No, Steve Jobs has not had a change of heart overnight. Skyfire, a browser application that we had written about in early September is finally ready for approval and will hit the App Store tomorrow. Like we had mentioned last time, this browser app will render Adobe Flash content on iOS devices without violating any of the terms that Apple has set on its app developers.
What Skyfire basically does is that it uses a proxy browser to remotely interpret Flash content and transcodes them into an iOS compatible format before it is rendered on the iPhone, iPod Touch or iPad. This does not violate any of Apple’s terms since all the transcoding happens remotely and not over the application on the users’ end.
However, a point to note here. This application will only help you “watch” Flash based content and you cannot interact with them. That means, playing Flash games on your iPhone is still not available as yet. Skyfire for iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad should be available on the App Store at a price of $2.99 starting tomorrow.
One thing that is commonplace when an iPhone (or for that matter any gadget) gets stolen or spied upon is that the thief attempts to unlock your device by trial and error with a series of passcodes. iGotYa is a new iPhone application that makes use of this common user behavior to help owners find culprits.
iGotYa is set up in such a way that the application will take a picture as well as tag the location of the iPhone every time a user inputs a wrong passcode. This is assuming the person uses the trial and error method to break into the phone. This picture is taken with the front camera of the iPhone 4 and the picture and location details are sent down to an already specified email address of the owner. The application also has other options like letting the thief in, but hiding sensitive details like messages, call history, mail,etc.
Now the sad part is that this application is not available for non-jailbroken iPhones. For those who have already jailbroken their device, you can check the app out on the ModMyi repository on Cydia and can purchase it for $4.99.
Amazon is an undisputed leader when it comes to book shopping on the web. But how about taking on competition from the traditional brick and mortar stores? The etailer has just introduced a new barcode scanning feature that will help the company take on these rivals by letting customers scan barcodes of books from these shops to compare prices on Amazon and if required, purchase the book online.
The new version 1.2.8 of the Amazon iPhone app is now available for free from the App Store. However, the barcode scanning feature will only work with the iPhone 3GS and the recently launched iPhone 4 units running an iOS version of 4.0 and above.
Another thing that this new feature in the app will take advantage of is the fact that book shoppers tend to purchase books in a heap. Such purchases are often awarded with free shipping on Amazon which means that users will have a more convenient delivery of books home with Amazon. You can check out this new app on the App Store by clicking here.
If you have not heard about Google Goggles yet, you have definitely missed something that is truly a hallmark of emerging search engine technology. The technology has been in the works at Google for a long time and lets users search using pictures. For instance, you could capture a picture with your camera of a local landmark and Google will recognize the picture and immediately return results that are relevant to the picture captured.
The Google Goggles functionality has been available on Android since December last year and though the functionality is still far from perfect, it is still seen as one of the promising new search technologies. It is then of interest to iPhone users that the Google Goggles functionality has finally made it to the App Store. This feature is now available as part of the Google Mobile application and can be accessed by tapping on the small camera button that is available on the new version of the app available for free download from the App Store [iTunes link].
Do note that the Goggles functionality is not comprehensive. Google explains,
“Computer vision is a hard problem and Google Goggles is still a Labs product. It works well for things such as landmarks, logos and the covers of books, DVDs and games. However, it doesn’t yet work for some things you might want to try like animals, plants or food.”
eBay-owned Paypal has been bringing a number of innovative technologies to the iPhone. After letting users to ‘bump’ their phones in order to exchange contacts and send money with their earlier update, Paypal has now announced yet another update to their iPhone app that will make it easier for users to deposit money into their account.
The new electronic check deposit feature will allow users to simply capture a picture of the front and back sides of their checks and submit it electronically for the money to be automatically transferred from the bank to their Paypal accounts.
