Hello iOS Affairs readers! I actually thought there would be no one left reading the blog after all the time I was away recovering, but I recently started looking at the blog visitor numbers again, and I was very wrong. In fact, on an average day, iOS Affairs still gets 200-300 visitors! I'm absolutely amazed!
You can check out the end-of-the-year stats in a fun WordPress-created report (put together by stat monkeys!) & you'll see that about 95,000 people read iOS Affairs in 2013!
But, this post isn't about last year. It's not a review, it's not another apology for being away so long (although I did miss you all), & it's not another false start at returning the blog to an active status (barring some huge catastrophe like flying monkeys taking over the world, of course).
What this post IS about is what's coming up in 2014.
New, Newish, & Just a New Look for 2014
- An overflowing list of cool reviews of new apps & some very cool apps you may have missed last year while I was away (Did everyone see Frax HD? How about Poshlight or Springle or …? Okay, I'm going to force myself to stop now!)
- Some new blog features & special types of posts (still being finalized, so you'll have to wait for more on this).
- More posts featuring how-to's, apps for specific people/professions/hobbies/etc., analytic/news posts to help you make decisions when buying new toys, apps, & accessories, pro/con posts on using new iOS 7 features or buying new devices, & the list goes on & on.
- A look back at past posts including much-needed updates to key posts for apps like Instagram & Camera+ by Tap Tap Tap, just to name 2.
- Posts with insight from the people who make all these apps possible – the developers. I want to talk to some of the great developers I've been able to get to know while writing iOS Affairs & I want to share some of their valuable advice, knowledge, & tips with you.
- Reviews of some new products like fiftythree's fabulous new Pencil stylus that goes perfectly with their Paper iPad app, but can be used anywhere you usually use a stylus. Other products include the iPad Air; I know it's a little late, but it'll have my personal how-to's & tips that you won't find anywhere else. And, we'll see what else comes out this year. As a unrestrained early adopter, you can bet I'll have whatever it is as soon as possible.
- And of course, new roundups of Big Fish Games! They've put out some incredible games for iOS in the past year & I will tell you which ones are worth playing & which ones you should skip. My pie in the sky plan is to eventually provide you with a list of every single Big Fish Game available for iOS with mini-reviews & links. That will take a bit of time, though.
All of this & much, much more will be coming to you very soon. I have a few ducks I need to make stay in a row before I can start writing again on a daily basis (those crazy ducks simply won't stay where I put them!).
My Word (I Pinky Swear)
I promise (within reason) that this is not another false start. I've wanted to start writing again for some time, but I didn't want to keep coming back, realizing I'm still too sick, rinse & repeat. So, I waited. I waited & waited & waited (I HATE waiting) until I felt healthy enough on a daily basis for a long enough time that I could be sure that I am up to the job of consistently bringing you important readers the news & reviews you're looking for.
What I Learned While Away
While I was waiting, I was too sick to do much. But, being sick couldn't keep me from my iDevices. Most of the time, it was all I was capable of doing. The upside is that I have SO much to tell you!
I started making a list of projects I did over the past 7 months, research I did in the App Store, little known apps I managed to find in dark, hidden corners, cool ways to save & actually make money using your iOS device, amazing gifts to give no matter what your price range, new social media groups/apps that have popped up (especially with a focus on photography), etc., etc., etc.
I read articles & magazines that gave me insight & ideas that I want to share with you, played with more apps than you can conceive of (I passed the 7,000 mark for apps I own!), found better ways to do many everyday chores using my iOS devices, & truly became an iDevice-only user when the only computer I had access to decided to die.
I have so much to say, so much to share, so much I want to show you, but I'm going to say goodnight now before this gets too long even by my standards. I'll leave you with some highlights from the list of more than 100 items I made of experiences I've had in the past 7 months in the iOS arena that led to ideas for posts.
I'm sure some of these will change a bit, some will combine with others, & some just won't work out like I planned, but this will give you an idea of what you have to look forward to.
Overly Long List of Upcoming Post Ideas
- Doing Christmas iOS Style & Giving Gifts Digitally
- How to Set Up Multiple Devices Within Families So Everyone Has Their Own iCloud Account, But Apps Are Shared
- Is the 128GB iPad Worth It? Can iOS Handle That Much Data?
- Explaining the App World to Complete Novices
- Setting Up a Private Social Media Circle for Families/Groups of Friends: Which Apps Work Best?
- Making Apps: Even Kids Can Do It With Newer Teaching Apps Available
- Problem With an App You Just Bought? The Best Way to Resove It Isn't a Complaint in the App Store, It's Talking to the Developer: Here's How
- How Do I Own 7,000 Apps? I'm Far From Rich, but I Know Where & When to Look for Paid App Sales
- Banking on iOS: Is it Safe?
