App reviews: TripCase, Flow Free
Travel without stress
Have a New Year’s resolution to travel more? If you’re looking to rack up the frequent flyer miles in 2014, chances are you’ll want something to help you manage all those flight, hotel and dinner reservations at a glance. TripCase is a well-designed app that aims to make the logistics of travel easy so you can enjoy your trip. Like other, similar services, you can add your travel information to the service by forwarding relevant emails to TripCase. You can also build a trip manually, of course. From the app, you can look up flight information (or look up alternate flights, if needed), call your hotel, get directions and more. The app has ads tailored to your location and other information – apps have to pay their bills, after all – but they’re generally unobtrusive and, sometimes, even useful. Free, with in-app purchases, for iOS and Android devices.
Engaging puzzle game
Whether you’re interested in sinking a lot of time into a game or just picking up something that can occupy you in the waiting room at the doctor’s office, Flow is worth a download. The game is a simple twist on connect-the-dots: Players are faced with a grid of different-colored pairs of dots. The goal is to connect the right dots while filling up every square on the grid. It sounds easy – and is, at least in early levels – but quickly becomes a brain-twisting exercise in spatial thinking. The app has a good number of levels, even in the free version, although users who aren’t interested in spending money on the app do have to deal with ads. But even that minor interruption doesn’t detract much from this delightful brainteaser. Free, with in-app purchases, for iOS and Android devices.