I like snow, although I’m never sorry if it holds off till Christmas. Here on the Atlantic coast of Nova Scotia where I live, we usually don’t get snow that sticks until after Christmas, but this year we have plenty. The weather has been extraordinarily wintery again so far this season.
If you’re a snow fan, wherever you live, you can enjoy some snow apps on your computer or iDevice desktop for Christmas. And the great thing about virtual snow is that you don’t have to shovel or plow it!
There are more snow apps for Apple devices than you might imagine.
Snow Apps for OS X
This screensaver draws snowflakes falling down your screen. Simple enough, but the oh-so-clever part is that it uses a semi-physical model for growing each snowflake, meaning every snowflake is actually unique, and also that it uses a quite a bit of processing power…but that’s the price you pay for indivduality.
LotsaSnow requires Mac OS X 10.3 or later.
For more information, visit wakaba.c3.cx.
Let It Snow ($0.99)
Bring a Winter Wonderland to your desktop with Let It Snow’s realistic snowfall and get into that festive holiday feeling as snow covers your dock and settles on windows while you work.
Let it Snow features:
- Realistic snow fall – using a physics engine
- Snow drifts – that build up at the bottom of the screen
- Snow covered windows – snow settles on the currently active window
- Random flurries of snow – so you’d better wrap up warm
- Melting snow – snow disappears after a period of time
A number of preferences let you control how the snow falls:
- Amount – Decide how much snow you want
- Size – Pick bigger or smaller snow flakes
- Speed – Select faster or slower snow
- Flurries – Choose if you more or less flurries of snow
- Thaw – Set how quickly you want the snow to thaw
- Escape bottom – Toggle between snow escaping from the desktop or building up at the bottom of the screen
- Escape sides – Choose to have the snow escape from the sides of the screen, or fall down the sides
- Multicolored – Add a bit of colour to your snow flakes
- Settle on active window – Choose if snow settles on the active window
Let it Snow brings a bit of winter magic to your Mac.
Let it Snow requires OS X 10.7 or later.
For more information, visit www.ilialang.com.
Snow ($2.50 demoware/shareware)
Back when I was running the Classic Mac OS, my favorite snow application was Rick Jansen’s Snow for Macintosh, which let it snow on your desktop and windows, adds a Christmas tree, and sends Santa and his sleigh flying around your screen for extra festive season cheer. However, one of the cool things about Classic Snow is that since the whole process of letting it snow on your windows is somewhat CPU intensive, if you found Snow slowing down your machine you could use the preferences to choose fewer or smaller snowflakes, no Santa, no tree, or no snow at all. You can set the number of flakes, how fast they fall, Santa’s speed limit etc. It all worked very well.
Happily, Rick has released an OS X native version of Snow for the Macintosh. It still snows on your desktop, and Santa and his reindeer still fly around your screen while snow piles up on top of your windows. However, the tree is gone, having been replaced by an ambling Polar Bear and resizable snowdrop plants. Rudolph’s nose also glows red once you register the application.
Snow requires OS X (not yet tested with OS X 10.9 Mavericks).
For more information, visit: www.xs4all.nl.
Snow Dance 3D Screensaver ($12.95 shareware)
Smoothly falling flakes create the sensation of calmness and serenity.
Snow Dance 3D Screensaver shows you the bewitching attraction and purity of snow-white winter. Imagine you are on mountain top and take pleasure in a magnificent landscape of mountain nature. Huge flakes of snow softly lay down on the earth, forming a snow-white airy cover. The well-shaped evergreen and splendid firs, muffed with snow, harmoniously brighten a panorama and decorate solitary, centuries-old mountains. Harmony and pacification reign everywhere.
More than just a screensaver:
- Each screensaver contains a clock of two kinds (analog and digital)
- Each screensaver contains a calendar
- Screensavers work under Windows and Mac OS X
Snow requires Mac OS X 10.4 or later.
For more information, visit 3dsignal.com.
Snowfall: The Ice Storm (free)
This quartz composer screensaver for Mac OS v10.4 Tiger features snowflake images by Wilson Bentley: The Snowflake Man. Once it’s installed in the Library/Screensavers, you can customize it to suit your tastes by modifying the options in System Preferences.
“Under the microscope, I found that snowflakes were miracles of beauty; and it seemed a shame that this beauty should not be seen and appreciated by others. Every crystal was a masterpiece of design and no one design was ever repeated. When a snowflake melted, that design was forever lost. Just that much beauty was gone, without leaving any record behind.”
– Wilson “Snowflake” Bentley 1925
Snowfall requires OS X v10.4 and up.
For more on Wilson Bentley see www.snowflakebentley.com. For more information, visit www.alittlebitofnothingleft.net. For a mini-tutorial on installing and using Snowfall, see fairerplatform.com.
This open GL SnowFlake screen saver draws white flakes of love on your screen—a winter holiday present.
This is a simple OpenGL screensaver for OSX in cocoa. It uses a very simple custom NSOpenGLView, as a subview of a ScreenSaverView/
For more information, visit github.com.
Snow Apps for iOS
Snowflakes ($0.99 for iPhone, $2.99 for iPad)
Seattle based Hado Labs has released Snowflakes 1.2, an entertainment app developed for iOS. Independently engineered and artistically designed, Snowflakes generates more than 9,000 unique and beautifully realistic snowflakes, with intricate ice-like structural details. With the touch of a finger, you can create single snowflakes with three levels of detail or layer multiple snowflakes to build rich textural effects. Save your high-resolution snowflake compositions to your device.
“No two snowflakes are the same” is a truism that holds up under Snowflakes’ powerful design engine, which renders the skeletal, ice-like structure of snowflakes with ethereal realism. No other app on the market produces such intricate, realistic snowflakes.
In Single mode, create up to 9,621 single snowflakes with three levels of detail. Multiple background effects and millions of color choices infinitely increase the design possibilities. Multi mode allows the possibility to layer snowflakes in multiple size and color combinations to create complex textural compositions. Move, scale and view snowflake designs in full 2,048 x 1,536 Retina display.
Use your high-resolution Snowflake compositions in your holiday greetings by saving them, or share your images instantly with your friends via email, Facebook and Twitter.
Purchase Snowflakes for iPhone or iPad.
Zen of Snow HD ($0.99)
A beautiful and peaceful snow globe world. Shake to “stir up” the snow and then watch it slowly fall. We call this Zen of Snow because it is so peaceful to watch.
- Send free e-cards
- 4 snow scenes (animated Christmas lights twinkle, snow falls, creek flows, smoke rises from cabin’s chimney)
- Shake to stir up snow and watch it fall
- Christmas music: “Angels We Have Heard on High,” “Silent Night,” “Midnight Clear”
- Swipe to pan between the four scenes
- In-App purchase for Rabbit
- Option to have snow fall forever
- Option to adjust the the amount of snowfall
- Option to adjust the wind blowing the snow
- Night Mode (see the lights in all their glory)
- Option to rotate into wide-screen view
- Option to turn off the Christmas lights
- Option to turn off the Christmas music
Zen of Snow HD is compatible with iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. If you would like to try out the free version, grab Zen of Snow Lite.