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Top 10 iPad apps for women

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iPads aren't just for fun - they can be used to make your life better too. Here's our pick of the top ten iPad apps for women.

Apple have just announced a couple of new iPads - upgrades to the existing iPad and iPad Mini. Let's take a look at what's new!

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First up is the full-size iPad. Or the iPad Air as we should be calling it (yes we think the name is silly too). This is Apple's "full size" device with a 9.7" screen. Whilst yes - it's a rectangle with a screen (what did you expect?), take a closer look and it has some impressive spec:

It's 20% thinner than the previous iPad (only 7.5mm thick) and it weighs only 1Ib - or about 454g in British measurements. The bevel around the edge is apparently 43% smaller.

It's impressive on the inside too. Like the iPhone 5S it is running an A7 chip - which Apple promises will make it twice as fast (eight times faster than the original iPad). Similarly on the graphics power has been doubled - which makes it apparently 72 times faster than the iPad 1.

On the wifi front this is the first Apple device to use "multiple-in-multiple-out" (MIMO) technology, which should result in more stable connections. There's a 5MP iSight camera on the rear too, and in a first for Apple, dual microphones to make things a bit easier for Siri and other sound recording apps. Apple claim this will have a 10 hour battery life.

The iPad Mini has also been refreshed - finally coming with a higher resolution (2048x1536) display, still packed into a 7.9" screen. Spec-wise this is pretty much on a par with it's taller brother - also coming with an A7 chip and all of that good stuff.

Colourwise both devices have a new split colour scheme - coming in "space grey and black" or "silver and white".

What's interesting is that Apple have decided to keep making the big iPad 2 and original iPad Mini to sell in addition to these new devices - but at lower price points, providing more an entry-level option.

On the software side, Apple had a lot to announce for desktop and notebook computers (the new operating system, Maverick is free and available today!) - but the crucial takeaway for prospective iPad users is that the iLife apps (like Microsoft Office) as well as Garageband and iMovie have all received updates for iPad, and are free with new purchases. Nice!

Hopefully we'll be able to get the new devices for a proper review soon.

So you've peeled the cellophane off and are looking at a brand new iPad. What now? What apps should you download right away, to get up to speed and to get the most out of your new toy? Here's our recommendation of the ten apps you should waste no time in downloading.

Finally, the other alternative is to go the other way entirely and splash out on an iPad Mini. A 7.9New Apple iPad launches in a couple of weeks! Well that's what big US blog AllthingsD is claiming. It says that its sources say Apple will deliver the fifth generation iPad and the second gen iPad mini - with a possible side of other new products ((Mac pro?) on October 22nd.

AllThingsD has had a good track record at predicting Apple launch event days and were bang on with the September 10th date for the iPhone 5s and 5c.

If you are expecting some huge new technological advance from the new iPad think again. The 5th gen iPad is likely to be thinner and lighter and look a little more like the iPad mini. Meanwhile the mini will most likely sport a retina display. Anything else would be a major surprise. It is interesting too that very little has recently been heard of the iWatch.

There have been rumours recently that the display has caused Apple issues and that it won't have enough of the iPad mini 2 this side of Christmas. If this isn't rubbish then maybe we will see the new iPad mini 2 in limited quantities for a few months. Apple is highly unlikely to unveil a iPad mini 2 without a Retina display.

5 alternatives to the Tesco Hudl

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So Tesco have announced that they're getting into the tablet game with the announcement of the Hudl tablet. Running Android Jellybean 4.2.2, has a 7" 1440x900 screen, and will only set you back £119. Presumably they can afford to be so competitive because the point of the tablet is to point you into the direction Tesco's built-in money-spinners, like the Blinkbox on-demand film service.

Personally, I'm looking forward to the inevitable Hudl Extra, which will be the size of an aircraft hanger, and Hudl Metro, which will be tiny but found seemingly every 300m in South London.

But what if you don't want to, well, Hudl? What if you want to go your own way? There's plenty of choice out there, and here are five of the most interesting alternatives.

apple-ipad-5-vs-ipad-mini-2-01.jpgTwo days on from that launch and we are already thinking about Apple's next big venture. Sonny Dickson has got some pics which purport to show both the Apple iPad 5 and the Apple iPad mini 2.

They don't exactly show us much do they?

Nevertheless this is the guy that got some very realistic images of the iPhone 5S, so you can't really discount them.