While this is definitely a convenient way to transfer money, not all users are happy. A review of the new feature on the App Store brings up a very pertinent point,
“PayPal proudly announced the new check deposit feature last week to much fanfare, claiming this version would be released in a day or so. Well, try several days. It’s immediately slower, but it’s worth it, right? After all, we’ve suffered for years with PayPal pretending we have to wait three business days for ACH transfers to happen, so at least now we’ll have a way to deposit funds instantly. Oh, think again! Now they want us to believe that instead of same-business day crediting that’s a normal part of Check 21, we’re supposed to wait six business days “or longer” for the deposit. Yes, seriously. Whatever you do, don’t use this feature; you’d be better off mailing your check to a bank in another state! PayPal stands to make a fortune off the float on these check deposits. Unreal!”
You can still check out the new version of the app by clicking here.
While a lot of popular iOS applications first made their debut on the iPhone before moving to the newer iPad platform, Netflix has chosen then alternate route to make features available first on the iPad. This makes sense considering that the iPad is the better media consumption device of the two and is the go-to platform for users who want to watch movies and TV shows.
The company has now released a new update to the iPhone app that brings the popular TV-out functionality of the iPad app to the iPhone. This will now allow users to connect their iPhone to a TV to watch Netflix streamed movies and television shows on TV. Do remember that you will need an AV dock to connect the iPhone to TV. You can either choose to buy an Apple-certified AV cable or pick one of those third party cloned accessories.
An app to make free calls from your iPhone? CallCoin is a new app that lets you earn coins for answering surveys and playing online games and use these coins to make VoIP calls over the application. The application offers users 5 coins to begin with and VoIP call rates begin at 7 coins per minute which means you will need to answer at least one survey in order to begin using the iPhone application.
However, you will need to remember that there is no free lunch and so when you do get something for free, there are other risks at stake. According to a review on AppShopper, the application refers users to various third party websites to answer surveys and these surveys request personal information on a lot of occasions without any guarantee against misuse. So you may need to take a look at this application at your own peril.
We are also hearing negative reviews with regards to the call quality that cannot be vouched for at the moment. In any case, if you are looking to give this free app a try first, go ahead and download the app from the App Store by clicking here.
Google has released a new version 3.1.0 of their Google Earth app for iPhone that brings support to retina display on the recently launched iPhone 4. Besides this, the latest release also brings Ocean content layer and Underwater bathymetry and ocean surface information to the iPhone user.
The latest release brings the iOS app on par with the Android counterpart. Google had only last month introduced the ocean discovery feature to their Android app. Not surprisingly, the new iOS app is free to download and is compatible over iOS 3.0 and higher and support the iPhone, iPod Touch as well as the iPad.
The Google Earth app for iOS is a pretty nifty tool providing satellite as as informational content from Wikipedia by making use of the users’ location. You can check out the latest version of the Google Earth app by clicking here.
Napster – the popular music streaming service has finally arrived on the iPhone. The new Napster app is available for download on the iPhone and iPod Touch and will give users access to close to 10 million songs on demand. The application itself is free to download though you will have to be a paid subscriber to receive access to the music files. The subscription costs amount to $10 a month.
The application does a lot of things besides simply streaming music. Users can save songs and albums on the local storage in order to access them offline later. Additionally, users may also create playlists, bookmark and play favorites, automix songs, etc.
If you have regularly used the incognito mode on Google Chrome or Private Browsing mode on Firefox, you may be aware that such private browsing functionalities are not available on the Mobile Safari web browser app on your iPhone. Of course, unlike the computer, not too many people will need such features on their mobile phones. But if you are one looking for such a solution, here is an iPhone app for you.
The new Covert app brings a ‘Private Browsing‘ option to Mobile Safari. The functionality can be accessed by tapping on Tabs and selecting the option. While this feature is enabled, the web browser history does not get recorded giving you the feature that had hitherto been missing on the iPhone. Also, during this time, the browser turns grey in order to indicate that you are on a private browsing mode.
Covert is free though it is unfortunately a jailbreak app and is hence available for download only from Cydia.