Awesome apps for work and a great game for play


Awesome Apps of the Week
Showcasing some of the best, coolest, most interesting new apps and app updates.
Photo: Ian Fuchs/Cult of Mac

I rely on my devices for everything. Whether it’s my recipe book, my alarm clock, to help me get work done, or entertain me during my downtime, my devices are a critical piece of life. Having apps that help me in those situations (or just make them a little more fun) is key.

This week, an app that makes short work of dealing with obscure files, a way to manage your favorite color collections, and a delightful game to enjoy. As usual, if you have something you want us to check out for a future Awesome Apps post, be sure to email your suggestion or tweet them over!

6.1-inch iPhone for 2018 pictured in fancy new color options


6.1-inch iPhone color options
This could be an early glimpse of the iPhone 9.
Photo: Slashleaks

The more affordable 6.1-inch iPhone expected to launch this year won’t be as exciting as its pricier siblings, but it seems Apple has some tricks up its sleeve to make it more appealing.

New photos reveal some of the fancier color options buyers will be able to choose from, including red and blue.

El Capitan quietly added 10-bit color support for new 5K iMac


iMac Retina 5K
The 5K iMac has gotten even better.
Photo: Apple

In addition to the plethora of new features Apple added for OS X El Capitan, it also quietly integrated 10 bit color support for the 4K & 5K iMac.

While this may not mean much for your average user, it’s absolutely massive news for photographers, video editors, or anyone else who relies on high-end color correction.

Find your gaming zen with …and then it rained



If you’re looking to get away from it all, you might want to check out this game. …and then it rained is an arcade game full of sound, rain, and colors, and it’s the perfect game for a quiet few minutes away from the hectic pace of your life.

With true zen-like minimalism, there are just a few simple mechanics at work here, but it may just be the best game you play all week.

Check out the video below to see how it plays.

Retina iPad Mini Shows Fewer Colors Than iPad Air


Anand's graph showing the various color gamuts of current tablets.
Anand's graph showing the various color gamuts of current tablets.

Friday afternoon I checked out the Retina iPad mini at a local Apple reseller (spoiler: it’s awesome), and I tried it right after I’d hefted the iPad Air. And I noticed something I hadn’t heard about in any reviews: The colors are way brighter and, well, more colored on the iPad Air. The wallpaper looks more saturated, and the blue/green icons really jumped out at me on the bigger display.

The mini, by contrast, looked just like the old mini, only with higher resolution. And it turns out that my eyes were right. Anand Lal Shampi of Anandtech did the tests and found that the color gamut of the Air is wider than that of the Retina mini.

NIX Bluetooth Scanning Dongle Lets Your iPhone Collect Colors



What color is that lovely jacket your friend is wearing? And that movie poster up there on the side of that building? Wouldn’t that blue make the perfect color for your new website’s background?

But how can you make sure you’re getting the exact color? After all, your cellphone camera is affected by all kinds of external factors, including the color of the light falling on the jacket/poster, as well as the colors of the surrounding items. What you need is a handheld, iPhone-controlled colorimeter.

ColorSchemer Studio 2: A Little App That Speeds Design Up [Deals]


CoM - colorschemmain

I may not be a designer, but I know what I like. And even with my lack of craftsmanship in design, I do have a sense of realizing when a color is just a bit, well… a little off. But what I don’t know how to do (at least with ease) is how to fix that “offness” when I really need to.

So I don’t fix it at all.

Only when people who have more design sense than I do tell me that the color that I thought was “a little off” is actually very off do I feel bad about my decision to just let it be. That’s when this app—currently on sale through Cult of Mac Deals—probably could have come in handy.

ColorSchemer Studio 2 is touted as “the professional color-matching application for your Mac” and Cult of Mac Deals has it for only $29 for a limited time.

Apple Testing Budget iPhone For Later This Year In Colors Like Blue, Pink, Green And Orange [Rumor]



Apple is rumored to be working on a budget iPhone targeted at emerging markets. The device will allegedly be made of plastic and look like an iPod touch in the back and an iPhone 5 in the front. Other reports have claimed that Apple is working on multiple color variations beyond the traditional black and white.

Today a new report from Japanese publication Macotakara claims that Apple is currently testing such a device in the supply chain for production later this year. 

How Apple Will (And Won’t) Colorize The iPhone 5S


Nice try, but no, the iPhone 5S isn't going to look like this.

When it comes to iOS devices, Apple’s long adhered to a (slightly modified) adage of Henry Ford: “You can have it any color, as long as it’s white or black.”

With the 2012 iPod touch refresh, though, Apple showed for the first time they were willing to start making iOS devices in different colors. From there, it was only a matter of time that the inevitable rumors started circling that the iPhone 5S would come in a swatch of different colors.

This concept by Alexander Kormishin imagines what an iPhone 5S in color would look like, but we think he’s got it all wrong. Here’s why.

The Inside Story Of How Apple Bought Music Startup Lala, And Then Bought It Again



Lala was the pioneer in online music streaming before services like Spotify and Pandora really took off. If you Googled a song pre-2009, a Lala link was the first result. Founded in 2005, Lala underwent some business model changes until it became a full-fledged music streaming site. A partnership with Google’s Music Beta and good connections with the record industry allowed Lala to grow and gain attention from bigger tech companies.

