Who would’ve imagined a world where you wouldn’t miss jailbreaking your iPod Touch/iPhone. Of course, there are still issues such as apps not having access to background processes which stunts applications like that from Last.fm running constantly but such is life. I’ve been enjoying the wireless, anytime anywhere nature of the iPhone. The good and the bad is you’re taking the internet with you wherever you go. I hardly have any time to watch movies any more. Right now I’m waiting on my replacement head phones to come in. The default ear buds always suck for me. I got like five of them I don’t need really. The standard issue suck so bad I need to crank the volume full blast just to catch snippets of movie dialogue riding the train so by the time I get to the office my ears are ringing. And I still miss half the dialogue!
Oh yeah, enough with the rant. Here are some apps I’ve grown to love on the iPhone. All of them are free except one. Haven’t tried any of the non-free games but I’m sure I will when get really bored.
Ap News really delivered on this one. A free native iPhone client that delivers the world’s latest news right to your finger tips, right in the palm of your hand.
Again, another free news app that delivers. This one gives you both the latest financial news and can even track your stock portfolio if you want. It’s quite an app all and all. You really can’t ask for much more. Makes me feel like a businessman of sorts.
Social Networking on the iPhone
Alright enough with the news, obviously the iPhone wouldn’t be much without a little bit of fun. It’s first and foremost a phone and phones are for communicating with people. The internet is also a major social engine but we all know that it’s for communicating with people and psuedo-people, you know, you’re friends on with quotation marks around them like “friends”. Nonetheless important.
It’s no wonder that Twitter comes out the clear winner in terms of the sheer number of native clients. The amazing thing is that Twitter had no hand in developing any of these applications and that’s a true testament to their strength despite frequent outages.
The boys finally delivered on this one. I was at first taken aback by the rampant Tapulous branding. That was either an over-reaction or I got used to it quick. Either way, this is a great client. It’s quick and simply just like Twitter. It has all the basic functionality you want. Scope your replies, your network, while checking out the public feed.
This is the twitter app I’ve used the most and always use for posting updates. It’s the lightest client of the bunch and gives you quick access.
I was honestly surprised that the developer went through the trouble of creating this but it brings the same coolness of the ajax version. Wish he gave us more access to Twitter functionality but those be the breaks. Good for dull moments and showing off to friends.
I’ve omitted Twitterific since I don’t use it. The problem is that the iphone version tries to hard and succeeds at replicating Twitterific and all its flaws. Twitterific was great when you only had like 20 friends but woe to the bastard that wants to go beyond that and explore. The main problem is the navigation, all the other apps allow you to quickly switch contexts easily between your replies, your network, and the public feed. Twitterific just locks you into the stream of updates from either your friends or everyone and your replies and directs get mixed into the massive flood of updates. Not really how I want to use twitter. None of the other clients suffer from this and on top of that the iPhone Twitterific is the slowest to load by far.
For my other social networking needs there is the official facebook app, Exposure for Flickr. Yeah, I don’t use MySpace.
A free Othello game. What more can I say?
Look at that sideways, it makes more sense. Anyone can make a beat with this.
Here’s the first beat I ever made in my life.
This makes it the first iphone app I ever bought.
One app I can’t wait for is the WordPress for iPhone app. This should be a killer app for all you bloggers out there! Of course, it’ll take you forever to type up a decent post but good when you have nothing else available and are on the road.
All in all, the best apps are ones that turn the limitations of a mobile platform like the iPhone and turns it into a strength. All the apps I like and use are focused around a single functionality and does it well. It doesn’t try to mimic a desktop app but gives you the functionality that you need for it to actually be useful.
I like the fact that I can get back into other forms of social networking since I know that I can keep up with happenings in bite-sized chunks and really hit the PC when I need to do something more involved. I don’t have to waste time playing catch up since I’ll be on top of things while being shuttled back and forth on the commuter train like a zombie.
Right now, the quality of apps vary and you can bet that a lot of the free apps in crowded areas like todo lists are more or less junk. Whether the paid apps will be worth the sticker price is up to debate. If you’re unsure of which one to go with, you could wait it out and pick one out of the winners and thus most likely to be properly supported. I see a common trend of dime-a-dozen junk apps dragging down the legitimately good ones. Of course, the games section are a whole different ball game as well as applications like BeatMaker that give you something that can’t be easily copied like todo apps.
Oh yeah, the default apps like Maps and the free Remote app are really cool too. In fact, the real-time location feature of maps is one of the features I enjoy using the most.