- Are Game Reviews Rigged? Here's What I Learned
- Justifying the Price of More Expensive Apps
- Why AppleCare+ is an Absolute Must & the ABC's of AppleCare
- New Arrivals on the Hidden Object Game Scene
- How to Live Without a Computer
- Social Apps for Photographers
- Could iOS Gaming Ever Replace Consoles?
- Why So Many Developers Choose to Make Apps for iOS First or Only Make Apps for iOS (It's Not About Money Really)
- I Crossed the 2,000 Apps on 1 Device Mark & My iPhone Got Very Angry
- Everything You Need to Know to Use Shared Photostreams
- Why Your Mobile Phone Company is NOT the Place to Go for Device Problems
- 2-Step Verification is Becoming Quite Popular: How it Works & When You Should Use It
- Angry Your Favorite App Was Replaced With a Newer Version Instead of an Update After iOS 7? Here's Why It Happened
- iOS 7: “Change for Change's Sake” or “Change or Perish”?
- Why the Original iPad is Becoming Obsolete & Why I Think That Will Happen Faster for the iPad 2
- How to Tell if an App is Abandoned & Why/When You Should Avoid Abandoned Apps
- Is Apple Really That Expensive or Is It Just an Image?
- How to Get the Do Not Disturb Feature to Really Not Disturb You (But Still Let the People You Want Get Through)
- Has the iPad Finally Lost It's Entertainment Device Only Image?
- Where to Find Cell Usage Data in iOS 7 & Other Apps You Can Stop Buying Because Your iOS Does That Now (plus, How to Save Data by Shutting Off Specific Apps)
- The New Generation of Bluetooth Stylus'
- The Best non-Safari Ways to Search the Internet
- What Is That List of Apps at the Bottom of the Settings App For?
- How Augmented Reality Is Going to Change What You See
- iBook Alternatives: They Keep Making More!
- Learning to Read Faster Using Cool New Apps
- What's So Different About iOS 7 Wallpaper? (plus, a list of new key words & their definitions)
- Best Dictionary/Thesaurus Apps & Why They Need to Do More Than Give Word Definitions Anymore (plus, a how-to on setting up the integrated iOS dictionary, in case you don't know it exists)
- Everything I Learned During the iOS 7 Update Process (Possible Fix for Hung Up Update!) & You Won't Believe How Much Faster Restoring 64GB Via the iPad Air Is!
- Train Your Brain, Improve Your Memory & Focus Using the Best Puzzle Apps & Other Assorted Helper Apps
- Mood-Measuring & Tracking Apps; I've Tried Almost All of Them – Here Are the Best of Them
- I Made My 1st Kickstarter Purchase: How It Works & Is It Worth It?
- Device Peripherals: I Finally Found a Decent 3rd-Party Lightning Cord. Plus, Cases, External Battery Sources, Camera Adapters (and Why They Aren't Needed), Other Cords, etc.
- Is a Quad-core Device Really Better?
- Biggest Innovations of 2013 & What May Be Coming Next
- Does Anyone Actually Know What's “Best” for Batteries? Truth, Fiction, & Who Knows
- Paid vs Free: Does It Change How We Behave? A Look at the Paid, Free, Freemium Choices Developers Make
- When Reading Reviews Is Worth It, When It's Not, & How to Know the Difference (plus, How to Be a Discerning Reader)
Well, I guess I decided to give you a little more than a peek! You know me though – I'm wordy & always write too long. That's what you like about me though, right?
Tell Me Your Ideas & What You Think of My Ideas, Please!
Let me know what you think of the list & other plans I have for iOS Affairs. Tell me what you want to see 1st or what you're not interested in seeing at all. Send me an email with any other ideas you might want to see instead or in addition.
I'm so glad to be back & to be able to write to all of you. It's been far too long!
Who, What, When, Tumblr?
I don't have an exact date for when iOS Affairs will return officially. It will be within the month. When I know the date, I will send a Tweet (follow @iosaffairs on Twitter) & put it on Facebook (like IOS Affairs Facebook Page). I'm looking into how to to short notes using the current design of this blog. Hopefully I'll find a way to place a note on the website, as well.
Did you know there is a Tumblr Edition of iOS Affairs? It is mostly the same posts you read here on the WordPress website, but I often publish extras on the Tumblr edition (things that won't fit or will be too long, extra infographics that may be off-topic, Instagram photos from the iOS Affairs Instagram account, & other tidbits & fun things).
I haven't said this for such a long time, but:
That's it for me today. Until later, …