It made sense for Apple to buy Lala in December of 2009. was shut down in May of 2010, and Apple has since introduced products like iTunes Match. When Lala was bought, we all knew that Apple had paid around $80 million for the small startup. Now the inside story of how the deal was reached over dinner at Steve Jobs’s house has surfaced.

Apple Isn’t Buying Failed Social Network Color, They’re Just Hiring The Guys Who Made It



A flurry of rumors have surrounded the failed video app start-up Color over the past 24 hours. First a rumors hit that Color was going to completely shutdown after failing to gain widespread use after a year. A few hours later a second rumor claimed that Color wasn’t shutting down, they were just being bought by Apple.

It appears that both rumors were completely wrong and sort of right at the same time. Color – as a company – isn’t being purchased by Apple for an eight figure sum, but Apple is buying Color’s team of 20 engineers for a modest figure of $2 million to $5 million.

Apple Has Reportedly Purchased Video Sharing Startup Color Labs [Updated]


Once a photo sharing service, now a video broadcasting cool
Once a photo sharing service, now a video broadcasting cool

You know how some ideas sound really good conceptually but end up not panning out in reality? Color was such an idea. The iPhone app received a ton of hype originally with its $41 million in venture capital funding. The premise was to create a location-based, crowd-sourced photo stream from people’s smartphone cameras that was shared publicly for everyone to see. After that idea failed, Color tried to reinvent itself into a photo sharing service by partnering with Facebook. Now the app is positioned as an internet broadcasting tool.

With recent rumors that Color Labs was considering closing its doors, a surprising report today claims that Apple is in the process of acquiring the startup.

Colorotate Turns The iPad Into The Ultimate Photoshop Color-Picker



In some fields, the iPad just isn’t suited to take over from a PC. And that’s cool, because it can still help out. Take pro-level Photoshopping, for example: without actions, multiple windows and keyboard shortcuts, no iPad app is going to be better than PS on OS X. But you can put your tablet net to your Mac and let them work together.

Today’s example: Colorotate, a color editing app for your iPad.

The Brother MFC-J825W Printer is a More Than Capable iPad Printer [Review]



You’ve got an iPad. You were so taken with this magical device that you decided to write the next great American novel that doesn’t involve sparkling vampires using Pages or another word processing app for the iPad. One problem: How to print it.

The Brother MFC-J825DW is one of the latest Brother printers to join HP, Lexmark, Epson and Canon as a capable Airprint printer. So how does it work with the iPad?

How iOS 6’s Cool New Adaptive Status Bar Works


In iOS 6, the status bar changes color to match the app that's running.
In iOS 6, the status bar changes color to match the app that's running.

As we detailed in another post earlier this week, Apple’s new iOS 6 beta features a nifty new status bar that changes color to match the app you’re currently running. We provided a number of screenshots that showed the status bar in three different shades of blue, and in silver — colors the status bar never displayed in iOS 5.

So how does the status bar determine which color to use? Well, it’s actually pretty simple.

The iPhone: Made (Or At Least Patented) In Glorious Technicolor


Technicolor says there's not much difference between The Emerald City and Cupertino: both use their tech.
Technicolor says there's not much difference between The Emerald City and Cupertino: both use their tech.

If you’ve ever seen an old color movie like The Wizard of Oz you’ve probably seen the “Filmed In Glorious Technicolor” crawl. In fact, for years, Technicolor was synonymous with seeing color on film and on your screens, and for good reasons: Technicolor was ingenious.

Despite the fact that no one had invented film stock that could actually capture color, the French company had figured out a way to make color movies by splitting the light being recorded with a prism into red, green and blue light, then recording those individual color spectrums onto separate strips of black-and-white film. Once these strips of film were colored and combined, the result was life-like color recorded on black-and-white film.

Pretty cool, huh? In the days of digital cinema, though, Technicolor has fallen on hard times. In fact, their entire company is unprofitable, with the exception of one department that keeps 220 staff on hand. It’s the patent licensing department, and their only job is to rip open new iPhones, iPads and Macs the second they come out and start looking for infringements.

New iPad’s Color Filters Alone Eat 30% More Battery


The new iPad has much improved colors, but at the expense of battery life. Photo Jeff Yurek/Dot Color
The new iPad has much improved colors, but at the expense of battery life.

The first thing that hit me when I powered on my new iPad wasn’t the retina-ness of the display — that takes a little time to seep into your brain. No, it was the colors. They seemed more contrasty, more saturated. More colorful. But just what was going on? Jeff Yurek, of the Dot Color blog, did some scientific digging.

Colorware Your Old MacBook Using Fabric Dye



Have you ever wanted one of those custom, Pantone-colored MacBook, but don’t want to pay the guys over at Colorware an $800 premium to make your device look like Jonny Ive and Punky Brewster’s illicit love sprog?

Well, the good news is that you can actually do it yourself in your own kitchen. The bad news is that for most of us, the process is so complicated and so likely to end in user error that while you’ll still save over Colorware’s $800 premium, you’ll still have to spend a few hundred bucks replacing your machine.