The only things of note that I gleaned from the pics was that the new iPad looks a lot more iPad mini-esque. A few bloggers have suggested that Apple has reduced the size of the bezels on the new iPad in order to decrease its overall footprint.

Obviously both are going to be thinner and lighter than their predecessors.

Expect to see them in a month or two's time. More pics here.

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flipboard-mag-broswer-fast-company.jpgAs anyone who has an iPad knows already Flipboard is a fabulous way to keep tabs on your friend's social media output.The company recently also started to enable users to update their own magazine type feeds too.

Now it appears that the company has designs on your web browser too. Flipboard CEO Mike McCue has been talking to Mashable and confirmed that user-created magazines will begin appearing on Flipboard.com imminently with the rest of the Flipboard experience to roll out later this year or early next year.

The web version mimics the iPad original so you can (sort of) read articles, click through to their original sources and subscribe to magazines, but not a great deal else. Though some interesting innovations are apparently coming in the near future. McCue indicated that it is easier for Flipboard to "roll out in pieces,"

I must admit that after getting very excited about Flipboard's original iPad offering I haven't spend too much time using the service since. The newly created magazines are an interesting concept and they work well enough on the web. Check out the Fast Company mag here. For me though it falls down a little as you still have to migrate to the original website to read most of the articles. A work in progress then...

Bought yourself a lovely new iPad mini? Well the range and the quality of the cases for your new device gets better all the time.

Here are our favourite new high-end iPad mini cases.


So it was an interesting night for Apple watchers, with the company's financial results not really anywhere near as bad as some analysts had predicted.

There does however seem to be some underlying issues that the company needs to tackle the most urgent of which is getting some new product out to rival the endless stream of goodies that are emanating from Korea.

So good news for Apple fan people as last night CEO Tim Cook confirmed that a new phone and new tablet will be coming before the end of the year probably in the Fall.

The question is of course which products? The phone could the iPhone 5S or the much rumoured cut down iPhone to tempt budget buyers, And as for the tablet is - it the iPad 5 or will we see the ipad mini 2.

There is still a fair bit of conjecture as to what the iPhone 5S will feature. Some pundits predict that it will be a largely cosmetic upgrade with new software features. Others think that it will be a different format and boast a larger screen.

The news that it is coming in the Fall tallies with recent rumours that Apple are running a little behind on the release schedule.

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If you own a dog you probably wonder what it gets up to when you are nit around. Of course you can install a webcam to check to see what Rover is up to, but now an new iPad app hopes to take remote dog monitoring to a new more interactive level.

The $1.99 Pavlov Dog Monitor app doesn't just keep tabs on your hound, it also uses technology to help you train your pooch too and even allows your dog to send Facebook messages to you.

Its main function is to ensure that the dog doesn't spend the whole day barking at the neighbours. To address this you set the app up and leave your iPad on in the same room as your mutt.

Then if the dog starts barking a sound monitor on the iPad then triggers a video - which you have pre-recorded - saying bad dog stop barking etc.

If the dog behaves themselves then it gets the treat of a little video from you saying good dog etc.

Your pet's progress is then tracked each day by the Dr. Pavlov character with it given a grade for each session you are away.

You can even set the app up so that your dog sends a Facebook post to you of its activity.

It sounds great in theory, but I guess how it works will depend on the individual dog. It might drive some dogs crazy and also some dogs respond better to screen than others.

Btw dog lovers - did you catch this?


Apple iPad mini cases for blokes

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Bought yourself a shiny new iPad mini? You are going to need a case for it. Here then is a round up of iPad mini housing which is targeted more at blokes than it is women.

There's a selection of stuff - from classy woollen cases through to fashion ones and ultra toughies - if your iPad gets a knock or two.

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Well this was always going to happen, The trend for putting Kindles in classic book jacket style cases has now crept over to the iPad and you can now house your Apple tablet in a suitably retro 1984 by George Orwell cover.

And if wrapping your iPad in Doublespeak doesn't appeal then there's also Origin of the Species, Alice in Wonderland and Wizard of Oz.

The covers are designed to fit gen 3 and 4 iPads, sport spongy material to further protect your iPad and retail for £19.99 from Firebox.

iPad mini cases for women round up

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Bought yourself an iPad mini? If so you'll need to get a case for it pronto and here then is our selection of some of the best cases available that are aimed more at women than men.

Apple announces 7.9inch iPad Mini

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At an exclusive event in San Jose, California today, Apple has announced a new addition to the family: the iPad Mini.

