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Monday, 2 May 2016

Sync.ME - Caller ID & Spam Block - App Review



Do you get irritated with pesky telemarketers, or other people you would rather didn't attempt to phone you? This App will help that feeling, as well as some rather pleasant by-products.

Now for the ACIDS test:

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The first thing you need to do is register your own number through the App. This is in order to enable you to synchronise your contacts on Sync.ME (one of the by-products).

Having done that, you can synchronise your Facebook, Linkedin, and Google+ contacts. This means that when you are called by one of them (or look at their contact details), you will see their mug shot in all its glory.

By accessing the settings option you can set your Sync.ME record and any change will be reflected to any other contacts using the system (very useful for a change of address or phone number).

The settings also allow you to detect spam and telemarketers from Sync.ME's database, so you could be sure that the unknown (to you) number calling isn't worth replying to.

There is also a reverse number look-up feature which is useful, although (not unexpectedly) not totally comprehensive.

Cost
The App Costs $0, although there is also a premium feature to unlock additional numbers.

Indispensability
If you really want contact photos or better call screening, this App covers both.

Dependability
The App can obviously only check against the Sync.ME database and your social network contacts who have the same information as on your contact details.

Security
You need to share your mobile number and then access to your contact details. The social media information you receive should only be the publicly available information.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Very useful in more than one way.

To find out how the ACIDS Test works, click here.


You can get Sync.ME - Caller ID & Spam Block here and support for the App here.


Tuesday, 26 April 2016

Weafo - App Review



Have there ever been times when all you anted to do was transfer a file from one iOS device to another? This App aims to resolve that simple, but sometimes frustrating procedure.

Now for the ACIDS test:

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Check that both iOS devices are on the same wi-fi network.

Press Start on the first device. At the top of the screen will appear two addresses. The first is in the form http://192.168.x.xxx and the second http://name_of_your_device.local.

Enter the address in a web browser (such as Safari) on the second device.

The first device will now ask for confirmation that you are allowing access to your device.

On the second device add the items that you wish to transfer. These will automatically be listed on the first device.

Tap Start and it's done.

Cost
The App Costs $0. This includes the transfer of 3 files per week. You can purchase additional bandwidth via an in-App purchase.

Indispensability
This is a simple way to transfer files, and knowing that the file you transfer is also the one received and not whatever iOS e-mail decides to do.

Dependability
The App works.

Security
This obviously needs to be used with care as you are giving access to your data.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Easy file transfer between iOS devices.

To find out how the ACIDS Test works, click here.


You can get Weafo here and support for the App here.


Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Digits, the calculator for humans - App Review



Oh no, yet another calculator for iOS... maybe not.

For those of you old enough to remember calculators with tally rolls, this is much more like that but, editable.

Now for the ACIDS test:

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The calculator part is pretty much as you would expect, although with the additional possibility of customising colours, and various other bells and whistles. It's not that we're playing down these items but, the real differentiator is on the left of the screen...

The tape is what will make you able to confirm that your calculation is correct. You can see the values and operators entered and check their accuracy.

The real magic is that by touching on any of these values, you can edit them; this can save you an awful lot of time.

Cost
The App Costs $4.

Indispensability
A calculator, for sure. One where you can check and edit calculations; probably depends on how you are going to use it.

Dependability
The App is very easy to use and reliable.

Security
The App is self-contained, so no concerns on this front.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Back to the old days with all modern convenience; great App.

To find out how the ACIDS Test works, click here.


You can get Digits, the calculator for humans here and support for the App here.


Thursday, 14 April 2016

Fuel - App Review



If you are keen on maintaining fuel consumption records for your vehicles, this App could be right up your street.

Now for the ACIDS test:

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You start off by adding a vehicle, to which you assign a name, type, fuel type and optional comment.

The Settings screen allows you to pick units kilometre or miles, as well as the consumption type (litres/100 kilometres, or miles per gallon); handily these are set independently so you can mix imperial and metric units.

Now, net time you stop at a petrol station you can use the Fill ups option.

You can then have access to information to consumption and costs.

Cost
The App Costs $2.

Indispensability
Obviously you can use a spreadsheet for this information but, this is a neat alternative.

Dependability
Fuel is an iPhone App which works in 1x and 2x modes on an iPad. It is extremely simple to use and reliable, although you need to have a certain amount of data before it becomes truly useful.

Security
You can copy your data to Dropbox (Dropbox/Apps/FuelApp), as well as e-mail a csv file.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Keep a track of your vehicle consumption with ease.

To find out how the ACIDS Test works, click here.


You can get Fuel here and support for the App here.


