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New iPhone apps worth downloading: Facebook Poke, Path update, Pudding Monsters

by Phil Hornshaw

Kick off today with a new way of interacting with your Facebook friends, using today’s leading fresh app, Facebook Poke. It allows you to “poke” your friends on Facebook but with lots more versatility, using images and videos and giving your pokes an expiration date. We’ve also got an update to the smaller, more intimate social network Path, and Pudding Monsters, a new game from the creators of Cut The Rope.

Facebook Poke (Free)

What’s it about? Facebook’s newest standalone app lets you “poke” friends through the social network, but greatly expands the functionality of the feature.

What’s cool? On the web version of Facebook, a “poke” is usually just a quick way to get someone’s attention. Facebook Poke takes that function and breaks it out into its own app, and in doing so expands the sort of things that constitute a poke. For instance, instead of just sending a notification to the other person, you can poke them using videos, messages, or photos – so it might be considered more of a quick “check this out” than an attention-grabber. You can also limit how long your pokes are available and track when your friends take screenshots of the items you send, so you’ll have greater control over your poke messages staying private or just between you and the other person.

Who’s it for? If you’re an avid Facebooker, you’ll probably find a lot to like in Facebook Poke.

What’s it like? Check out the standalone Facebook app, as well as Facebook Messenger and Facebook Camera.

Path update (Free)

What’s it about? Social network Path gives users a more intimate connection with friends and family than is offered by other networks, such as Facebook.

What’s cool? Path focuses on the closer connections you have with your friends and family, and is more about sharing moments. You can share photos and videos through path using custom filters when you shoot them, and also use the app to create journal entries and check-ins like you’d get from other networks. Path offers the ability to comment on other people’s posts but with the ability to do more than just “like” things – the app includes a number of emotions you can attach to posts, for example. Its latest update squashes lots of performance bugs and adds the ability to search through your own posts to find your own memories. The app also includes the ability to post your Path updates to a number of other networks, like Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr.

Who’s it for? If you prefer your social networking to be a little more intimate, give Path a try.

What’s it like? For more social sharing, try Instagram and its photo filters, or the newly iPad-optimized Tumblr app.

Pudding Monsters ($0.99)

What’s it about? From Cut The Rope maker Zeptolabs comes Pudding Monsters, a puzzler follow-up that’s about growing giant monsters from smaller ones.

What’s cool? Pudding Monsters includes more than 75 levels in which your goal is guide the pudding creatures to join together to create one giant monster. You combine them using swiping mechanics to slide them around a grid, but obstacles that get in your way will require some creative thinking.

Who’s it for? If you like the look and puzzles of Cut The Rope, you should try Pudding Monsters.

What’s it like? Speaking of Zeptolab’s other games, Cut The Rope and Cut The Rope: Experiments are both a lot of fun.

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