Best iPhone Apps: 2011 Edition

March 7, 2011124 Comments

There are three things you should know about me when you look at this post: one is that I delayed getting a cell phone until age 20 (2004). I then delayed getting a smartphone (iPhone) until 2008 because I was worried it would kill my productivity. What it ended up doing was making me even MORE productive.

Even though smartphones “can” be huge time wasters, and can very easily distract you due to various apps, pop-ups, and games… but if you are holding off on a Droid or iPhone, you would be amazed at the health and productivity benefits you get when you use the “right” apps.

Here are my top nine iPhone apps for this year…

2011 “Health” Apps

#9: AmbiScience Power Sleep & Nap: If you haven’t heard of binaural beats, they’re special sounds you listen to using headphones. They emit one tone from the left earphone and another from the right, and when they combine in your head, they create special pulses that (depending on what kind they are) can get you more focused, make you more alert, or even put you to sleep. I use these to fall asleep on airplane flights.

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#8: MyNetDiary: I don’t watch what I eat or how much I exercise religiously or anything, but every now and then I like to see how much water I drank today, along with how much sodium, calories, fiber, and protein I’ve ingested, plus how much weight I’ve gained or lost this week. You input everything you eat into this app and it charts all your levels for you.

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#7: 100 Push Ups: Three times a week this app tells you how many sets of push-ups (and how many in each set) to do in order to get you to 100 push-ups in 6 weeks. I started out only being able to do 25 push-ups at a time and by week 3 I was up to 80.

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#6: Nike+ GPS: Track your runs and walks, what routes you took, how many calories burned, your speed, distance, and all that good stuff. I used this while walking the Zappos.com Las Vegas Rock n Roll Marathon last year.

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2011 “Travel” Apps

#5: Kayak: This finds way better deals on flights and hotels than Expedia. Lance and I were recently able to score flights to Thailand for $4K each (first class) when Expedia told us they would be $10K each.

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#4: Hulu Plus: For 7 bucks a month, you can stream many TV shows and several documentaries over 3G or Wifi. What’s even cooler is this app also runs on the iPad, and the Roku (a box that connects to your TV).

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2011 “Communication” Apps

#3: Skype: If someone sends you a text message on Skype, or calls you on Skype (even if it’s a video call) it rings onto your phone. And yes, when you answer the Skype call on your phone, you can make it a video call with the user-facing camera, even if you’re not on Wifi — the official “FaceTime” app requires Wifi, but not Skype. You can also send Skype texts and make Skype calls right from the phone.

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#2: Find My iPhone: Locate, lock, and wipe your phone if you lose it anywhere.

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#1: Amazon.com: Buy things even when you’re not at home. I know I mentioned this one last year but it’s still cool to be able to send someone a gift while you’re waiting for a plane or buy something you forgot at the store. I’ve ordered some weird stuff lately from Amazon including supplements, Metamucil and grass-fed beef.

Those were my favorite apps for this year… what were your favorites?

Previous Winners from 2010:

I made sure to keep last year’s winners in this blog post. All these apps are still great, and I’d still love to know if any of these are your favorite.

9. Tweetie (now “Twitter”)

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Twitter is usually a huge time waster for me. It tells me about trending topics I don’t need to know about, people replying to me who should have emailed, and other peoples’ conversations I probably shouldn’t even be reading.

So how do I satisfy my curiosity while also staying productive?  I usually check Twitter on my phone, while exercising.

8. Amazon.com, Shoot It, and 1800Flowers

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The coolest thing about smartphones is that you can buy stuff on them.  I’m not talking about those goofy credit card readers, I mean just purchasing something on the phone and getting it shipped to you.

If someone recommends a movie for me at a seminar, I can dial it up on Amazon.com and it’ll be there when I get home.  I can take a picture of me and the person and use the Shoot It app to send a postcard of that picture for 99 cents that will also be there by the time they get home.  And just to keep my girlfriend happy, I can send same-day flowers back home with a couple of taps.

7. Calendar

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The biggest mistake you can make with a smartphone is to enable email, especially popups when new emails arrive.  You’ll never get anything done.

For that reason, I sometimes check email on my phone’s browser (again, when I’m exercising) but I definitely do not use the built-in mail app.  I was having trouble getting it to sync properly in Gmail anyway.

Here’s what I do instead: I sync my phone with my Gmail account, but ONLY for the calendar portion.  When setting up an email account, I don’t choose the “Gmail” option.  Instead I use the Microsoft Exchange option.

For the server address, I use m.google.com and for the username, myname@gmail.com. Enable SSL just in case you are on an unsecured Wifi network.

Then (this is important) turn off Mail and Contacts, but turn on Calendars.  This way if I add something to my Google Calendar, it will show up on my phone (in iPhone’s built in calendar), and vice versa.  If I need to check Gmail, I just use the Google App.

Finally, open your browser on the iPhone and go to: http://m.google.com/sync to authorize that particular device to view your shared calendars. A weird step, I know.

By the way, when I do check email on my phone, I almost never open any messages.  I just delete emails I’m never going to open like notifications of payments received, some “new subscriber” notifications for the autoresponder sublists of mine I’m monitoring, obvious spam, newsletters I’m going to read, and so on.  That way when it comes time to check email “for real” there’s a lot less clutter.

6. Sleep Cycle

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This is a very strange (but effective) app that I use a couple of times a month to fix my sleep schedule.  As a self employed entrepreneur it’s really easy to stay up too late or oversleep, and after a couple of weeks waking up at 10 AM, when I want to get back to waking up at 7 AM, this app will do the job… in one night.

