Wednesday, January 27, 2010

iReview: Twitbird

Most of us know that there about thirtyfivegazillion apps out there for us iPhone junkies.  Well, out of that thirtyfivegazillion, a fair amount are apps for twitter.  If you have no idea what twitter is, please do the following:
1)  Pack your iPhone in a nice box and surround it with bubble wrap.
2)  Ship your iPhone to...

Just kidding!  I'm sure you all know what twitter is, right?

Okay, so when I first got my iPhone, I immediately downloaded the twitter app that is now called Echofon.  I like it.  **Echofon never gave me any issues, but I got bored with it.  I started trying new twitter apps left and right.  I've probably used 3 others, not including Echofon.  None of them fit me or my needs.  I'm not too needy, but for me, sometimes the more an app can do for me, the more I like it.

One day, during my weekly trip to the app store on my phone, I found Twitbird.  I downloaded it because it was FREE and honestly figured that I wouldn't care for it either.  Well, boy was I wrong!  I could gush for at least an hour about all the features this app has, and I will, but not for an hour and to make things easier for y'all, I've got some pictures!

For starters, when you open the app, there is a really good sized menu.  It may be a little much for some people, but like I said, I like options.  What this picture doesn't show you is that there is another page of options if you scroll down!  Other options that aren't listed above are Trends, My Profile, Search, Saved Links, Public Timeline and a few more!

When you click on "Home" it takes you to your activity.  It loads all the tweets in individual bubbles.  Unread tweets are in tan and read tweets are in the gray shade like above.  There's also another menu.  I didn't bother labeling everything there because they're mostly self explanatory when you have the all.  The icon in the middle though, that lets you choose a background (mine is that leafy thing).  You can also use a picture from your photo library.  Fun!

When you want to create a new tweet you can see that there are a lot of things you can do.  When you click on the @ symbol, you can scroll through your "following" list and pick a person, instead of trying to memorize every.single.username.

Some other features that this app has that I didn't get pictures of are:
When you get to the end of a page (25 tweets) you just slide your finger upward and it loads the next set for you.  This app does allow you to have two accounts, which is neat because most of the multi-account twitter apps are not free.

To RT or @ someone as a reply, all you do is tap on the tweet you want to use and click on the leftward arrow.  You'll be able to pick from reply, retweet and direct message.

Overall, this is my favorite twitter app.  This morning I downloaded Tweetery because someone mentioned that it was a free download this week.  I wasn't impressed.  I've already removed it from my phone.

I hope that you've found this review and all of our others helpful!  Don't forget, if you have an app that you would like us to review, or an expensive one that we don't want to pay for that you want to review, contact either of us using the information in our profiles!

**They may have updated and upgraded Echofon since the time I stopped using it.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

brief hiatus

hey, readers! i know we don't update this guy a ton but i just wanted to let you know a couple of things...

jenn has carpel tunnel syndrome and since she's in the middle of a "flair up" (her words, not mine) she won't be able to contribute for a little while.

she's been complaining about her wrist brace not helping...i think she just needs this:

i am going out of town on friday and i'm busy busy busy preparing for the trip. so i won't be updating until sometime next week. hopefully when i get back i will be able to post a review of iCommute SF.

thanks for reading :)

Monday, January 18, 2010

iReview: Shazam

shazam describes itself as "an amazing music discovery engine". um, okay? i love using shazam though so i guess maybe it is an amazing music discovery engine. my old, shitty, lg shine actually came with shazam on it so i've been rockin' this technology for about 2 years now. if you live in some sort of hole and haven't heard of shazam, here's the deal: you're driving to work, listening to the radio and you hear a song that really strikes your fancy and you think to yourself, "man, i wish i knew who sang this song!" enter shazam. you launch that bad boy, it listens to your radio, sends the sample to some database, then comes back to you with a song title and artist. holy crap, right? it's genius.

this app is totally free and a must-have for ALL iphone users. be prepared for it to fail every now and then. it doesn't always identify the obscure stuff but i'd say that 90% of the time i use it, it comes back with an answer for me. and another great part is that it saves all the songs you've tagged so you can go back and find a song in case you forgot the title or artist or something.

i even tried to use shazam at sxsw in 2008 and guess what? it worked! it was at jens lekman so i guess his live songs sound almost exactly like his studio songs because shazam identified him immediately. it was crazy!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

jazzing up your iphone case

i am very picky when it comes to a case for my iphone. i see a lot of people using those really bulky, rubbery incase cases that look like this:

i'm sure they provide a nice amount of protection but they're way too bulky for me. i can't stand them! for the first few months i had my phone, i used the plum slimshell by dlo:

i loved it! i was pretty rough on it and it eventually cracked in a couple of places. it's still totally usable but i bought a new one anyway. i got the teal one this time. oh, did i mention best buy sells them and they're only about $15? it's a nice deal.

yesterday i decided i wanted to add some flair to my little slimshell so i went to michael's and picked out some stickers that i liked. the sheet came with TONS of stickers for about $1.50 and i picked the ones that best matched the teal case. here is the finished product:

immediately after i finished it i was a little unsure of it but everyone who has seen it has complimented it. it's definitely growing on me.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

iReview: IMDb (or iMDB?)

