In our continuing tradition of rounding up new mobile application releases we found interesting and/or exciting over the past month, we present you with this new list of apps for September 2011. There are some great game, new browser releases and innovative uses of augmented reality this month. There is also a new section for prominent updates you may have missed during the month. Check it out below.
The list, as always, is a bit subjective so please let us know in the comments if we missed an app or you have found one that you cannot live without.
HeyStaks is "social search" brought to iOS and Android. It is not dissimilar from the approach that Microsoft is taking with Bing and Facebook integration but the HeyStaks community is the one that powers the social aspects of search.
Untappd is a way to track what beers you have drank and then rate and share them socially. Have you ever frequented a pub that has a giant beer list and wanted to work your way through it? There is a bar here in Boston called the Bukowski's that is know for its beer and has a "Dead Authors Club" where you drink 133 beers in 180 days to join the club. Untappd could be a great way to keep track of your progress and share it with your friends.
Some of our favorite people at ReadWriteWeb recently have been game developers. Puffle Launch is brought to users from Disney, so it is not exactly your classic indie studio type of game, but it is still very cool. So, basically this weird red blog wants these little golden rings and will stop at nothing to get them. The graphics are reminiscent of Super Nintendo and the game play is a mix between pinball and Super Mario. When it comes to cool games, Puffle Launch is probably the September Pick of the Month.
Hipmunk -- (Free)
Hipmunk is a favorite service amongst the frequently traveling ReadWriteWeb staff. It functions a lot like Kayak but with a better user interface in aggregating flight and hotel information when searching to make a trip. The great part about Hipmunk for Android is that it works in just about the same way as the desktop version, which is just about what you want from a native travel search app.
Washington Post -- (Free)
Really, the Washington Post coming out with a decent Android app is long overdue. When local competitor TBD.com launched (note, I worked there) in 2010, it already had an Android app on its first day. It can create a headline feeding widget to the home screen of an Android device, which is a good feature for a news app. The Washington Post has been making a concerted effort recently to modernize its Web and mobile presence and bringing a dynamic app to Android is a good first step.
Flickr -- (Free)
Flickr continues this month's trend of major Android apps that were released by prominent Web companies. Flickr is still one of the best photo services available online and has been sorely missing a good mobile presence. The app allows you to upload from anywhere and capture with an in-app camera. Flickr provides filters and Twitter and Facebook sharing. Instagram what?
Card.io -- (Free)
Card.io provides a software developer kit for Android developers to easily accept credit cards for in-app purchases. It allows users to scan credit cards with their phones' cameras to use the information to make purchases. It does not actually process the payment or save information, but rather just imports credit card information that the app can use.
Smozzy -- (Free)
One of the coolest and most disruptive free apps we have seen in a while. It is in a public beta stage and technically is only supported for T-Mobile phones including the Nexus S. Smozzy lets you browse the Web without a data plan, entirely through text messages (SMS and MMS). You text what you want to see and Smozzy will go get it and deliver it via text. It has experiemental AT&T and Sprint use and untested Verizon use. Best used with unlimited messaging plan. This is the type of service that may not be available if T-Mobile is acquired by AT&T because Ma Bell would never allow users to purposefully skirt data usage.
Cut the Rope -- ($0.99)
Cut the Rope has been available for iOS since July but is just making its way to Android. It is a game similar to Fruit Ninja but is more complex in that you have to cut ropes in a puzzle format to feed Om Nom, a little green monster that has an insatiable appetite. Om Nom want candy.
Invisible Universe -- (Free)
This is one of the most dynamic apps that I have seen in a while. Imagine Google Sky mixed with all the cosmic currents and nebulae that you cannot see. That is Invisible Universe. It is like an augmented reality of the night's sky except the reality is not augmented because you could not see it with your eyes in the first place. It uses GPS to track where you are, what you are looking at and show you the universe as you would never think of seeing it. A similar app is called Weather Reality, where you point your phone in a direction or towards the sky and it gives you what is happening with the clouds or rain or temperature in your viewfinder. Invisible Universe is like that, except with the cosmos.
iPhone & iPad
OfficeDrop -- -- (Free: iPhone & iPad 2)
OfficeDrop has just been optimized for the iPad 2. It allows users to scan, search and organize paper documents, PDFs and other documents and make them available through the cloud. It is a digital file system similar to Dropbox.
Dolphin Browser HD (Free: iPad)
The popular third-party browser has finally made its way to iOS with Dolphin Browser HD for the iPad. We reviewed it here. It is a tabbed, social browsing experience that is one of the only (and one of the best) options if you are trying to get the cord from iOS Safari. Apple has been reluctant to let third-party browsers in the App Store and as such several prominent browser makers do not even bother. Dolphin did not shy away and created a very Chrome-like browser for the iPad.
NBC -- (Free: iPad)
I cannot watch full episodes of Chuck on my TV with my Roku, but I can now watch them on my iPad. NBC follows in the footsteps of ABC by unleashing a free app that can allow users to watch episodes, clips and behind the scenes geeky goodness of their favorite shows. With NBC and ABC and company releasing apps that basically mimic the functionality of Hulu Plus, it is a wonder that Hulu has a future among the networks looking to sell it.
Quora -- (Free: iPhone)
The social question and answer site finally has a mobile presence. It is pretty basic in terms of the functionality that Quora offers but it may be the key to bringing the Quora community back to the forefront of the tech scene after it made a nosedive in mind share following its massive hype at the beginning of 2011. Tell us, does Quora still excite you?
Flight Card -- (iPhone: $4.99)
Flight Card is a flight tracking app for the iPhone that lets you track flights by route, flight number, gate, departure times and more. Anyone who travels a lot is always checking to make sure that their flight is on time so as to make sure that you spend as little time in the airport as possible. Flight Card bypasses the airlines native apps (which are never really all that helpful) and brings the information to your iPhone in a simple, native package.
Filmic Pro -- (iPhone: $2.99)
Filmic Pro was technically released on Aug. 31 but that is close enough to September that we will include it here since it did not make our August Apps of the Month. Filmic Pro is one of the most powerful video camera and editing tools that can be found on a smartphone. The feature list is impressive, with variable frame rates, framing guides, three different resolutions, import videos and more. If you are serious about shooting video with your iPhone, seriously consider Filmic Pro.
Notable App Updates for September
It is always important to remember to go into your device and update apps on a regular basis. Updates provide new functionality, performance and security upgrades and make sure that the bugs from the last version have been taken care of.
Notable iOS Updates:
- Yahoo Fantasy Football '11, TweetDeck, The Weather Channel, Rdio, Words With Friends HD, Kindle, Order & Chaos Online, Foursquare, iBooks, Skype, Google Books, Evernote, OpenTable, Infinity Blade, Spotify, Zaarly, Google+, Instagram 2.0, Dropbox, MLB At-Bat Postseason.
Notable Android Updates:
- Gmail, Google Books, Google Maps, Tumblr, Norton Mobile Utilities, Flixster, LinkedIn, IMDb, Gun Bros, Google Voice, Foursquare, Dictionary.com, Words With Friends Free, The Weather Channel, TweetDeck, Spotify, Rdio, Skype, Robo Defense, Pandora, New York Times, Netflix, Lookout Securituy, Hulu Plus, Kindle, Firefox, Facebook, Evernote, E*Trade Mobile.