Simply Mac Blog

Archive for the ‘App Spotlights’ Category

Apr 201423

Keep your passwords under control with 1Password

by Shane Roberts

1password

The drama around the Heartbleed bug has gotten a lot of people up in arms over their passwords. Passwords can be tough, not only to remember, but to come up with.

That’s where 1Password can come to your rescue. With the Heartbleed bug, it has been recommended to change your passwords. For me,  I dreaded the task to change all my passwords, and frankly while iCloud Keychain is handy, it’s lacking. 1Password has it mastered and did most the work for me.

Basically, 1Password is a password management and creation app. It’s available for both Mac and iOS, plus it syncs between the two.

1password-screenshot

When you need to create a new password for a site, you’ll just go up to the key in your menu bar, in terms of the Mac version that is, and mouse over ‘Password Generator.’ In there you’ll see a pre-created password that you can copy and use as your new password. You can adjust the strength of the password, as well as tweak some of its requirements. Once you have your password setup, 1Password will ask you to name it so it can be stored.

The next time you need to login,  just go to the key icon on the menu bar, find which site you’re logging into (which 1Password will notice more often than not),  click on it, and it will fill out your password for you – and you’re done!

1Password can also store your credit cards, your information (address, phone number, etc) to quickly fill out a form, and really any other data that you’ll find yourself putting onto the web at any given time!

I personally use this app and it’s great. It takes the hassle out of having to put one capital letter, one number, a special character, no repeating characters, and so on and so on into a password.

It’s also on sale right now, through Friday, for 50% off! That means it’s $24.99 for Mac and $8.99 for iOS! You better hurry to get the savings before they’re gone!

Apr 201408

Adobe Releases Lightroom Mobile for iPad

by Shane Roberts

LightroomMobile

Before I get very in-depth with this new app from Adobe, I want to make it clear up front that, while this app is free to download, it requires a Creative Cloud subscription from Adobe. With that said, I’m guessing the people more likely to use this app, likely already have a CC subscription.

More and more photographers are taking their iPads with them on the go for their photo shoots or presentations. It’s just easier to pack around and use an iPad on the go. To make taking an iPad an even more viable option for photographers, Adobe has released Lightroom Mobile.

LightroomMobile2

If you use Lightroom on your computer, this app will sync back-and-forth between the app on your iPad and your computer.

LightroomMobile3

Here is the app summary directly from iTunes:

Edit and organize images anywhere, anytime on your iPad. Enhance everything from smartphone photos to raw images from DLSRs using powerful and familiar tools. Automatically sync all your mobile edits with Lightroom 5 on your desktop. Easily share all your photos to social media sites. With Adobe Lightroom mobile, your photography is going places.

Edit 
• Edit raw files from DSLR cameras using Smart Previews 
• Edit images from your iPad camera roll 
• Enhance images using familiar Lightroom tools and presets 

Organize 
• Import photos from your iPad camera roll 
• Quickly Flag and Reject photos 

Sync and Share
• Automatically syncs photo edits, metadata, and collection info with Lightroom 5 on your desktop and all your Lightroom-enabled devices
• Easily share photos online via social networks

LightroomMobile4

While the iPad is not yet ready to take over for a laptop full time, for many people out there, an app like this inches it closer to accomplishing that.

If you are a photographer, or just like to mess around with pictures, and have an Adobe Creative Cloud subscription, check out Lightroom Mobile. Click here to see it and download!

Apr 201404

App Spotlight: Find My Friends

by Shane Roberts

Find My Friends - simply mac

It can be a pain to meet up with a friend or family member somewhere, because either directions are confusing or you’re not sure how close someone is for planning purposes. Here is the perfect app, from Apple, that can solve that problem!

Using the same principles as Find My iPhone, Find My Friends allows you to see where your friends are on a map and also notify you, or them, about arrivals and departures.

I can already here the concerns of “Wait, people can track me and see where I am?” The great thing about this app is that it is all permission based. When you invite someone, it can be temporary with a cut off date and time. So if you are on a family outing or vacation, you can set the location sharing to end for everyone that is in the invite at an exact time. Once that time ends, permission will need to be granted again to initiate location sharing through the app. If you don’t make it temporary and you want to cut off sharing, you can easily do that as well. So no need to worry about your friends or family knowing your location, at all times, without your permission.

Find My Friends - simply mac

Once sharing is setup, like in the image above, you can see images of your friends locations on a map. It will give you the distance they are from you currently, and how long ago that was updated.

FindMyFriends2

If you select an individual you are sharing locations with, you can have the option to turn on Notifications. Basically, you can setup the app to notify either you, or your friend, of the others arrival or departure at a certain location. You can also set a geofence around the location you want, to spark the notification to happen when they are closer to that location, or farther away. For example: your car is being worked on and you’re waiting for a ride. You can share locations with your ride, so they can see where they need to go and can receive directions to get there. Plus, you can setup a notification when they arrive at the shop, so you know you can step outside and meet up! It can work vice-versa as well. Your ride, within the Find My Friends app, can have it notify you of their arrival, or even when they leave their home!