i've only had my iphone since september but since day -10 (that's 10 days BEFORE i got the thing) i've been wanting an imdb (internet movie database) app. i LOVE imdb. i use it ALL the time. i always think about how much of my life would be wasted sitting around trying to figure out where i know the guy in this movie from. that database is truly a life saver! if you aren't familiar with this site a) i feel sorry for you and b) get your butts over there and check it out!

when i discovered the lack of app-age, i had to bookmark it in safari and just use that all the time. on december 10, 2009 (two days after the app was released) i was on a roadtrip back to austin from san angelo, tx (about a 4 hour drive). without going into too many details, several friends and i had made the trip out there to attend a friend's funeral. anyway, on the way home something came up that caused me to consult my imdb safari page. when i got there, i saw a huge (well, not too huge since i was viewing it on my phone) banner advertising an app for the iphone and ipod touch. i may or may not have gone a little nutso. i was running on no sleep and had experienced the peak of every emotion known to man that day so i can't really be held accountable for the way i reacted. i downloaded that shizz immediately and have used it daily ever since. oh, did i mention the best part? IT'S FREE! i've paid for my fair share of apps already but i get super-duper stoked when i find free apps that i actually like. and i don't just like this app, i love it. i want to marry it.

stay tuned for a possible vlog where i 'splain an app in front of a video camera. scary, huh? nah, i made my vlog debut on my regular blog this weekend and it was fun (even though my hair was a mess).

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

iHave a guest blogger!

we have a guest blogger today! this post was written by my iphone so you can get to know it a little bit better.

hi, my name is white light/white heat. isn't that a long, silly name? my mom says she named me that because a) i'm white b) i get a little hot when i'm charing and c) she loves the velvet underground.

i'm 16gb of loveliness! i currently have 11.12 gb of music, 194.2 mb of pictures, 817.8 mb of apps, 78 mb of "other" and 2.10 gb of free space. i'm a 3gs so that means my mom can use me to take videos. i think she mostly uses me to take videos of her silly nephew but he sure is cute!

i have more apps than my mom would like but not as many as lots of other iphones! right now, other than the apps that i was born with, i have:

93.3 kgsr
bank of america
ps mobile
camera bag
toy camera
best camera
paper toss
zytrec allergy cast
weather bug
blog press
baseball fan
cinema fx
dragon dictation
icommute sf
southwest airlines
photo funia

can you tell that my mom likes photo apps? i thinks she's a little out of control! i've had a lot of other apps that my mom didn't seem to like so she deleted them pretty quickly. she's so picky!

every day i can be seen wearing my plum slim shell made by dlo. i love it! it doesn't make me look fat like so many other iphone cases do. i only take it off when i'm charging because i get hot flashes when that little white cord is plugged into me.

i suppose those are just about all the details you could want to know about me. i feel lucky to have been born an iphone and i'm glad stefanie adopted me. she takes great care of me (though sometimes she uses me a little too much)!

Monday, January 4, 2010

iReview: Camera Bag

camera bag made by nevercenter ($1.99) is another app i've had since early on. my friend kerry discovered it and i couldn't wait to download it when i got my phone! this app lets you use a photo from your camera roll or take a new one and apply one of 11 different effects to it. once you have an effect you like, you can save it to your camera roll or email it to one of your contacts.

that is what you will see when you first open this app. then you will either tap the icon to load a photo from your camera roll or take a new one. i'm going to chose a picture from my camera roll and apply every effect to it, one at a time.













for this review, i have chosen the helga one to email to jenn. i simply tap the email icon and it brings this up:

if you're at all familiar with lomography and such photography techniques, then you'll get the that helga=holga, lolo=lomo, and colorcross=cross process.

there are a few things you can change in this app, such as the resolution the picture saves at, whether or not to crop, and whether or not to use borders. i have crop and borders on because i love the square pics and the ones with white borders! obviously, sometimes the crop doesn't work very well for a particular picture (like cinema in this example) but there's always something that does work!

i use this app ALL the time. it's hard to say which effect is my favorite but i think i use colorcross the most. i love to actually cross process film so i think that's why i like that particular effect so much. i would say that this app is definitely $2 well spent if you like to play around with your iphone photos like i do.

iReview: Zyrtec Allgery Forecast

There's not really much to say about this app, except it pretty much determines how my day will pan out.

Hi!  I'm Jenn, and I'm allergic to everything that grows and that is also the color green.  Annnnnnd, I live in Texas, where stuff stays green pretty much all year round.

The first thing I do every morning is open this app.  It's easy to use and easy to understand.  I also love this app because it's tied in with the weather channel, so you can get your life or death allergy forecast at the same time as getting the weather!

Here's a few screen shots:

As you can see, the scale goes from 0 to 12, 12 being:  if I chose to walk out the door and spend even 6 seconds outside, I might will DIE.  Also, I've pointed out how easy it is to read, the colorful scale next to the actual forecast number makes easy to see if you will die a painful allergic death or not.  Also, below you can see the high and low for the day.  This app uses the GPS on your phone to pinpoint the location for which you are requesting the forecast.

This picture shows that I need to move to NYC, where the Predominant Pollen is none, and the score doesn't even really register on the colorful life or death chart.

The other things that I love about this app is that it's FREE, and there aren't ads all over the place.  The only place an ad pops up is if you select the "Get Relief" button on the bottom, then it will give you a list of Zyrtec products.

I give this bad boy 2 thumbs up, because it's faster than waiting for the weather person on the TV to tell you you're going to die!