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At AppStorm we pay very close attention to the App Store. We monitor the introduction of new apps in much the same way that a trader keeps their eyes glued to the markets. We know what’s going up, what’s going down, as well as what’s desperately in need of a bug-fixing update.

As a result, I’m able to inform you that the general trend among vector drawing apps is downsizing. Rather than competing with Adobe’s mighty Illustrator, apps such as iDraw, Artboard and Sketch offer something a little simpler, more compact and more reasonably priced. Happily, from the app buyer’s perspective, the growing number of apps in this niche is creating intense competition, which, in turn, is having a positive effect on quality. In fact, vector artists are spoilt for choice right now.

Yet somehow, still more contenders are finding the room to squeeze into the ring. One such app is Bluetail. It wants to undercut the undercutters, offering a stripped-back, no-nonsense workspace at a rock-bottom price. But does Bluetail fall on the side of value-for-money simplicity, or does it creep into ill-equipped incapability? Time to find out.

Pagico, considered a ‘brilliant cross-platform project and task management app‘, has developed legions of fans since its launch. Perfect for managing complex projects across multiple platforms (Mac, Windows, Ubuntu and iOS), Pagico’s destop version retails at $50. It is available for both Desktop and iOS.

If you need design or web development work done, for a limited time only you can claim a Pagico desktop license with any purchase of services from Microlancer.

Microlancer is a marketplace for design and code services including logo design, PSD to Website, WordPress customization and many, many more.

How to claim your Pagico desktop license

  • Browse Microlancer to purchase the design or code service you need.
  • After purchasing the service, fill out this form and include your order ID.
  • Once we verify your order details, we’ll connect you with your Pagico license.

This offer applies to Microlancer purchases made from Tuesday, 24 September 2013 to Tuesday, 1 October 2013 AEST. (more…)

We just closed our giveaway; congrats to our winners lapfelix, Poporin, ptrix, Markus, and Andrew!

Everyone loves bundles, but how about 3 new bundles? That’s what our friends at Paddle have this week. They’ve got two new games bundles — the Pay What You Want Variety Games Bundle and the Fall Pay What You Want Game Bundle — with 5 games each for Mac and PC, as well as a bundle of Mac apps from Little App Factory.

Each of the bundles are a great deal since they’re pay-what-you-want bundles like the popular Humble Bundles, but we’ve got something even better: 5 copies of the bundles for our readers. 5 lucky readers are going to win all 3 of these bundles this week.


It’s almost time to upgrade your Mac to OS X Mavericks — and if you’re going to opt for a clean install, that means it’s time to reinstall many of your older apps. There’s also brand-new versions of VMware Fusion and Parallels that came out recently, and special deals from Adobe on Creative Cloud upgrades. That means you need all of your old software keys. But what if you’ve thrown away your disks, deleted old purchase emails, and lost your paper records?

That’s where Mac Product Key Finder comes in. It’ll scan your Mac for over 180 supported programs and recover your keys automatically. You can then copy the key to use wherever you need — to activate software on a new Mac, or to purchase an upgrade at upgrade pricing. Or, you can export a whole list of your product keys for your records, so you won’t have to go searching again next time.


The pro version of Mac Product Key Finder goes even further. In addition to uncovering your old keys on your Mac, it’ll let you scan your external drives, Time Machine backups, and networked Macs for product keys so you can inventory every key you own even if you’re not currently using them. It’ll also let you see the serial number, IMEI, and more info from your iOS devices, and includes a terminal tool to let you generate a CSV or TXT file with all of your license keys.

Go Find Your Lost Keys Today!

There’s no reason to pay full price for an upgrade to your older apps — and no reason to quit using your older apps just because you’re getting a new Mac. Go download a copy of Mac Product Key Finder this week, and rediscover the keys you’ve lost. You can try out the free version if you only need to look for the basic supported apps, or get the pro version with all its features for on sale for 20% off this week with our exclusive coupon code APP20STORM which makes it just $19.96!

Think you’ve got a great app? Sign up for a Weekly Sponsorship slot just like this one.

