Quotebook iPhone App Review [App Giveaway]

Want to win a copy of Quotebook? Post your favorite motivational quote on my Facebook post HERE to be entered into a drawing for a Promo Code ($2 value).

Quotebook iPhone App Review

Quotebook for iPhone ($2 as of this writing) is a cool little app that grabbed my attention because it serves a good purpose for me as a lover of inspirational quotes.

Every now and then I come across a quote that I want to remember, and what do I do? Usually I paste the quotation into a note in my iPhone. The result is that over several months I accumulate many different notes with quotes in them. Sure, I could paste all my favorite quotes into one single note, but this is not ideal since I have such a mess of other notes in my Notes app — shopping lists, account numbers, and other random things I’d like to remember — and no good way of organizing them.

Quotebook is an app that is intended solely for storing and organizing your favorite quotes in one place. Maybe you read a quote on a poster somewhere that you like. Put it in your Quotebook. Maybe you are reading a book and you want to jot down several excerpts. Put them in your Quotebook and note the Source (i.e. the name of your book).

Entering a Quote

To enter a quote into your Quotebook, simply hit the “+” sign in the app and paste your quote in the textfield. You can also set an Author, Source, Rating, and one or more Tags.

Browsing Your Quotes

What makes Quotebook great is that you can filter your quotes by any one of the aforementioned categories, as described below.

By Quote

This page displays a list of all of your quotes. In the settings, you can choose whether to display your quotes from newest to oldest or vice versa.

Quotebook Quotes

By Author

You can display your quotes alphabetically by author. What is really neat about this feature is that you can tap on an author and Quotebook will bring up the Wikipedia entry for that author, if one exists. It will even pull up other quotes from this author from Wikiquote.

Quotebook Authors

By Source

You can display your quotes by source, which is a great feature if you have entered many quotes from a specific source into your Quotebook. Then you can browse all the quotes that you enjoyed from a particular book, or newspaper article, etc.

Quotebook Sources

By Tag

You can also categorize and sort your quotes by Tag.

Quotebook Tags

Suggested Improvements

I think Quotebook is a fantastic, minimalistic app that serves a focused purpose that will appeal to people who love quotes. However, if the developer would like to really soup up this app, I think it would be great to have the ability to add photos to the app as well as audio.

So if, for example, you see a billboard that’s really funny, you can snap a photo of it and add it to the Quotebook. Or if you want to simply say a quote out loud and record it instead of typing it out, you could do that as well.

How to Win a Copy of Quotebook

Matt, the developer of Quotebook, has kindly offered to give away a Promo Code to one lucky reader of AppleiPhoneReview.com. To enter the drawing to win a copy of Quotebook ($2 value), all you have to do is post your favorite inspirational quote as a comment on my Quotebook Facebook post HERE and I will send the winner a message with the promo code by the evening of Thursday, April 28.

iPhone 4: First Impressions [Review]

So I haven’t received my iPhone 4 yet. They are apparently sold out everywhere for the next three weeks. But I got a chance to check out my friend’s a couple days ago. I was impressed.

My initial impression was that the iPhone 4 feels great in your hand. It’s slightly heavier, but the extra weight gives it a solid feel. What’s more, it has almost all of the features that I have been wanting for years.

iPhone 4 Camera

iPhone 4 Camera

The camera quality is excellent when compared to my 3GS, and the HD video quality is stunning. My friend also showed me a movie he made in 5 minutes on the iMovie iPhone app, and it was impressive, considering it was made on a phone.

I also love Apple’s implementation of the flash options and the front-facing camera switcher in the Camera app. To enable the flash, disable it, or set it to Auto is as simple as tapping your preferred option at the top of the screen. Switching to the front-facing camera is also a matter of tapping once at the top of the viewfinder screen. And the LED flash itself seems to be of reasonable quality.

iPhone 4 Speaker

iPhone 4 Speakers

The speaker seemed to me to be louder and improved with regards to audio quality.

Other Observations

It was also just a pleasure to hold in my hand. Touching the buttons and using the interface was a characteristically-Apple experience. The speed was also noticeably improved, and iOS4 is a great acquaintance to the iPhone 4. Folders and multitasking were meant for iPhone 4.

