GarageSale HD

GarageSale HD Let’s You Prepare eBay Auctions on Your iPad

There seems to be no shortage of uses for the iPad. Many deem it to be a content consumption device more than a content creation device and I typically agree. However, I’m finding myself doing more creating with it than I did two years ago. This is due largely in part to the increase in really great iPad Apps. Yesterday I finally got around to putting some items on eBay that I’d been wanting to sell for a while. Rather than set these auctions up on my Mac, I decided to see if I could do the whole process on the iPad and the answer was YES! On the Mac I use an application from Iwascoding called GarageSale. They released an iPad version and although I bought it a while ago, I never really used it to do an auction. I was always gun shy that I would run into some limitation and end up completing the process on my computer. Since I had a little more time than usual, I decided to try it.

GarageSale HD eases the pain of creating an eBay Auction

When you create an eBay auction you want to have good images, a good description and a good looking HTML listing that stands out more than the next guy selling the same thing. GarageSale on the Mac sold me because it had great templates to make the auctions “pretty”. GarageSaleHD also has great templates and walks you through the whole process. You start with the title/sub title of your auction. Then you insert your photos. The App will allow you to upload up to 5 photos using their hosting service for free OR you can use eBay’s hosting for a fee. You can grab the images from your iPad camera, albums or Dropbox. Since I had already photographed my item and processed the images with Adobe Lightroom, I simply grabbed the JPG files from my Dropbox folder. This process was a little tedious because you can’t import multiple images at once and you have to navigate to where the images are each time if they are not in your root Dropbox folder. Once the images are in then you choose your categories and other eBay items such as New or used, model number, etc. Next you right your description and this is probably the hardest thing to do with the on screen keyboard. Luckily I have this nifty Logitech Ultrathin iPad Bluetooth Keyboard Cover (that totally rocks), so writing my description was a breeze. Next you set your buying/shipping options. Lastly you preview your Auction right in the App and choose any template you want. There are some nice ones built-in, but if you get bored with those you can buy more via an in-app purchase option. Start your auction!

 

The Bottom Line

GarageSale HD is the BEST APP for creating eBay auctions because it’s easy and well designed. These guys have been at it for a while on the desktop side too. Speaking of which you can send your auction over to the desktop version if you wish to perhaps do more. The only thing I found lacking was not having the ability to put a hyperlink to a page in my description. It would have also been nice to have more image hosting options such as choosing the images from your own web site/server. Lastly eBay is getting smarter about pulling in the manufacture specs for your item if you have the UPC code. It would be awesome if GarageSale HD included a UPC bar code scanner to add this to your listing. If you sell on eBay this is your App!

You can see my GarageSale HD generated auction here (for as long as it’s available on eBay)

iTunes

Google+

Google Releases Their Google+ for iPad Update

As promised and long overdue, Google has just released their update to their Google+ iOS App with native iPad support (yay!). I rarely used Google+ on my iPad because I didn’t like the mobile browser experience or using the small iPhone sized App. Now I can experience most of Google+ in all its glory with a native iPad App. I say most, because like so many social networking Apps they lack features that the main website has (why is that?). However, with the new App you can browse your Circles, upload photos, make posts, tap to +1 something and manage Circle memberships. You can even do Google Hangouts complete with video and audio using your iPad 2 or higher. They also did a nice job with a sideways navigation in landscape mode.

Great, but room to improve

The App makes it really easy to add new content such as photos and posts, but not so easy to manage existing content. For example, I can get to my existing photos from my Profile page, but I can’t do anything with them but look at them and tag them. Want to delete one, move it to another album, etc. then you’re going to be going back to the website in your browser to do that stuff. I wish companies like Google and Facebook would learn that people want to be able to do EVERYTHING in a native App that the mobile website or main website allows (Delta Airlines are you listening?).

The Bottom Line

If you’re a Google+ user with an iPad there is absolutely no reason not to have this App. Download it immediately and you’ll have a much better Google+ experience than you ever had before on your iPad. Don’t forget to add me to your Circles!

iTunes

15 Must Have Summer Travel Apps

Compliments of iStockphoto.com

It’s summer and many of you will be hitting the road or the airways on your summer travel excursions. I figured it was time to update my “Must Have Travel Apps.” Realizing that some of you will travel by land, some by air and some internationally, I’ve divided the list up into those three categories.

