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  Iphone apps news and reviews

Daimler’s Smart lineup has been begging for an electric variant since its inception, due to its small stature and focus on being more “green” than other cars on the road. It took some time, but Smart finally did debut an electric variant and it is now due for an upgrade. Well, after much delay, the redesigned Smart electric drive – yes, it’s all lowercase letters to stay true to the “smart” way – is finally set to hit the streets without hitting the filling station.

With the influx of EVs in the marketplace, can the puny smart fortwo really stand up to the challenge? The fortwo has always been a niche car and adding in the hum of an electric motor in the place of its three-pot gasoline power plant just places it into an even narrower niche.

Only time will truly tell whether this car will gain any traction in the EV market, but we are all set to dive into it and tell you what to expect. We will also let you know if this car is one for the ages or one that you can live without.

Click past the jump to read our full review.

Posted on by Brad Anderson 0

There’s no denying that the sound of any kind of forced induction is incredible. Fitting a turbocharger to any car is quite expensive and as a result, people generally only install aftermarket ones for the performance upgrades. However, if you’re still obsessed with the sound of a turbo, but aren’t prepared to pay to have one installed, then a recently launched iOS app dubbed ‘iBoost’ may be the perfect solution for you.

Developed by app development team Bonobo in conjunction with Japanese tuning firm HKS , the app helps recreate the sounds of the systems developed by HKS itself. In order to function, the iBoost app utilities the iPhon’s accelerometer to detect movement of the car, with a variety of different gauges and sounds being offered.

Nathan Hamey, lead designer of iBoost stated, "Working with HKS has been a blast. The partnership has given us pit-lane access to extract the best sounds possible from their SQV. We’ve also painstakingly crafted their boost gauges to look and respond just like the real thing. I think people are going to get a real buzz out of seeing and hearing authentic HKS gear in their car."

"We’re thrilled to have the chance to be featured in iBoost," says Masaya Funayama, spokesperson for HKS. "It’s is an incredibly well designed application and a lot of fun to play with. It’s a great match for the HKS SQV," he continued.

With the basic version costing just $0.99, while the upgraded pack costs $1.99, the iBoost app is definitely an attractive purchase.

Source: App Store

The Apple vs. PC war has gone from computers to laptops, from laptops to MP3 players, from MP3 players to phones, and from phones to tablets, but Apple has never attempted to compete with Microsoft in its automotive form (see: Ford Sync)… That is, until now. Apple has just announced that it will start fitting its Siri system into vehicles.

For those that hate having only one mouse button to choose from (A.K.A. those that could give a rat’s backside about Macs) you may have no clue what Siri is. Well, Siri is, as Apple calls it, an “Eyes Free” system that allows you to control various items, like the iPad and iPhone, with only your voice. Before you start thinking “OMG, that’s like so 2007,” Siri actually learns your speech pattern and does not require you to use a series of ridiculous keywords to activate certain features, so it is basically a 2012 twist on 2007 technology.

So, this means that you can now drive “Eyes Free…” Okay, maybe not, but you never have to unglue your hands from the 10-and-2 position ever again when controlling whatever iDevice you happen to have, via Bluetooth, plus it also controls a turn-by-turn navigation system with crowd-sourced traffic updates. We are sure that there are tons more features to the automotive variant of Siri, but for now, this is all that Apple has released.

As for the cars that will include this new system; let’s just say that Apple definitely flexed its superpower connections, as according to Macworld, it has signed up Land Rover , Jaguar , BMW , GM , Mercedes , Audi , Toyota , Chrysler , and Honda . According to reports, you can pick up your first “iCar” starting in about 12 months.

Given this system is as cool as it sounds on paper, I can add one more product to the short list of Apple items I can actually stomach, making that list the iPad, iPod, and Siri.

When considering motorcycles, Suzuki is likely a brand that comes to mind. Their cars, on the other hand, nearly go unnoticed unless you are looking for specifically cheap transportation. They typically only account for a fraction of a percent of U.S. auto sales, but that fraction is a tight and very loyal market. Well, it looks like they are trying to dig themselves out of obscurity by adding high-end features to their vehicles.

