All posts in Sponsors

iPhone Traveler Pt. 9 – Navigate with maps

mapsontheroadApple’s iPhone ships with Maps, a home-grown mapping application that you can use to find driving directions, public bus routes and walking directions for when you’re on foot.

A quick note.

The public has not been satisfied with the performance of Apple’s Maps, and in September, 2012, the company issued a public apology for the performance of its app.

Understand that the mapping application that ships with your iPhone, Maps, may not be the best solution for you. Fortunately, there are several fine alternatives in the App Store, many of which can be found by searching for the term “navigation” or “maps.”

Today, I’ll explain how to use Apple’s Maps app as well as an alternative that I trust. Let’s begin with Maps.

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Thanks to Gas Cubby from App Cubby

gcBig thanks to Gas Cubby for being this week’s sponsor. This handy app records milage for you, which is fantastic if you’re often taking business trips. I used to use a notebook for this, but I’d either misplace it or forget to transfer a certain trip to my spreadsheet. Not any more, as Gas Cubby lets me export directly to an Excel-friendly format via email.

The app also records your service history and even offers service reminders reminders, which is great. You know those plastic clings that the mechanic puts on your windshield? The ones that always fall off? Forget about them. I won’t forget to get that 7,500 mile checkup done when Gas Cubby reminds me.

The app’s search feature is also well-implemented and there’s ample support for international units, like MPG (Canada), MPG (UK), MPG (Imperial), L/100km, gal/100mi (US), gal/100mi (Imperial), km/L, km/gal (US), km/gal (Imperial), and mi/L, for all of you folks who drive on the wrong side of the road.

Do you like charts and graphs? I know you do. Tilt your iPhone to the landscape orientation and view data on your vehicle’s average MPG, typical gas price you pay, automotive expenses and service expenses. Nice!

Gas Cubby has been in my travel folder for years. It’s fast, good-looking and, most importantly, useful. Go and grab Gas Cubby now.

Gas Cubby from App Cubby

gcHuge thanks to Gas Cubby for being this week’s sponsorDavid Barnard and his crew build iOS apps that I’ve been using for years, including Gas Cubby.

Gas Cubby is a fantastic companion to anyone who often travels by car. It records milage for you, which is fantastic if you’re often taking business trips. I used to use a notebook for this, but I’d either misplace it or forget to transfer a certain trip to my spreadsheet. Not any more, as Gas Cubby lets me export directly to an Excel-friendly format via email.

The app also records your service history and even offers service reminders reminders, which is great. You know those plastic clings that the mechanic puts on your windshield? The ones that always fall off? Forget about them. I won’t forget to get that 7,500 mile checkup done when Gas Cubby reminds me.

The app’s search feature is also well-implemented and there’s ample support for international units, like MPG (Canada), MPG (UK), MPG (Imperial), L/100km, gal/100mi (US), gal/100mi (Imperial), km/L, km/gal (US), km/gal (Imperial), and mi/L, for all of you folks who drive on the wrong side of the road.

Do you like charts and graphs? I know you do. Tilt your iPhone to the landscape orientation and view data on your vehicle’s average MPG, typical gas price you pay, automotive expenses and service expenses. Nice!

Gas Cubby has been in my travel folder for years. It’s fast, good-looking and, most importantly, useful. Go and grab Gas Cubby now.

Rego for iPhone, a traveler’s companion

regoforiphoneBig thanks to Rego for iPhone (free for the first 10 places, $2.99 for unlimited use) for sponsoring the site this week. I’ve been using Rego since launch day and it’s earned a spot on my iPhone’s home screen. It lets me create a record of my favorite places, both those I have seen and those I hope to visit someday. With a few taps I can mark it on a map, write some notes, take photos and add useful, searchable categories.

Rego is like a contacts app, but for locations. It has become the place where I store the places I care about. But Rego is more than storage. Before your trip begins, create a new collection and add all the places you want to visit — either by positioning pins on a map, or by searching on names or addresses. Rego searches Apple and Foursquare location databases, and your Contacts. Plan your itinerary by re-centering the map on any pin. For example, set your hotel as the “Active Location” and watch all your places sort by distance to that pin.

