Weekly App Store Roundup: Oct. 25, 2008

As we say goodbye to the humble Mac Mini and consider giving a warm welcome to a fresh selection of iMacs, another week draws to a close. In the meantime, a handful of apps have emerged from incubation, so it’s time for The Apple Blog to examine these new arrivals and see if we can identify some potential.

This time we’re running a warm stethoscope over rRootage, Discover, Papaya and social networking tool BrightKite.

rRootage (free): Designed by Japanese shoot-em-up designer extraordinaire Kenta Cho, rRootage is a frenetic and unforgiving space blaster. This is hardcore blasting rendered in hyper-stylised vector form, each level an ever-more intricate series of bullet-dodging space battles against gigantic alien motherships. Those who decide to delve in to the kinetic joys of rRootage will need to check out the instructions first, before taking on the bullet barrage.

BrightKite (free): Much to the frustration of the iPhone-owning BrightKite cognoscenti, this app has been long delayed. Now it’s here, enabling you to check in at your current location and inform your friends where you’re at and what’s going down. With Twitter integration too, this is a must-have for budding social butterflies.

Discover (free): There are indeed several apps already out that turn the iPhone in to a portable, wireless hard-drive, it’s just that the good ones — Air Sharing and DataCase to name but two — cost a few bucks. B-Base, the developers of Discover, claim that their app will be, “free forever,” which is pretty impressive considering its comprehensive and competitive feature-set. If you’re in need of cost-effective portable storage, Discover should be your first port of call.

Papaya Game Edition (free): On paper, or to be more specific, on a glossy 15″ Macbook Pro screen, Papaya sounds wonderful. An instant messaging client, with support for MSN, AIM, Yahoo, Google Talk and ICQ. Unfortunately, the app is woefully ugly and, worse-still, requires your iPhone number for registration. Until it’s been given a serious polish, this is worth avoiding like rotten fruit.

As usual, before we close the doors on the App Store for another week, there’s a final recommendation for you. Remember Free RSS Reader? It’s a seriously simple free RSS reading app which I recommended earlier this month. It’s time to retract a recommendation because while Free RSS Reader is acceptable, Daisy Feed, in comparison, is astonishing.

Daisy Feed incorporates an immense array of features including feed ranking, favorites list, email integration and — this is the killer feature for me — auto-feed recognition. And, just in case you need that extra push to go grab the app right now, it looks gorgeous and is totally free.

If you’ve been downloading from the App Store this week, drop by the comments section and tell us what apps you’d recommend and what you’d steer clear of.

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