Amazon just killed Pocket and Instapaper

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The quiet update that Amazon made to its iOS Kindle app took me by surprise because it is a feature I have wanted for a long time.

Pocket and Instapaper make great jobs of presenting long articles on phones and tablets in easy to read ways and they have been firm app friends, but there has always been something missing. The ability to easily transfer long articles to read on my Paperwhite has involved using the Amazon extension on my desktop and even paid services in the past, but now I can transfer these articles to my reading cloud with one tap and they will appear on my iPhone and Paperwhite ready to read. They will synchronise at all times and the Kindle app just ate 2 icons on my iPhone which no longer need to be used.

The presentation is comparable to Instapaper and with my books also residing on the iOS app or my Paperwhite, there is always a sense of continuity.

It could be argued that Amazon is using its position to kill off the competition, but in this case I jumped at the chance to use just one app for 99% of my reading and it works superbly.

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Kosho Tsuboi’s Tangible Paper Calendar Syncs With Your Smartphone


There’s something about the tangibility of paper that—despite an ever-growing availablity of smartphones and kindles—stops us from throwing out our traditional notebooks and pens. Yet with ‘magic calendar,’ by Kosho Tsuboi—combines the tactility of a physical wall calender with the intellegence of technology, creating a future where even paper connects to the internet… More at designboom.

So clever…

Your apps (Arnold and Kirk)


I wish there was a tracking tool on the iPhone to see how much time you used on each app.
The closest is the Battery monitor in Settings.

Here are my top battery eaters (no particular order):

Mail, Music, Safari, Camera, Photos, Phone, Contacts, Notes, Messages
Google Calendar – better month display, can read individual appointments, rather that just see dots
Fitbit (mobile app for my fitness tracker)
Battleship, AcidSolitaire, iFarkle, MS Soitaire
Library (book reader)
YO.TV (TV guide)
Carrot (fitness incentive program here in Canada) Arnold

I just realized this is very similar to the “show us your homescreen” thing we did a while back 😀
Google Maps/Waze – nav, prefer 3rd party
Camera/One Second Everyday – journaling
Simplenote – love the simplicity and how it has a web frontend
Weightbot – sad support has dropped for this, the clicky robot sounds make a chore into a pleasure
Yahoo News Digest – at risk of being supplanted by Apple’s swipe left / quick access area
FB /tumblr – social meda
Shazam – music id’ing
Cracked – good reads
Slack/Whats App messaging
Appigo Todo – the first and one of the few I’ve found to really handle recurring Items
Bebot – best sound toy ever
Desert Golfing – minimalist gaming Kirk

Your iPhone apps may no longer work

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I thought this is important for as many people to see as possible. A few years ago, Apple switched to 64 bit processing and storage. Shortly thereafter, they started requiring all new apps and updates to be switched to 64 bit. Recently, they started culling old apps that had effectively been abandoned and were not 64 bit. You may see the warning upon launching an app that it may slow down your iPhone. This is because it’s a 32-bit app. In iOS 10.3, there’ll be a stronger warning and you’ll be able to find out which apps are 32-bit. And as of iOS 11, those 32-bit apps will no longer work. Better check them now. Bob

Good advice from Bob who also sent in this link to show you how to check your apps.

Your apps (Bob and vboelema)


Since I’ve retired, I spend much more time on my desktop Mac than on my iPhone or iPad. And some of my Mac apps are reflections of the apps I use on my iPhone, and vice versa. To specifics:

Todo – I’ve used this for as long as I remember, with a break of about a year for some reason. I don’t bother with their cloud. I don’t need it. I also have their Mac app which is just okay, but everything syncs nicely.

1Password – Also on my Mac.

Firefox – I don’t care for Safari, either on my Mac or on my iPhone. I sync bookmarks from my desktop to iPhone and vice versa.

Microsoft Pix – Camera replacement.

Car Care – to keep my gas and maintenance log

Moneydance – Just a reflection of my desktop version

NHL – A must for ice hockey fans

Week Cal and myCal Pro – calendars. The built in calendar is too limited. I need two to keep track of my schedule and my wife’s. With two apps, I don’t have to switch in the app. I just open one or the other.

WeatherEye – A must for Canadians

Flipboard – for when I’m waiting

GoodReader – for a variety of things

Photos, Messages, Phone, Mail – default iOS apps. Bob

Here are my main ones:
Google apps: Gmail, You Tube, Maps, Translate, Hangouts.
Agenda: CloudCal, CloudTasks & Business Calendar Pro, Sectograph.
Office: AndrOpen Office, Simple Mind, 4001 Spanish Verbs, Free Adblocker Browser, HP Everyday Papers.
Communication: Whatsapp, Skype, Face Book, Messenger.
Music: Player Pro, Spotify, TuneIn Radio.
Media: MxPlayer Pro, Netflix, VLC, tTorrent, Home (Chromecast app), BBC News, Kindle.
File manager: Solid Explorer, Dropbox.
Camera: Cameringo +
Car: Ulysee Speedometer
Miscelaneous: Nova Launcher Pro, Energy Bar, Swiftly Switch Pro, Swiftkey Keyboard.

Most I use daily, some weekly… but they all get used. vboelema

Your apps (Neil)


Much of what I do uses Apple’s own apps, and I can’t think of many, if any, cases where I have replaced a default app with something else. I’ve limited this to iOS, in line with Shaun’s post.

Mail: it would be better of it had PGP support, but it’s good enough, especially now that it supports multiple signatures

Safari: it works fine. I use an “always-on” VPN when not connected to a trusted Wi-Fi network, so all traffic routes back through my servers, so I get the benefit of network-level tracker blocking, access to services on the home network.

Reminders, Notes, Camera, Podcasts, iBooks etc. All fine for my needs.

Other apps which I use frequently are (in alphabetical order):

1Password (iPhone / iPad): I have no idea what my passwords are, thanks to 1Password. Essential on both iOS and macOS, in my opinion

Authenticator (iPhone): a good two-factor authentication app, although it doesn’t seem to offer backup, which is a shame

Blink shell (iPhone / iPad): excellent ssh application

Glympse (iPhone): great for sharing location with friends who don’t use iOS

Good Notes (iPad): for taking notes with the Pencil, with different notebooks per topic

Groundwire (iPhone): the best SIP client available for iOS, in my opinion

iAnnotate (iPad): sadly, WebDAV support was removed from the new version, so I am stuck on version 3, but it is still my go-to PDF reader/annotater

Nextcloud (iPhone / iPad): client for our Nextcloud server. Think “Dropbox, but not on someone else’s computer”

TomTom (iPhone): their new app/model is a good example of how to take something great and ruin it pretty much comprehensively. But I’d still rather have this than rely on something which needs a cellular connection. Note: the original version is available here.

TouchBlur (iPhone): for blurring out faces and so on in photographs, usually for when I want to tweet something but remove unwanted bits

Tube Exits (iPhone): because I still don’t know the best routes to use on the London Underground

TweetBot (iPhone / iPad): Twitter client. It would be better if it could do scheduled tweets

Narro turns your reading list into a podcast

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Use Narro’s Android app, Chrome Extension, iOS app, or bookmarklet on any article. Don’t worry about ads or formatting – Narro filters out everything but the text.

The extracted text will be transcribed to audio in a clear voice. You can choose from over 25 voices with automatic detection of over 10 languages!

Tom Munch mentioned Narro yesterday and I have signed up because the idea is great. I haven’t had time to try it yet, but potentially it could be one of my most used apps.