Best New iPad Apps: Read thousands of books on Oyster, edit photos with Snapseed & make your shopping list

November 1, 2013
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Read on Oyster – the ‘Netflix for eBooks’

Oyster recently came to the iPad for the first time and it’s fantastic for anyone who loves reading books on their tablet.

Dubbed by companies as the ‘Netflix for eBooks’ it promises a library of over 100,000 eBooks for $9.95 a month, although it is offering a free one month trial if you fancy checking it out first.

The app is generally a breeze to use. The dark user interface and stylish typography makes it easy to read, even at night-time, and the full-screen viewing mode means that the app is populated by a collection of high quality cover images.

You can easily flip between pages while the app will serve up related titles and personalized recommendations based on what you’re reading. New books are added each week and, should you so choose, you can share which books you are reading via Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. There is also the option of following friends and other interesting people to see what books they are reading.

A really great feature of Oyster is that you can sync your activity across iOS devices – meaning you can pick up from where you left off on your iPhone.

Snapseed gets new photo features

Snapseed is truly one of the best photo editing apps on the App Store, so much so that Apple named it iPad App of the Year in 2011. Less than year later and Google took an even bigger interest – buying the company behind the app outright for an undisclosed sum in September 2012.

The app (free, iTunes) is now on version 1.6.0 and that brings about some noticeable improvements for those with a keen eye for photography.

A new feature called HDR scape enables users capture the most dynamic range of colors between the dark and light in an image, while a new Shadows slider in the Tune Image area can be used to brighten dark areas naturally. There have been some bug fixes and other smaller improvements too.

And as before, you’re still able to apply filters, crop images and add images from the camera or your photo library. There is also a selection of frames and the option to save images local or share out to social networks.

Buy Me A Pie is now geared up for iOS 7

Grocery shopping list app Buy Me a Pie was this week updated to version 3.4 and the change means that it is now optimized for iOS 7.

I last reviewed the app in July and the core functionality remains; you can create, edit and tick off shopping list items, and there is a grey toolbar at the top for adding new items. You can add new items by typing directly into the toolbar, or alternatively select from the dropdown menu of pre-defined items.

Editing your list is easy; you tap and hold an item to edit or swipe to the left or right to delete.

Cleverly, the app can work offline (useful if you’re taking your iPad or iPhone to the supermarket) and you can share lists with friends and family via email or by setting up an online account. You can even print out lists should you so wish.

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