64 Seriously Cool iPhone Applications

Friday Feb 6th 2009 by James Maguire
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Utilities, social networking, weather, sports, news, games, music – all the apps you need to hypercharge your iPhone. (And yes, the list includes Gumball Bingo and Castle Feud. Serious fun is not optional.)

Update: Cool iPhone Apps

Also see a September '08 update: Top Ten Free iPhone Apps

Plus: 81 Tasty iPhone Apps

Summer 2009: iPhone Apps: the Top 46 Oddest

Okay, you’ve bought your iPhone, showed it to all your friends, and learned to love it. The thing’s cool. But now you want more. You want your iPhone to sing and dance and play with you. You want more functionality – and more fun – and you want tons of freebies.

With that in mind, peruse this list of iPhone apps. Lots of cool tools. Weather, sports, news, games, music, an eBook reader, even time management apps: they’re all here. Check ‘em out...

Personal Productivity

1) Befree 4 iPhone
Enables remote control of your PC from your mobile device. It’s freeware, but the paid pro version allows you remote access to all the files stored on your PC hard drive.

2) iBay
Search eBay on your iPhone. (You bought that handheld to help you shop, didn’t you?)

3) iWebSaver
Lets you save your favorite Web sites and applications to your iPhone (or iPod). It’s simple: type in an URL, click “Save it now,” and chose “Add bookmark.” Also available as the iWebSaverFavlet

4) 911 Help
Turn your iPhone into a safety device: this app displays a big bold red 911 sign visible dozens of feet away from the device. It flashes to help others realize you need assistance.

5) Can I Drive Yet?
Helps you calculate if you’re sober enough to operate a motor vehicle; enter your relevant data (how many drinks, your body weight, etc.) and it spits out an answer, using national blood alcohol standards.

iphone application

911 Help for the iPhone

6) BarCheck
When you’re shopping in your neighborhood store, enter the numbers on an item’s bar code to get review and prices from Amazon, Google and Yahoo. Yup, it’s smart shopping.

7) Widgetop
Helps you manage your collection of widgets. (A widget is a software app that lets you do something. An example is a menu bar or a toggle switch, but there are zillions.)

8) Dictionary
Not just a dictionary, but also a thesaurus. Comes in handy when you’re typing that business email and you want to seem suave.

9) Calorie Counter
Calculate your daily calorie intake based on age, weight and exercise level. If you’re feeling disciplined, it also gives you a number to shoot for to lose weight. (Cupcake, anyone?)

10) Currency Exchange
Keep track of the relative value of the world’s major currencies. Watch the dollar’s precipitous fall right there on your handheld. You might also try eSignal’s Currency Exchange Calculator. In theory the two apps should produce the same numbers.

11) Mortgage Payment Calculator
Calculate your monthly payment on that monstrously expensive house that you can’t afford. (I haven’t yet found an iPhone app that calculates foreclosure costs.)

iphone application

xRay for the iPhone

12) ModGuitars.com Tuner
Helps you tune your guitar. Very useful for those lunchtime gigs that help you pay for your pricey gadgets.

Fun and Enjoyment

13) iDoodle
Let’s face it: you’re too productive. But with iDoodle, you can wile away the hours drawing on your iPhone – circles, polygons, many colors. Designed specifically for the iPhone.

14) xRay
No, it’s not real, but it might fool some of the people some of the time. Tap the screen, hold it over a friend’s hand (someone who scoffs at the iPhone, for example) and tell them you’ll “xRay” their hand. A stock photo of an xRay will show up. Very juvenile, and very cool.

15) Free-Tunes.net
A collection of the free songs on iTunes. Sure, they’re little-known bands now, but the price is right, and you might discover a real gem.

16) Podcaster
An incredibly useful program to stream audio and video podcasts, using an iTunes-styled control panel.

iphone application

Illusionist for the iPhone

17) Stripr (for Comics Fans)
Helps you manage and view all those online comics you enjoy. Plus: give feedback on comics. Thumbs up or thumbs down on Marmaduke?

18) iPhones Wallpaper
Give your iPhone a forest background, or urban, or sunset, or psychedelic. Those pretty flowers are nice, but then there’s also that mountain view…

19) MacLight
Turn your iPhone into a flashlight, or give it a “campfire” flickering look, or a strobe light. Might be useful the next time the power grid goes down.

20) The Illusionist
Strange, trippy visuals on your iPhone: rolling cylinders, brain conflicts, Escher-like optical mind-twisters. Don’t look at it after your daily double espresso.

Games

iphone application

Castle Feud for the iPhone

21) Castle Feud
Slaughter your opponents and leave them dismembered on the field of battle. Cool! A multiplayer game.

22) iSudoku
Having this app means never having to be away from your Sodoku addiction. Hey, you can quit whenever you want to, you just don’t want to…

23) Speed Type
Measures your typing speed, with the top 200 scores saved. This game is not only fun but also improves your iPhone emailing skills.

24) iConnect4
If you like Connect, you’ll be happy to see iConnect. Can you connect four chips in a row before the iPhone does?

25) mobileLife
A cellular automation game, “Game of Life,” has been developed specifically for the iPhone and iPod touch.

26) Madelinette
In this game (originally European) you attempt to block your foe from moving. Who will goof up first?

27) Mines
Find all the mines that are hidden underneath the boxes – or else.

28) Gumball Bingo
A multiplayer game that lets you chat with others while you wait for your winning combo. Plus: play 3 bingo cards at the same time.

iphone application

Gumball Bingo for the iPhone

29) iget4
Play against your iPhone – and your computer opponent will always shift moves. This game forces you to think.

30) Olympic Sports
Compete virtually against the Olympic greats to see if you can capture the gold. Earn glory without the sweat (except for a few cramped fingers).

