school. But sitting here gated to my room on a Saturday night and listening to Garden by Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs inspired me to get back to the work that really matters. Without further ado, this week’s app of the week is YouTube Pro.

This fantastic app is better than any of the other YouTube apps that I have personally tried, simply because it is the only one I have tried that allowed you to log in to your YouTube account. Upon opening the app, you are faced with a Metro style start screen, you then slide along the panorama to view things such as the top rated videos and your subscriptions. However most of the interesting stuff is located on the first screen. The ‘Recorded Page’, where…

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Windows Phone App of the Week: Fhotoroom

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This week’s app of the week is Fhotoroom. To put it bluntly, it’s Instagram for Windows Phone. With this app, you can take and edit photos and then ruin enhance them with effects, writing and frames. You then can proceed to upload these either directly to Fhotoroom or to a number of places such as Facebook, Twitter, Flickr and Tumblr.

Upon entering the app, you are prompted to create an account and upload your first picture, which will be used as your profile picture. You are then able to proceed to edit and upload as many photos as you wish. Some of my personal masterpieces include a picture of bacon and multiple pictures of coffee.

But in all honesty, I recommend this app for the sole fact that the pictures that appear on the title screen are either really cool or contain boobs just hilarious.

Fhotoroom, Windows Phone, Free
Download from the Marketplace or visit the website

App of the week: Dungeon Hunter 3

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Well I never saw this coming – I have chosen an Android app of the week. If you have read some of my earlier articles, you will be as surprised as I am. The reason for this is that my mum got an award-winning Android tablet and, me being me, I had to play with it the second I came home from school and, having been using it for the last few hours I was inspired to do an Android AOTW. So here it is: This weeks Android AOTW it Dungeon Hunter 3.

This is the best android game I have played so far, but admittedly I haven’t played a lot, and I wish that it were available on more platforms. When you start playing the game, you have to chose between four different classes, each one with different strengths and weaknesses. I personally chose the warlord as I always chose the tank class, but you can also chose from the astromancer, trickster and the shaman. Once you choose your class you are then given a quick tutorial, showing you how to both play and upgrade you character. Once completed, you are then free to kill and maim to your hearts contempt.

The gameplay is very detailed, with each kill giving you both money and experience, slowly helping you to buy countless upgrades and items to help your character on their way to becoming invincible, but, for those more inpatient people out there, each level and mission comes with three additional goals that, when completed, give you a large boost to both gold and XP.  The game is easy to get the hang of, with the tutorial teaching you know all you need to know, but having played it for about two hours I can tell that completing it and fully upgrading your character is no mean feat. It will take countless hours of gameplay.

Dungeon Hunter 3, iOS and Android, Free
Download from Google Play or the App Store

Splashtop Metro Testbed lets you try Windows 8 on an iPad

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Xavier Voigt-Hill:

Want to try out Windows 8 on a tablet but you’ve only got an iPad? Splashtop could have the answer with its new Metro Testbed app, which gives users the chance to use the Windows 8 Consumer Preview in a simple iPad app.

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Splashtop Metro Testbed, iPad, £17.49
Download from the App Store or visit the website

Originally posted on Tech:

With $25, an iPad and a bit of curiosity, you can try Windows 8 on a tablet right now.

Splashtop, a maker of remote desktop software, has released a $25 iPad app called Win8 Metro Testbed. If you’ve got Windows 8 Consumer Preview running on a PC, Splashtop’s app will stream it to your iPad, while allowing for all the same touch gestures you’d get on a proper Windows 8 tablet. For example, you can switch apps by swiping from the left side of the screen or bring up a list of options–the “Charms” bar, as Microsoft calls it–by swiping from the right.

(MORE: Windows 8 Consumer Preview: One Step Closer to the PC’s Future)

On tech blogs like GigaOM, Splashtop is marketing Win8 Metro Testbed to Windows 8 app developers who don’t want to buy a Windows 7 tablet for testing. Chances are, a…

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Windows Phone AOTW: GIFStudio

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This week’s best Windows Phone app is GIFStudio by Daniel Gary.

This great app allows you to create animated GIFs from the comfort of your own Windows Phone. You use your phone camera to take a number of pictures that the app then stitches together into GIF form. You then can proceed to manipulate the GIF, by changing the speed, adding and removing frames, including those already saved on the phone, or sharing them with your friends. We at Digixav love GIFs and web have had quite a lot of fun with this app. Without GIFs, we would not have lives.

GIF Studio, Windows Phone,  £0.79
Download it from the Marketplace