Category Archives: Tech News

iWorks and iLife Apps Now Free with new iOS Device Purchase

Did you recently purchase a new iPad or iPhone for yourself or as a gift this past holiday season? If so, you are eligible to download the iWorks and iLife applications suite from the App Store for free! This is about a $70 value! Bet your salesmen didn’t mention that at the store. Since October 2013, Apple has made the application free for all new purchases.

 

iApp image
The iWorks Suite is one of the most popular and feature loaded productivity app sets on the App Store today since a full version of Microsoft Office is still not available for the iOS system (Office 2 HD and Document to Go are great apps,but iWorks remains more popular and definitely aren’t free). The iWorks suite includes the following apps which can be downloaded separately:

  • Pages (Document Editor)
  • Numbers (Spreadsheet Editor)
  • Keynote (Presentation Editor)

The iLife suite is a little more on the “let loose and have fun” side of things being known as creativity apps but the suite does include a feature packed picture and movie editor which some may still consider “productivity”. The iLife suite includes the following apps which aslo are downloaded separately:

  • iPhoto (Photo Editor)
  • iMovie (Movie Editor)
  • Garage Band (Touch Instrument and Recording Software)

Even through the items are free, you wouldn’t think so when you try to go download them from the App Store. Thats because you have to know where to look in the Store for the free download. If you just search for them, they will show up for their regular price.

To find them for free in Apps Store using iOS 7 (what all new devices come with), do the following:

  1. Open the App Store on your iOS device
  2. Click on the “Featured” icon at the bottom left of the app display
  3. Make sure you are in the “All Categories” section of the Featured area by clicking the “All Categories”button at the top left of the Featured area.
  4. Scroll to the bottom of the Featured area and click on the “Apps Made By Apple” Button
  5. Once in the “Apps Made By Apple” area, if you are eligible for the free apps, they will show up as free in this area. Then, download as normal. FYI, as will all other free apps, you will still be prompted for your Apple ID and Password upon download.

Once you have the applications downloaded, they are now eligible for free download on the rest of your iOS devices associated with your Apple account! So now you can enjoy the apps across your full iOS network!

Please note that most of these apps are over 250MB, so you may need to free up a little space if you want the full package.  Happy downloading!

Kik Messenger Platform and Security Concerns

Kik Messenger continues to grow in popularity among the younger generations as a social messaging platform. In general, its messaging platform is one of the most highly rated data-based instant messaging platforms in the app world today thanks to its cross-platform capability and high speed message delivery. In many cases, it is right up there with WhatsApp messenger, some believe it is better, however WhatsApp remains more popular and has been around for longer.

Kik Messenger starts with a private username and password which can be shared with friends to chat privately. As with many other apps (such as Tango, Zello, etc), Kik Messenger scans your devices address book to identify contacts who are also in Kik. In the past this scan was apparently somewhat aggressive, resulting in the removal of Kik Messenger form the RIM Blackberry App Store due to this feature and privacy concerns by RIM. However, according to latest research, this now this appears to have been ratcheted down and privacy concerns from this feature of the app appear to be minimized (however, always keep one eye open for apps that request permissions to your address book).

The problem starts when users (especially minors) start to share their Kik usernames on public or semi-public forums such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Ask.fm, Online Chat Engines, or App reviews (the number of reviews of the Kik app in the Google Play and iTunes Stores providing messenger usernames is astonishing, give it a look). Once this username information is released, anyone can contact the account holder with this username. When someone invites you to join on Kik (this is the start, you have to accept and invite before you can start a conversation with that person) there is no validation on who the user is which is sending you the invite, if you don’t know who they are or haven’t seen them use their Kik account, then there is no guarantee.

A few good articles have been posted on this topic and how the problem can span out of control when used with Instagram and other systems. If this sound a little to close to home, I would recommend reading them here (see below).

What Parents Need to Know About KIK Messenger App
http://blogs.mcafee.com/consumer/parents-need-to-know-about-kik

Parents Beware: Instagram & Kik Messenger Are A Dangerous Combination & What Social Dangers to Check For
http://www.hightechdad.com/2012/07/02/parents-beware-instagram-kik-messenger-are-a-dangerous-combination-what-social-dangers-to-check-for/

Picture to Pedophile: The Danger of Instagram and Kik Messenger
http://www.thetreenetwork.com/the-danger-of-instagram-and-kik-messenger/