Apple iPhone’s Most Outstanding Applications

Apple iPhone is probably the largest consumer electronics launch in history.
Apple iPhone is probably the largest consumer electronics launch in history.

I think that Apple’s phone is wrongly called the iPhone, because truth be told, Apple’s gadget is much more than a phone. Its a hand held computer. Apple has launched a brand new category in computing. First we had the “desktop”, then it got smaller and evolved into a “laptop” which now, with Apple’s help, has evolved again into a “palmtop”.

If you take a close look, the iPalm can do anything a desktop or laptop can do and a lot more. You can browse the Web with it; you can send and receive e-mails with it; you can listen to music with it; and you can run almost any application with it. Plus, you don’t have to be sitting in a chair while using it. You can use the iPalm anywhere, everywhere you happen to be. It represents the total liberty all-purpose device. Isn’t that cool? You bet.

Even though the launch of Apple Inc.’s much-anticipated new phone turned into an information-technology meltdown, as customers were unable to get the phones working, in the final analysis, it was a huge success. Even days after launch day, July 11th, people were lining up at Apple’s retail stores in an effort to put their paws on a second generation iPhone. This extraordinary demand was not even anticipated by Apple’s Guru, Steve Jobs. It was as if the iPhone had a life of its own.

What kind of applications are out there for the iPhone? Quite a lot and the list is growing even as we speak. Apple turned on the tap for its iPhone Application store last week, unleashing more than 500 applications for iPhone users. If you have an iPhone, you just might forget the device is capable of making phone calls, since you’ll be so busy updating your favorite blog’s pages, coveting your neighbor’s co-op and wielding your handset to swerve around virtual racetracks.

Steve Jobs, Apple’s chief executive, is hoping to expand the iPhone’s appeal by luring software developers to create programs for it. John Doerr, the venture capitalist, is adding an incentive: his firm is putting up $100 million to invest in the work of those programmers. This will add an interesting flow of applications to the iPhone in the upcoming months.

The App Store is simple to use, thanks to its elegant and intuitive interface. Many of the applications are free, and most cost $9.99 or less (although a select few cost as much as $79.99).

Here are the twelve best applications currently available for the iPhone according to The New York Times:

  1. Best in Business – Recorder (99 cents): Have a brilliant strategic insight while waiting on line at the airport? Whip out your iPhone, hit one key, and record it before you forget. Recorder does one thing—record voice memos and even meetings—but it does that with single-button simplicity. Use it for reminders, personal and professional. You can’t e-mail or move the memos to your computer, but for most short reminders, it’s all you need.

  2. Best in Education – Math Wizard ($1.99): Whether you’re a grade-school student looking to develop math skills or a Baby Boomer aiming to tone your brain, Math Wizard has you covered. Disguised as a game, this application pops up a series of math problems. Enter the correct answer and you are rewarded with another. You can chose between 10 levels of play.

  3. Best in Entertainment – BoxOffice (Free): BoxOffice takes advantage of the iPhone’s GPS capabilities to find movies near you. You can browse by theater, movies, showtimes and distance. When you find what you want, BoxOffice provides a micro-synopsis of each movie and ratings from Rotten Tomatoes, a movie review site. It will also display the address of the theater, and locate it for you on Google Maps. You can even link to Fandango for ticket purchases.

  4. Best in Finance – Puluwai Real Estate Search (Free): If you’re on the prowl for a new home, or simply want to know what your neighbor is asking for his two-bedroom co-op, Puluwai is for you. The app employs the iPhone’s location-aware capabilities to find homes near a particular address. Puluwai enables you to scout by price, number of bedrooms and keywords, such as “Chelsea.” The photos are slow to pop up, but when you find something you like, you can save it to a favorites list and then tap the Map It! Button for driving details. You can also e-mail the listing or contact the Realtor.

  5. Best in Games – Crash Bandicoot Nitro Kart 3D ($9.99): Flip your iPhone horizontal and hop into a hot rod with the crusading Crash Bandicoot. The iPhone’s accelerometer enables you to steer your car by tilting the phone to the left and right. The game offers 12 different tracks and environments, as well as plenty of opportunities to blast through opponents and crates of fruit. The graphics are mighty impressive, but be warned that this game will drain your battery faster than you can blink an eye.

  6. Best in Healthcare and Fitness – Epocrates Rx (Free): This prescription-drug database comprises data on more than 3,300 brand-name and generic drugs. While it’s designed for healthcare professionals, Epocrates delivers a wealth of information for that’s useful to consumers, too. For instance, Epocrates spells out common medication dosages for adults and children, possible side effects, possible interactions with other medications and even photos of the pills to help you identify or verify medication.

  7. Best in Lifestyle – Yelp (Free): Yelp fuses social networking, user reviews and local searches into one easy-to-use app that’s essential for any iPhone on the roam. This portable version of, a Web portal that has been around for a few years, has a substantial stock of user reviews (with ratings) and content. You can use GPS to search for nearby restaurants, bars, coffee and tea joints, banks, gas stations and drugstores. Click the Map button and Yelp will display all search results on a Google Map.

  8. Best in Music – Tuner ($4.99): When you get tired of your own tunes (remember, the iPhone is also an iPod), turn on Tuner, an application that serves up thousands of Internet radio stations in a format that makes it easy to find exactly what you want to hear. You can either browse its incredibly comprehensive genres section, check out the Top 500 list, or simply search for your own favorite station. As with most Internet radio stations, the sound isn’t CD quality and the volume is sometimes a bit low, but the selection is massive.

  9. Best in News – Associated Press Mobile News Network (Free): If you like your news comprehensive, you’ll want the AP Mobile News Network. The opening screen delivers the day’s top news stories and photos. After getting the big picture, you can tap to Local, Sports, Showbiz, or More, which comprises categories such as technology, business, elections, lifestyle, and wacky, among others. You can save any story for later, or e-mail or text it to a friend. The Mobile News Network also contains daily photos, which can be viewed as slide shows, and daily videos. The videos can be painfully slow to load, unless you’re connected to a Wi-Fi network.

  10. Best in Photography – Exposure (Free): This simple application connects with Flickr and enables you to do one thing very well: Browse Flickr photos. You can browse by photosets, recent photos, ID tags and favorites. You can’t upload photos taken with the iPhone to Flickr, but the application works reliably and quickly. Its coolest feature: Tap the Near Me button and the program displays images taken near your current location.

  11. Best in Sports – At Bat ($4.99): Stat-happy baseball fans will cheer for At Bat, which delivers real-time scores of all Major League Baseball games. Click a game (they’re organized by date) and you’ll get an inning-by-inning rundown of runs scored, as well as stats on the winning and losing pitchers. Each game includes eight or so video clips of the day’s highlights (they look great on a Wi-Fi connection but woefully choppy on AT&T’s 3G network).

  12. Best in Weather – WeatherBug (Free): WeatherBug wraps your local weather conditions in an attractive package that includes temperature, wind speed, precipitation and other current conditions. It goes a little deeper than the Weather application built into the iPhone by delivering information like severe weather alerts, heat indicators, dew points and even radar images.

After getting your feet wet with some of the iPhone’s applications, you’ll forget you have a phone in your hands; it’s a lot more—it’s a palm computer.

Source: The New York Times

One thought on “Apple iPhone’s Most Outstanding Applications”

  1. Wow, thanks for the positive reviews. One year later and we like we’ve learned a ton and made some tremendous progress. We hope you’ll try out Puluwai 1.09 which is tested on iPhone 3.0 and works great on the iPhone 3GS.

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