Just before you go to bed, you run this app and place the phone face down underneath your pillow.  Every time you toss and turn in your bed, the phone makes a note of it.  Somehow based on your “tossing and turning” patterns, it can tell if you’re awake, dreaming, or in a deep sleep.

What’s the point of this, you ask?  Do you ever notice how some days you’ll get “just the right amount of sleep” while on other days you wake up groggy?  When you wake up groggy, you’ve interrupted your REM cycle, your dream time.

Thirty minutes before the time set on your alarm clock, Sleep Cycle tries to find the best place to wake you up, when you’re not dreaming.  Sometimes it can’t find a good place and interrupts a dream, but more often than not, it wakes me up at just the right time and gets my sleep schedule back in order.

5. FlightTrack

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When you’re traveling, especially when flying, doesn’t it suck to have to carry around a sheet of paper with your flight info, times, and gate information?  What if your plane is delayed, early, cancelled, or the gate changes?

With the FlightTrack app, you store your flight number in the phone, and it pops up reminders 2 hours before the flight, an hour before, and when it’s time to board.  It notifies you of gate changes, delays, early departures, all that good stuff.  I like it because when I’m making connections, I compare the gate of my arriving flight and connecting flight after the plane has landed but before it’s docked to the jetway.

4. PayPal and CheckCB

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Another great way to kill time while you’re flying, waiting, or just trying to get motivated is to check your stats and see who’s paid you.  On some trips I like to be able to see that the trip has paid for itself in passive income before I’ve even returned home.

CheckCB is an app from Joel Comm that lets you check multiple Clickbank accounts and check your sales for an account in daily or weekly format, or even in what paychecks they’re mailed you.  PayPal has an “official” app to check your balance, check sales and even “bump” (knock your phone against someone else’s) and then send or request money from that person.

3. BlogPress

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Most people don’t realize that you can manage and update your blog using a simple desktop application built into Windows starting with Vista.  That program is called Windows Live Writer.  There are blogging apps for the iPhone that use the same technology.  So you can type out and publish posts without having to deal with the interface or a browser.

The only tricky part is enabling it in your WordPress settings — good thing you have me to guide you.  In your WordPress dashboard, go to Settings, Writing, and enable the XML-RPC publishing protocol.  Now your blog is ready for the BlogPress app.  Just install on your phone, add a blog, set it to the WordPress service provider… and enter your username, password, and URL.

I’ve been using this late at night to post my four daily tasks onto my private accountability blog for the next day.

2. Kindle

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Many people bought the iPad as a Kindle replacement but what a lot of you don’t know is that there is a Kindle app for the iPhone.  Sure, it’s a tiny screen on a phone but you can still purchase books for 5 to 10 dollars, download them in a few seconds and have a book that doesn’t take up any space in the physical world.  I can’t stand bookshelves.

It’s also impossible to lose your place with a digital book.  And it’s the perfect solution to a long plane ride or boring workout session.

1. Evernote

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Finally we’re at my favorite iPhone app for this year, my new favorite productivity tool.  I’ve always used my phone to jot down notes instead of writing things on pieces of paper I might lose later.  Not that long ago in Las Vegas, a speaker at a seminar yelled at me because I was in the front row using my phone.  He thought I was Twittering, I was actually writing down something he said onto the phone.

iPhone has a built in notes app, but there’s one problem: the notes don’t sync to your computer, they’re stuck on the phone.  Evernote, on the other hand, automatically synchronizes your notes onto their servers as soon as you have an internet connection.

I have Evernote installed on my phone, laptop, and desktop computer. I use it to store my (very small) swipe file, article ideas and email autoresponder ideas.  That’s it.

At any time I can whip out my phone, add an article title… and the next time I open up the Evernote app on my laptop or desktop, I’ll be able to get to it.

Apparently Evernote can also store audio clips the same way it stores text notes, but I haven’t tried those yet.  I’ll let you know how audio dictation works out for me.

Now I’ve shared my nine favorite iPhone apps with you… what’s your phone iPhone (or iPad, or Blackberry, or Droid) app and why?

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Tagged with: best appbest iphonecoolest iphone apps

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  1. Smartphone: AT & T 8525 (HTC) running Windows Mobile.

    Best App: Telenav GPS

  2. My favorite iPhone apps tend to mimic/support the productivity apps I use on the desktop:

    Evernote, with Evernote on the desktop
    NetNewsWire, with FeedDemon on the desktop
    Sherpa, for interfacing to BaseCamp
    Yahoo Messenger, with Yahoo Messenger on the Desktop
    Dropbox, with Dropbox on the desktop
    Stanza, for reading public domain books

  3. Man, I’m still on the Blackberry… using Outlook:)

  4. Marcel says:

    Birthday Reminder – no explaining needed
    Photogene – to edit photos
    Skype – to save money
    and Cell Minute Tracker – use it or you will pay

  5. Jesus says:

    iPhone all the way.

    AirVideo: Stream videos on your PC to your iPhone via WiFi or 3G with Live Conversion. PERFECT for IM’rs that want to watch videos on the go without dealing with the iTunes sync drama.

    GoodReader: Upload and Read PDF’s easily with “Text Reflow”.

    JotNot: Scan documents/receipts with your camera and upload to Evernote or convert to PDF.

    Calengoo: Best Google Calendar app hands down.

