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iOS 7 was the largest upgrade to iOS ever. It brought along a completely new design language on both the iPhone and iPad, and unlocked various APIs that have made applications more useful and powerful. It also introduced new technologies and APIs, such as iBeacon, that should become only more useful as time goes on.

In terms of usability, however, it offered no major advances for the iPad. In a world where tablets are increasingly being used in lieu of laptops, iOS on the iPad needs to mature, and fast. (more…)

Reading is a topic that a lot of us get fired up about, mainly because we all do so much of it. It’s a field many of us are very experienced in. When people make decisions about buying a hardcore or a softcover book, they’re using their experience to make that choice. That’s why talking about the perfect reading experience is so tough — no two people have the same tastes.

That’s my word of warning as I enter into this: the following article, even more so than usual, is nothing more than my opinion. But let me be the one to tell you, and I hope you’ll agree, my opinion is certainly the most correct one. I’ll start by saying that the new iBooks for iOS 7 is terrible. Whereas before, choosing between iBooks and Kindle was tough, the decision just got a whole lot easier. Quite simply, I’m about to tell you why I prefer the Kindle experience over iBooks.

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I never did like Facebook. In fact, I only joined the benighted data-grabber two years after I started tweeting. Perhaps this reluctance was an indication of my desire to communicate, rather than staying up to date with my friends’ latest FarmVille scores. Maybe I didn’t want to be the plaything of an advertising network. Or, I suppose that Zuckerberg might have been right, and I really was so darned anti-social that I detested my friends and never wanted to see their annoying faces again [note: sarcasm].

All the same, I joined. And now, I’ve had enough.

Except, there’s a problem with the Facebook-leaving sentiment, however appealing, fashionable and written about it might be. When you delete your account (…he says, as if such a thing were possible…), you’ll still want to keep in touch with your close friends when you can’t see them, and with your relatives on the other side of the world, who still want to see your latest pictures. You’re going to have to find an alternative.

Okay, so let’s have a think. Ah, yes, of course: Google+.

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Apple worked very hard on developing iOS 7, the most recent release of its mobile operating system, which effectively transformed the stale user interface to something more colorful. As usual, it received mixed reviews. Some people called it “flat”, while others believed its colors rendered it “childish”.

It’s a fact that people don’t like change, so negative reactions to iOS 7 are not surprising. Apple’s recent update to the Remote app, on the other hand, is quite unexpected. It includes a full redesign to fit snugly with iOS 7. But strangely, it goes beyond the call of duty here, introducing new and foreign UI elements. Usually I would praise experimentation, but in this case, I’m not so sure it’s a good thing. (more…)

Although still one of the most universal and reliable forms of communication, email is quickly becoming stagnant and in need of a change. Despite it being an undertaking of epic proportions, many have taken up the challenge and new services and apps have started populating our devices and permeating our workflows.

One such app for which I had high hopes was Evomail. It promised exquisite design, innovative features and a streamlined experience. Sadly though, it fell short of the mark.

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It was a tuesday, and since I got home from the office early that day, I decided to pop into my son’s daycare to take him home. As I open the door, I see him (wearing a fireman’s hat) with two other boys, all crowded around a PC screen. They keep touching the CRT and my son says, “It’s broken.”

The touchscreen — and more specifically, the popularity of the iPhone and iPad — have changed the way we interact with technology. A few years ago, Steve Jobs was insistent that touchscreen computers just weren’t going to take off. But my three-year-old boy says different. And I think he might be right. (more…)

I, like many adults, used to collect comics. I owned dozens of long boxes, filled to the brim with various copies of X-Men, Spider-Man and Detective. But I eventually traded comic books for cars, and shortly thereafter my collection went away, sold to a man for pennies on the dollar.

Three years ago, I started collecting again. But I didn’t end up in a dusty comic book shop that smelled of vanilla and shame, but instead from the comfort of my living room using the many popular iPad apps built by Comixology. And recently, the game changed again with Marvel Unlimited. But the shape of the online comic book landscape still isn’t that bright. How so? Let’s find out. (more…)

When it comes to Apple’s iconic media events, the one thing that guarantees hype is new hardware. No matter what else is on the agenda, iPhones and iPads are the star attractions. Understandably, much of the other news interspersed between device unveilings is swept aside, perhaps given a whisper of coverage after the dust settles. For me, it is those tidbits I find tantalisingly mysterious, a mere breadcrumb hinting at a grander plan. Last week’s iPhone event was no different.

Prior to WWDC I’d have forgiven anyone for thinking iWork had been put out to pasture. With no desktop update since 2009, it’s fair to say the web app versions of Pages, Keynote, and Numbers came with more than a little intrigue. In a sense, Apple had just created its first multi-platform apps. Now, four months later, Apple has dropped another breadcrumb. All three iWork iOS apps are now free for purchasers of a new iOS 7 device — Apple’s strategy is beginning to come full circle with more than a little risk and reward.

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Just look at the iPad. Look at that ever-so-thin, yet robust, metallic body. Look at that expanse of touch-sensitive glass, mounted on top of a bold, bright, high resolution display. You’ll just have to make do with thinking about all the processor power squeezed into the unfathomably small crevice between the two. This, surely, is a product made with the photographer in mind.

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Yep, it’s that time of the year again. Hundreds and thousands of students around the world have graduated from high school and are currently loading up their parents’ cars almost to bursting point, raiding the kitchen cupboards for tins of soup and instant noodles and shipping off to either college or university, depending on which part of the world you’re from. It’s a difficult time for a lot of people but I believe university really marks the second stage in your life when you lave home, brush up on both your ironing and social skills, and discover what kind of a person you really are.

Besides the countless things you’ve got to think about, there’s one thing that is worth considering — should I get a new computer for university? There are hundreds of great deals out there for students looking to buy a new computer for their studies (including Apple’s very own, and very generous, education discount) but I believe that an iPad should be your essential purchase for university. As a recent graduate and proud iPad owner, I can truly say that I wouldn’t have survived college with one, and I found it indispensable on so many different occasions.

Here’s why.

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