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Did you just get a new Mac? Or maybe you’ve had one for a long time and are just looking for some cool affordable apps to download. Either way, we’ve got a fun roundup for you. There are a bunch of paid apps on the App Store, and many of them do their job well, but what about free ones? What if you don’t want to pay for a new text or photo editor? There are a lot of free and open-source alternatives to popular apps, but they’re often hard to find.

In this roundup, we’ve gathered a list of great free apps that you should download, even if for a moment to try them out. They’re great, and you’ll likely find at least a few to add to your workflow. They’re also all native apps not tied to a service — so you won’t find the likes of Evernote and Droplr — so you can use the apps anywhere, anytime.

Here’s the best free stuff, just for your Mac, in 2013.

If you like to read on your Mac, then Apple’s WWDC 2013 announcement of iBooks coming to the Mac with OS X Mavericks was a breath of fresh air. Macs have had a great PDF reader — Preview — built in for as long as we’ve had OS X, but for ePub eBooks, we’re left to forge for our own best reading app. There’s tons of contenders, but very, very few exceptionally good apps in the category.

Even if you have Mavericks Developer Preview today, though, you still can’t get iBooks just yet. If you want to read eBooks on your Mac today, you need another option. And if your Mac can’t run Mavericks, or you don’t want to upgrade when it comes out, you’ll still need something else then.

That’s why we’ve got though every major eBook app for the Mac, tried them out, and put together the very best for you. There’s two standout apps, that we really recommend, and then others that fill in other gaps.

Here’s to the readers!


If you’re still using Google Reader, there’s a weekend project that you’ve got to take on: exporting your RSS feeds, and finding a new RSS reader app. That’s because it’s the end of June already, and Google’s shutting down Google Reader on Monday!

Over at Web.AppStorm, we’ve written a tutorial for getting your data out of Google Reader — including your favorites — and into other services. Then, we’ve just rounded up the 5 best online replacements for Google Reader, most of which already work with Mac and iOS apps you likely already have tried out. They’re all great, and we’re sure you’ll find one you like there — even without leaving your Mac behind.


It’s the eve of WWDC 2013, and Apple’s cloud sync platform, iCloud, is one of the highest priorities in every developer’s mind. It’s been 603 days since iCloud‘s launch and exactly 1 year 5 months after the App Store burst onto the Mac scene, and yet both feel like they’ve hardly moved forward at all.

Sure, they’re both widely successful, and the App Store especially has change the way we approach buying apps. But the App Store has also made it tough for developers to make upgraded versions of apps economically feasible, leading them to add in-app purchases for new features, or add their own subscription-based services to make money. Of the two, though, iCloud has been the most problematic, leading developers like The Soulmen to have to rewrite major parts of iCloud sync code to get it to work in their apps (Ulysses III, in this case).

We’re all hoping Apple significantly improves iCloud this year, and perhaps there’ll be major announcements about both it and the App Store next week. But there’s also alternates now. Aside from just relying on Dropbox for sync, the Omni Group has built their own iCloud competitor, OmniPresence, and Paddle is making it simpler for indie devs to sell their own apps with in-app purchases, outside of the App Store. (more…)

Ready for the final installment in our popular “Apps We Use” series? Want to find all of the apps that’ll solve all of the problems of your life?

Wait, what? You say you want a more universal answer to your problems? Here it is: 42.

Anyway, I’ll give you a sneak peek at what my intimate life with my Macs looks like. Don’t be shy, come closer, but shhhh… please keep quiet or you might end up scaring a couple of bits and bytes.


Web development — and app development — is an ever-growing industry. Over at ThemeForest, there are thousands of website themes available because developers spend time coding them. But it’s not easy to construct one of those masterpieces. It takes knowledge, effort, and the right tools.

Here at Mac.AppStorm, we try to make sure you know about the latest and greatest in software machinery. The best software tools. Today I’m going to introduce you to ten of the best code and markup editors available on the Mac, from free feature-packed apps to paid workhorses. They’re first and foremost designed to help you code and write markup, but most are customizable enough that they can be great writing apps, too.


Earlier this year, I made the move to a MacBook Pro being my primary machine after years of having a desktop with a supplemental laptop. This change really just acknowledged the way I already used my computer since I seldom sat down in front of my several year old desktop. Over time I’d moved to doing almost all my work on my MacBook. In fact, for much of the last six month before making the change, the most common way I accessed my desktop was by remoting to it from my laptop.

This change lets me be more mobile and that brings a lot of freedom when working, but also adds a few challenges with having a computer that’s meant to be on the go. Over the last couple of years while gradually making the switch from my laptop being a supporting machine to my primary computer, I’ve come to use several apps that help simply the job. Let’s look at a few of them.


It’s now my turn to tell you about all the amazing apps I’ve found and kept using to this day, after years of reviewing tons of wonderful software for Mac.Appstorm. Some of these won’t surprise you; in fact, they might have been repeated several times by other authors that have posted in this series. However, I hope you get some cool ideas as to how you could use some of these apps, or perhaps pick up a few new apps that you hadn’t heard of.

I’ve broken these apps down into categories of what I generally do with them. Hopefully that’ll make this easier to read and relate to. Let’s do this!


Back in the day when Apple was still the underdog, I wanted a nice VAIO, mainly because I’m a Sony person and those things have cool fingerprint scanning stuff… but I also wanted OS X. Ultimately, because of my design and creative tendencies, I choose a MacBook Pro – my first OS X machine. I quickly feel in love with the OS and the apps available for it; their gorgeous UI and their simplistic yet extremely useful nature make them so nice to work with and look at.

So today, I get the chance to share with you guys some of the apps that I use on my Macbook Pro. Some of these are obvious choices, but hopefully there will be one or two apps that you’ll be interested in. Check out all the apps I use after the break.


Adobe used to be best known as the company that sells a $700 dollar photo editor that’s all but ubiquitous in the design world. Now, it wants to be known as the company you pay $50/month to, for its whole suite of apps. Adobe’s rethinking their entire business in terms of a one-size-fits-all Creative Cloud subscriptions, which is either great news for you price-wise (if you upgrade every time and own one of the pricer Creative Suites), or terrible news (if you only own an individual Adobe app or don’t purchase upgrades that often).

Now, there are great new features coming to all of the Adobe apps we love in upcoming Creative Cloud releases, but lost in the limelight at Adobe MAX and the discussion about the switch to Creative Cloud is the great free stuff that Adobe offers. They’ve dropped a few things over the years — like the beautiful online office suite they used to have at – but they’ve added enough stuff that Adobe still has quite the nice set of free offerings.

There’s Mac apps, fonts, and web tools here: enough for everyone, even those who swore off Creative Suite years ago. So here’s the best stuff you can get 100% for free from Adobe, today. (more…)

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