    Grocery Gadgets: Enter grocery list online and it appears on the App & vice versa. Other family members also see the changes in real time.

    Road Trip: Track your car’s mileage and more.

    Dropbox: Share files between PC and iPhone.

    SimpleMindX: Mindmapping software.

    LogMeIn: Log in to your home computer. AWESOME!

    WordPress: Post to WordPress from your iPhone.

    FTPOnTheGo:Self explanatory. FTP app.

    Dragon Dictation:Talk into the phone, it converts to text to paste or email.

    Dragon Search:Talk your search into the phone, it looks in multiple locations.

    RunMeter: Perfect for tracking walk, bike or exercise trip lengths and pace.

    QuickVoice:Record and download any event of any length.
    iFitness:Best fitness tracking tool.

    2DO:Best To-Do app. Integrates with ToodleDo.

    httpv://


    Click Here to Play Video

  6. Robert Plank says:

    Marcel,

    “Birthday Reminder – no explaining needed”

    I have that app too… it’s called Facebook :-P

  7. John says:

    Here’s what’s on my iPhone home screen – I use most of them regularly.

    Omnifocus
    Mindnode
    Tweetie
    Simplenote
    Evernote
    Facebook
    Goodreader
    Instapaper
    1Password
    Weathereye
    Messages
    Reeder
    Google
    Zeptoliner
    Safari
    Ipod

    In the dock I’ve got Phone, Mail, Pastebot and Textexpander

    I use Google Apps for my mail, calendar, etc. I didn’t know you could set it up as an Exchange account – thanks for the tip.

    Further to your Kindle app recommendation, I’d look at Goodreader. It’s a pretty capable PDF reader that will reflow text from PDFs into readable text much like the Kindle app displays. It’s handy for reading PDF reports in those same places that you use the Kindle app.

  8. Robert Plank says:

    Hey John you can’t just go and list the built in ones like Safari and iPod… that’s cheating :-)

    Is there a reason you have so many note taking apps, like Omnifocus AND Evernote at the same time?

  9. Wow, Robert, I wonder if this post will get a 100 comments: though I have a smartphone (I think, lol) I only use it to text message with you, from time to time, and maybe check my stats on the browser.

    But you do make Iphone very desirable. There is only one question I have: what intensity of workouts do you have that you can manipulate and read your iphone WHILE working out? I can’t even do that while walking.

    Sophie

  10. Robert Plank says:

    Elliptical. I can “run” with the maximum resistance while reading and writing on the phone. I can also read (not write) on the phone on the treadmill at a very fast run and the maximum incline. I didn’t think I could do it either, but I had a teacher in college who read a book a day, even while walking or while driving (at stop signs).

  11. John Deck says:

    My first smart phone was the Handsprings and my latest is a Palm Treo.

    Some my favorite apps, (most apps will sync with Windows)
    1. Agendus for contacts, calendar, and email.
    2. SplashID for storing passwords
    3. Google Maps
    4. TouchLauncher
    5. pTunes for listening to mp3 recordings.
    6. Natara Bonsai for outlines and lists.

    One item I really like is a feature not an app, is that my Treo shows who is calling by their phone number, if they are in my contacts database even if their caller ID is blocked.

    John Deck

  12. Robert Plank says:

    Hey John,

    My first handheld was a Handspring Visor. I had it 10 years ago and I had just made “some” money with internet marketing, bought it and I was one of the few (about 5) students in high school with a palm pilot… except I was the only one who had a color one. I wasn’t the phone version but I used it to read books and had the Targus stowaway keyboard (I wish they still made those) to type. I still have it in my desk drawer, it’s bigger and heavier than the iPhone and only does about 1% of what it can do… battery lasts a little longer though. :-)

  13. Robert Vance says:

    My Favorite apps are
    Evernote – keep useful information handy
    QuickOffice – for working on files I Need
    Zendesk – for handling support tickets
    ftponthego – for uploading files to server after minor fixes while on the road
    cpanel WHM – for setting up new domains on my hosting while on the go
    HTML Editor – for making quick changes to my websites

  14. Robert Plank says:

    Robert,

    I was going to get the cPanel app but it gets bad reviews that it doesn’t do as much as the browser and crashes.

  15. Greg Russell says:

    My favorite iPhone apps are: Vlingo,Highrise, Fandango and Line2.

    Vlingo allows me to use my voice for google searches, call people in my contact list. I just have to say: “Call John Doe on cell phone” and it will dial John’s cell. You can also upgrade and send text and emails with your voice too.

    Highrise, recently released its own app for Highrise CRM. It allows me to have direct access to my highrise account from 37signals.

    Fandango, becuase I love going to the movies. This apps gives you the theaters and movies times anywhere you are.

    Line2 is the iphone app for a phone service called “Toktumi” allows you to use your cell phone and call from your business number as well ask use VOIP calls over your cell so you don’t use any minutes. I had the toktumi service first but the line2 app makes it even better.

  16. Michel says:

    Last.fm, fabulous radio application!

    httpv://


    Click Here to Play Video

  17. My Favorite app is for my Blackberry and it is called MindBerry. I can mindmap while I am on the go and it will export to either FreeMind format or even better yet, MindManager format.

    Awesome stuff

  18. Robert Plank says:

    Shannon,

    I tried mindmapping apps for the iPhone but none of them let me “rapid fire” a bunch of new nodes… it was tedious to add to it.

  19. Glen says:

    Wow! Think I’ll go get a smart phone, sounds so cool!

