From encrypted messaging, to tools that tell you what to pack for holiday, we covered a lot of ground with new iOS apps in July.
Here, we filter through the cacophonous crackle to present you with our selection of the best App Store newcomers from the past month.
“This event was off the charts”
Gary Vaynerchuk was so impressed with TNW Conference 2016 he paused mid-talk to applaud us.
Strictly speaking, MyRoll isn’t an entirely new app, but July saw the already popular Flayvr app change its name and pivot in a slightly new direction. MyRoll is an intelligent mobile gallery app that displays all your best photos as ‘moments’, automatically organizing your snaps based on its analysis of each photo’s make-up.
In a nutshell, it prioritizes shots that are in-focus, contain smiling faces, bright colors, and so on.
Hours is a nifty little time-tracking app that comes courtesy of former Apple Design Award winner Tapity.
While anyone with a need to manage multiple timelines will find this useful, it’s perhaps more directly aimed at those working in the project management realm. At any rate, it’s pretty slick and is beautifully designed.
PackPoint really is for the lazy. By asking you a number of questions, it determines what you’ll need to take with you on a trip to ensure you don’t forget anything.
It’s nicely designed, and the app itself is genuinely handy, though you probably won’t want to rely 100% on this if you have very specific requirements for your holiday.
Asana is the slick collaborative task and project management startup from Facebook co-founder Dustin Moskovitz and ex-Facebooker Justin Rosenstein. The popular productivity platform did have an iPhone app already, but it was basically an HTML5 wrapper. July saw Asana’s first foray into fully native iOS app territory, one that also heralded in support for iPad.
With 3DBin, you can create an animated photo of any entity. The iPhone app helps you create 360-degree or 180-degree photos – all you do is circle around your subject and shoot a series of shots. 3DBin then stitches them together to create something a little more encapsulating, covering multiple angles.
It was a long time coming, but Facebook finally optimized its Messenger app for iPad users.
Though you could use Facebook Messenger on your iPad before, it was a blown-up version of the iPhone incarnation. And for many, this update was long overdue.
Wiper is a secure messaging app that permanently deletes your conversations with one click. It’s basically like WhatsApp or Telegram, except it introduces a button that wipes messages from the sender’s phone, recipient’s phone and the company’s own servers in seconds.
But that’s not all. Wiper also offers encrypted HD voice calling, and tells you when the other person takes a screenshot of your text-based conversation.
Anchor Pointer isn’t your typical navigation app. It bypasses turn-by-turn directions to return you to specific points where you’ve dropped virtual anchors. It’s more about remembering how to get back to somewhere than anything else.
You can meet friends by using the compass in any public place (requires Facebook tie-up), remember where that hidden alleyway coffee shop is, or use it to re-find your car.
Haste is like QuizUp meets Boggle. It’s a fast-paced, friends vs. friend game built around real-time, live multiplayer action. It takes the age-old word-search puzzle game ethos, or more specifically Boggle, and gives it the 2014 treatment.
You can either connect up with Facebook to play friends, or enter as a ‘Guest’ to be matched with a random opponent. It’s free with ads, or $1.99 without.
CitizenMe is an interesting one for sure. Its basic premise is to serve as an aggregator of all the Terms of Service of popular apps installed on your phone, including Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram. It then flags any potentially iffy specifics, and highlights what’s good and bad.
An added facet of CitiznMe, however, is that it monitors the language you use in social media posts, and lets you know what kind of persona you’re conveying.
To-do list apps are ten-a-penny, but Tinker is a nice addition to the increasingly saturated space. It promises to organize your life through duration-based goals, and what this simplistic app lacks in features, it more than makes up for in design.
With Tinker, you create individual tasks, give them a name, starting time (date) and duration (up to 24 hours in length). Hit the ‘tick’, and you’re good to go.
Google was on fire this month, launching three new apps for iOS. One of these was the long-anticipated Google Analytics.
Google Analytics lets you access all of your Web and app data as usual, but now it’s packaged in a mobile-friendly format for Apple devices. You can peruse page-view figures and real-time reports of traffic by region, source and more.
Next: YouTube Creator Studio
YouTube Creator Studio
With the app, creatives can manage their channel, including checking stats, responding to comments and setting up customized push notifications.