Friday, 8 April 2016

Text Crafter 2 - App Review



TextCrafter is a notes app for iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch. It is much more than the built-in iOS Notes App; if you need more, take a look at this.

Now for the ACIDS test:

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The App has a few helpful hints when you get started; spent the short minute reviewing this, it will be worthwhile.

Writing a note is as simple as you would imagine, which is a good thing.

The real power of the App is in the Settings menu. Here you can have access to:

Editing Theme - set the font, size and light/dark
Link Shortening Service - choose from is.gd, BitLy, TinyURL, TinyCC
Note Tags - choose from coloured points or icons

Editing notes includes the ability to change the appearance of the text, and your notes can be arranged with colourful tags (rather than the ubiquitous text).

There are other great little bits like easy access to special characters, and snippets (so much used items are easy to paste into text).

Cost
The App Costs $6.

Indispensability
A Note App is essential; if the built-in App doesn't have enough bells and whistles then, give this a go.

Dependability
The App works.

Security
It is easy to share via e-mail, iMessage, or social networks; the usual double-edged sword.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Notes on steroids.

To find out how the ACIDS Test works, click here.


You can get Text Crafter 2 here and support for the App here.


Monday, 4 April 2016

Kanbana - App Review



'Kanbana is a simple graphical task board that helps you visualise and optimise your personal workflow'; this is what the developers promise.

From Wikipedia, the definition of Kanban is "(literally signboard or billboard in Japanese) is a scheduling system for lean manufacturing and just-in-time manufacturing."

For the moment, we'll view it as a to-do system that is visual.

Now for the ACIDS test:

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To learn to use the App in double quick time, spend under 2 minutes watching this Video.

The App comes pre configured with columns titled: Todo in the Future, Todo This Week, Todo Today, Evaluate & Refine, and Completed. You can add to these columns by tapping and holding outside the right-hand edge and entering your own, which can then be easily dragged into the appropriate place.

To enter a Todo, simply press and hold anywhere and type your item then choose a colour; this can then be dragged to the appropriate column (unless of course you entered it in the required column in the first place).

You can then reorder and edit each item.

Cost
The basic App is free, if you want Cloud data sync (for multiple devices), this costs $9, and the fully-featured version is $3 per month.

Indispensability
As I've said many times, a to-do system is essential to getting things done. If you haven't got one that works well for you then, take a look at Kanbana; it's different.

Dependability
This is an extremely simple App to use.

Security
This is a standalone App, unless you upgrade and then you can access your data from multiple iOS devices, as well as a PC.

ACIDS Test Rating:

A to-do list system that's good enough for Toyota.

To find out how the ACIDS Test works, click here.


You can get Kanbana here and support for the App here.


Tuesday, 29 March 2016

Orderly - App Review



Oh no, not another to-do list App. This one could well be worth a second look as it promises "Orderly is designed based on how the human-mind visualises to-do lists! Shown in three levels at a glance, you can quickly decide which ones to work on and what's coming soon. Set note colours, fonts and font sizes to visually aid you in classifying the to-dos.

Now for the ACIDS test:

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On the home screen you will find 'Info' from where you can get 'How to'. This will lead you through some screen grabbed pages which show some of the features of the App and how to use them.

For those of you (that makes most of us) who would rather just get stuck in, click the '+' at the top left of the screen and create a new folder, assigning it a colour, or better still an icon. You will now automatically be able to create an item by tapping the '+' at the top right of the screen (do not worry that your folder has not appeared). You enter a title for this to-do (and that might be all you do), and then add any items in a list. You also can select due dates and priorities (High, Medium, Low).

The App includes a powerful search facility which can bring up all items that are relevant.

Your To-dos are neatly shown as lists and can be changed for priority and order on the screen by dragging; very intuitive.

Cost
The App Costs a nominal $1.

Indispensability
Regular readers will know that a to-do list is an absolute 'must-have', and more importantly, 'must use' App. Orderly could just be a very good solution for those who want something more intuitive than a straight list.

Dependability
The only irritating item found was that when entering items in a list tapping 'Next' makes the on-screen keyboard disappear.

Security
You can synchronise your files with Dropbox. The files are saved in Dropbox/Apps/Orderly as JSON; for those of you who would like to edit the items on a PC, enjoy.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Mixed App and to-do with finger control.

To find out how the ACIDS Test works, click here.


You can get Orderly here and support for the App here.


Wednesday, 23 March 2016

Places Around - App Review



Looking for something near you, or in the environs of a particular place? 'Places Around' aims to help you out.