    This helps me decide too :)

    Thanks

  20. Robert Plank says:

    Glen,

    What phone are you going to get?

  21. bukep says:

    I do not know what the advantages of iphone because I do not have it

  22. Ron Barrett says:

    Still ‘stuck’ on a Blackberry, but I use Google maps a lot, I have my work email, personal email and my gmail synched on it.

    I actually have YouVersion Bible on it for my daily Bible reading, The Weather Channel, I Heart Radio are the ones I use on a regular basis. Oh, plus the mp3 player so that I can listen to yours and Lance’s recordings while on the elliptical machine.

    You’re making me want to go and get the IPhone now… of course, I will have to wait about 8 more months til my current contract expires :)

  23. Dennis says:

    I don’t own an iClone.

    I use Evernote on my Palm Pre Plus.

  24. DROOIIIID!!!

    I love Pandora! It let’s you rate the songs you hear with a thumbs up or down and then gets “smarter” as you go.

    It also streams high quality over 3G (well at least on verizon)

    Get Pandora.. you will love it!

    DROID DOES!

    Lance

  25. I’m an iphone user now (took me forever to get used to it after my WindowsMobile.) My top two most-used apps (besides the games we won’t talk about) are D2u and jetset.

    D2U is a dictation program that lets me record something – an article or a product idea. Then I send it off to be transcribed directly from the iphone. By the time I get home, it’s in my inbox. Very handy.

    JetSet is the way I track my cash expenses, both at home and on the road. When I travel, of course, it’s all tax deductible – but not if you don’t record it. So I write down the snacks, the tips, taxis – all those little things that you pay cash for. With one button it’s emailed to my bookkeeper as a ready-to-paste spreadsheet. Very cool – and saves me several thousand dollars per year.

    Jeanette – who wrote Tax Tips for Small Business owners in the April issue of OnlineSuccessNews.com – Robert has an article in there too!

  26. Wow, I can’t believe no one mentioned any games. Isn’t that the real reason we buy these gadgets? They come in really handy when you have a few minutes to kill (commercials, for example).

    I can’t be the only one who has apps like Numbrix and Soduku.

    It will be interesting to see what happens when the iphone gets multitasking.

    What’s up with the 100 comment thing? Most people can’t get that many in the whole lifespan of their blog.

  27. Robert Plank says:

    Chris,

    I use games on my phone too but that’s probably one of the things I do least on it. And I don’t have any permanent games on there… I keep them on there until I get bored. I’ve got “Words with Friends” (multiplayer Scrabble), Bejewled, Monopoly, and Uno. And the Geocaching app, but that’s more of a real life game.

    I’ll install Sudoku on the next plane ride.

    And I have the 100 comment limit because it gets more people to comment… are you going to try it on your blog? Even with 10 or 20 comments to start.

  28. I find the easyBM online bookmarking tool very useful as I can access my favorite sites with a simple tap rather than having to type the full URL:
    http://www.easybm.com/blog/2009/10/13/online-bookmarks-on-your-iphone-and-smartphone/

    Disclaimer: I own the service but it is FREE to use, so no commercial intent :P

  29. Robert Plank says:

    Arun,

    Why not just setup a blog with links and bookmark the blog?

  30. Sam England says:

    There you go Lance!!!

    Pandora is the BOMB!
    A must have for music listeners on the go…

  31. @Jeanette

    Grabbing those two now..
    I just got an iPad and was pretty impressed with how accurate Dragon Dictation was..

    Going to try out D2u

    Thanks!
    lance

  32. Bob Marconi says:

    Afraid I haven’t kept up with technology. Probably one of the few who don’t have a smart phone!

  33. Keith Alston says:

    iphones rule.. of that there’s no doubt. My main apps are:
    iAccounts – great password/login databank
    Twittermatic – autoposting
    Music Quiz – great to do when I have a bit of free time
    ooTunes – the best radio app of all
    taptu search – a great search app
    ITN News – The UK News channel
    Stanza – the best ebook app
    Paper Toss – So addictive, great game
    AudioBoo – Post audio messages on the web
    Howcast – find videos on ‘How To…’

    These are ones I use almost daily but I have another 63 besides.

    I thought Blackberry was good but iPhone wins hands down

    Keith

  34. I have android. I like the Google maps app with full featured GPS/navigation built in.

    A French-English dictionary app came in real helpful last year too.

  35. jacques says:

    evernote also lets you take a photo of wine labels, business cards, etc.. and you´ll have it everywhere you need
    other apps:
    for 3G users, QIK VIDEO lets you take video clips on any iphone
    PHOTOSHOP MOBILE, great to process your photos
    SWIPE to accept credit cards with your phone

    httpv://


    Click Here to Play Video

  36. Robert Plank says:

    Jacques,

    Do you really use the photoshop app that often?

  37. Tim Jensen says:

    I have a Motorola Droid and I LOVE Twidroid Pro. It allows me to manage multiple twitter accounts when I am away from my computer.

  38. Adam Porter says:

    I have a BlackBerry and an iPod Touch (no iPhone).

    App-wise, I only use my Blackberry for navigation (Garmin GPS app) and phone calls.

    For the iPod, I use the Mail app for all of my accounts (which I’ll probably be changing, after reading your post), TweetDeck, Facebook, Weather Channel, SiriusXM, and Orb (stream docs, music, pics, and vids from my Desktop).

