Apple bought Swell, plight of indie developers, Russia wants Apple code! interesting new apps

Effects Studio handles the basics of photo editing and adds exclusive features
Effects Studio handles the basics of photo editing and adds exclusive features

Apple confirms purchase of personalized talk radio service Swell, shuts down app — Apple has indeed purchased Swell, a personalised news radio application, Apple confirmed on Wednesday NZ time, after promptly removing the free download from the iOS App Store.

The plight of the Indie iOS developer: is the App Store broken or is this much ado about nothing? — Instapaper and Overcast developer Marco Arment recently penned a blog arguing that Apple needs to do a whole lot more to direct users to higher quality apps. Under the current set up, Arment articulates that the “top lists” on the App Store tend to skew far too often towards low quality apps, rip off apps and cheap clones.

Russian government asks Apple to hand over source code amid spying concerns — Russia’s Ministry of Communications and Mass Media has suggested that Apple should open its source code for government inspection to ensure that the iPhone maker is not complicit in enabling US intelligence services to spy on the world’s largest country. [Surely they’re Putin us on?]

Effects Studio for iOS takes photo effects to the max — There are so many apps for editing and adding special effects that it’s pretty hard to keep track of them all. I’ve reviewed so many that they can become a misty blur. Effects Studio (NZ$1.29) takes adding effects to photos way beyond where most apps go but still manages to offer the basics, so it does stand out from the crowd.

Instagram launches Snapchat competitor ‘Bolt’ in selected markets — A week after rumours that Instagram would launch Bolt, the Facebook-owned company soft-launched the new time-restricted image and video messaging app in New Zealand, Singapore and South Africa.

iPhone gets first free app for encrypting voice calls — For all your spies out there, an open-source project has released the first free application for the iPhone that scrambles voice calls, which would thwart government surveillance or eavesdropping by hackers.