I didn’t get to make any calls or use any apps, but overall the experience was undoubtedly superior to the iPhone 3GS. While I have been plenty critical of past iPhones, with the iPhone 4 there is less to complain about — though, don’t worry, I will have plenty to critique once I receive mine in the mail and begin to actually use it. Nevertheless, to me it seems that the iPhone has finally come of age. If the iPhone were a human male, I would say that after three years of growth and experience, iPhone 4 is now, at last, a man.

No one is without flaws, however, and I am sure I will become acquainted with the iPhone 4’s weaknesses given some time. But overall I am impressed and almost proud to see that this device, which I have scrutinized and observed since its infancy, has finally grown up.

(Of course, let’s not forget there have been issues reported that should make any reasonable person hesitate to spend hundreds on the iPhone 4.)

Here are some more photos, taken with my 3GS:

iPhone 4 Volume Buttons

iPhone 4 Side

iPhone 4 Back

What Do You Think?

Do you agree with my initial impressions of the iPhone 4? Is it all it’s cracked up to be? I would love to know what you think.

iMainGo2 Portable Speakers for iPhone [Video Review]

I have really enjoyed the quality, portability and protection offered by the iMainGo 2 iPhone speakers. Watch this video for my complete review:

iMainGo2 for iPhone

The iMainGo2 case is ultra protective, including a plastic screen that does not hinder use of the iPhone’s touchscreen. The plastic screen suffers from air bubbles, but the protection is invaluable. I love using the iMainGo2 while I cook or garden outdoors, since I can control the music without getting my iPhone dirty.

The speakers offer loud, high fidelity audio, although they sometimes “crunch” a little bit at the highest volume levels. They are definitely loud enough, though.

Overall, I have been happy with the iMainGo2, but I would love to see some controls on the case to allow me to use the iPhone’s volume buttons and the on/off switch. I would also like to be able to receive phone calls while the iPhone is in the case, since the iMainGo2 does not allow access to the microphone.

Update: I’ve realized that I sometimes forget to turn the unit off, and that’s because the on/off button for the iMainGo2 is inside the case. I would really appreciate an LED light on the outside of the case so that I know when it is turned on.


Buy on Amazon: iMainGo 2 Handheld Speaker Case for iPhone (Black)
Shop: Buy iMainGo 2
Manufacturer: Portable Sound Laboratories

iGorilla App is Good Model for Donation-Based Non-Profits [App Review]

iGorilla iPhone app

iGorilla is a charitable iPhone app that lets you track the work the Virunga National Park is doing — with your donations — to save mountain gorillas in the Congo. With your $4USD App Store purchase, the park gets a $2.80 donation, and you get mobile access to field journals about the gorilla families that the park is working with.

What’s great about the iGorilla app is that in exchange for your contribution you are able to actually see what people in the Democratic Republic of Congo are doing for the gorillas, and why they need your support.

Upon downloading the iGorilla app, I began to follow the Kabirizi gorilla family. After browsing photos and biographies of the gorillas, I navigated to the Kabirizi family blog, where field workers document the plight of this endangered species. While there are exciting stories of new births, many of the stories in the blog address the harsh reality of life for gorillas in the Congo, who often get caught in snares or go missing.

The BBC reports:

The mountain gorilla population has been reduced by poaching, civil conflict, deforestation and disease. But conservation work is helping to secure the remaining 720 animals, with an estimated 211 of the great apes living in the park.

Ultimately, the Virunga National Park hopes you will feel some kind of attachment to these gorillas whose stories you carry around in your pocket that you will touch the iPhone app’s ever-present “Give” button to contribute more to the project.

The iGorilla app is an extension of the community that has emerged at Gorilla.cd, where users can interact, donate money, and take other actions to save the gorillas.

A Model for Non-Profits

iGorilla Donate

The Virunga National Parks runs a great online campaign. Their website and blog serves to document the plight of the gorillas and the work that is being done to save them, while offering visitors the chance to not only donate, but to see how their donations are put to work.

What if all non-profits developed iPhone apps to engage sympathetic people on the go? Although not the first charity-based iPhone app, iGorilla is a good model for savvy organizations that see the increasing relevance of the mobile web.

iGorilla demonstrates how iPhone apps can be used for social and ecological good. Non-profits take note.

Room for Improvement

What is sorely missing from this app is social media integration. The Gorilla.cd website gives visitors the opportunity to share blog posts, videos and pictures on Facebook and via email, but the iPhone app lacks this social sharing capability.

iGorilla Donate

It would also be great to see the park add features to give users more opportunities/reminders to donate. What if I was able to get a pop-up notification each time a post relating to my gorilla family was added? What if blog posts outlined the problem and exactly what materials are needed to fix it, then offered a chance to donate funds for these specific items. This would contribute to the transparency that the park has already cultivated on its website, where people can pitch in to specifically purchase petrol, sacks, and support for gorilla orphans as well as park rangers.