While traveling, use Rego to visit the places you planned, and add new places you discover along the way. Rego uses the iPhone’s GPS, so you don’t need Internet coverage to capture new places. Also, in most cases, your maps will have been cached during your planning, so they’ll still be available when you’re in the middle of nowhere.

Rego is private by default, but you can selectively choose to share places. This creates a web page for your place on the Rego server, that you can show the world. Other Rego users can directly add that place to their Rego, by visiting the page. I actually like keeping it private, as I use Rego is my personal travel log and wish list.

Don’t take my word for it, Apple loved Rego so much they featured it in the New & Noteworthy list on the App Store home page in 127 countries, and gave it a big banner in the Travel section. It’s truly one of my favorite travel apps.

By the way, see “Catalano’s” in the screen shot above? That’s one of the greatest places on earth, baby.

Here’s how you can sponsor the site. It’s a great month for those with travel apps.

Rego for iPhone stores your favorite places

regoforiphoneBig thanks to Rego for iPhone (free for the first 10 places, $2.99 for unlimited use) for sponsoring the site this week. I’ve been using Rego since launch day and it’s earned a spot on my iPhone’s home screen. It lets me create a record of my favorite places, both those I have seen and those I hope to visit someday. With a few taps I can mark it on a map, write some notes, take photos and add useful, searchable categories.

Rego is like a contacts app, but for locations. It has become the place where I store the places I care about. But Rego is more than storage. Before your trip begins, create a new collection and add all the places you want to visit — either by positioning pins on a map, or by searching on names or addresses. Rego searches Apple and Foursquare location databases, and your Contacts. Plan your itinerary by re-centering the map on any pin. For example, set your hotel as the “Active Location” and watch all your places sort by distance to that pin.

While traveling, use Rego to visit the places you planned, and add new places you discover along the way. Rego uses the iPhone’s GPS, so you don’t need Internet coverage to capture new places. Also, in most cases, your maps will have been cached during your planning, so they’ll still be available when you’re in the middle of nowhere.

Rego is private by default, but you can selectively choose to share places. This creates a web page for your place on the Rego server, that you can show the world. Other Rego users can directly add that place to their Rego, by visiting the page. I actually like keeping it private, as I use Rego is my personal travel log and wish list.

Don’t take my word for it, Apple loved Rego so much they featured it in the New & Noteworthy list on the App Store home page in 127 countries, and gave it a big banner in the Travel section. It’s truly one of my favorite travel apps.

Here’s how you can sponsor the site. It’s a great month those with travel apps.

Thanks to Twitterrific 5.2

ad_52TigerI’d like to thank Twitterriffic 5.2 with push notifications for sponsoring the site this week. I’ve been using it for several days now and it’s great. In fact, I’ve finally been able to delete the app I was using just for push. 

If you want to get in on this, act fast. The Iconfactory is releasing this feature as a public beta, and the first 1,000 users who download the app and enable push will be able to try it out. So download Twitterrific 5.2. now, flick that setting to the on position and enjoy.

Each type of notification has an accompanying, color-coded symbol (below) so you can know exactly what has come in (DM, reply, mention, favorite, retweet or new follower) at a glance. If you dislike the color symbols, they can be turned off (I like them).

Push isn’t the only nice change in this update. Others include:

  • Profiles redesigned to display user banners
  • Discussions can now be shared via email & Storify
  • Droplr thumbnails now display in the timeline
  • The timeline can now display up to 600 tweets (was 400)
  • Various changes to make VoiceOver less verbose
  • Bug fixes, UI tweaks and much more

I’ve used Twitterrific since the beginning and I still believe it’s the way to go. From great new features like push to little niceties like the pull-to-refresh animation, it’s the iOS Twitter app for me. Get it now.

T52notes

Sponsor: Twitterrific 5.2 for iOS with push notifications

ad_52TigerBig thanks to the Iconfactory and Twitterriffic 5.2 with push notifications for sponsoring the site this week. Twitterrific is and has been my iOS Twitter client of choice, and version 5.2 with push notifications makes it even better.