OS X Mavericks is bringing a number of features power users have wanted for year: better multiple display support, tabs and tags in Finder, all while using less system resources than before. The menubar itself, however, has mostly gone untouched.

That’s still Bartender’s domain. And with the just-released v1.2, Bartender remains the app anyone with a packed menubar needs in any version of OS X.


It’s been a busy week for Apple, with the iPhone 5c and 5s hitting the streets today, only days after iOS 7 was finally released. Apple’s never released two new iPhones at once before, opting instead to simply discount the older model, so it’ll be interesting to see how the new strategy fares in the market.

Macs have to wait a bit longer to get Mavericks, but there’s been a ton of interesting stuff written about Apple this week — from AnandTech’s detailed analysis of the new iPhones to USA Today and Businessweek’s interviews with Apple’s leadership. Here’s the best articles from this week to fill up your weekend reading queue.


Evernote’s a great notebook app. It makes it simple to write notes down, record audio or drag in images to remember everything, and then find it all again quickly with a click.

But then, what makes Evernote so nice — something so many people rely on — is far more than just being a notes app. There’s plenty of places you can jot down notes, from the built-in Notes app to services like Simplenote. Evernote, though, ends up being far more than just that since there’s so many ways to add info to it. You can clip web pages with the brilliant new Evernote Web Clipper, snap pictures and add notes on the go with the new iPhone app, or use IFTTT to save stuff to Evernote on the go. If only you could do something with all that info.

Well, now you can. That’s where Evernote’s new Presentation Mode comes in.


I’ve been slowly putting together a website and a brand for the creative firm that I’m starting (it hasn’t launched, but if you’re curious, feel free to check it out). Branding is not an easy thing. It’s a large, multifaceted process that requires a lot of time, effort and yes, Photoshop skills.

That’s why I admire any company or app that tries to make certain parts of the task easier. I love playing around with text, but I don’t have weeks and weeks to make a great logo. And sometimes, I just need an easy way to experiment. That’s where Logoist comes in. The app makes it as easy as possible to put together a logo by eliminating a lot of the cumbersome heavy lifting Photoshop mandates. Let’s take a look and see if it’s worth your time and money.


In the rush of new apps and upgrades on iOS 7’s launch day, the app that started it all got updated, too, with some features you won’t want to miss. In the 13 years since Apple bought out SoundJam and turned it into their music library app, iTunes has grown beyond anyone’s wildest dreams from 2001. It’s where we manage our Post PC devices, or — increasingly — just that old app we forget about in the age of streaming music services.

So Apple decided to make it about music again. iTunes 11 streamlined the aging music app’s interface, hid much of the complexity, and added a rather nice mini-player in last year’s upgrade. That still doesn’t help much if you don’t buy music or rip CDs these days.

Enter iTunes 11.1. It’s the iTunes — on your Mac, PC, and iOS — that finally makes sense in the post-download age. It’ll get you listening to — and likely buying — new music more than any iTunes before.


Some keys get used more just because they’re more common, but for keyboard fiends, there’s a whole different set of keys that get worn out. If you’ve ever worn out the ⌘, Ctrl, or alt keys on your keyboard, chances are you couldn’t get by with just a mouse.

If anything, keyboard shortcuts are one of the best things in OS X. There’s the usual suspects, like ⌘+C and ⌘+V for copy and paste, or ⌘+tab for switching between apps, but you get those everywhere. Then there’s the ones that make OS X especially nice for writing: Alt+left/right to jump between words and ⌘+left/right to jump to the beginning/end of a line, with the addition of holding shift down to select text. There’s even more obscure text editing shortcuts, like Ctrl+T to swap the two letters your curser’s currently between.

Then, there’s the even more powerful keyboard shortcuts: those like ⌘+space to open Spotlight search or the default Alt+space to start Alfred. Those — combined with app specific shortcuts, and those you can setup yourself from your Keyboard’s system preferences — are the most powerful tools to keep you from having to revert to your mouse or touchpad all day. They’ll get so ingrained in your muscle memory, a computer without them feels broken.

For me, Alt+space is that killer shortcut that I invoke over a hundred times a day to use Alfred. What’s your favorite keyboard shortcut?

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