Nowadays more and more kids are asking for an iPhone, maybe yours as well. But are you worried about their receiving nuisance calls, bullying, contact from strangers, endless spam and trolls? These commonplace tricksters can soon rack up a huge phone bill — and you’ll be the one asked to pay it.
MobiPast is a new monitoring app that allows you to see just whom your kids contact on their phones — and who contacts them. It’s not spying exactly. It’s for their and your safety and peace of mind. To see how MobiPast allows you to remotely track your kids’ calls, texts, contacts, internet surfing, social media activities — and GPS locations — read on.
Rolling with Cubr. Photo courtesy Sébastien Leidgens.
SAN FRANCISCO — Sébastien Leidgens wants to put a new angle on the business card.
His invention, Cubr, is a six-sided die that connects people through private mobile web chat. When a red, blue or green Cubr is tossed your way, you hit the website or download the app, then enter the code to start your instant message convo or share photos with the person who gave you the die. The enterprising Belgian, a former project manager at a digital marketing agency, is taking a gamble on the idea that people are tired of handing out one-dimensional cards.
“It’s a business card for non-business people,” Leidgens says in an English heavily influenced by his native French. “Young people don’t have business cards. This you can use for private situations in everyday life. It’s a lot more fun and outside of the usual public circles.”
While sitting in on a session at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference last year, Nick Frey, Chris Galzerano, and Veeral Patel got an itch to make something. As part of iOS 7, Apple had introduced “Multipeer Connectivity,” a framework for communicating with nearby devices.
Frey and his friends were at WWDC on student scholarships given by Apple, a tradition that provides the opportunity for hundreds of grade school and college students to attend the expensive conference for free each year.
Nearly a year later, the result of their shared itch is Audibly, a nifty iPhone app that can chain together iPhones to create a wireless sound system.
High-school senior Omar Martin Del Campo and his small team of developers have found a way to make text messaging even more secure. Peek lets you chat with friends via the app and your messages are erased as you read them.
The app asks you to authenticate with Twitter or Facebook to ensure your identity to your friends, and then you can chat away in the fairly clean, purple-themed interface on offer.
“Our focus,” said Del Campo in an email with Cult of Mac, “is a great user experience, beautiful design, simplicity and safe and secure messaging.”
As if we didn’t have enough fat shaming to go around, there’s a new game on the App Store called Plastic Surgery For Barbara, and it’s a doozy.
The idea here is that Barbara (or Barbie, if you will) is overweight. The developers want kids aged 12+ to play a game in which they can assume that fat is ugly, and that the only way to fix a weight problem is through surgery.
“Barbara likes to eat a lot of burgers and chocolates and once she found out that she looks ugly,” says the App Store description. “She can’t make it up with this situation any additional second. And today plastic surgeon is going to make operation on her body and face in order to return cute Barbara’s look.”
So, she’s fat, which means she’s ugly, and she can’t wait any longer. If she just gets surgery, she’ll be “cute” again. Whew.
Which means, of course, that you can use the Canary not only to get notifications when there’s out-of-the-ordinary activity recorded, but also to capture video you can look at later that may not have tripped a notification.
We talked with the Canary crew at CES, as you can see in the video above.
55 percent of Hinge users are looking to find a relationship, according to internal user surveys by the app developer. 35 percent want to find good dates. Only 5 percent admit to just wanting a hookup.
That’s a huge contrast from other apps like OK Cupid or Tinder, said Hinge developer Justin McLeod, who spoke to Cult of Mac over Skype.
His goal, he said, was to create a much better dating app, one that was just as easy to join as Tinder, but with more quality results. It seems to be working, as the app is growing by 10 percent every week.
The problem with the native Contacts app on your iPhone is that you have to keep the addresses, phone numbers, and emails updated on your own. If your friend moves, or gets a new number, it’s up to you to get the information and enter it correctly into your Contacts app. That’s just so old school.
Addappt is a new app that aims to change all that. You invite others to download and enter their own information in the app, and then every time something changes on their end, the entry in your app changes, too. Better still, the app will push the changes to your native Contacts app, something I’ve not seen before in an app of this type.