One of the problems with the iPhone, yes despite all the hype it has a few, is the sheer number of applications that are available. The simplest type of application will have several different offerings, some free, some paid, all of which will do, largely, the same thing.
I’ve installed a lot of applications, mostly free ones and removed a fair share as well and as the current list hasn’t changed dramatically for quite a while now I thought it a good a time as any to have a flip through the screens and tell you what applications I have installed, and why.
Ever present apps
The main four applications that are docked in the bottom bar are:
- Smart Dial – paid – replaces the Phone app and allows you quick dial shortcuts and the more standard mobile phone based dialling (i.e. dial 4 and it will search the contact list for contacts starting with either G, H or I)
- Mail – default – syncs with my GMail account.
- Safari – default – internet browser, can’t be without this!
- iPod – default – it’s only on writing this list that I realise I don’t use this application all that much, perhaps I need to switch it out with.. SMS Text app?? Hmmmm
Home Screen 1
Here you’ll find my most frequently used applications. From top-left:
- Text – default – still can’t forward a text but it’s the one of the most heavily used applications in my phone.
- Calendar – default – syncs with iCal which syncs with my Google Calendar (which itself syncs with Outlook at work). There must be an easier way, right?
- Photos – default – I quite like the standard photo browser and haven’t found a replacement yet.
- Camera – default – yes it’s not the best camera but it does a good job for what it is.
- Twitterific – paid – still the best Twitter app I’ve tried, even with the occasional blip when it can’t connect to Twitter.
- Maps – default – used this far more than I thought I would. Very cool watching that wee blue dot move as you do!
- Mobile Fotos – free – mainly used to upload any photos taken on the iPhone directly to Flickr.
- Google – free – As a heavy user of most Google applications (Mail, Calendar, Docs, Reader) this is a must have (also has an Easter Egg)
- Settings – default – cos, you know, you need to change them sometimes!
- Contacts – default – only really used to add new contacts.
- Clock – default – direct access to the Alarm function is the only reason it is here.
- Phone – default – only here because Smart Dial doesn’t show the missed calls and voicemail counts.
- Facebook – free – whether I like it or not I’m slowly getting sucked into Facebook. I actually prefer the app to the website.
- Zenbe – free – a simple list manager, which syncs with my web account. I don’t use it for anything other than lists although Zenbe offer the full gamut of email/calendar integration.
- TV Plus – free – lets me record TV programmes on Sky+ direct from my iPhone
- Weightbot – free – a new entry this year, a simple weight tracking application.
Home Screen 2
The next two screens are the rest of the applications, loosely grouped.
- App store – default – WAY easier than using iTunes if you ask me.
- Remote – free – control iTunes on my PC or MacBook using my iPhone.
- Calculator – default – just in case.
- Notes – default – use this mainly for ideas and thoughts (still to try Evernote).
- Units – free – a very simple unit converter.
- Google Earth – free – Mainly for WOW factor, streetview is amazing.
- Stanza – free – turns your iPhone into a Kindle, sorta. Plenty of free books out there, not used this much. Yet.
- Weather – default – cos it’s good to know what the weather is in other places. Innit.
- Flixster – free – one of a handful of movie applications I’ve tried. This one found our local cinema and that’s good enough for me.
- Drinks Free – free – a cocktail recipe application. Simple. Perfect for the holidays.
- Instapaper – paid – Nice merging of web application and iPhone. Add a website to the Instapaper account online and you can view it here in full.
- AllRecipes – free – nice interface, spinner controls let you choose the type of meal, the ingredients and then find a recipe.
- Night Stand – free – all I need now is a sideways dock and for this to hook into the default Alarm application and I have the perfect bedside clock.
- Flashlight – free – it’s a torch. Turns the screen white (or any other colour). Very handy as our friends live in a street with no lights!
- WiFinder – free – finds all local Wifi signals. Quicker this way than via the Settings application.
Home Screen 3
- YouTube – default – another default app that I don’t use much but helps waste a few moments.
- Flickr – free – Not used this in much anger yet but is very slick.
- Darkslide – free – another photo based application. As well as handling uploads it lets you browse for photos based on your location.
- BBC iPlayer – free – this is a chat really, just a bookmark to the online service!
- Last.fm – free – more genius than I care to mention. Access my music ANYWHERE!
- iTunes – default – don’t think I’ve used this once.
- Shazam – free – works, occasionally. Music recognition service, fun in pubs.
- Flip Clock – free – kept because, when rotated horizontally, it looks the business.
- Palringo – free – seldom used but handy to have, a multi-client IM application.
- iTalk – free – sound recorder application. Seldom used.
- Oblique – free – a random strategy on demand, original concept by Brian Eno and Peter Schmidt.
- Air Sharing – free (at time of purchase!) – now a paid app, this lets you use the iPhone as a Wifi drive for transferring files between computers.
- Locly – free – location based suggests for restaurants, taxis, hotels. Handy if you travel.
- VNC – free – excellent little application that will let you connect to a VNC server. Works like a charm.
Home Screen 4
Games ahoy! Quite a few good ones, as well as silly ones, are available for the iPhone. And no, I’ve not downloaded iFart. Yet.
- Pac-Man – free – it’s Pacman, need I say more?
- Dice – free – not sure why I have this… don’t really have much call for dice.
- RF09 – free – a footie game that is a little hard to control but still fun.
- Lightsaber – free – awwww c’mon!!
- AdrPool – free – not even sure I’ve played this yet.. hmmmmm
- iChoose – free – handy decision maker! Yes/No style.
- Cube Runner – free – excellent, simple and addictive. Tilt-based flying game. Genius.
- HoldEm – paid – Texas poker. Very addictive.
- Bubbles – free – drag your finger to create them, then pop them. OK, not a game really..
- Cro-Mag – free – racing game. As seen in the adverts.
- Rolando – paid – excellent use of the touch screen, strangely addictive little game.
Home Screen 5
- iHandy Level – free – a spirit level, for those quick DIY jobs.
- Sharecard – paid – lets you send a vCard of your details via email.
- Stocks – default – I don’t have any shares but it is interesting to see the prices at the moment!
And that’s it. Phew. All of the applications are available in the App Store, as you can see, there are plenty of free applications to keep you busy.