    It seems I need to refocus for a tad more productivity, and less distraction…thanks for the pointers, all! ;)

  39. Todd McGuire says:

    I would have to agree with Lance. Dragon Dictation is the app I use most, I can use it to text and email totally avoiding the keyboard. The delivery is immediate, the only restriction is the length of the recording is limited.

    httpv://


    Click Here to Play Video

    D2U is nice, but costs $$ and has a delivery delay.

  40. My top 10 Iphone apps have to be

    Trapster
    slingplayer
    PDF Reader
    Redlaser

    httpv://


    Click Here to Play Video

    Cydia
    Paypal
    Camera
    Airshare
    Irecorder
    Google Maps

  41. My favorite apps for iPhone are: Spotify (I listen to music all day long), Tweetie (for Twitter), MindNode (to create mindmaps) and WriteRoom (to write and syncronise with Scrivener).

  42. After reading all these, clearly I”m not using my phone enough for business. I’d say the number one app I use is Google, with voice search. With it I have at my fingertips the combined knowledge of the world!

    Google Maps, because I need to know where traffic sucks so I can avoid it.

    Amazon.com, because I love the Buy It Now button!

    Battery Doctor, so I can keep my phone healthy.

    BC Reader, to scan business cards and get them into my phone book quick.

    Free Wi-Fi, finds free wi-fi hotspots!

    Fandango, to find local movie times!

    GoDaddy, to secure domains on the fly!

    Oh yeah, and I check in with FourSquare and Yelp multiple times a day. :) I will be adding a bunch of apps you guys have recommended! They sound awesome. I have 2Do but haven’t mastered it yet.

    -Adryenn

  43. Robert Plank says:

    Adryenn,

    I am addicted to FourSquare as well… but I’m still not the mayor of my own house yet.

    The Amazon.com 1-click buying is dangerous for me…

    And Battery Doctor? Looks cool but if my battery starts crapping out, I’ll just get a new iPhone… is it really that serious a problem to justify a whole app for it?

  44. jacques says:

    BTW thank you all for the great app tips!

  45. Robert Plank says:

    You’re welcome Jacques, which one did you like the best? Are you going to install any of them?

  46. Jeff Bode says:

    I have to agree with Lance… I like & use Pandora the most, what can I say? I like to listen to music

  47. wal gifford says:

    Hi Robert,

    I don’t have a smartphone, and my wife has a blackberry.
    SHe intends to upgrade to the new iphone, due for release here in June 2010, and if I like her’s I will make the move too.

    One app that I have heard others find very useful is “evernote”

    PS We are sitting on our hands for the ipad for the time being too!

  48. Rob Metras says:

    My favorite app is MaxMobile. I can have an extension on a virtual switchboard and all my directories at hand.

  49. The best iPhone app is Bubblewrap. You can pop to your heart’s content while you are bored at a seminar or waiting in line somewhere.

    httpv://


    Click Here to Play Video

  50. Google G1 (ANDROID RULES)

    I’m using the latest modded (jailbroken) build from Cyanogen. Allows USB tethering to the Internet

    I agree that it’s important to avoid distractions, so I don’t use twidroid any more. Email is ok, but I check it at intervals and not every time an email hits the phone.

    My favorite apps:
    Meridian Player Pioneer (Cool for resuming and FF/FR)
    Better Cut
    Google Voice (Free SMS)
    Google Maps
    ASTRO File Manager
    RepliGo Reader (PDF reader)
    Quick Calendar
    FlightTrack

  51. Robert Plank says:

    Roger,

    I thought about jailbreaking a while ago but I keep hearing the latest iTunes and iPhone OS updates prevent tethering… AT&T needs to get its act together and add a tethering plan.

  52. Connie, you crack me up…. lol…. rofl

  53. Thanks for the App suggestions – Evernote sounds perfect for me and just went to check it out on my phone. All the reviews from the last few days mention the latest update is crashing the program and the app is not working. One disgusted reviewer wrote “This app crashes more than a chimp taxi driver.” What’s up with this? Is anyone having these problems? I’m definitely not downloading this until all the glitches are resolved.

    A really basic, but ultra helpful app is the Google Voice Search. The accurate voice recognition makes searching so simple and easy, no typing needed!

  54. Robert Plank says:

    Sheryl,

    Evernote has been crashing for me lately too. Luckily the notes auto-save, and if you uninstall and reinstall you can get it back. I’m hoping they will remove all the bugs.

  55. I’ve almost worn a hole in my iPhone screen launching TapForms — it’s a database application that allows you to create “apps” of your own. Well, DB apps, anyway. To me it’s worth buying an iPhone/iPod touch all by itself.

    Others that I use often (usually multiple times per day) include…

    Lose It! – Track what you eat.
    MobileRSS – Read your Google feeds on the go.
    Navionics Marine: Caribbean – Nautical charts so I can plan my get-a-way.
    aSmartHUD – Gives you a Heads Up Display at night while driving.
    Sleep Cycle – Robert already talked about this.
    Wurdle – Boggle-type game. Quick to get in and out of.

  56. Robert Plank says:

    Jay,

    What really sold me on getting an iPhone is Tim Ferriss shared a video of the food barcode scanner… I bought it and then later found out Tim doesn’t even have a smartphone, what a nerd.

  57. United Introduces Mobile Boarding Pass

    Mobile check-in is now available nationwide
    These three steps can take you from check-in to boarding, wherever you are:
    Enter mobile.united.com into the browser of your mobile device to check in for any flight within the U.S. starting 24 hours before scheduled departure.
    If you are flying through one of the airports listed below, you can select to receive your boarding pass via email.** Otherwise, visit any EasyCheck-in® kiosk to print your boarding pass at the airport.
    To use your device as your boarding pass, scan the barcode on your screen at security and at the gate when boarding.
    You’ll also be able to check flight status and get up-to-the-minute arrival and departure information, including times and gate information.

