The Best Free Apps for July 4, 2014

Sections: iDevice Apps, iPad, iPad Air, iPad mini, iPhone, iPhone/iPod touch/iPad, iPod touch, Originals

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screen568x568Happy Independence day to all of our American readers, and happy Friday to everyone else. This week, Apple announced an update is coming to the iTunes U app for iOS devices. This is already a wonderful app, but they’re making it even easier for teachers to add course material entirely from an iPad. Additionally, students will be able to participate by asking questions and having discussions. This update will be coming soon, so download it now and find some content to learn something new, then enjoy the update in the coming days.

Next up is a game that’s been available for a while, but is just now finding it’s way to the U.S. App Store. Fates Forever is an online tournament free-to-play game that’s all about player vs. player battles. And if you’re a fan of the night sky, which you should be, SkySafari 4 is a must have app that uses your iPhone’s GPS and accelerometers to help you identify stars, nebulae, galaxies and more! Get it for free for a limited time.

But the best free apps don’t stop there. Check out more games and such below.

The Best Free iOS Apps:

  • iTunes U – School might be out for summer, but that doesn’t mean you have to stop learning. Apple is about to update this already wonderful app on July 8th, giving teachers a plethora of new features. The new version will allow teachers to create and manage courses entirely from an iPad. Content can be added from other apps or even the camera on the device. But this isn’t all about teachers; students will also get new features, like the ability to ask questions and have classroom discussion on new topics. This is sure to encourage more educators to add even more content to an already impressive collection of learning material.
  • Fates Forever – The tournament has begun. Stop waiting for your buildings to finish, it’s time to start battling. This is a free action game where you can team up with your friends in epic player vs. player battles. There are eight heroes to choose from to join in combat with other players. There are towers to destroy, shrines to capture, spells to cast and more. It’s a free to play game, but there are no timers and no speed ups here. Just play as much as you want.
  • SkySafari 4 – I always recommend downloading nighttime sky apps whenever they go free because it’s so cool to be able to use your iOS device to identify stars and the like. This is an award winning app that has everything you need to get started learning the night sky. Its database has 120,000 stars; over 200 star clusters, nebulae, and galaxies; all major planets and moons; and dozens of asteroids, comets, and satellites. Yes, you can even track the ISS with this app. It’s just like having a small version of the entire universe in your pocket. This one is free for a limited time, so download now, and use it to look up at the night sky later.

The Other Free iOS Apps (some for a limited time):

  • iScanner – I recommend one of these almost weekly, but it’s just because they are so useful. If you don’t already have an app that converts images into PDF documents, here’s yet another option.
  • Day One – Record life as you live it with this journalling app. It has a clean, elegant interface that makes journaling your life a simple pleasure. You can use multi-markdown text formatting, type in full screen mode, add a passcode lock, and add photographic entries. It’ll even automatically add data like photo EXIF data, weather info, location data, etc. Entries can sync across your iOS devices with Dropbox or iCloud. These are just a few of the features.
  • Daedalus Touch – Here’s another text editor for iOS. This one has no file lists, no folders, no documents in the classic sense. Yup, it considers itself to be a next-gen text editor. There are just paper stacks and an infinite amount of sheets. You navigate by gestures. All of your texts update to iCloud across all of your devices. It’ll even export your text in various formats.
  • Recordium – Here’s an app that’ll help you record audio via your iOS device’s microphone. But it can do more than that. You can attach notes, tags, and pictures to your recordings. You can even highlight sections of audio while you’re recording them, which could be great for recording your classes.
  • Epic Ninja – Get ready for a blast from the past with this retro platforming game featuring a ninja. Although, can you really consider it a ninja if you can see it? Just saying… There are 90 levels in 3 worlds complete with epic boss fights and non stop fun all in a very retro style.
  • Laser Hell – No, this is not quite where lasers go after they die to be punished for making children go blind. Instead, this is a simple as hell, yet impossible rhythm-based techno music arcade game. Try to keep your balance while avoiding hellish lasers and stay alive.
  • Nozoku Rush – Swipe tiles that subtract down to zero to clear off the board. Maximize your score with big combos and show your friends who’s boss on the leaderboards. There are two modes in this game—rush and race—that are a little like a matching game with some math thrown in for fun.
  • Skylanders Battlegrounds – Leap into battle with the brand new Skylanders SWAP Force characters. Bring the Skylanders to Life and free the war-torn battlegrounds. Choose your favorite Skylanders and face off against Kaos’ evil Warlord army and so much more. You can even connect to the bluetooth Portal of Power if you have the accessory to bring your collection to life instantly.
  • Wrong Way Racing – How many laps can you go before you burst into small metal chunks and flames? This game challenges you to do one thing, drive the wrong way around the track. You are the black car. Just avoid the other cars while racing the wrong way. The latest update to this game adds a new track that finally allows you to drive more than 500 laps, which is something you can totally do, right?
  • Paperama – Here’s an origami puzzle game. You solve the puzzles by creating the desired shape without using too many folds. Can you handle it, or will it be you who folds under the pressure?
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  • surtursword

    Is there a version of Skysafari app for Windows 8? I only use Android currently and would love to have my kids be able to check out the constellations on my Nexus 10.