iPhone

Easily browse all the iPhone compatible apps that we have reviewed here.

gasbuddy

GasBuddy for the iPhone

With the troubles abroad right now causing the price of oil to skyrocket, coupled with the coming summer months where we traditionally see higher prices at the pump, I thought it would be a good idea to take a look at Apps that could help me keep my out of pocket expenses as low as possible. I went looking for an App that would quickly help me find the cheapest gas around me with as little “fluff” as possible. What I found was an App developed by a very popular gas savings website that I had already been using, Gasbuddy.com. GasBuddy has been a leading gas price website for quite a few years providing quality, and timely information so it only makes sense that their App would be of the same standard.
 

How it works

GasBuddy relies on user input of the gas prices to feed its every growing database of gas stations and gas prices. The first thing that you’ll notice when you open the App is its simplicity. There are four buttons and a search bar. The buttons are as follows, Find Gas near me, my profile, settings, and win gas. If you don’t want to participate in the input of gas prices, the only button you’ll use is find gas near me. It does exactly what its name implies. Tapping on this button will use your location and find gas near you. Once GasBuddy finds the stations near you, the data can be sorted in a number of ways. The first option you have is whether you want to see a list view, or a map view of the gas stations. Each has its pros and cons. I prefer the list view because I get a larger list of the surrounding gas stations near me. Under the list view (which is the default setting), you can view prices of regular, midgrade, premium, or diesel simply by selecting the corresponding tab at the top of the screen. Below, you have the option of sorting the stations by distance, or price. I prefer price, but the default setting is distance. I don’t mind driving an extra .10 of a mile for fuel that’s $.20 cents cheaper. I have a 27-gallon tank so the $.20 savings adds up!
 

Doing your part

If you decide that you’d like to do your part and input prices either when you happen to see them, or when you’re filling up, GasBuddy makes it easy. Under the “my profile” button you’ll find a member login section. There you can sign in if you already have a GasBuddy account, or create a new account (it’s free). Once you have created an account, you simply search near you again, find the station that you are currently wanting to input data for and select it. At the bottom of that gas station’s page you will see a button titled “report prices”. There you can report what the current price is for others to see and search.
 

Win Some Gas!

I know, this is what you really wanted to hear about. It’s easy. All you have to do is input gas prices. Each time you input a gas price you earn 150 points. After you earn 1000 points, you can enter into the weekly drawing for $250 in free gas! It seems like a pretty fair trade off to me.
 

Conclusion

GasBuddy has everything that I want from a gas finder App. It not only finds and helps me sort the lowest prices near me, but also gives me the chance to win free gas! To me this is a win-win. If you want to save on fuel quickly and easily this is the App for you.

You can get GasBuddy for Free here from the iTunes

 

SneakPeek

Preview InDesign and Illustrator CS5 Files on your iPad/iPhone with SneakPeek

 

The iPad is a popular gadget amongst graphic designers. With SneakPeek it just became a whole lot more useful. SneakPeek for iOS allows you to preview your Adobe InDesign CS5 and Adobe Illustrator CS5 directly on your iPad, iPhone or iPod touch. The concept is really quite simple. Both InDesign CS5 and Illustrator CS5 now have the ability to save embedded "previews" in their respective file formats. SneakPeek can use those previews to display on your iOS devices. This is extremely useful for viewing artwork from Illustrator, but it becomes even more useful because InDesign CS5 can now save ALL of the pages in the preview as well. With SneakPeek you can thumb through an entire InDesign document right on your device. The next question becomes: "how do I get these files into the App?" SneakPeek takes advantage of the "Open In" command found in Apps like Safari, Mail and yes…..Dropbox! I just wrote a post the other day on "5 Ways To Take Advantage of Dropbox" and now we have a great 6th way. 

 

How does it work?

The first thing you have to realize is that while this App does what it says, you still have to change a preference in InDesign to take advantage of it. InDesign CS5 by default will only save a "medium" quality preview and only of the 1st 2 pages of the file by default. You have to change your InDesign Preferences to save a larger preview (if you want it to look good on the iPad) and enable the All Pages option. Yes, this will make your InDesign files a little larger, but it is soooo worth it.

For Illustrator CS5 just make sure you have PDF Compatible File enabled in the Save dialog box.

Now that you've made your file the next question is "how do I get it on my iPad?" You have a few options. You can email it to yourself and use the Mail Open In command to Open the attachement in SneakPeek. You could post the file on a website and do the same command in Safari. Lastly and probably the best way is to put the file in your Dropbox  (get a FREE 2GB Dropbox account here) from your Mac or PC. Then using the FREE Dropbox App you can select the file and choose Open In SneakPeek to view it. Once the file is open you can just swipe through the pages and pinch to zoom. Awesome!

 

But wait, there's more

Seeing the file is cool, but you could do that already with a PDF version of the file. So SneakPeek takes it up a notch by also allowing you to see which fonts were used in the document, which images are linked as well as which colors and swatches were used.

 

The Bottom Line

This App is a must have for the InDesign and Illustrator users out there. It's also an Art Director's dream come true. While it does work there is one thing I'd like to see added in the next update and that is DIRECT support for Dropbox. Instead of having to open the document in the Dropbox App first and then move it over, I'd love to see the ability to log into my Dropbox account directly in the App. This is possible because I have other Apps that allow this. No need to stop there either. Might as well add direct support for MobileMe and FTP too. These direct connections would definitely earn a 5th star from me. However, there is no reason for a Creative Suite user not to grab this one immediately.

