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It’s been a big week for Apple, with the announcement of iOS 8 and OS X 10.10 “Yosemite” for the desktop bringing the two platforms closer than ever before. The Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) is a chance for Apple to show off, but also a celebration of the software engineers who populate the platforms with goodies – paid and free.
These are the very same engineers who produce the apps that feature in this column, and many other articles in MakeUseOf on a weekly basis. So when they decide to give it all away for free, we’re right there to find the best deals.
Easy FTP Pro (
$3.99, now free)
There’s a good chance you’ve needed to access an FTP server at some point in your life, but have you ever done it from an iPad? What if you one day need to? Now’s your chance to grab one of the best iOS apps for the job in Easy FTP Pro. The app is universal, supports SFTP and FTPS (among others). The app also has SMB support, a console view, web browser and even Dropbox support for uploading and downloading.
Writer Pro (
$19.99, now $4.99)
From the same guys who brought you one of our favourite Mac and iOS word processors, Writer Pro is a turbo-charged version that blends iA’s distraction-free approach with powerful tools like syntax control which highlights superfluous words, weak verbs and repetitive nouns to improve your writing (this applies to English only). The iOS 7 app features a full-text search, auto-markdown support, night mode and more.
Animated 3D Origami (
$2.99, now free)
One for the children, parents or anyone with a fondness for crafts, Animated 3D Origami features more than 80 traditional origami patterns and shows you how to construct each one, step-by-step. These include the usual frog, crane and flower but also some less popular ones if you like the challenge. According to the developers, origami can help develop logical reasoning, attention span, spatial thinking and fine motor skills. Plus it’s a great distraction!
Splashtop 2 Remote Desktop (
$4.99, now free)
Splashtop maintain (via the App Store description) that the iPad version of their remote desktop software retails for $19.99 at full price, but according to my sources the app hasn’t been that expensive for over a year. Still, you can’t argue with free; so it’s a good time to download if Splashtop is a remote desktop solution that appeals to you. The software allows you to control a Windows or Mac OS X computer from your iPad, either locally or remotely across the Internet.
CamStar Pro (
$1.99, now free)
Ready to get super-gaudy? CamStar Pro positions itself as one of the best, most feature-packed photobooth style apps on the App Store. The app allows you to pose and apply a variety of live effects, capture video and use themes like wanted posters to create easily shareable images. According to one App Store reviewer it’s “totes amazing LOL” – and now it’s free to boot, so what are you waiting for?
CrabIt [No Longer Available]
CrabIt is a note-taking app that uses pictures instead of text. There are many apps designed for the job, but we’ve not featured a whole lot in this column in the past. If you’re looking for a photo notebook that allows you to easily take, tag and find photo notes – whiteboards, memos and photos you don’t want cluttering up your Camera Roll – you can grab CrabIt for free, right now.
$4.99, now free)
App Store App of the Week, Republique is a mobile gaming experience set in a totalitarian state with an emphasis on stealth, espionage and technology. The game was developed by those who had previously had a hand in Metal Gear Solid, Halo and F.E.A.R., and has been designed from the ground-up with touch gameplay in mind. There’s lots of story to unravel, puzzles to solve and action to be a part of with little more than a tap required to get the ball rolling. The graphics aren’t bad, either.
Leo’s Fortune (
$4.99, now $2.99)
Winner of an Apple Design Award at this year’s Worldwide Developer Conference, Leo’s Fortune has gone on sale to celebrate. Graphically stunning, with simple and addictive gameplay, Leo’s Fortune is a platforming game with action adventure tendencies that will have you collecting coins at breakneck pace across a variety of landscapes. Check out the trailer above to see just how good this one looks.
$4.99, now $1.99)
Continuing the theme of good-looking games, Limbo has received some of the highest honours a game can receive both for its console and PC version, and the mobile outing. The game is a dark and moody platformer in which you control a boy in search of his sister. Defeat puzzles, flip switches and a traverse deadly foreboding landscape, and gawp at the gloomy yet beautiful graphical style.
$4.99, now free)
Fingerlab have a penchant for creating four-player friendly experiences, last week they put their multiplayer rock studio Rockmate on offer and this week they’re giving away Multiponk instead. Multiponk is essentially pong, but for four players. Just in case you don’t have four players on hand at all times, there are one, two and three player modes as well as multiple skins and a full soundtrack.
RollerCoaster Tycoon 4 Mobile (
$2.99, now $0.99)
Now before you jump for joy and hit the purchase button, be aware that this isn’t the same RollerCoaster Tycoon as the PC version. Unfortunately it’s full of in-app purchases for premium currency, and the App Store reviews aren’t too forgiving either. But all criticisms aside, it’s probably still your best bet if you want a virtual theme park game for your iPhone or iPad. If you want a true Chris Sawyer classic, don’t forget to check out Transport Tycoon which is more or less the same as the PC version.
That’s a lot of apps for one week, see you next weekend for more Apps on Sale.