Readers’ App Reviews – May 2016

Check out some apps released by fellow readers this May – including an app to help you defeat writer’s block, and a keyboard to add animated GIFs! By Ryan Poolos.

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It’s May, and for most of us that means getting ready for WWDC – also known as Christmas for iOS developers!

As the most wonderful time of year draws near, the excitement grows among the iOS community. We’ve been making wish lists, predictions, and counting down the remaining days.

At, the hard work is just about to begin. WWDC brings tons of new APIs, frameworks, and other changes – and for us that means tons of tutorials to write and update.

In the meantime, our amazing community has continued to release tons of great new apps. I’ve got an inbox full of apps from readers like you to prove it. :]

I receive more than an app a day from fellow readers, and although I don’t have time to write about every app that hits my inbox, hopefully the few I show inspires you to finish your app.

This month we have:

  • An app that will help you defeat writer’s block (or else!)
  • A keyboard to add animated GIFs
  • An app motivate you to complete your goals
  • And of course, much more!

Keep reading to see the the latest apps released by readers like you.

GIPHY KEYS. The GIF Keyboard

Gifs. Gifs. Gifs. We all love them – no matter how we may pronounce the word! :]

You’re probably familiar with Giphy, the fantastic database of gifs for every occasion easily searchable at

Well get ready, because the gifs are breaking free! Giphy Keys is a new app from Giphy bringing their gif database right to your keyboard. You can easily search for gifs right from any app in your keyboard. Simply type what you’re looking for and gifs appear.

It’s easy to find great gifs even if you don’t have a particular one in mind. There are curated gifs, popular gifs, saved favorites, and more. You can easily find a gif on the fly from text you type, and it even allows you to type a zip code and get a customized gif with current weather conditions!

Best of all, Giphy keys still works as a regular keyboard. There’s no need to keep switching back and forth like some other gif keyboards I’ve tried. Highly recommended!

MotivAction – Set & Achieve Goals

MotivAction is an app to help you achieve your goals.

You simply set your goal and MotivAction holds you to it. MotivAction will track your progress along the way and help you get through the week.

Tasks are powerful and full featured. Set tasks for specific days, by specific times, and sort by difficulty and priority. You can also set subtasks to help break down the big things you need to get done.

Along the way, MotivAction will ask you about your mood to tune your reminders and encouragement. You’ll earn achievements for completed tasks and completed weeks. As you climb that mountain, MotivAction will show you encouraging animations to get you through. Check your stats for the week, month, or even quarter!

If you need a helping hand getting through your week, give MotivAction a try, it might be just the thing you need to push through.

Danger Text – never stop writing


Have you ever had suffered from writer’s block? If so, Danger Test is a new app with a solution that might work for you.

Danger Text gives you set time intervals to sit down in front of your keyboard and write – but adds a bit of extra danger.

You start out by saying you want to write for 10 minutes. Once you hit start, the app’s interface melts away and you’re left with a timer, the keyboard, and a blank canvas.

As you type, Danger Text is watching. If you stop for too long it starts to get upset. If you don’t type anything for more than a few seconds, you’ll lose everything you’ve written! Its quite an effective tool to force you to focus. Knowing that you’ll lose what you’ve done so far is a lot of pressure, and it works.

Danger Text has a few modes beyond the standard. If you’re just wanting to write, you can get a “Head Start” sentence to kick you off. If you’re wanting to share some thoughts there is a “Stream of Consciousness” mode that shortens the time to erase to the extreme.

There is also a “No Going Back” mode that disables delete to keep you focused on writing forward. And there is even a “Russian Roulette” mode that randomly deletes at the end even if you didn’t stop if you’re feeling lucky.

To give your short writings a place to go, the app also includes “Danger Times”: a shared collection of Danger Text creations from writers like you, bound by fear and time. You can choose to share your own writings there if you want to give others a taste of what 10 minutes of non stop writing looks like for you!


Repulsion is an addicting and challenging game. It’s similar to some gate based games you may have played but the added physics make it a big more difficult to master.

You’re controlling two simple balls that need to make it through the oncoming gates. Taping the screen will cause the balls to be repelled from each other with immediate force. The longer you hold the press the more force between the balls.

But it’s when you let go that the magic happens: the balls are drawn to each other. They spring to and from as they are never quite able to touch. Its this physical attraction and repulsion that you have to master to keep going.

Each gate will have openings at various spots you must pass through. To align the balls with the gate you’ll need to time your interaction so the balls properly react. Sometimes you need to wait until the last minute to avoid too much separation. Sometimes you need to preempt so the blowback attraction will bring them closer than their natural state.

The result is a challenging game, yet so simple to play. Repulsion definitely sets the new standard for easy to play, difficult to master.

Ryan Poolos


Ryan Poolos


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