Ingress is perhaps chiefly notable as it’s an augmented reality game for iOS, courtesy of Google. It was quietly pushed out to the App Store more than six months after it was opened to Android.
In the game, players are either part of the resistance or enlightened teams battling to collect and control the powerful ‘Exotic Matter,’ which is located virtually in real-life locations around the world.
Next’s notability comes from the fact it was created by Christopher Gulczynski, who’s better known as the co-founder of the crazy-popular Tinder. As with Tinder, Next is all about the swiping – but this isn’t about securing you a hot date.
Budding musicians and song-writers can use Next to record short videos from 10 seconds to 3 minutes in length. Users can view 30-second excerpts of the songs, swiping left to dismiss and swiping right to like.
Following its launch on Android back in April, Lingua.ly finally launched for iPhone to help you learn languages simply by browsing the Web. You’ll probably want to install the Chrome extension too, as it lets you add words to your account when you’re browsing from your desktop.
Your first step when setting up Lingua.ly is to indicate the language that you’re learning, after which you can manually type or paste words into the dictionary, and it will give you the translation in your mother tongue.
With the browser extension, you can highlight foreign-language words from the Web and add them to your cloud-based account, and they are then accessible through the mobile app as well.
Kickstarter has had a dedicated iPhone app for a while already, and fellow crowdfunding platform Indiegogo finally launched on too in July – but in Canada only. However, as of yesterday, it’s now available globally too.
The app lets you keep track of campaigns you’re watching and have backed, while campaign owners can manage their projects too. It’s been a long time coming.
Timeful draws on academic research from Stanford and Duke to add artificial intelligence to your mobile calendar. As it learns your schedule, it can automatically prioritize and allocate tasks in your free time.
Timeful has created an “Intention Genome” that classifies the types of activities you have on your list. It then ranks them using a behavioral science-inspired algorithm.
Wikipedia’s iOS app got a complete overhaul this week. It’s now completely native and lets you edit articles as well as browse.
There are a few more ‘Easter Eggs’ worth discovering that you don’t immediately realize are there. For example, in addition to serving up easy access to your ‘Saved’ favorites, there’s now a ‘Recent’ option which delivers easy access to all your recent reads on Wikipedia.
6Wunderkinder released a completely rebuilt version of Wunderlist at the end of July. Going beyond just to-do lists, the plan is for Wunderlist to become “the home of the world’s lists,” from how-to guides to reading recommendations and beyond.
The app also has a new look and boasts real-time syncing whenever you make a change to a list.
Bolt (New Zealand, South Africa and Singapore)
In a somewhat unusual launch strategy, Instagram introduced a new standalone app in July – but only in New Zealand, South Africa and Singapore.
Bolt’s basic premise is pretty similar to that of Snapchat: you snap and send images to friends by tapping their avatar at the bottom, and you can write on the photos too.
PlaceUs (US/Canada Only)
Unfortunately, it’s only available in the US and Canada for now, but it’s ultimate goal is to help people stay connected with just a close circle of friends and family. As it learns your routines, it can do things like automatically send a message to your wife/husband when you’re on your way home from work. That’s just the tip of the iceberg though – the possibilities here are plentiful.
Timista (London only)
Timista is a smart planner app for Londoners, automatically surfacing things to do based on three key metrics – location, time and availability. It’s like a digital concierge, morphing activities, bespoke plans and availability to tell you exactly what you should be doing, and when, in the UK capital.
Timista works straight out of the box. No signing up, no accounts, just simple questions to establish the basic parameters around which you’d like to find something to do. It’s beautifully designed, too.
Jump (London only)
Jump for is a slick, real-time bus-tracker for London-dwellers. It shows you bus stops in your locale, letting you tap and scroll horizontally to find the bus you want – a lot of attention has been given to design detail here.
You can also track the progression of buses as it moves around, and set alerts for when it’s due to arrive.
What…you want more?!?
If you’re on the hunt for more iOS apps, check out some of the best ones from June, peruse through our monthly roundups from the year so far, or put your feet up and check out our pick of the bunch from the whole of 2013. Alternatively, you can check out some of the best Android apps from this month too – some of which you may recognize from the iOS incarnations listed here.