Starting in the 2013 model year, nearly every Suzuki car, truck, and SUV will include a Garmin stereo system that will also include Pandora radio. With the internet taking over everything nowadays, it’s only expected that internet radio would make its way into more cars – heck, some cars now have a hard drive bigger than my desktop PC, seriously…

Pandora works a lot like satellite radio, as it is not broadcasted from terrestrial towers, but rather streamed through the internet. You can personalize your own station too, so there is no need to swap the station every time something you can’t stand comes blasting through the speakers.

There is no receiver or anything like that for Pandora radio, so this is really not costing Suzuki much, meaning the cost to you would be minimal, if anything. The Garmin radio connects to an iPhone, per Pandora, and the iPhone in turn receives the Pandora signal, broadcasting it through the radio. It makes us curious because Pandora radio also has an Android app, which means nearly any phone on the market can receive its signal. However, Pandora specifically mentions just the iPhone in its press release.

We are starting to wonder if iPhone and Garmin are maybe up to something, or did the Pandora rep just misspeak. For the sake of all Suzuki buyers that choose to use this service, we hope the latter is the truth. From our research, it looks like Garmin and Suzuki have apps for both Android and iPhone, so it was likely a mistake to just say “iPhone.”

Regardless of its connectivity, this is a step in the right direction towards Suzuki reeling in its direct competitors, Hyundai and Kia .

Hit the jump to read Pandora’s official press release.

Japanese automaker Nissan is introducing a new, state-of-the-art technology that promises "self-healing" capabilities. We’d love to tell you that this is some kind of joke, but the truth is, it’s not.

In all seriousness, Nissan is unveiling a cell phone accessory that features their new Scratch Shield paint technology. According to Nissan, the Scratch Shield paint technology promises to heal small scratches within an hour for less-serious instances, and up to a week’s time in more serious occurrences.

The technology was developed by Nissan in collaboration with University of Tokyo and Advanced Softmaterials Inc. This material is expected to be used in a number of future Nissan and Infiniti models, but will make its debut as an protective accessory for the iPhone 4 and 4S models.

The case is made out of ABS plastic, a material that’s stronger and tougher than any other kind of plastic and, when combined with their new Scratch Shield technology, promises to be a revolutionary new safety accessory to protect our beloved iPhones.

We’ve seen some pretty crazy things being invented the past couple of years, but a cell phone case that heals itself?

That’s something we’d love to take a look at.

The good thing about technology these days, as far as video game developers are concerned, is the wide array of platforms they can come on. No longer are we limited to video game consoles now that smartphones and tablets have become a popular tool for the vast majority of the population.

EA Games, the developer of Need For Speed: The Run, is taking advantage of this wider access to video games with the release of the trailer for the game on the iPad and the iPhone.

You read that right, folks. We now have iPad and iPhone trailers.

Since the game is already out for the PS3 and Xbox platforms, the next step is to bring all the action to the iPad and iPhone. That’s what the trailer is for. And even if it doesn’t come with the same cutting edge graphics as that of the console versions, it still something that should be a good download.

Besides, the iPad and the iPhone have one thing going for them that the PS3 and the Xbox don’t: you can take those two anywhere you go, and in doing so, play NFS : The Run anytime and anywhere.

Smartphones have become so prevalent these days that it’s becoming tougher to have yours stand out from the others. In order to do that, a lot of people have gone to accessorizing their phones as a way of adding a touch of personality.

And since we love just about everything related to cars - especially the exotic variety - we’re going to give due space to an iPhone case that we’d love to dress up our iPhones with.

Ladies and gentlemen, say hello to the Vapor R8 Pro iPhone case from Element Case.

Made from a CNC Aluminum Frame with a combination of a satin black anodized finish and a gloss powder coat finish, the Audi R8 -inspired R8 Pro is the kind of iPhone case that deserves to be protecting our beloved smartphone.