FindMyFriends4

Find yourself in a big shopping center, or a beach trying to stay coordinated with your friends or family? Use Find My Friends to find your group, if you get separated, and you can avoid the awkward direction giving from person-to-person. No longer will you have the “hey I’m by the restrooms on the left…. No not that one, the other one,” type of conversations.

It’s a very handy app, available for both iPhone and iPad, and it’s free. Head here to check it out! 

Mar 201431

Microsoft FINALLY brings Office to iPad

by Shane Roberts

After almost four years and millions of iPads sold, Microsoft has finally released their Office apps for iPad. New Microsoft CEO, Satya Nadella, announced that Word, Excel and PowerPoint were all going to be available on the App Store, and they are free.

However, there is a catch to that free price tag. When you download the apps to your iPad, you’ll be able to open and view any file that is sent to you in Word, Excel or PowerPoint without a problem. If you want to edit the file, you’ll need to be subscribed to Office 365. Office 365 is a $99 per year subscription, and gives you the ability to edit and create documents on the iPad app. That could disappointing for those people that are not already 365 subscribers, and perhaps have the regular version of Office installed on their home computers.

Subscribers to 365 get access to Office on up to five computers and five mobile devices, so there is definitely a value there if you decide to subscribe. If you just want Office on your iPad, however, that may be a steep price to pay, especially with Apple’s iWork apps being full function apps that are also free.

If you are an Office 365 subscriber already, you should go download these apps for your iPad. If you are wanting to get the apps, then subscribe to Office 365, you can do that with an in-app purchase.

The apps themselves are very nice looking apps. The people that do subscribe to 365 and use the apps, have given it good reviews overall. One omission in these first versions of the app, which pops up in many of the reviews, is the ability to access cloud services like Dropbox to load and save files.

Below are some screen shots of the apps and the descriptions straight from the App Store.

Microsoft Word for iPad (FREE)

Word-for-iPad

Now your Word documents look great on the iPad. When you edit or create documents, you can be confident they will look exactly how you want across PC, Mac, tablet and phone. Word for iPad has the familiar Office look and feel along with an intuitive touch experience, so you’ll be up and running in no time.
Word for iPad is part of Microsoft Office. With an Office 365 subscription, you get always-up-to-date versions of Microsoft Office on your PC, Mac, tablet and phone. 

Word documents look beautiful 
•Images, tables, charts, SmartArt, footnotes, equations are all there, nicely formatted. 
•Word documents look great, just as they do on your PC or Mac. 
•View email attachments and access all your Word documents from OneDrive, OneDrive for Business, or SharePoint.
•Pick up from where you left off because Word for iPad knows what you were working on last, no matter what device you were using.

Create and edit with confidence
•When you edit a document, your content and formatting are maintained across all your devices – PC, Mac, tablet and phone.
•Express your ideas exactly the way you want, with rich formatting including fonts, pictures, tables, charts, textboxes, shapes, footnotes, page layout and more. 
•Track changes, add comments and work simultaneously with others on the same document.
•Word automatically saves your document, so you can rest assured that you don’t lose all your work while you’re on the go. 
•Simply share your work with others by emailing a hyperlink or the entire document.

A familiar Microsoft Office experience
•It’s easy to pick up the app and get started, because it’s like the Word experience you already know. 
•The familiar navigation and menu options are built for a touch experience. No keyboard required.

Word-for-iPad-2

Word-for-iPad-3

Microsoft Excel for iPad (FREE)

Excel-for-iPad

Now your Excel spreadsheets look great on the iPad. When you edit or create spreadsheets, you can be confident they will look exactly how you want across PC, Mac, tablet and phone. Excel for iPad has the familiar Office look and feel along with an intuitive touch experience, so you’ll be up and running in no time. 

Excel for iPad is part of Microsoft Office. With an Office 365 subscription, you get always-up-to-date versions of Microsoft Office on your PC, Mac, tablet and phone. 

Excel spreadsheets look stunning
•Formulas, tables, charts, comments, hyperlinks, sparklines, conditional formatting are all there, so you see the whole picture. 
•Excel spreadsheets look great, just as they do on your PC or Mac. 
•View email attachments and access all your Excel spreadsheets from OneDrive, OneDrive for Business, or SharePoint.
•Pick up from where you left off because Excel for iPad knows what you were working on last, no matter what device you were using.

Create and edit with confidence
•When you edit a spreadsheet, your content and formatting are maintained across all your devices – PC, Mac, tablet and phone.
•Turn numbers into insights, with support for formulas, charts, tables, sorting, filtering, and more. 
•A special formula keyboard lets you add numbers and formulas rapidly – much easier than with the standard touch keyboard. 
•Excel automatically saves your spreadsheet, so you can rest assured that you don’t lose all your work while you’re on the go. 
•Simply share your work with others by emailing a hyperlink or the entire spreadsheet.