Land/Sea Travel

Navigon USA

If you’re traveling by car whether you’re driving cross country or using a rental car at your destination, then you should check out my favorite Voice Turn-by-Turn GPS Navigation App. Navigon continues to raise the bar by constantly adding cool new features.

iTunes

Expedia

This is definitely one of the best apps for finding and booking hotels for the area that you’re traveling to. Great interface on iPad and iPhone.

iTunes

AroundMe

AroundMe is a must have for finding restaurants, ATMs, supermarkets, bars, pharmacies, gas stations, etc. This geo based App has been one of my favorites for a long time.

iTunes

Taxi Magic

Getting a taxi while you’re at the airport or hotel is pretty easy. However, if you take one to a meeting or shopping center, it may not always be easy to get one for the return trip. Taxi Magic allows you to book taxis right in the App. If you’re in one of their covered areas you are booking right with the dispatch system and you can even schedule one in advance. Once the ride is over you can even pay with the app.

iTunes

Ship Mate

While this App isn’t the official Carnival Cruise App, it’s probably the next best thing. You can learn all about your ship, see a schedule of activities and even communicate with other cruisers.

iTunes

Air Travel

Flightrack Pro

Flighttrack Pro is the ultimate flight management App. You can enter flights manually or sync with your TripIt account. You get push notifications of gate changes, cancellations, delays, etc. This app has saved my butt on more than one occasion.

iTunes

TripIt

TripIt for iPad

TripIt (combined with a free account on tripit.com) is the one place that pulls my whole trip together. All of my confirmation numbers, hotel contact numbers, addresses, directions, etc. are there in one spot.

iTunes

Gate Guru

Gate Guru has really come along way since it was first introduced. This app lets you know what amenities the airport you’re in/close to has and more importantly what’s near your gate. Connections can be tight and with Gate Guru you can quickly figure out what’s near by and what’s not.

iTunes

World Clock

World Clock will not only help you keep your various time zones straight, but it will even help you when scheduling meetings (conference calls) across multiple time zones.

iTunes

Your Airline’s App

Most Major Airlines now have their own App. This means that you can usually check in for your flight and display your electronic boarding pass right in the App. Even though I’m not a frequent flyer on American Airlines, I think they have the best one. C’mon Delta, yours could be so much better!

American Airlines, Delta, United, Southwest Airlines

 

International Travel

 

XE Currency

If you’re traveling to a different country one of the 1st things you’re going to want to check is the current exchange rate. XE Currency is one of my favorite Apps for viewing multiple currencies and doing calculations all at once.

iTunes

Tipping Guide

Here in the US tipping is pretty standard. In some countries tipping isn’t required/expected and in others it’s at different rates. Tipping Guide covers many countries and lets you know what’s customary.

iTunes

Skype

International roaming can be outrageously expensive and not everyone has an iOS device to do FaceTime. Skype allows you to make Skype to Skype calls for free and you can even make low cost international call.

Skype for iPhone iTunes

Skype for iPadiTunes

 

Travisa Visa

Of course you need a valid passport when going from country to country, but do you need a Visa? The Travisa Visa App answers that question in great detail. It also lets you know what’s required to get one. It’s one of the most important travel apps I have.

iTunes

Google Translate

Traveling to another country typically means also dealing with different languages. As much as I wished I spoke the language of every country I visit, the sad reality is that i don’t. In most tourist areas it’s usually not a problem, but once you go off the grid the chances of someone speaking English drop significantly. I use Google Translate at times when I need to get a few words vocalized in the native tongue.

iTunes

Invoice2go for iPad

Create Invoices on iPad/iPhone with Invoice2go

While I don’t do a ton of invoices, I do have to create one every now and then. It’s even better when I can do them on the go or right on site. Yesterday, a Twitter follower asked me which App did I recommend and while I hadn’t spent a lot of time with Invoicing Apps for iOS, I did have any idea of what I’d be looking for in such an App and Invoice2go seemed to fit the bill nicely.