Now for the ACIDS test:

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Choose from one of the listed categories:

ATM
Bakeries
Banks
Bars
Beauty Salons
Book Stores
Bus Stops
Car Rental
Car Repair
Car Wash
Casinos
Churches
Clothing Stores
Coffee Shops
Department Stores
Doctors
Electronic Stores
Fire Stations
Gas Stations
Groceries
Gyms
Hindu Temples
Hospitals
Hotels
Libraries
Meal Delivery
Mosques
Movie Theatres
Museums
Parking
Parks
Pharmacies
Police
Post Offices
Restaurants
Shoe Stores (don't tell my wife about that one)
Shopping Malls (or that one)
Spas
Synagogues
Taxis
Train Stations
Travel Agencies
Zoos

Then the App will instantly return a map of where you are with pins dropped at the relevant places. Tap on a pin for further information, including additional views).

In addition you can also enter a place name and search for that location.

The App is well-designed and very easy to use.

Cost
The App Costs $2.

Indispensability
There are plenty of ways to find particular places but, this App serves as a 'one stop shop' so is very useful.

Dependability
The App is designed for the iPhone and Apple Watch, and works in 1x and 2x modes on an iPad.

In testing, all the places that purported to be in the vicinity indeed were but, there were also lots of known locations which should also have been flagged, regardless of category.

Security
The App needs access to your location in order to work (fairly obvious really). The App is self-contained, so no other concerns on this front.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Useful but should contain more places.

To find out how the ACIDS Test works, click here.


You can get Places Around here and support for the App here.


Thursday, 17 March 2016

WiFi Mouse HD - App Review



This App promises to transform your phone into a wireless keyboard, remote desktop, track pad and more.

Now for the ACIDS test:

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In order to get started, obviously having already downloaded the App, you then need to download the Mouse server from here.

All you then need to do is run the App, as well as the software on your PC (available for Windows, Mac, and Linux).

Provided that your PC and iPhone are on the same network, the App will immediately connect your iPhone as an input device for our PC. You can now simply enter text from a keyboard, as well as use the screen as a mouse.

Just for fun, and to prove to myself that this works, most of this review was written using the App.

The fact is that, especially for a remote App, the set-up is an absolute breeze.

Cost
The basic App is absolutely free and there are in-App purchases to add additional features.

Indispensability
Obviously, this is down to user preference. I would however suggest that if you have a surface and no keyboard then, the App allows you to keep the whole Surface screen real estate and still have a keyboard. Being able to use a screen positioned to the left/right is also much easier than a track pad.

Dependability
This App and the software work and didn't fail, not even once, during testing.

Security
It depends how paranoid you are but, of course, your keystrokes are transmitted via your wi-fi network.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Free input device; you can't buy one of those in a shop.

To find out how the ACIDS Test works, click here.


You can get WiFi Mouse HD here and support for the App here.


Friday, 11 March 2016

GoPro App - App Review



If you are the lucky owner (or even user) of a GoPro Camera then the chances are that you are very happy with your product (I certainly am).

The one thing that you might crave is a way to remotely start/stop the camera... and perhaps more. This is App is for you; it does much, much more than that. (how about editing for a start).

Now for the ACIDS test:

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The first thing to do is connect your iOS device with the GoPro Camera. The important thing to remember is to have cycled to ensure that wi-fi is turned on and then connect your iOS device to that network.

You now have the choice between

Control
Here, not only to you have a live feed from your GoPro Camera but you can also start and stop recording by touching a large red button; that's the most basic function. You are also able to set the resolution, frames per second, field of view, low light setting, and spot meter. Additional settings are available for multi-shot and photo, as well as set-up (orientation, default mode, LED blinking, beeps, video format, and setting the date and time). There is also direct access to the battery state and SD card capacity (both used and available).

and

Media
this displays the content of your SD card. In order to delete an item it just needs selecting and putting in the bin. You can also take clips of 5, 109, or 30 seconds from an existing recording, or grab a photo from any individual frame.

Cost
The App Costs $0... obviously it only works with a GoPro Camera but, that's considerably less than a dedicated remote control.

Indispensability
If you need to remotely control your GoPro Camera, which is essential in cases such as on a helmet (you look pretty silly looking for a mirror to check the 'on' light is flashing) then, you need this App, let alone that you can ensure that the field of vision is what you were hoping for.

Dependability
The App really is brilliant although a very minor criticism is that although you can turn the GoPro Camera off through the App, it cannot be turned back on (or at least I didn't mange it).

Security
The App is self-contained, so no concerns on this front.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Perfect companion for the GoPro Camera and at a price you cannot refuse.

To find out how the ACIDS Test works, click here.


You can get GoPro App here and support for the App here.