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iPhone App Roundup

May 16, 2009

I was thinking this morning about just how often I use my iPhone. I mean I’m constantly pulling it out of my pocket to tweet, listen to music, or find a bus. It really has become an important part of my daily life.

With 40,000 apps available in the app store it can be hard to find one to suit your needs. Here are the ones that have found a place on my home screen.

Maps is a native iPhone app but I use it all the time. With OS 2.0 came the ability to find directions by bus. I find this to be incredibly useful when navigating Seattle by Metro. Now if you don’t know where you are going but you know it’s beer-thirty then Coctail Compass (Free, iTunes Link) can help you find the closest Happy Hour in Seattle.

I have a few apps dedicated to Social Networking. Facebook (Free, iTunes Link) brings the ultra popular social networking site to the iPhone in a slick “shake to update” interface. As an avid twitterer I’ve tried several twitter clients. With the recent update to version 2, Twitterrific (Free/$3.99, iTunes Link) is my client of choice. It now supports multiple accounts, lots of great views, and an awesome interface.

When I get bored with the music I have in my iPod library I turn to Pandora Radio (Free, iTunes Link). Pandora is a revolutionary music service that lets you create “stations” based on music you like. Pandora then serves up more music based on your suggestions. You can link to the same account you use on the desktop so all your channels are synchronized and it even works over 3G. Looking for something more local? Try FlyCast (Free, iTunes Link) and stream your local radio stations right over the internet. Now lets say your in the elevator rocking out to some great muzak and you really want to know the name of that song. Let Shazam (Free, iTunes Link) listen for 30 seconds and it will return the info and a link to purchase instantly in iTunes.

The last app I want to mention is a bit of niche app. GoSatWatch ($9.99, iTunes Link) is an app for tracking satellites. It has a ton of great features including pass prediction, map view, and customizable satellite sets. I’m sure there are several hobbyists and professionals that would find a use for GoSatWatch but I’m particularly interested in it because it provides an easy way for me to track amateur radio satellites in the field. With the iPhone, a handheld FM transceiver, and a directional antenna you can get started in amateur radio satellite communication.

This is by no means a comprehensive list. For the most part I completely ignored the native Apple apps. It does give you and idea of some of my favorite apps and some of the ways I’ve put my iPhone to use. Let me know how you use yours.

jd

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