File compression and archiving software remains among the most popular downloads, even though Windows integrates a basic but capable compression utility. Aftermarket archive tools tend to be faster, more powerful, and more capable than the Windows utility, and you've got plenty of them to choose from, too -- many of them freeware. We've tried all the big names, including WinZip, 7-Zip, and WinRAR. One tool we haven't tried before is B1 Free Archiver, and we wish we had. This free file compression and archiving solution has a lot going for it, such as wide compatibility with popular … Read more
Users who enjoy a little celebrity gossip may be interested in an application that draws from several sources. Urban Gossip FREE tries to accomplish this job on a small scale but fails miserably. The app crashes and is full of distracting ads.
Urban Gossip FREE doesn't consume a large amount of memory and it loads pretty quickly. The user interface is pretty rough, though. It is very busy and hard to read on a screen any smaller than a tablet. Not only is it incredibly hard to read but it is littered with invasive advertising, too. A scrolling advertisement … Read more
The newest version of iOS has a built-in text-to-speech function that will mechanically read any words on the page to users with learning or sight impairments. It is easy to turn on and works fairly well for most apps and all Web browsing. For those that have more robust text-to-speech needs or that want to communicate with other people through the text-to-speech function, SpeakText FREE is a potentially useful app.
The app's biggest issue is the poorly executed user interface. Lacking clear menus, busied by excess and animated ads, and not taking advantage of the space available on the … Read more
Designed to convert text to speech in a variety of settings, either in the original language or translated into one of a handful of languages in its libraries, SpeakText for Web FREE could be a very useful app. Because the voice files are downloaded before you start, the process is relatively quick and accurate; but an obtuse design, steep pricing structure, and lack of clear direction make it an app only suited for a small number of users.
The first thing to know about the SpeakText apps is that the core software is designed for three different uses, and this … Read more
At first glance, SpeakText for Office FREE seems like a redundant app. It uses text-to-speech technology to read what is onscreen, either in the original language or translated. Of course, the iPad and iPhone come with text-to- speech software, so what purpose does this app have beyond centralizing it into a single space? For the most part, the text-to-speech functions are efficient, but the restrictions with the free version and high cost of the upgrade lessen this app's usefulness.
The free version of SpeakText for Office has limitations on the number of sentences you can have spoken or translated. … Read more
The SpeakText line of apps is designed to provide a more robust suite of tools for text-to-speech integration on your iOS devices, including translation into over 30 languages. SpeakText for Me FREE combines the abilities of several SpeakText apps, but has quite a few shortcomings, not the least of which is a pretty hefty price tag if you opt to upgrade from the limited free version.
The interface for SpeakText for Me FREE is the most immediate issue. Messy, ad-supported, and sprawling, it lacks the clear direction and sharp design needed to recommend a paid upgrade. It actually proved fairly … Read more
The iPad is a great device for translations and multilanguage dictionaries. Because it is frequently "in your pocket" and because the device is connected to the Internet for regular updates, it works extremely well for trips out of the country. Unfortunately, not every app provides the same high level of translation quality that you might hope for when away from home. Portos Dictionary is one such app -- offering an uneven, poorly executed experience in serious need of an upgrade.
The Portos Dictionary is labeled as free and so should be expected in some ways to lack a … Read more
At first glance, InstaThis HD appears to be yet another barebones free image editing app for the iPad. However, while the app does limit what you can do in the free version, there are quite a few functions available that allow you to do everything from creating multi-image montages to editing and adding effects to those images.
When you first open the app, you'll be prompted to upgrade to the paid version, which features dozens of additional filters and editing tools. However, the free version is quite robust on its own, allowing you to use any of the app'… Read more
The standard YouTube application doesn't offer the ability to create a playlist for automatic playback. Fortunately PlayTube Free offers this function as well as a few more that make it a fairly valuable download for YouTube fanatics all over the world.
The setup for PlayTube Free requires no time at all. Once the app has been installed it opens to a simple user interface. With a black background and crisp white text, the menu is easy to read and navigate. The main menu allows the user to search for new videos, browse favorites, check out the history, or playback … Read more
You're lucky if your Android gadget came with more than three fonts by default. Galaxy Font For FlipFont@ free tries to liven things up by adding around 20 fonts to your phone, but it isn't terribly easy to install. While the fonts are certainly stylish, you might have more trouble than you want actually getting them onto your gadget.
This font pack is designed to work with a program called FlipFont®, which is remarkably hard to find online. Samsung and Nokia devices can usually get it, but most other phones will need to be rooted to install … Read more