Only a month ago Apple proudly presented the iPhone 5 and, in what seems to be a rush to make sure they get included in all fanboys and fangirls' Christmas lists, the tech giant now unveiled yet another device.

The Apple iPad Mini

Having sold 100 million iPads in just two and a half years, the iPad Mini is 7.9 inches and is an entirely new display. You can hold it with one hand, it has the same curving back as the iPod touch and comes in both black and white.

It's 7.2mm thick - that's as thin as a pencil - and weighs in at .68 pounds, half as light as a fourth generation iPad and apparently the weight of a pad of paper.

It has the exact same resolution as the iPad 2 (1,024 x 768) and is great for 'reading your emails and browsing the web'.

The iPad Mini also has front and rear cameras - like the iPhone 4 and 5 - and is compatible with all iPad apps.

More details to follow

See gallery below for iPad Mini images - ALL IMAGES: PRESS ASSOCIATION

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There's a lot of London publishing going on at the moment, like this ace free iPad book (disclaimer - there's some Shiny involvement in it) but in terms of digital publishing nothing quite as ambitious or an innovative as this.

London - A City Through Time is an iPad app that is an extraordinary in its scope, vision and technical implementation. There really is nothing like it. Its executed by a company called Heuristic Media who have worked with among others Macmillan Publishing and The Museum of London to deliver a history of the capital using images, video, maps and a load more. There is some text there too - more on that in a moment.

At first glance it looks mind blowing. There are a number of ways of working your way though it. You can access information via a Timeline or find things via interactive maps. Alternatively you can just browse through videos, maps or individual subjects.

There is some fantastic stuff in here. The images, everything from portraits of medieval queens through to harrowing images of WW2 London are really superb. There are also a few very striking skyline images that enable you to get a 360 view on either via using your finger or by using the iPad's gyroscopic facilities.

I also love the maps, mainly from the Victorian era, which show how the city began to sprawl during that century. You also get a few celebrity quotes on London, some cute Pathe videos featuring a cast that includes Oswald Mosley and John Lennon and a trio of audio tours you can take.

Ironically, for what can still be loosely termed a book, is that while the app is brilliant on images and interactivity it isn't great on words. I was promised several thousand articles - what I got was school essay type stuff and load of links to Wikipedia. I am guessing that most of the content is curated from another source, but it is dull, textbook like, and quite often not especially relevant. It really undermines what could be a promising section on tube trains, and adds little to the overall package.

To be fair, the vast majority of people who buy this won't care anyhow. What this app does brilliantly is curate cool stuff about London. In five years time individuals will be able to do something similar in that they will curate content that has been stored online and package it up as content on an iPad.

The other sticking point might be the price. Personally I feel a tenner is fine for the app, but a friend who was also blown away by it, has reservations about the price.

However, don 't let minor quibbles about words put you off. If you want words go here (coughs).

This is a fantastic app that both tourists and Londoners will cherish. Go buy it!

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Over the last few months members of the Shiny team have been working away on an ebook called The London Project. It features a group of bloggers writing passionately about the past and the present of the city they love.

The book was created using a new-ish platform called iBooks Author, which enables the user to add galleries, maps and video - which in the context of The London Project are mainly used as footnotes. The Kindle version is a bit more straightforward. Ultimately though The London Project is about words. It has longer essays that we think don't really work in the context of the web but make sense on the iPad/Kindle.

I wonder if this is the start of a new type of publishing in which ebooks are produced that have magazine style content from different authors and are - because of the nature of ebook platforms - largely image free.

It isn't that new. Football title Blizzard, publishes a magazine style ebook on the Kindle, iBook and print on demand formats every few months. The features tend to be serious, intelligent, and occasionally downright pretentious dissections of the beautiful game, If you want to read why brilliant historian Dominic Sandbrook thinks that Revie era Leeds had much in common with Nixon's US presidency this is the place to go.

The subs are cheap, or you can pay for what you want. There is minimal design and no images - it is all about the words.

As for The London Project it is free on iBooks and a couple of quid on the Kindle

Stories include

The tale of the City's most iconic 20th century image
The capital's disappearing villages
The London venues that shaped the history of music
The hidden history of the Thames Estuary
Dalston's Street Preachers
London's lost sports venues
The curse of north London artist Stuart Free
How the Hippies took Mayfair
Pop-Up London - what's behind the trend

and a load more.

