Apple has released an update to its universal iTunes U app adding new note-taking and sharing features and improvements to searching within the app. iTunes U 1.2 now allowed users to take notes directly in the app while watching or listening to a lecture. An improved search feature now allows users to search for text within posts, assignments, notes and other course materials from any of their subscribed courses, and users can now also share their favourite courses with friends via Twitter, Mail or Messages. iTunes U 1.2 is a universal app requiring iOS 5.0 or later and is available from the App Store as a free download.
Reading Rainbow has released an official iPad application based on the popular and long-running children’s television series. Hosted by LeVar Burton, the Reading Rainbow library provides users with access to a trusted library of books that can be customized to the child’s interests. Children can also take exciting virtual video field trips to themed islands where they can discover new fiction and non-fiction books that include audio storytelling by celebrity actors and light animations and activities to enhance the story.
Reading Rainbow provides access to over 150 interactive books and 16 video field trips and promises frequent updates to expand the available content further. Reading recommendations can be customized to the child and an integrated reward program helps to motivate reading; parents can also access a dashboard to share their child’s reading progress. The Reading Rainbow app is a free download and users can select a single book and view introductory videos for free; a recurring in-app subscription of $10/month or $30 for 6 months provides unlimited access to the library and can be used on multiple iPads that share the same iTunes Store account. Reading Rainbow requires an iPad running iOS 5.0 or later and is available from the App Store as a free download.
M5859 Studios has released Inside the World of Dinosaurs, an interactive dinosaur encyclopedia for the iPad. Narrated by Stephen Fry, the app provides a comprehensive multimedia encyclopedia that features the entire catalogue of dinosaurs from Archeopteryx to Zuniceratops, including a library of 60 fully animated and interactive dinosaurs displayed in three-dimensional models that users can spin around and view at any angle. Users can zoom in to closely study details such as skin texture and colour, view animated fight sequences and scrub backward and forward to analyze dinosaurs’ walk cycles.
Created as a collaboration with subject matter experts in science, literature and digital art, Inside the World of Dinosaurs provides over 310 fully interactive 3D models, 60 expertly modelled photo-realistic dinosaurs, 40 fully interactive 3D recreations of dinosaurs in mid-flight, 200 pages of detailed original text, 5 hours of narration by Stephen Fry, 84 videos and historical pictures and much more. Inside the World of Dinosaurs requires an iPad with iOS 4.3 or later and is available from the App Store for $14.