Review: Overcast for iPhone, the newest contender for the iOS podcast app market

With Instapaper and The Magazine, Marco Arment effectively invented the read-it-later and independent publishing idioms on iOS. Naturally, competitors followed but Arment was already a ‘front runner’ in the market. With Overcast, Arment is the follower. Overcast joins a whole host of other developers in a segment of the App Store that is already well established. It’s a different set of challenges.

In many respects, Overcast acts like its the only podcast app on the iPhone. I mean this in a good way. There aren’t any gimmicky extras or visual widgets to try and spur interest. This is very much Arment’s take on how a podcast app should look and behave. Read on for our full review …

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Paul McCartney releases five classic albums as iPad apps – more content, lower cost

ipad

The Guardian reports that Paul McCartney has released five of his classic albums as iPad apps, offering remastered audio tracks, videos, interviews, photos, and artwork from both albums and singles.

Five of his classic albums – Band on the Run, McCartney, McCartney II, RAM and Wings over America – have been turned into iPad apps by label Concord Music Group, and released through Apple’s App Store.

Surprisingly, despite the additional content, the cost of the apps is lower than buying just the albums alone…  Read more

Google Chrome for iOS update adds Cast support to web pages, gets a tweaked icon

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Google has released an updated version of the Google Chrome application for iOS today, bringing at least one interesting new feature to the app: mobile websites that have Cast support will now work with all of your Cast-capable devices. It’s unclear how the feature works at the moment, but according to the release notes, developers are going to need to add support to their webpages before they can take advantage of the feature.

Also, as will likely be praised by iOS users everywhere, the version 36.0.1985.49 update goes the way of Google Hangouts and finally gets rid of the infamous “lip” located at the bottom of the app icon:

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Apple begins encrypting iCloud email sent between providers

MailIcon

Last month Apple confirmed that it would soon beef up encryption for iCloud email following a report detailing security flaws in major email services. While Apple previously encrypted emails sent between its own iCloud customers, now the company has enabled encryption for emails in transit between iCloud and third-party services for me.com and mac.com email addresses. 

The change is documented on Google’s transparency website that shows the percentage of emails encrypted in transit for both inbound and outbound email exchanges (pictured below): Read more

Estimote introduces iBeacon power management tools for extending battery life

Estimote iBeacon beacon screen grab

Estimote, the company behind the iBeacons I tested in my Launch Center Pro 2.3 coverage and used by easyJet in select European airports, is introducing a round of improvements to its beacon product line and corresponding software today. The primary focus of the improvements deals with power management and how Estimote’s iBeacons consume battery. In short, Estimote’s iBeacons are getting smarter about how they connect and stay powered by adding two beacon power modes including Basic and Smart…

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Review: Wiper encrypted messaging/calling app with neat erase feature (and iOS 8 update details)

Yes, another secure and ephemeral messaging app. There’s Wickr, Snapchat, Confide, so what makes Wiper Messenger different? I’ve had the chance to play around with the new free chatting app on iOS, and it seems to act as a fusion of WhatsApp, Snapchat, and Wickr. The app prompts you for your email address or phone number in order to create your account, and then you are brought to a fairly simple interface with three tabs across the bottom: Chats, Contacts, and More. Let’s go tab-by-tab:

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