This is a feature I’ve wanted for a long time. Now I no longer have to keep a second Twitter client installed simply for the notifications! Goodbye, other apps.

If you want to get in on this, act fast. The Iconfactory is releasing this feature as a public beta, and the first 1,000 users who download the app and enable push will be able to try it out. So download Twitterrific 5.2. now, flick that setting to the on position and enjoy.

Each type of notification has an accompanying, color-coded symbol (below) so you can know exactly what has come in (DM, reply, mention, favorite, retweet or new follower) at a glance. If you dislike the color symbols, they can be turned off (I like them).

Push isn’t the only nice change in this update. Others include:

  • Profiles redesigned to display user banners
  • Discussions can now be shared via email & Storify
  • Droplr thumbnails now display in the timeline
  • The timeline can now display up to 600 tweets (was 400)
  • Various changes to make VoiceOver less verbose
  • Bug fixes, UI tweaks and much more

I’ve used Twitterrific since the beginning and I still believe it’s the way to go. From great new features like push to little niceties like the pull-to-refresh animation, it’s the iOS Twitter app for me. Get it now.

T52notes

Macminicoloco’s Forever promo

macniniMacminicoloco (MMCL) is a data center that stores your Mac mini and keeps it online, happy and healthy. Once it’s set up, you get a static IP and full access to the machine, so you can do what you please. Talk about “cloud services,” this is your own Mac, not rented space on someone else’s server. Macminicoloco has been hosting Mac minis since 2005 and currently has hundres of them humming away, serving customers in more that 40 countries.

This week, the company announced the Forever promo, which offers its pro-level package at 30% off — forever. That’s right. Here’s what you get:

  • Setup Charges dropped to $0
  • Monthly Charges dropped to $49 (30% off)
  • Static IP Address
  • Remote Reboot
  • Advanced Stats
  • 1000GB per month
  • Hot Standby Club
  • Buy, send, or rent a Mac mini
  • No contract. Cancel anytime.

New and existing customers are eligible and the promo ends on February 18, 2013. This is also the first time that MMCL has offered rentals in quite a while. Right now you can get full hosting and a rental Mac mini for $59 total!

Seriously, having your own dedicated Mac accessible and in the hands of people who know how to take care of it is immensely useful, and this is a great deal. Get on it.

Thanks to 3 Magic Shots

3magicshotsBig thanks to 3 Magic Shots for sponsoring the site this week. This service gives the great but lesser-known apps in Apple’s App Store a chance to be seen by customers. 3 Magic Shots puts featured apps into three categories: Premium, Paid and Free shots. The paid and free shots feature great apps in those categories, and the premium apps are made free to 3 Magic Shots customers. That means you get a look at three super apps that deserve recognition each day.

The folks at 3 Magic Shots choose apps carefully, so you know they’ll be fun, cool or useful. As I write this, Stack The States is featured. That’s a great educational app that my kids love.

Try out 3 Magic Shots to find some hidden App Store treasures and enjoy great, free apps.

If you’d like to sponsor the site for a week, here’s how.

 

Thanks for Drafts for iPad and iPhone

Screen-shot-2012-12-24-at-9.21.51-AMThanks to Drafts for sponsoring the site this week (here’s a full review of Drafts I wrote a while ago). Drafts has been on my iPhone’s home screen for months and months. If  you received a new iPad or iPhone for Christmas, you definitely want to install Drafts.

Drafts is where text starts on iOS. Launch Drafts and start typing. Capture ideas, status updates, todos, phones numbers, whatever. It’s ready to go as soon as you launch. There’s no need to fiddle with tags, categories or an edit button. Drafts is always ready.

Drafts is more than storage. When you are ready to do something with your text, Drafts is ready with an extensive list of output actions, including: Dropbox, Evernote, Twitter, Facebook, App.net, Email, Messages, Events, Reminders and one tap export to a continuously growing list of other apps.

Try Drafts in your dock for a week, you won’t regret it!

Drafts and Drafts for iPad are available now at the App store.