Overall, I am glad to see this charitable organization taking their message to the App Store and using the iPhone as a tool for social good. I hope to see more non-profits follow suit.

TomTom for iPhone Review [iPhone GPS App Review]

TomTom iPhone GPS App

The TomTom GPS app is the first navigation app I’ve used on my iPhone other than Maps. With turn-by-turn orientation, voice navigation and location-based features, TomTom is a definite upgrade. But there are some weaknesses to consider before you shell out $70 in the App Store for this iPhone GPS app. Continue reading my TomTom for iPhone review to learn more.

Disclosure: This app was donated to me free in exchange for a review. Sometimes I review donated products or apps that interest me. I do my best to be fair and objective. The FTC requires that I disclose my relationship with companies, and I agree that it is important to mention.

TomTom for iPhone Review

The first thing I noticed was how much more user-friendly the maps themselves are. Rather than a small blue circle on a static 2D map, TomTom shows you a big arrow that always points forward as a 3D map orients itself below. Whereas the Maps app shows you your location from a satellite’s perspective, the TomTom app allows you to see yourself as well as the road ahead at all times.

Google Maps vs TomTom

The second basic improvement over Maps is voice navigation, which helps you keep your eyes on the road as a customizable voice guides you through each turn. TomTom supports many different languages for its GPS app, including male and female voices in English, Spanish, Chinese, Danish, Dutch, Italian, French, etc.

TomTom iPhone GPS App Languages

iPhone’s default Maps app is certainly lagging behind, and the TomTom GPS app beats it in the basics. But how useful is TomTom for iPhone overall? Here are the pros & cons of this iPhone GPS app, according to my review of TomTom for iPhone:

TomTom for iPhone: Pros & Cons

Things I’ve observed while using TomTom for iPhone:


  • Turn-By-Turn Navigation
  • Voice-Guided Navigation
  • A dashboard at the bottom of the app tells you the remaining time and mileage to your destination, the distance and direction of your next turn, and information about your speed.

    TomTom iPhone GPS App

  • The map can be viewed in vertical or horizontal orientation (I prefer horizontal). The default iPhone Maps app only lets you view maps vertically.
  • Nearby gas stations appear on the map, so that you can anticipate places to refill your tank as you drive. You can also locate Points of Interest like Gas Stations, Hotels & Motels, Restaurants and Parking Garages either in your area or along your route. Like the iPhone’s default Maps app, TomTom also lets you search Google for other local destinations.

    TomTom iPhone Points of Interest

  • A music control panel can be enabled to allow you to control your iPod as it plays in the background.

    TomTom iPhone GPS App Music Controls

  • TomTom lets you avoid toll roads if you choose.


  • Entering addresses on TomTom is, quite frankly, a pain in the a**. Instead of just letting you enter the address in full, TomTom makes you set the city, then the street name on a subsequent page, followed by the house number on yet another page. That is way too many steps to enter an address. And because the city, street name and house number are entered separately, you can’t simply copy and paste an address into TomTom. This is a serious limitation of this app, in my opinion.

    Entering a destination address in the TomTom app is a 4-step process:

    TomTom for iPhone Address Input

  • No Google Earth view. TomTom offers 3d and 2d graphical maps, but it does not let you view the earth from a satellite like you can with Google Maps.
  • Steep price point. $70 is not pocket change for most people. TomTom also offers a real-time traffic service for $20 per year. If Google introduces its turn-by-turn navigation for Maps on the iPhone, then this high price could be hard to justify unless TomTom adds premium innovations to outcompete Google.
  • When you pinch to zoom out on a map, you can’t see street names on the map. Fail.
  • The clock is not visible within the TomTom app. If you have a clock on your dashboard this is no problem, but if you’re not in your car and you rely on your iPhone for the time, then you’ll need to exit the app.

What did you think of this TomTom for iPhone review? Do you use TomTom for iPhone or some other iPhone GPS app?