  58. Robert Plank says:

    Mike,

    Why even check in on the phone to begin with? If you have to go to the kiosk to print it out anyway…

  59. Exito Smith says:

    I am still on Blackberry too but I will buy the Ipad tomorrow.
    Success

  60. Robert Plank says:

    Exito,

    Sounds good… let me know how you like the iPad. It turns out Lance bought me the iPad 3G so I get one too, even though I didn’t want one at first. It’ll be so much fun for us both to play multiplayer games over wifi on those Delta flights.

  61. meebzorp says:

    Fandango – a “must” if you’re a movie lover
    Pandora – ditto if you’re a music lover

  62. Sarah says:

    Hey Robert, so when are you going to release your own App?

  63. Robert Plank says:

    Sarah,

    I already have one… for this blog… search “Robert Plank” in the appstore and you should find it. :-)

  64. Hi Robert, thanks for the tips, some things I didn’t know!

    I like the Dropbox app as well as Pocket Informant which is very cool.

    Also Shazam is awesome if you’re looking for songtitles…

    Cheers,

    Charl

  65. Robert Plank says:

    Charl,

    Oh yeah, I use Shazam every now and then (maybe once a month) but not on a regular basis.

    httpv://


    Click Here to Play Video

  66. Dean says:

    essential iPhone apps?

    Facebook is top of my list, followed by my sporting interests with the Sky TV Football Scores Centre (soccer for you yanks!) and WTCC (world touring cars).

    For a bit of fun, try 18,000 Cool Jokes

  67. Robert Plank says:

    Dean,

    Do you use your phone for anything productive or is it just games?

  68. joe says:

    Robert, thanks much for a very powerful list of apps to consider. Although I have a few, the one I am going to test is the sleep cycle. That sounds very appealing.

    Thanks for the tips on the email as that has been somewhat of a struggle for me as well. The recommendations and settings are just what I needed.

    Although I have a smartphone as well, I think the iPhone is a very advanced technology that is going to revolutionize the way we work and interact. I specially like the ability to get things done on the road using such a small tool and not have to lug around a big bulky computer. However, for now, I believe we are still a ways away from doing away with the laptop or computer altogether but it is getting close.

    I agree with you on the iPad. Great technology and seems very interesting but other than the touch screen capability, it lacks far too much to be all that compelling. Maybe, as you say, in a few years will get better.

    Thanks again,
    Great post and I will definitely save it for reference.
    Joe
    ps: I created a lens about hating apple but loving the ipod touch :) : http://bit.ly/aFJIiS

  69. Rob says:

    I love my pocket pc. I manage all my websites and most importantly I buy and sell on ebay. I love the technology today. I wish the I phone could do some of the things my ppc could do.

  70. Robert Plank says:

    Joe,

    “However, for now, I believe we are still a ways away from doing away with the laptop or computer altogether but it is getting close.”

    When I travel I leave my laptop at home. iPhone does the only basic stuff I need to do… take notes, write articles, check web sites, answer emails, respond to blog comments… what else do you really need to do?

  71. Andy says:

    I like Run Keeper PRO where it tracks my run and I can upload it to their site for a record.

    Also I recommend XE Currency Exchange App, Bloomberg, Kotoba (for Japanese), iHandy Level to show of your phone to people, MultiConvert to convert units of measurement from one form to another, Planets (to check up on what is going on above your head) and iFitness for ideas on how to perform exercises.

  72. Victoria says:

    Hi Robert,
    Evernote sounds great, thanks for your tips!
    I am discovering the Apps world as they have just turned on 3G in our part of the world (Caribbean).
    I am looking at purchasing an IPhone, in the very near future!
    best Victoria

  73. RH Berg says:

    In an attempt to maximize my productive time, I use cell phones as little as possible. I don’t have a smart phone. I have trained my contacts/customers to call the office and leave a message. I listen to my messages between 3-4 pm and respond only then. I respond to emails between 7-8am and then again between 4-5pm.

    Since we each have ONLY 24 hours in a day I would rather be in control of those hours otherwise you are at the beck and call of everyone else.

    Read Tim Ferris – The 4 Hour Workweek, EXCELLENT!
    http://www.fourhourworkweek.com/

    “Time is free, but it’s priceless. You can’t
    own it, but you can use it. You can’t keep
    it, but you can spend it. Once you’ve lost it
    you can never get it back.” ~ Harvey MacKay

    And finally: “Action is the real measure of intelligence.” ~ Napoleon Hill

  74. Robert Plank says:

    RH,

    I’ve trained customers the same way as you but the ability to write stuff down (especially as you’ve seen from all the mentions of Evernote) helps me regain lost time especially when I have nothing to do, like when traveling. Having a smartphone means I don’t have to bring a laptop anywhere. You still have to have self control just like everything else.

  75. John B says:

    I don’t have a smarties phone just yet, im still sufficing with a separate ipod and phone (I know what you’re thinking, I need to get with it) and I spend most of my time creating and marketing those membership sites! Ha..

  76. Jey says:

    Excellent post, came a little bit late. I just lost my iPhone,but what ever I was looking for all been listed here.

    I noted down all of them, when I get my new one in June (4G) I will have all of the above.