You can get SneakPeek for $9.99 here from the iTunes

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iTrivia

iTrivia: All about Apple

How well do you think you know Apple's history? Apple has millions of fans. Some just like the products, others are fanatics that eat, breathe and argue everything about Apple with anyone who will listen. Many are somewhere in between. The iTrivia App aims to test your knowledge of all things Apple.  This game randomly selects 10 questions per game. Some questions are super easy, some are very hard. I've owned a Mac since 1984 and there are still several questions that I've gotten wrong. I guess that puts me somewhere in between the typical customer and fanatic. :) In any case this is a fun game to play when you have a few minutes to pass the time.

There is also a catch

You only have about 25 seconds to answer the question. Not quite enough time to Google it :) There are over 500 questions/answers in the game so you're not likely to get bored to quickly. The questions range in the categories of Hardware, Software, People, History and Miscellaneous. This game is a Universal App so that it looks great on all iOS Devices. Sadly there's no option to phone a friend.

While the game is GREAT, I'd love to see some mult-player options as well as sharing scores via social media. 

You can get iTrivia for $0.99 here from the iTunes

grocery_gadget

Grocery Gadget – Shopping List

Once I find an App that I like it usually takes a lot to get me to look at and move to a different App. Very few Apps are perfect and there is always room for improvement or a feature here and there. If I find an App that I really like then chances are even if there is a similar App out there, I'd be giving up a feature to move to the other App to gain a different feature. I say this because, many of you know that my favorite Grocery List App has been Grocery iQ for quite some time. Grocery iQ has worked very well for me and I really didn't have any major complaints with it. However, there was one problem in using it and it was something I never considered until I saw Grocery Gadget. Once I saw this feature in Grocery Gadget it became painfully obvious that this was the one feature that would solve my problem and make me switch.

The basics

Let's get the basics out of the way first. Grocery Gadget lets you add items to a list (or multiple lists) either manually or by scanning the product's barcode (a must have for me). You can enter additional details about the item such as the price and what category/aisle it's in. You can even enter your own custom comments about the item. If you do take the time to enter the item's price then Grocery Gadget will total up everything on your list so that you know approximately how much your grocery bill is going to be before you even leave the house. Although I'm not big on coupons it has a coupon feature too.

The big thing for me in any of these Apps is that they have to allow for cloud based syncing. The beauty with cloud based syncing is that your significant other can add things to your list over the air at any time. Whenever you happen to go shopping you just pull out your iPhone/iPod touch and your list is ready to go. So far I haven't mentioned a single thing that the App I was already using didn't do. However, Grocery Gadget adds one thing that made my shopping experience so much faster…

A picture is worth a thousand words

While it's great that my wife can add something to my list over the air, the problem arrises when I don't know what that item looks like. I remember standing there staring at 15 different kinds of Oatmeal reading each one to try to find the one that was on my list. Had I had a picture of what the box looked like I would have been able to find it in 2 seconds. Grocery Gadget allows you to have a picture of the item you're adding to the list. As a matter of fact if the picture is already in the database it will be added the minute you scan the barcode. If it's not in the database you can take your own picture when you're adding the item using the camera on your iOS device. This is the one feature that got me to switch over to Grocery Gadget immediately. I also like the fact that with Grocery Gadget you can manage your list via their website too.

 

The Bottom Line

Grocery Gadget is a great grocery list App and having the ability to add pictures to the items makes it the "BEST" App that I've seen to date. While I do really like it, there are a couple of things I'd like to see streamlined and added. First of all there is no native iPad version. I don't really care since I'm not going to take my iPad to the store. However, the iPad would be great to use at home to manage the list. Also if iPad 2 has a camera like the rumors are saying then I'll want an iPad version even more! Next, I would like to see a more clear distinction between Lists and Stores. Clearly you could have an item that is available at more than one store and while Grocery Gadget does allow for this, it doesn't make it obvious on how to assign a list to a specific store. I figured it out along with how to add stores, but it was in an obscure place. It's not the end of the world, but Grocery iQ does this better.

With a few minor interface tweaks, I'd gladly give this app a 5th star. If you're looking for the BEST Grocery List App for iOS (and Android), this is probably it!

You can get Grocery Gadget for iPhone/iPod touch for $4.99 here from the iTunes

Eventbrite

Eventbrite Helps You Check In People At Your Event

EventbriteFrom time to time I host events that require registration, both for online events but also for in-person events. Instead of handling all this myself I have started to use an online service called Eventbrite. Since this is BestAppSite, I am not going to have a look at the service, but instead review their iPhone app which can be used as a help in checking people in at the doors.

This application integrates right into your Eventbrite account and is dependent on the information that you enter on there. When you launch the app you are presented with a list of your events that you can tap into (literally) and see the stats or start checking in people.

Since it syncs up to your account online, the information about which people you are checking in will be posted up there and by enabling their auto-sync feature, the app will be usable together with many iPhones at a multi-door event.

When it comes to checking in people, you can show the people in a list and tick off each person as they get there. This feature is great for smaller events. If you are putting on something bigger, the 2D barcodes that can be put onto the person’s ticket will help you check in people faster. Just use the built-in camera of the iPhone to scan the code and the person is checked in.

While the app does a very solid job at checking people in to a venue, I would like to see more options for editing your events, adding new attendees and managing everything from the app, compared to now being just a check-in app. As the world is becoming increasingly mobile, it is a shame that I must visit their website to change settings for my event. At least let me add or remove attendees from the app as a first step!

If you are using Eventbrite you should definitely download the app, seeing as it is free. The service itself (Eventbrite) is free for free events. For paid events, they take a slight cut out of each ticket as a processing fee.

Eventbrite Easy Entry - Eventbrite

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