A familiar Microsoft Office experience
•It’s easy to pick up the app and get started, because it’s like the Excel experience you already know. 
•The familiar navigation and menu options are built for a touch experience. No keyboard required.

Excel-for-iPad-3

 

Excel-for-iPad-2

Microsoft PowerPoint for iPad (FREE)

Powerpoint-for-iPad

Now your PowerPoint presentations look great on the iPad. When you edit or create documents, you can be confident that they will look exactly how you want across PC, Mac, tablet and phone. PowerPoint for iPad has the familiar Office look and feel along with an intuitive touch experience, so you’ll be up and running in no time.

PowerPoint for iPad is part of Microsoft Office. With an Office 365 subscription, you get always-up-to-date versions of Microsoft Office on your PC, Mac, tablet and phone. 

PowerPoint presentations look amazing
•Images, tables, charts, SmartArt, transitions, animations are all there, nicely formatted. 
•PowerPoint presentations look great, just as they do on your PC or Mac.
•When presenting, use the built-in laser pointer, pens or highlighters to get your point across.
•View email attachments and access all your PowerPoint presentations from OneDrive, OneDrive for Business, or SharePoint.
•Pick up from where you left off because PowerPoint for iPad knows what you were working on last, no matter what device you were using.

Create and edit with confidence
•When you edit a document, your content and formatting are maintained across all your devices – PC, Mac, tablet and phone.
•Express your ideas exactly the way you want, with full support for rich formatting including fonts, pictures, tables, textboxes, shapes, transitions, speaker notes and more. 
•Work simultaneously with others on the same presentation.
•PowerPoint automatically saves your presentation, so you can rest assured that you don’t lose all your work while you’re on the go. 
•Simply share your work with others by emailing a hyperlink or the entire presentation.

A familiar Microsoft Office experience
•It’s easy to pick up the app and get started, because it’s like the PowerPoint experience you already know. 
•The familiar navigation and menu options are built for a touch experience. No keyboard required.

Powerpoint-for-iPad-2

Powerpoint-for-iPad-3

 

Mar 201418

App Spotlight: March Madness Live

by Shane Roberts

NCAA March Madness Live - simply mac

It’s March and that means one thing. The NCAA basketball tournament is about to tip off. If you are not at home and have to catch every game of every round, then the NCAA March Madness Live app is an app that you need. It’s also great if you want to watch a game on your TV, one on your iPad and another on your iPhone!

How it work is if you are a television subscriber, log into the app and authenticate your subscription, and watch any game you want! Games on CBS don’t require a paid TV subscription. Once you’re logged in, you can watch any game that is currently happening, receive live game alerts, see everything that is happening in social media around the tournament, watch recaps, stay informed with news, stats and more.

Screen Shot 2014-03-18 at 11.00.58 AM

You can also fill out your brackets within the app, and let the app do the tracking for you!

Screen Shot 2014-03-18 at 11.04.14 AM

The app is available for iPad and iPhone, plus it’s free! Head here to check it out.

Mar 201417

Microsoft OneNote Comes to the Mac App Store

by Shane Roberts

OneNote for Mac - simply mac

Microsoft has taken another step in allowing their software on Apple devices, as well as allowing them to be distributed through Apple’s various App Stores.

The most recent addition to the App Store from Microsoft is their popular note program, OneNote.

OneNote is a rather straight forward, but multifaceted, program. It’s basically a digital notebook. You can take notes, make check lists, reminders, add images, have tabbed sections and a lot more. Back when I used PC’s, OneNote was a handy program to have, and came in useful many times for me.

Here is the description straight from the App Store on OneNote:

Here are some more ides on how to use OneNote:
• Capture rich notes for classwork, meetings, or research
• Keep track of you shopping list and mark items off wherever you are
• Create an itinerary and keep track of your travel plans for you next big vacation
• Take pictures of receipts and bills to remove some of the paper clutter
• Collaborate and share ideas with your team
• Research items and prices to make the best purchasing decision
•Keep and edit all of you notes – whether taken from ONeNote for Mac, tablet, phone, or browser
Key features
• Sync your notebooks seamlessly across computers and devices – then share them to your friends, family, or colleagues
• Your notes look just the same on your Mac – including rendering ink annotation and formatting
• Search your notes and files for anything you’ve captured by just typing a keyword or phrase
Requirements
• Mac OS 10.9 or greater
• A free Microsoft account to use OneNote for Mac. 
• OneNote for Mac opens existing notebooks created in Microsoft OneNote 2010 or later and are save to OneDrive
 
OneNote for Mac
 
 

 The key things to take out of that list, specifically in the requirements, is the fact that you need Mavericks. Also, you need to sign up for a Microsoft account if you don’t already have one.

So if you are looking for a new app for note taking and such, check out OneNote! It has iOS companion apps, and the best part is that it is FREE! Click to see more.

 

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