    JEY

  77. Robert Plank says:

    Jey,

    The 4G looks like it’s going to be the bizzomb… especially with front AND back facing cameras.

  78. Judith says:

    I don’t really like phones, and I tend to lose them in taxis, meetings and coffee shops (My friends say my subconscious does it on purpose), so I’ve learned not to put files, passwords, or anything work related on those things. Which is why the cheapest ones for calling and texting work for me.

    Most of my apps are on the iPod, which gets more use than my phone.

    And I use Evernote for almost everything that I think of after getting cramped fingers from writing longhand in a notebook with a fountain pen.

    I’m seriously considering the Nexus though.

  79. Rich Stevens says:

    OK, great post Robert…
    My fav app is my own Rich Stevens App of course!

    Others UStream so I can at anytime from anywhere stream decent quality live video and audio to a page on my own site, very cool app tells me how many people are watching and I can also archive any video I shoot as well for later viewing.

    ping.fm to post updates to twitter and fb
    shazam just in case i hear a new song and want to know its name
    gorila cam turns my whole screen into the shutter button, makes it so easy to take better pix (its free too)
    tv guide gotta know whats on:)

  80. Robert Plank says:

    Rich,

    How many people do you get on your UStream shows? I tried it on my phone at Lance’s house a few times, and even with the Twitter notification that the show is starting, I only got 2 to 4 people on the program. It was kinda cool to do the “yes/no” polls though.

  81. Rich Stevens says:

    oops forgot to tell you, i got my app created @ http://www.MyCustomWebApp.com and they did it pretty quick too!

  82. Robert Plank says:

    I had something similar done from a service called “Mothership” (I think) — they plugin your picture, blog feed, URL and other stuff to create a free app in the app store. I just wish they’ll tell me how many people have downloaded it.

  83. I hadnt noticed any one using this app
    Try this micro blogging platform out can save some time.
    posterous.com/picposterous

    PicPosterous iPhone application – Posterous Mobile
    PicPosterous for the iPhone – Your iPhone instant camera …
    PicPosterous lets you take photos and
    video on your iPhone and post them instantly on the web.

  84. Katie says:

    Have yet to find a really good ToDo list & I hate the way notes are kept on the iphone, so I’ll be looking through the lists above to find what may be useful!!

    I like the photoshop app for iphone because I can do quick edits of my photos while I’m on the go.

    I also like FreeWiFi since it helps me locate free wifi spots.

    I have Evernote, but am not that crazy about it – even on the computer.

    I also just downloaded Dropbox, which is useful between laptop and desktop but have yet to use it with the iphone.

    One of the problems I have is that we are so remote that half the time the iphone doesn’t work for me. I can text & sometimes get calls, but I mostly use it when I’m on the road.

  85. Robert Plank says:

    Katie,

    Hopefully Verizon gets the iPhone soon… then I can ditch crappy AT&T coverage and hop back onto Verizon where I was…

    I hate the notepad too. For to-do lists I use a blog and just post 4 things on it every day… no reason to have a fancy app for that, but everyone in the comments here is talking a lot about 2-Do for todo lists.

  86. Peggy says:

    This article is a keeper, thanks to all of you for sharing some rather amazing i-phone uses. Nice to see some familiar faces, too, who follow Grandmapeg on Twitter.

    To those of you who listed the name and something about the application – a big thanks and if you didn’t, I wish you’d or someone else would give a short description.

    Robert, the Sleep Cycle is amazing. How long have you been using it? I also liked the idea of using the phone and getting in exercising at the same time.

    When you use the Kindle, is the font the same as what we are seeing in these comments?

    Peggy

  87. Robert Plank says:

    Peggy,

    I have been using it for the last 4 months. At first I was using it every day, but now I only it use a few times a month to get my sleep back on track. If the sleep cycle made a standalone device that does what their app does, I’d buy it just to save the hassle of plugging in my phone, putting it under the mattress, and all that.

    The kindle app uses some Times New Roman looking font. You can adjust the size it shows up on the screen.

  88. I like:

    speechtimer – it helps you stick to times. It starts as Green and then turns yellow and then red.

    Essential for speaking gigs or focused blocks of time.

    Tapatalk – it lets you use enabled V Bulletin forums (like mine) from the iPhone!

    Sherpa – you can run basecamp from the iphone.

  89. Robert Plank says:

    James,

    The speechtimer looks phizzat!

    httpv://


    Click Here to Play Video

    Do you use it? Does it become a crutch like a teleprompter does?

  90. Bryan says:

    i just got my first smartphone and i’m still trying to learn how to use it. thanks for the tips!

  91. Robert Plank says:

    Bryan,

    What phone did you get?

  92. Rich Stevens says:

    @ Robert, I do a radio show so there are some of those “fans” that I guess are close by and seem to check my website tv page for the live feed.. when I dont announce it get anywhere from 15-40 which is weird.. lol other times when we do announce on the air a lot more of course:)
    Do you have a ustream page or the codes embeded on your own site? I saw our numbers jump when we put it on my own site!

  93. Robert Plank says:

    I have a ustream page somewhere but I don’t have subscribers or traffic to it… what, you’re saying I have to actually get off my butt and promote it? LOL… so by radio show, you mean it’s at a set date and time so people have it in their schedule and you send email reminders and all that? Do you monetize it somehow?

