Popular blogging service Tumblr just upgraded its iPhone app to 3.0, now offering a streamlined interface, Spotify support, and swipe gestures that make it easier to use.
Jason ParkerSenior Editor / Reviews - Software
Jason Parker has been at CNET for nearly 15 years. He is the senior editor in charge of iOS software and has become an expert reviewer of the software that runs on each new Apple device. He now spends most of his time covering Apple iOS releases and third-party apps.
Tumblr (free), the popular blogging platform, just released a revamped version of its app for iOS. In the major update to Tumblr 3.0, the layout has been completely redesigned (bringing it more in line with the Android version, covered in April by Jaymar Cabebe), giving you many of the tools found on the Web site and intuitive swipe controls for posting.
Several tweaks to the interface make the app both easy on the eyes and easier to use. The revamped Dashboard supports high-res images; you can now post and listen to audio links that stream directly from Spotify; and improved photo browsing with a new image viewer makes it easy to flip through images. The app handles notifications much better; you now have a button that takes you to all your notifications in one place so you no longer need to sift through your posts to see who has commented or "liked" them. Posting forms have been upgraded as well, making it easier to get a post out quickly--and you no longer need to sit and wait for the post to send before moving on.
Tumblr has also added Radar in version 3.0, the noteworthy collection of trending posts selected by the Tumblr team. Radar shows up as the default screen when you hit the tag button at the bottom. From the same page, you also now have the ability to search tags.
Probably the biggest time-saving features are new gestures for the post button. Now, a swipe upwards on the post button in the lower right opens your iPhone camera for quick photos, similar to how iOS 5 lets you bring up the camera from the lock screen. A swipe to the left from the post button brings you immediately to a text post form. Though it's a different experience from the older version of the app, the new way of doing things is definitely more intuitive and its easy to see that regular users of the service will appreciate the new layout.
Tumblr 3.0 is a free app, so there's nothing to lose by checking it out if you've ever entertained the idea of blogging. But for regular users, this upgrade will definitely make interacting with the app more efficient and the elegant overall look makes for a smooth experience on your iPhone.