Tag Archives: app store

Copilot Live Premium GPS Navigation review (Android)

So now I have my car, I need to make sure I have a good way of guiding myself when I don’t know where I’m going. I’ve tried many sat nav apps over the years over various phones and operating systems. On my previous phone, the Nokia 5230, free sat nav software was provided courtesy of Nokia and I have to say – considering it was free – it was fantastic. Not only did it include features that would normally come at a premium (eg traffic and speed camera alerts), but it also allowed maps to be downloaded to the memory card (in order to save data usage).

Sadly, whilst Android does have free sat nav provided (courtesy of Google) – it’s quite limited. The actual navigation is very good – but considering it doesn’t have speed camera alerts and also doesn’t allow map downloads, I decided I had to look into a premium option.

After much deliberation, I decided to go for Copilot Live Premium. It comes at rather a cost – £25 up front including VAT and then £10 per year (after the first year) for ongoing traffic alerts. However, you do get all the premium features I would expect – including free map downloads to a memory card (which are also very well sized) and free speed camera alerts.

Performance of the app is very good – on my HTC Sensation XE movement shows at a lovely frame rate. The GUI is also very efficient – not only does it look tidy but you can also choose from a wide range of stats to show on the main display such as speed, distance remaining, ETA and so on.

 There are also plenty of settings you can play with – from changing how far in advance the app warns you of an upcoming junction through to the types of POIs that are displayed on the map. I found some settings hard to find – in many cases they were hidden away – but there’s definitely no shortage of customisation.

Overall, I’m very happy with the app. In future, I’d like to see better speeding warnings – right now you only get a warning when you’re over 5mph over the speed limit. Whilst this is handy, if I was doing 35mph in a 30 zone I’d easily get caught by a mobile speed camera.

Features: 4/5
Performance: 5/5
Price: 4/5 (good value for money, but monthly payment options would be nice)

Is the new “Find My Friends” app by Apple a handy tool or a stalker’s paradise?

To coincide with the release of iOS5 on October 12th, Apple released several new optional apps for iPod touch, iPhone and iPad. One of these apps is Find My Friends, which claims to be a handy tool for locating friends and family by making use of their GPS and A-GPS functionality.

The new app has been met with mixed reviews – with many claiming the app could simply be used as a stalker’s tool in the wrong hands.

However, I happen to think that the app is a very clever idea – with many not-seen-before features that make the app a safe, unobtrusive yet helpful way of keeping track of friends and family.

First of all, the app is completely opt-in only. This means that people can only track you with full permission granted by you – meaning nobody can publicly see where you are.

You can either invite people to permanent access to your location, or temporary “event” access which gives people access to your location for a set date and time. This means, for example, that if you’re meeting somebody at a festival, you can give them temporary access which terminates when the festival is over.

Also, you can quite easily turn off the app’s location tracking if you’re going somewhere you’d rather other people didn’t know about – simply by switching on ‘Hide from Followers” in the Me tab – making it easy to hide personal places. Whilst I’d quite like it to have a function where you could tell it not to report specific places, I’m sure this could eventually be possible.

Overall, I think this is an improvement on many previous tracking apps that have been released – and could seen as very useful to many.

Top 5 iPhone and iPod touch apps – January 2011

Sorry it’s been such a long time since I last blogged. It’s been a busy year so far with countless AS level exams, coursework and other projects I’ve been getting up to out of college. However, I have a little free time so I thought I’d rekindle the site with a new post – I was getting worried that I might not make a single post within January!

Anyway, here’s your top 5 iPhone and iPod touch apps for January 2011:

5. Family Guy Time Warped [£0.59 for full version]

If you enjoy Family Guy, you’ll really enjoy this great app. You play characters from the game in various challenges. The game is very entertaining although sometimes it can get quite frustrating as, at times, you die repeatedly! Nevertheless, if you’re looking for a game that’ll occupy you for a few hours, try it.

4. FleetMaster [FREE]

FleetMaster is a brilliant free battleships game which works via online multiplayer. The game uses “Game Center” to find others players for you to challenge. Whilst the game is a little sluggish at times, it does work very effectively and can be good entertainment if you’ve got internet to hand.

3. Cover Orange [£0.59]

Sadly this game is no longer free, but even at £0.59 it is well worth the purchase. This is an extremely addictive game with seemingly endless levels to complete. You play to save oranges that need to be saved from deadly “rain”. Sounds random, but it is extremely good fun (and often very frustrating).