It'll be interesting to see if other publisher choose this route

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Pinstagram is one of those annoying mash-ups of... you guessed it... Pinterest and Instagram, but now it's got its own shiny new iPad app it might be more appealing than them both.

The app allows you to see all of your Instagram feed photos in the popular Pinterest format, as well as search by keyword. You can then go on to 'pin' any of the photos you like to your Pinterest boards too and share via Twitter and Facebook.

The app is a cool way to view Instagram photos and great if you follow users who take snaps that are actually good enough to pin (which are far and few between we'd imagine), but it's also pretty exciting for photo-loving iPad owners because it's beaten both Pinterest and Instagram to the tablet device.

As you might expect, those behind the app made a conscious decision to go down the iPad route instead of developing an offering for the iPhone first. Pek Pongpaet, one of Pinstagram's Co-creators, told Mashable:

"If people are already using Instagram on their iPhones, it would be duplicating Instagram's effort [...] We'll never be a better Instagram than Instagram."

Available from iTunes for free. Oh and if you're lucky enough to have a 3rd generation iPad, Pinstagram has been optimised for the new Retina Display too.

[Via Mashable]

We've noticed that more and more lucky iPad owners are throwing caution (and their cases) to the wind and using only a smart cover, screen protector or NOTHING to protect their lovely tablets. This kind of behaviour may be a little risky, but it's totally understandable. Why wrap a gadget designed to be super slim in layers of bulky protection?

But, you'll still need a way to keep your iPad safe when you're carrying it around all day before you get it out and use it nakey the rest of the time, so we've collected together our top 8 ways to keep your gadget safe in style.

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The Queen's Gallery in London is currently exhibiting a number of fascinating anatomical sketches by Leonardo da Vinci, some of which have never even been displayed before (like, EVER). In order to make the collection more accessible to his fans, as well as art and science enthusiasts, The Royal Collection has developed an impressive, interactive app for the iPad, Leonardo da Vinci: Anatomy.

Most people know Leonardo da Vinci as the greatest artist and mind of the Renaissance period, but in actual fact he was also one of the most original and perceptive anatomists of all time. Over the course of his life he made a series of sketches and discoveries, which if uncovered shortly after could well have shaped European knowledge of the subject. But instead his work in the field was lost among his private notes for almost 400 years. Now these incredibly detailed, accurate and in many ways ground-breaking, sketches are part of the Royal Collection and are being exhibited for the next few months at The Queen's Gallery in London.

Shiny Shiny was invited along to the gallery and although it was a great opportunity to take a look at Leonardo da Vinci's work for ourselves, we also got some time to try out the new iPad app all about the exhibition. The Royal Collection worked closely with the application developers over at Touch Press in order to create a one-of-a-kind offering that doesn't just allow users to see Leonardo's work, but enables them to interact with the sketches and learn much more in the process.

The application, called Leonardo da Vinci: Anatomy features all 268 pages of his sketches, but it's their super high resolution that's been optimised for the iPad's new Retina Display which makes the app such a treat for the eyes.

Every aspect of the application is super interactive, you can scroll through pages, move sketches around, view them in 3D, enlarge them, play sections as animations and even translate Leonardo's secret notes into English. There's even a quirky spyglass tool, which you can move around the drawings in order to magnify certain elements. However, our favourite feature is that you can spin the body around (see the screenshot above), strip down certain elements of the model's anatomy with a simple swipe and then click on them to see all of the sketches associated with that body part. Very clever.

Although they're clearly the main focus, the app isn't just about looking at the sketches, there's a detailed commentary written by Martin Clayton, Senior Curator of Prints and Drawings at Windsor Castle, accompanying the content, which explains Leonardo's anatomical investigations in much more detail.

At £9.99 there's no denying this app is pricey, but for the access you're getting to the sketches, the impressive image quality with the new iPad's Retina Display and the chance to properly interact with the work it's definitely worth it for fans of Leonardo's work and those interested in anatomy.

Available from the app store for £9.99.

Find out more about the Leonardo da Vinci: Anatomist exhibition.

The new iPad/iPad 3/third generation iPad is here, we don't really care what it's officially called, we just want to know what to do on it to please our eyes.

The new tablet from Apple boasts a 2048 x 1536 Retina Display and we've collected together 10 apps that have been given a super high resolution update to coincide with the release.

Related: New iPad 3: 10 Retina display apps to get you started [PART TWO]

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