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The Week in iOS Apps: App.net spreads its wings

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This week’s roundup of new and updated iOS apps features some of those “other” social media services.

This free iPhone app is helping its eponymous service branch out beyond its original role as an alternative social network. The word “RSS” isn’t used to describe the latest update, but you can now subscribe to, well, stuff on the Internet in a way that’s reminiscent of feed readers—only better, since you can program push notifications for specific topics that concern you.

Macworld, way back in 2009, said that the original iPhone version of Awesome Note “overdoes things a bit.” That sounds like a mission statement for Awesome Note for iPad, which now touts itsself as an “all-in-one life organizer,” having added calendar options and the ability to sync with Evernote and Google Drive. The latest update gives the app that iOS 7 sheen, and now offers unified management of your reminders and calendar, bringing them together in a single screen so you can control your schedule and tasks efficiently.

The $1 Boxer email client for Gmail and Exchange is now available as an iPad app; the newest update also features integration with Evernote and Sanebox organizing services. It also integrates with Dropbox, Facebook, and LinkedIn—and it’s also versatile, working with Gmail, Exchange, Yahoo, and other IMAP email services.

Quick warning: Bob Dylan: The Bootleg Series works only if you purchase the albums of the same name from the iTunes Store. While listening to each track, compiled from rare recordings made mostly in 1970, you can find out the story of the song and of Dylan’s life at the time it was made.

We’re old enough that Clumsy Ninja reminds us of an early 1990s Chris Farley movie. (Yes, he was the ninja.) Players take control of the Clumsy Ninja as he searches for his missing girlfriend, Kira, and aid his quest by training, tickling, and even tying balloons to him—everything helps him improve his skills. This is definitely a “freemium” game; in-app purchases range from $3 to $30.

My young son went nuts for Endless Alphabet, an app that taught him his letters with a series of hilarious animations that—without fail—made him cackle long after he’d seen the cartoon for each letter at lest three times. So I’m looking forward to showing him Endless Reader, the next step up the food chain. It trains kids on “sight words” that they’ll need to know in order to start reading books in elementary school. Don’t worry, though: There are still plenty of fun, hilarious monsters to guide the way.

Yes, Google+ still has some life in it. The free social network has upgraded its iOS app, offering full-resolution backup of all photos and videos that you post to the site—but only in iOS 7. The latest update also lets users share their location and find nearby buddies with ease, and foreign language posts and comments can now be translated right on the screen.

The $1 USB Disk Pro lets users save and view files on their iPhone and iPad; this week’s version 2.0 update optimizes the app for iOS 7, adds support for Box and AirPrint, and improves the PDF viewer to include annotations.

Dropbox has been updated for iOS 7 … HBO Go added Chromecast support … and FlightTrack 5 launched with multiple new features.

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