App Review: iStat by bjango
iStat by bjango is the first app that we have seen that provides you with resource information about your iPhone or iPod Touch as well as any Mac computer running the iStat Server [free download - Mac OS X Only]. Along with memory and cpu usage statistics there are also two network functions: ping and traceroute which can be rather handy to troubleshoot the odd networking issue. Upon startup the user is presented with a list of “Servers”, these are any Mac computer on the network running the iStat server as well as an entry for the iPhone itself.
Selecting the iPhone button will give you the current stats of your device, including memory usage, disk usage (free space available), the current IP address (either wi-fi or cellular), the unique device identifier and the MAC address. The unique identifier is handy for ad-hoc app sharing and there is an easy way to email the ID off the device and send it to anyone.
Selecting the MacBook button on the home screen will yield statistics of your Mac computer (or, whatever Mac you have installed the iStat server software). Here, you will get a whole host of information including CPU usage statistics in a scrolling graph, memory usage pie chart, hard disk free space, network usage also in a scrolling graph, all sorts of temperature readings and more – all from your Mac computer.
As I stated earlier, the iStat server software must be installed on a computer running Mac OS X (10.4 min.) and “paired” with the app a-la 6 digit security code provided by the software and entered on the iStat iPhone app. Obviously that having a Mac OS X only server component will lock out any Windows users and we hope that bjango will release a windows compatible version of the server in the future (hint, hint).
Two other functions of the iStat app are to provide network ping and traceroute functions. These two functions are useful for the occasional network issue resolution and appear to work quite well.
In all we liked the iStat application but that’s only because we are techies here, however it has limited usability outside of the enthusiast or developer community. In reality, most users just don’t have any use to view this type of information especially on a mobile device and there are lots of options for real time stats on your Mac (or even Windows) PC without having to reach for your phone to see them.
Currently on sale for $1.99 (2.99 reg.) in the iTunes App store.
Mac users can download the iStat server here.