You get what you pay for – an adage we’ve all heard countless times over the years. As the App Store, both for Mac and iOS matures, this is becoming increasingly true. With paid apps often yielding both a more polished user experience and an increasingly advanced feature set compared to their free brethren, paying for high quality apps is becoming commonplace these days. This is a very good thing.
To that end, here’s what I’m using this week, and happily paying for:
Worth It iOS App of The Week
Confession: I buy way too many photo adjustment apps.
If there’s a new app out there that will enable me to make my photos more stylish, I’m in. Most of these apps are surprisingly solid, as countless developers know what a great market this is, and have the skills to back up their app making desires. My latest photo manipulation crush is Filters, and that name pretty much says it all. With over 500 filters and 300 overlays of varying styles and effects, Filters allows you to easily manipulate your photos in millions of different ways.
At $0.99, apps don’t get any less expensive, and with all that image adjustment capability, they also rarely get more powerful. If you’re a photo manipulation junkie too, and looking for a new toy, download Filters and give it a spin.
Want to share your latest creations with the Tech Haven community via Instagram? Be sure to mention @GoTechHaven and use the hashtag #TechHavenFilters, and we’ll repost the best ones for our followers to see.
Worth It Mac App of The Week
Just a couple weeks back I recommended Fantastical for iOS as a #WAW pick, and the next thing you know Flexbits, the developer of Fantastical, releases a huge upgrade for their Mac version of the app. No longer just a menu bar app to quickly view and add items to your calendar, now it’s a full-fledged replacement for the stock Mac Calendar app you’re likely used to using.
Let me get this part out of the way first: at $39.99 Fantastical 2 is pricey for a calendar app – and that’s just the 20% off introductory sale price. To see if the app was worth the price, I downloaded the demo version from the Flexbits site, and quickly fell in love with the both Fantastical 2’s design and ease of use, and as a result have no hesitation recommending it. If you live and die by your digital calendar, as many of us do these days, paying a premium (even a $40 premium) to better view and manipulate your calendar data numerous times each day makes sense.
So what’s the big deal about Fantastical 2 anyway you ask? With natural language event input, full Reminders integration, geofencing with Maps integration, Handoff capabilities with Fantastical for iOS, and the novel Calendar Sets to focus your calendar events to the most relevant at the moment, it’s difficult to imagine any features Fantastical doesn’t have.
Be advised that if you’re a previous Fantastical user, there’s no upgrade pricing. This is certainly frustrating, but when you see the results of the labor that Flexbits put into the redesign, and realize it’s basically an entirely new app, that does soften the blow slightly. Also, as a previous Fantastical user, you already know how well designed the app is, and the attention to detail Flexbits puts into all their apps, you can feel comfortable paying the relatively steep purchase price.