Going into detail on the characteristics of this case, you’ll come upon a contrasting black and white color scheme that includes a high gloss white powder coat on one side and rich satin black anodized finish on the other side. The R8 Pro also has an all-gloss black powder coat version, as well as an aircraft grade carbon fiber protective back plate that carries its own unique R8 Pro graphics and is finished with a satin clear coat. Finally, the case also comes with a plush Ultrasuede back plate that ensures the safety and well-being of your iPhone whenever and wherever you bring it.

Just when you thought iPhone cases were more about accessorizing than anything else, the R8 Pro has come along to remind you that style and security come in equal footing, especially for a gadget as delicate as a smartphone.

Here’s the catch, though: You’re going to need to shell out $160 to own one.

Source: Element Case

Oh, the benefits of technology. We can’t live with it and we can’t live without it. In the latest example of how our items like the iPad and the iPhone are shaping the way we find entertainment these days, we got news that John Galt Films Inc, the leading international producer of high octane vintage racing films, has released ten GT Racer applications for the iPad , iPhone and iPod Touch. GT Racer is a documentary-style film that dives into the world of racing like no other film app we’ve seen in the past. The app is based on the GT Racer HDTV series that was aired worldwide on a number of channels and is now being transferred to the world of Apple apps.

Directed and produced by Alexander Davidis, the whole scene of GT Racer transforms your world and takes you back to the Golden Era of auto racing, one where you can take a look at the most exclusive series of international racing, featuring the 1950s and 60s Aston Martins , Ferraris , Maseratis , Porsches , Mustangs , Cobras , and so many other race cars as they compete in the some of the world’s most famous race tracks, including the Nurburgring , the Spa Francorchamps , Laguna Seca , and Carrera Panamericana.

More than the cars and the tracks themselves, GT Racer gives you the opportunity to feel the incredible atmosphere of the time, a time where high-octane racing wasn’t all about technological innovation as it was pure, unadulterated racing.

The GT Racer titles are developed by Smarphone specialists, Netframes, and include the following titles: Shaken & Stirred - Spa (Belgium); On Porto’s Street Circuit (Portugal); Big Speeds at Silverstone (England); The Nürburgring Factor (Germany); Legends of Lime Rock (Connecticut, USA); Ferraris at Laguna Seca (California, USA);
The Spa Six Hours (Belgium); Nordschleife: The 500 km Marathon (Germany); Fast Curves at Magny Cours (France); La Carrera Panamericana (Mexico).

Each of the episodes are now available at Apple’s iTunes store for $22.99 each.

It seems only fitting that with all the controversy he has been involved with in the past year, The Stig would end up taking a much-needed hiatus from his job as Top Gear ’s resident driver. But while our definition of a vacation involves white sand beaches or a round of golf at the local clubhouse, the Stig has a different approach: end up in God-knows-where and ask you to find him while being surrounded by people from all walks of life.

This is “Top Gear: Where’s Stig?”, the latest game from BBC Interactive. Taking a ‘page’ from the hit book of the same title, which, in turn was inspired by the ‘Where’s Waldo’ franchise, Top Gear: Where’s Stig? will test not just your familiarity with Top Gear’s inaudible test driver, but will also test how sharp your eyes are, as well as your attention-to-detail.

Find the Stig, his Top Gear buddies, and a boatload of other items, and you’ll be well on your way to unlocking the mysterious driver’s whereabouts. Are you up for it?

Buy the app and find out.

Details after the jump.

Sometimes, the best racing strategy doesn’t involve a fast car or superior driving skills; all you need to do is have bottles of lightning in your bag and the ability to just throw them at your hapless opponents at the right possible time. That’s exactly what Disney’s Split/Second iPhone racing game is all about. It’s not so much about the car as it is about what kind of sneaky Power Plays you have up our sleeve, all in the name of winning a reality competition.

To be fair, Split/Second is as action-packed a racing game as there is on the iPhone. Add that to the fact that the whole story-line is pretty different – you’re a contestant in a reality show, if you can believe that – and you’ve got a game that should deliver a lot of adrenaline-pumping racing right from the first ‘episode’ of the reality show.

Whether it does, though, is entirely dependent on how you enjoy the spectacle of racing in such a chaotic environment where no lead is safe – even if you’re racing in first place and you’re about ten feet from the finish line.

Details after the jump.


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