Xtand Go Windshield and Dashboard Car Mount for iPhone [Review]

Xtand Go for iPhone

Just Mobile’s Xtand Go, mounted on my windshield

Just Mobile’s Xtand Go is a windshield and dashboard car mount for iPhone 3G and 3GS. I will say right off the bat that I am really pleased with this iPhone car mount (and I don’t say that about everything I review).

Here are my complete thoughts on the Xtand Go Windshield and Dashboard Car Mount for iPhone, including detailed instructions on how to use it.

Xtand Go Review

Disclosure: This Xtand Go was donated to me in exchange for an honest review. Sometimes I review donated products that interest me. Despite receiving the items for free, I do my best to be fair and objective. The FTC requires that I disclose my relationship with companies, and I agree that it is important to mention.

Instruction Manual

The Xtand Go’s main weakness, in my opinion, is its instruction manual. It seems they chose to use images to convey the directions in order to accommodate people with different languages, which is admirable, but it makes understanding the directions a challenge.

Xtand Go Instructions

I was somewhat confused by the imagery and had to figure out how to use the Xtand Go with little help from the manual. Just Mobile, please make the instructions for the Xtand Go more clear by adding text to the images. Looking at the instructions was the first thing I did, and it was not a good experience.

The Good

Despite the weak instructions, this mount is excellent, mostly because of its ability to adapt to many situations. The Xtand Go is versatile enough to be placed on virtually any area in your car, including glass surfaces and your dashboard.

What makes the Xtand Go so flexible is that you can adjust it to suit whatever area you are mounting your iPhone to. To mount to a windshield or window, attach the suction cup mount to the folding arm. To mount to the dashboard or console, use one of three available sticky buttons, which Just Mobile calls “Go Buttons.”

Xtand Go Contents & Directions

Xtand Go parts:

Xtand Go Contents

Xtand Go contents, from left to right: 2 of 3 sticky mounts/Go Buttons, suction cup mount, iPhone holster, and folding arm.

The folding arm: The folding arm is the flexible part of this iPhone car mount. The arm can be mounted to the suction cup or to Go Buttons that you stick to your dashboard. The folding arm is composed of two rotating disks on a circular base.

Xtand Go Folding Arm

The concept is smart. By letting you turn two discs on different planes, the Xtand Go lets you orient your iPhone practically any way you want. The only caveat: because each disk can only rotate along one plane at a time, it can sometimes be tricky to orient the iPhone the way you want it.

To be honest, at first it felt like I was playing with a Rubiks Cube, but once I got the positioning of the discs right by folding the discs in the proper positions, then it was easy to orient the iPhone vertically and horizontally.

The suction cup: The Xtand Go’s suction cup mount is one of my favorite features of this accessory. Think about it, to mount an iPhone to your windshield you need some pretty strong suction cups. Just Mobile’s implementation on the Xtand Go is smart and effective.

Xtand Go Suction Cup

To suction the mount to your windshield:

  1. Attach the suction cup to the folding arm by sliding it on and clicking it into place.
  2. Then, press the suction cup to the surface you want to mount to, and turn the base of the suction cup in a clockwise motion. The mount will now be securely fastened to the glass.

The Go Buttons: These little sticky mounts can be placed on different locations on your dashboard so that you can attach the folding arm to those locations. The sticker is strong and has remained attached in the two weeks I have been using the Xtand Go. It seems I could easily remove it if I wanted to, though.

Xtand Go Button

The Xtand Go comes with three of these “Go Buttons,” which let you mount (and unmount) your iPhone to several places on your dashboard

The coolest thing about the Go Buttons is that you can even stick one to your iPhone case and then mount your iPhone, case and all.

The holster:

Xtand Go

The detachable holster lets you clip your iPhone into place in a very non-intrusive way, as you can still access all of the iPhone’s controls and inputs when it is mounted, unlike Pro-Fit’s miCradle and UltiMount, which I reviewed in the past. If you have a case, it won’t fit in the Xtand Go’s holster, but instead you can stick a Go Button to the case to mount it to the folding arm, as I noted above.

Purchase the Xtand Go

Product Page: European shoppers can purchase the Xtand Go directly from Just Mobile.

Amazon.com Listing: Just Mobile does not seem to ship directly to the United States, but US shoppers can find the Xtand Go on Amazon.com (affiliate link).

What do you think?

What are your thoughts on Just Mobile’s Xtand Go? I would love to know if you agree with my opinion of this iPhone car mount.


Buy on Amazon: Just Mobile Xtand Go iPhone Car Mount
Manufacturer: Just Mobile