2. Words With Friends [Free version available]

This free game (ad supported, full version available) is a classic attempt at a digital interactive version of Scrabble. It does actually work very well with online multiplayer. However, if you’ve got many games running at the same time, the push notifications can become extremely irritating so you may want to consider turning those off. Otherwise, it’s another great way to waste some time.

1. Sunday Lawn [Free for a limited time]

I discovered this game some time ago, but it came to my attention that this is now free for a limited time. This has to be one of my favourite classic iOS games – but I almost find it too addictive.

So there you go – nothing very productive this month (!!) but definitely some great games to try. I apologize that there was no top 5 for December – I admit I simply ran out of time. I’ll try and get posts back on the go soon, but for the mean time I hope these keep your i-device stocked up for a while!

If I don’t get time to post, please remember that you can follow me with @geekonthepc on twitter for any personal updates.

Top 5 iPhone and iPod touch apps – November 2010

Since I’ve had my new iPod touch 4G, I’ve been downloading, installing and often deleting a huge number of apps. If you have to give Apple credit for one of their creations, the App Store would be where credit is due. It is, undoubtedly, the most popular store for mobile devices.

So, I’ve decided to start writing monthly top 5 app charts for the iPhone and iPod touch. Don’t ask me whether this will last – I haven’t got a clue! But I shall remain optimistic for the time being and begin now.

Here we go then. Here’s your top 5 roundup for November 2010 in reverse order.

Oh, and I’ll take the opportunity to point out that (for this month at least) there may be some older apps in the charts. You can’t ignore the classics and the most useful apps just because they’ve been out for some time. Basically, what I’m saying is, the month this refers to doesn’t necessarily mean that the app was launched during this month.

5. thetrainline [FREE]

This has to be one of my most used transport apps. This has been around for some time (I can remember it having a permanent residence on my old iPod touch as well as my new one) but, nevertheless, it is extremely useful for finding trains across the UK at the last minute. It’s only downside is that you can’t check ticket prices without registering for an account, which is a bit of a bummer if you need to know in a hurry. It does memorize your home location, though, which is handy as you can just tell the app to find the nearest station to your current location and get you a train home. If you use trains regularly, this is a must have.

4. OpenFeint (Free App a Day) [FREE]

The title gives the app away really. Every day, OpenFeint make an app on the App Store free for a day, and it’s your opportunity to get something for nothing. It’s pot luck really – sometimes the apps are great and other times they just aren’t worth the bandwidth. But as they’re free, I guess you haven’t got much to loose.


If you know about VLC Media Player for your computer, it won’t take you long to work out what this app does. However, it does do an extremely good job. It plays a wide range of video formats so I can finally play videos that aren’t in the annoying, space hungry MP4 format. It doesn’t always display videos in the centre of the screen, though, which you might find irritating. However, if you have videos in various formats on your computer, it is well worth the download.

2. eBuddy Pro [£2.99]

If you want a decent portable IM client, this can’t really be beaten. There is a free version of eBuddy for iPhone (and iPod touch) but it’s full of adverts and limitations – so I would suggest buying the full version if you’re going to be using IM frequently on the go. I prefer eBuddy Pro to other IM clients (such as the official WLM app) mainly because it is clean, quick and I find the notifications are much more responsive in this app than any other app of it’s kind. It also handles multitasking very well.

1. RedLaser [FREE]

As previously reviewed on GEEK!, I think this has to be my first number 1 app. If you like comparing prices for products and saving money online, this app will be your new companion. The app utilises the camera built into the iPhone (and iPod touch 4G) and uses it is to scan barcodes. Yes, you’ve heard of this concept many times before – however this app actually works! It’s found the vast majority of barcodes I’ve tried to scan with it, and also managed to get good price comparisons. This app is undoubtedly a huge time saver. It’s also a good entertainer for half an hour if you’ve got plenty of DVD’s or the likes in your home!!

So there you go. Let’s see if I remember to post up next month’s roundup.

Apple makes it clear that they have enough fart apps

I’m not joking! Apple has recently released a document that reminds developers of the rules and guidelines with regards to apps in the App Store.

Feast your eyes on this. It’s a good read!

My favourites from the document are as follows:

“We don’t need any more Fart apps.”

“If you run to the press and trash us, it never helps.”

“If it sounds like we’re control freaks, well, maybe it’s because we’re so committed to our users and making sure they have a quality experience with our products. Just like almost [!!] all of you are too.

The document then goes on to list every single rule of the app development.

So, if you’re looking into making an app anytime soon – remember Apple said this: “If your App looks like it was cobbled together in a few days, or you’re trying to get your first practice App into the store to impress your friends, please brace yourself for rejection. We have lots of serious developers who don’t want their quality Apps to be surrounded by amateur hour.”