What I’m looking for:

  • A good looking invoice!
  • Ability to add my logo
  • Ability add my items/prices for easy selection when invoicing
  • Ability to use my Contacts to send invoices to.
  • Has to generate PDF of the invoice.
  • Of course it has to do all the math for the totals, taxes, etc.
  • Ability to put in a deposit (or pre-payment amount).
  • Support for multiple companies/identities 
  • iPad and iPhone versions (ideally a Universal App)
Invoice2go does all of the above and there is very little that I don’t like about it. The App was very easy to setup. You start by picking a template for your “look and feel”. Then you enter the info about your business (address, phone number, etc). Next you add your items and then you’re all set to start invoicing. There’s even a cool PayPal feature that allows you to automatically include a PayPal link to receive the payment at as an option. The invoices look great and very professional. When you email the invoice from the App there will be a PayPal payment option in the body of the email along with the PDF attachment.

What could be better…

While this App does meet my minimum requirements, there are some features/tweaks I’d like to see added. First off is the area of a deposit. If a client wants to/required to pay 50% down, I’d like to see the ability to simply put in a percentage for a deposit and have the App do the math for the balance due. I’d also like the ability to set my starting invoice number. I can’t seem to find a way to do this. Lastly, their business model seems to be to sell you a service ($30/year) for syncing the data between multiple devices. I can’t fault them for wanting to create another revenue stream, but it seems that in this day of free cloud services (ie. Dropbox) that this paid model is a tad bit expensive for the casual user. There is a backup and restore feature that works via email, but you’d be replacing the info on one device with the backup file.

The Bottom Line

If you don’t need to tie into a desktop accounting system and you want to create great looking invoices, this is your App! It can print invoices via AirPrint and manage payments so that you know how much you’re owed. It also does estimates, credit memos and purchase orders.

Invoice2go for iPad iTunes

Invoice2go for iPhone/iPod touch iTunes

NAVIGON USA

Navigon App Update Adds Google Street View and It’s On Sale

While it’s true that iOS 6 will finally bring native turn-by-turn voice navigation to iOS devices this Fall, Navigon still makes the “Best” Navigation Apps in my Opinion and they’re available NOW! Best of all they’re on sale too.

This latest update brings Google Street View into the fold. This will be really helpful when navigating to an unfamiliar area and actually being able to see the place you’re trying to get to. For those who want the ultimate flying driving experience, you can do an optional in-app purchase of the “Cockpit” ($3.99) mode which displays extended information such as g-force value, altitude, compass, roll and tilt angles (not sure that I want to ever see a “roll” angle though).

 

These Apps are Universal and therefore native to iPhone, iPad and iPod touch!

Get the Navigon North America App for only $39.99 (normally $59.99) here from the NAVIGON <-My favorite Turn-by-Turn GPS Navigation App

Get the Navigon USA App for only $29.99 (normally $49.99) here from the NAVIGON

 

Navigon is having a Summer Sale on their iPhone/iPod touch GPS Navigation Apps. My Region Apps normally go for $24.99, however for a short time they are only $19.99 each!

Now you can get: MyRegion US East – covering: (AL, CT, DE, FL, GA, IN, KY, MA, ME, MD, MI, NH, NJ, NY, NC, OH, PA, Ri, SC, TN, VT, VA, WV) On Sale for $19.99

MyRegion US Central – covering: (AL, AR, CO, IL, IN, IA, KS, KY, LA, MI, MN, MO, MS, MT, NE, NM, ND, OH, OK, SD, TN, TX, WI, WY) On Sale for $19.99

MyRegion US West – covering: (AZ, CA, CO, ID, MT, NV, NM, OR, UT, WA, WY) On Sale for $19.99

 

Need a little more? Say two regions? No worries, just buy the main region you need and you can expand your coverage with an in-app purchase of up to two additional regions. So this way you can start with the main region you need, but add on later and only if you need to. This is the kind of pricing that I felt these GPS Navigation Apps should have had all along! So don’t hesitate. Jump on these Sale prices while the getting is good. Also if you have an iPod touch or you just want a great Car Kit to go with your Navigon App, check out this one by Magellan.

 

My setup above is:

 

FAQ: Yes, all of the Maps are built-in to the App. No, you don’t need a data connection while you’re using it (except for the weather, parking and Google POI search). No it does’t require your data plan (except for the 3 things I just mentioned). No it doesn’t require a Car Kit unless you’re using an iPod touch, which doesn’t have a GPS (the car kit does). No, there are no monthly fees. You buy the App and you’re done.

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