The Week in iOS Apps: Minecraft adds new features to its Pocket Edition

This week's roundup includes a major new update to Minecraft, plus news apps for taking pictures, celebrating JFK, and tasting coffee. Really.

week in ios apps
Rob Schultz/Macworld

Make more in Minecraft: Pocket Edition

This week’s roundup includes a major new update to Minecraft, plus news apps for taking pictures, celebrating JFK, and tasting coffee. Really. Read on!

Minecraft: Pocket Edition

Minecraft: Pocket Edition

Minecraft: Pocket Edition ($7, iPhone and iPad) is one big reason we have to set strict time limits for our kids who borrow our iOS devices. Now the game promises to become even more addictive, with an update that includes a Skyrim mashup pack and the inclusion of a marketplace that connects players to a “universe” of content. Players can even dye beds, smelt ingots, and build with new types of blocks: glazed terracotta and concrete. 



Airtripp (free, iPhone) is a social media app aimed at world travelers. You can meet new people in countries where you hope to travel—your chats can be auto-translated in the app—make plans, and share the best moments from your voyages abroad.



There are a number of “habit creator” apps in the world: Cycles ($2, iPhone and Apple Watch) is one of the newest. The app lets you create and customize your goals—everything from good work habits to better health activities—and offers periodic, gentle reminders to get you going.



Halide ($3, iPhone) joins the ranks of camera apps, featuring an array of tools including manual controls for focus, exposure, ISO, and white balance. Other tools include focus peaking, a detailed histogram, adaptive level grid, and RAW support. The new app just got a post-launch update that fixes the app’s tendency to crash on the iPhone 5 and 5c.

JFK Challenge

JFK Challenge

JFK Challenge (free, iPad) is a game that lets you take on two of the former president’s big missions: One lets you join the Peace Corps and learn to interact with people around the world, the other puts you in NASA and makes you a participant in the “space race” to get to the moon.



You know that feature in podcasting and audiobook apps that lets you listen to commentary, but sped-up? Motoread (free, iPhone and iPad) does the same with written material—converting text to audio, then letting you speed through the audio at double-time. Just download the text from your favorite sources and social media, and set the process in motion.

Quick Peek

Quick Peek

Quick Peek (free with in-app purchases, iPhone) helps you keep an inventory of your stored-away stuff. “Simply snap a photo of the contents going in the box, pack them up, apply the smart label, and scan.” Next time you want to find your stuff, just scan the smart label—similar to QR codes—with your phone and it’ll show you a picture of what’s inside the box.



Think you’re a coffee snob? This app is made for you. Palate ($3, iPhone and iPad) helps you create a “taste card” for each variety of coffee you drink—helping you think about specialty coffees “like a pro”—then share your discoveries with like-minded java enthusiasts.

dc legends june update 1
DC Legends

Others of note

DC Legends (pictured) has added Wonder Woman content … Alto, the email app, has integrated a calendar into its dashboard … Nomorobo helps you block telemarketers.

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