Information/Updates

31) iNews
Scan and read the news from high-profile publications, read RSS feeds, and take a Quick Look at the most critical news. In English, German, French, Italian, Spanish and other languages.

32) PressDisplay
Access dozens and dozens of magazines and newspapers from across the globe. Zoom in or zoom out on images.

33) Politicker
Scandal, polls, results, breaking news – all the developments about politics.

34) Sticher Radio
Pick a radio station and start streaming: comedy, sports, news, finance, and more.

Manage Your Life

35) TouchMail
Manage and read your email from any of your accounts, including Gmail, Yahoo, or MSN. Lets you read your emails even if you’re stuck behind your company’s firewall.

36) Goal Tracker
Monitor your progress toward your personal goals, focusing on using your time more effectively.

37) BudgetBuster
Track your daily-weekly-monthly expenses. How deep in debt are you today?

iphone application

Olympic Sports for the iPhone

38) ezMemorize
Helps you remember all those pesky little factoids that enable you to navigate through life.

39) Noter
A to-do list application that works offline or online. In theory, it helps you list all those things you need to do. But do you ever get past item No. 4?

Information Retrieval/Search iphone application

iPhoneMeeter for the iPhone

40) Phone Number Trace
Learn the identity of who just called you by entering their phone number into this search box. The free info includes location and type of line (landline, cell phone); actually finding the name will cost you $15.

41) Free Stuff Times
A list of free stuff on the Internet that’s constantly updated. Yeah, a lot of it’s junk (c’mon, it’s free) but you never know what you might find. How about a free Journal of Accountancy Calculator Calendar (thrills!) or a free Clear Wood Finish shirt? (snazzy!)

42) Song Lyric Search
You just can’t get that tune out of your head – but what the heck are the words to the verse?

43) About People Search
Use your iPhone or iPod Touch to look up anyone in America by phone number or by name. A useful little app.

44) Pinpoint Location Search
Quickly find a gas station, restaurant, wi-fi hotspot, or a residence. Plus: get traffic updates to help you avoid the rush.

45) Background Check
Check out an individual’s background, based on public records. The summary result is free, the real dirt costs.

Social Networking

46) Facebook for iPhone
Allows you to access the version of Facebook that’s optimized for the iPhone and iPod Touch.

47) Floort – We Know What You’re Thinking
A site where you can share your opinions with the world – on any topic – and start a dialogue. “Think of it as your own personal brain blog,” says Floort.

48) webChattr – Live Chat Rooms
Easy and free, webChattr is your own personal chat room, whenever you need one. Chat with your whole crew instead of texting each person. The webChattr app is on Bebo and Facebook.

49) PhoneMeeter
Share photos, text chat with friends, find a location on a Google map, check out events posted by bars and nightclubs. Think of PhoneMeeter as a mobile network community builder. iphone application

iphodmeter for the iPhone

50) Fluther
Got a question you need answered? Post it to Fluther and get an answer from the crowd. Recent examples: What’s a good place to take pictures in Chicago? What should I get for my birthday?

Sports

51) ScoreMobile iPhone Edition
All the sports scores, instantly. NBA, NCAAB, NFL, MLB, NHL. The moment the ball/puck/birdie goes in the hole/hoop/goal, you’ll know about it. Or, you can also use Live Scores, which is updated every 30 seconds.

52) iphodmeter
Find out how many calories your workout is burning, and send all your stats by email. Plus: measure walking mileage.

53) iTeeMaster
Where’s the nearest golf course? ITeeMaster will clue you in, and with one touch you can call the proshop.

54) NASCAR Schedule
Keep track of all the auto racing events, as well as results. Vroom, vroom!

iphone application

Weather Channel for the iPhone

55) Madness2Go Basketball Bracket
A Men’s basketball Bracket game specially formatted for the iPhone. Choose and follow your bracket right from your handheld. Play for free, and if you’re lucky (and talented) there’s a chance to win prizes.

Traveling to New and Interesting Places

56) Taxi Please, for the iPhone
Kind of funny little app, Taxi Please flashes the word TAXI in big bold black-on-yellow letters, to help you attract a cabbie on a busy city street.

57) Learnit Lists
Teach yourself a new language, in a manageable ten words at a time. Each day the app offers a list built from the 1,000 most common English words. (Is “iPhone” one of those words yet?)

58) iTinerary
Manage all your flight information, including arrival gate, weather, and maps to the airport.

59) WORLDview for iPhone
Provides all kinds of pertinent factoids for countries all across the globe: history, essential phone numbers, capital city, and more. Don’t be an Ugly American, learn about the culture ahead of time. (Then go visit the McDonald’s like you always do…)

60) Pocket Express Travel Edition
A cornucopia of travel aids: airline schedules, flight status, hotel information, reservation services – it's like have a personal assistant built into your phone.

Weather

61) Weather Forecast with Live Camera
Because it covers only Japan, this is a niche app. But it still earns a spot on a list of noteworthy apps – its combination of forecast with an updated photo is so cool, I’m hoping the idea spreads to all locations. Just a matter of time, surely.

62) Weather Made Simple
Enter a city or a zip code and get current conditions plus a 10-day forecast. Quite useful.

63) The Weather Channel
The classic powerhouse of weather information, right on your iPhone. Tons of current information, from any location, in an interactive format.

An iPhone Reader

64) iReading for iPhone and iPod Touch
A free online eBook reader for your favorite handheld. Search for book by author or title, then add it to your favorites list. Bonus: the software remembers where you last stopped reading. (Wait, didn’t Steve Jobs say that people don’t read anymore? Yikes, he needs to check out this nifty app.)

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