Things will start getting quiet around the Apple camp after tomorrow, and it’s not a Mayan apocalypse Mac and iOS users will need to worry about. Instead, it’s the dreaded iTunes Connect holiday shutdown, which means new and updated apps and even pricing changes are frozen for one entire week, during a time when many are cracking open the gadgets Santa has brought them. But fear not: the App Stores will continue to serve up merchandise right through the break — just don’t go expecting any deals or updates during that time.
It lives! (Sort of.) Redbox Instant by Verizon has officially launched iOS and Android mobile apps for its unlimited video streaming service, which also includes four DVDs at the kiosk for a Netflix-matching per month. There’s just one catch — you actually have to be invited into the closed beta, which requires tossing your email into a virtual hat and crossing your fingers. The company claims they’re moving quickly to send invitations out to those who sign up, with those lucky so-and-so’s getting a free month of service just for giving it a spin. The rest of us have to wait until early next year when Redbox Instant by Verizon officially launches for all. Shucks…
AllThingsD is reporting that eBay is planning to ditch advertising inside its mobile apps next year, claiming “it’s not worth it.” So says the company’s President of Global Marketplaces Devin Wening: “We aren’t happy with the user experience and we don’t need the money.” That’s certainly a refreshing change of pace from an internet-based company, and a trend we’d sure like to see more in the future. Of course, it’s easy for eBay to turn its back on the ad dough — they’re already expecting billion in transactions this year from its mobile apps alone.
Boinx Software has announced iStopMotion for iPad 2, the latest version of the company’s tablet app for creating stop-motion animation videos. So what’s new? Audio, and a lot of it. The app now allows users to record audio from the built-in microphone or any sound device compatible with the iPad for prerecording a soundtrack without having to use another app. Audio files can now be added from Dropbox, SoundCloud or imported from a Mac or another iPad as well, and the audio waveform feature helps place all that sound with precision. Version 2.0 is available now as a free update for existing users, and for a limited time, the iPad app is on sale for .99 — that’s 50 percent off the normal price of .99.
Created by the folks behind MacRumors.com, AppShopper is a handy iOS app for tracking which apps have gone on sale and which you already own. Unfortunately, new rules introduced with iOS 6 have caused AppShopper to run afoul of Apple, who has removed the app from the App Store. The folks at AppShopper are already hard at work on a new version which they’re hoping will receive Apple’s blessing, and will also add support for the taller screen on the iPhone 5. The bad news is, Apple’s developer portal shuts down Friday night and not due to any Mayan apocalypse — those folks will be taking a nice long break until December 28, when the App Store will again light up with new offerings and updates… assuming the world hasn’t ended a week earlier, that is.
Evernote has announced yet another update to Skitch for Mac, which returns even more of the app’s classic features to the fold. Custom styles allow users to tweak their image annotations, while custom colors serve up any palette you can imagine. Users can also adjust the size of their tools, again select timed screen snaps and get far more sharing options than simply Evernote, including email, Message, Twitter, Facebook and more. The update is already live on the Evernote website, but Mac App Store users will have to wait a bit as Skitch for Mac passes through the elves in Cupertino.
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