My favorite iPhone apps

A dear old friend suggested that I share my favorite iPhone apps.  I tend to stay on top of the latest well reviewed apps, but an iPhone is a personal device, and my favorite apps obviously reflect my interests. These might not appeal to you, but don’t be like my wife and use your iPhone primarily as a phone. If you have a need, there’s an app for that.

These are all my favorites in no particular order. Click the link on the name to go to the iTunes store page for each app. Leave a comment to let me know your favorite that I missed.

iMovie ($4.99): Easily create great videos with titles and transitions, right on your iPhone!

Adobe Photoshop Express (Free): Quickly edit and share photos on your phone.

Remote (Free): I use this app to control my Apple TV, but it will also control iTunes on any Mac, as well. It is the fastest way to browse to the album I want to hear.

NetNewsWire (Free): I use this app constantly to check up on the RSS feeds I follow, such as all that news on the Pac-10 Champion California Golden Bears.

Indigo Touch (Free, but requires Indigo software on a Mac): This is the remote application for a Mac home automation app called Indigo, by Perceptive Automation. With it, I can control lights, sprinklers, and even my espresso maker (so I don’t have to wait for it to warm up).

Google Mobile (Free): Lift your iPhone to your ear with this app and you’ll hear a tone that tells you to speak your search entry. Google uploads your voice query to its servers, translates it, and gives you surprisingly accurate results based on your current location.

Sportacular (Free): Purchased recently by Yahoo!, this app is the fastest way to check scores for your favorite teams. A recent update to version 2.0 adds more functionality, like checking in so that your friends know where you are watching the game.

USA Today (Free): A quick and attractive way to get the latest headlines.

Dropbox (Free): Dropbox gives you 2GB of online storage and allows you to access it from any PC, Mac, Linux PC, or most mobile devices. Drag and drop that PDF or JPG on your computer, and it will be available on your iPhone or iPad in seconds.

Evernote (Free): A great way to remember things. Like a bottle of wine? Snap a picture in Evernote. Can’t remember that light bulb size? Jot a quick note. Evernote uses optical character recognition, too, so if you only remember that it was a Chateauneuf you’ll still be able to find the wine by searching.

Dragon Dictation (Free): Need to jot a quick e-mail while you’re driving? Want to write a long e-mail but can’t type fast enough? Dragon Dictation sends spoken words to their servers and returns text that you can easily paste in any app. And if you speak clearly, the accuracy is amazing.

OpenTable (Free): I like to eat. And more and more, restaurants are using OpenTable to handle their reservations. This app lets you quickly reserve a table without having to speak to that snarky hostess.

Southwest Airlines (Free): A great, simple app for booking air travel and more. The best use is being able to check in to get in the “A” boarding group no matter where you happen to be 24 hours before your flight.

Shazam (Free): This app still amazes me more than any other. Launch it, then hold you iPhone up to a song playing on the radio. Shazam will record a small piece of the song, upload it to its server, then tell you the name of the song and the artist. It even provides a link to let you easily go buy the song in the iTunes store.

RedLaser (Free): This app is a great use of you camera and the web. Take a picture of almost any barcode, and RedLaser will scour the web to find the best price and additional product info. Then you can see how much that immediate gratification is costing you.

Chase Mobile (Free): Truly the brave new world. Along with the usual functionality of a banking iPhone app, Chase blows you away buy allowing you to take a picture of the front and back of a check with your iPhone, and deposit it remotely. No more trips to the bank because your dumb friend doesn’t use PayPal. I hate checks. It’s like a note from my mom saying its OK to take my money.

Angry Birds (a very worth it $0.99): First it was DoodleJump, then Strategery, but now my best time killer is the most popular mobile game ever. Even my wife, who abhors games on her iPhone, picked it up during a long car ride and played for three hours straight.

DIRECTV (Free): If you subscribe to DIRECTV, you have to get this. It requires a newer model receiver hooked up to the interwebs, but it provides the fastest way to find and record shows. And it works from anywhere. Even China. Crazy.

That’s all for now. Let me know about favorites I’ve missed in the comments below.

9 thoughts on “My favorite iPhone apps”

  1. I recommend you take a look at the Hipstamatic App. Very cool retro photo app that simulates old cameras, lets you swap out film, gels, lenses. Give it a whirl!

  2. Also surprised not to see Netflix on your list. Great for managing your queue and for short bursts of entertainment on the go.

  3. Funny you should say. The friend that suggested I do this list specifically said that Hipstamatic was his favorite app, and I plum forgot to check it out before completing the post. I’ll download it now and give it a spin.

  4. As for Netflix, it is among a few apps that I use exclusively on my iPad because of the larger screen (Words with Friends is another that comes to mind). I have three kids, so queue management is not much of an issue. I’ll do an iPad apps list soon.

  5. Nice list. Given your interest in displaying photos via AppleTV, I’m guessing you like to take them as well. If so, check out app “Hipstamatic”. It layers on digital effects on the photos you take to make them look like they were taken during the 60s or 70s. Definitely my favorite app.

  6. uhh, Pandora – ad-free music – plus you can bluetooth it to your car stereo (you must already have this, right ?); Flashlight (free) self-explanatory; ICanSee (free) – magnifying glass if you’re ever at a reataurant without your reading glasses…

  7. Pandora can be repetitive, and I have a huge music collection, so I tend to use Genius in iTunes. But it is cool. And Flashlight is great with the iPhone 4 and it’s LED light. But ICanSee? How old are you, man? 😉

  8. Thanks Joe for this blog. 10 years later, I finally got rid of all my windows crap and became and Apple fanatic; Better late than never. I just installed the remote app and on my way to get Apple TV.

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