  94. Ron Barrett says:

    @Sarah…

    I think he is going to be releasing an app that will allow you to build a list, flip a plr product and make an audio out of it and then create a membership site all with the press of one button! Oh, and it will all be coded in php ;)

  95. Robert Plank says:

    All right guys, here are YOUR top 9 apps on the iPhone:

    Notes: 15 votes (EverNote)
    Maps: 8 votes (built-in)
    Radio: 8 votes (Pandora)
    Reading: 6 votes (GoodReader)
    Games: 6 votes (Paper Toss, Sudoku, Wurdle)
    Mail: 6 votes (built-in)
    File Transfer: 5 votes (FTPOnTheGo)
    Social Media: 5 votes (Tweetie)
    Dictation: 4 votes (Dragon)

    What’s cool is that almost all of your top 9 apps are actually useful and make you more productive instead of being distractions.

  96. Rich Stevens says:

    @Robert, nope didnt say that at all, i hardly promote it and there are peeps there:)

    and as far as the radio show , I wish i could monetize…lol that’s the companies deal they sell advertising and pay me to do it…

  97. I like Evernote as well. Some other Cool apps I use…

    TimeLogger – Time Tracker
    facebook
    HootSuite
    Sirius XM
    Dragon Dictation
    Analytics – monitor all your google analytics
    pTerm – Mobile Shell app to access my servers
    FTP On The Go – Great for making quick file changes
    WinAdmin – Remote Desktop App
    PS Mobile – Photoshop Mobile
    LastPass – Password Management
    Mashable
    LifeHacker
    RedBox
    IMDB – Internet Movie Database
    Kindle
    TeamBox – Project Management
    Pano – allows you to use the iphone camera for panaramic pics

    And a ton of other games and trivia Words with Friends is cool too…

  98. Some other great apps to have

    trapster – identified speed cams, traps, live police
    vnc – allows remote control of your computer remotely
    tapatalk – allows access to a remote bb system for member communication/posts in a forum.
    pogoplug – remotely connect with 4 usb (drives) 2gb drives supported.
    google voice – call using a google voice number (hides your actual number) great for clients.
    media5-fone – talk through my asterisk server instead of using minutes.
    1password – secure password saver so you can safely store passwords to websites etc you might need to access remotely.
    appbox pro – nifty set of apps to use with iphone measurement conversions, clinometer, pricegrab, tip calculator, translator etc.
    Bank of America – banking application, lets you transfer funds etc. handy app.
    The Weather Channel – weather application.

  99. Robert Plank says:

    Keith,

    How do you like the VNC app? The ones I’ve tried (even though they’re cool especially broadcasting the audio) are clumsy. Lance says it’s better on the iPad.

  100. Pete Bass says:

    I know this is about Top 10 apps for the iPhone, but I can’t get the iPhone because I am in Verizon territory. So about 2 weeks ago today I got the Motorola Droid and Wow am I tickled with it. This phone does everything but brew coffee and I am looking for the App to do that. I love coffee…

    anyway some cool apps I use are the same as for the iPhone and some are only for the Droid, but here are my favorites.

    facebook…
    Google earth and Google maps…
    Droid Light turns my camera flash into a flash light…
    Live Bible…
    YouVersion best Bible app…
    Sporty Pal for workouts that you can post to the web in real time…
    Compass…
    Bubble, a couple of different levels handy way to make sure you just hung that picture right…
    Pandora…
    Wordpress…
    bar code reader, good for downloading apps from the computer or comparison shopping at the store. Scan a bar code and it will search the internet for the best price…
    Google Sky Map, look up at the night sky, this one will tell you the names of the constellations and planets above you. It even shows the horizon. Cool app…
    Snap Tell, take a picture, or scan a bar code and it will search to find out what you have on the internet…

    Thanks to all of you, I have found a few iPhone apps on here that I will have to search out and see if they are also available for the Droid.

    I love my Droid, I am kind of glad that Verizon didn’t get the iPhone because without a doubt this is the coolest gadget I have ever owned.

  101. Lance tamashiro says:

    Been playing around with the ipad (which is like infinitely better than my smartphone, plus no one can call me on it).

    So far my favorite (that isn’t a game) is LogMeIn.

    It allows you to control any of your computers through your iPad.  You
    get sound and file transfers for an upgraded fee.  It actually is very
    usable once you get used to it.

    Makes it nice when I want to check on stuff from the iPad without
    running down to the office.

    Lance

  102. Aaron Goodmiller says:

    You’re sleeping on Pricecheckah. It uses the great RedLaser barcode scanner, but gives you results from Amazon, eBay, walmart, overstock, buy.com as well as Google. It even let’s you put in your own stores.

    And at only 99c.

    http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewSoftware?id=300264101&mt=8

  103. Andrew says:

    The ihandy Level and the Water slide Game are a couple of apps that I recommend to show off your iPhone. But totally time-wasting otherwise ;-)

  104. imeye says:

    You can use wakemate to check your best sleeping time.A small gadget fitted on your wrist and connect to iphone via bluetooth

  105. Robert Lewis says:

    My favourite iPhone app is Shazam. It lets you identify a song that you hear playing on the radio or in a public place by listening to a snippet of the song and checking it against the app’s database. As well as providing information about the song, it also provides a link to buy the song on iTunes. Gone are the days of missing out on awesome songs because you can’t figure out what they’re called.

  106. Raymond Anderson says:

    i wish i cuold get one ipad its cool and a new generation phone, apple really done a great jod by launching this phone yar seriously, its a 3g and smart phone am waiting for launh in india so that i can buy one for me also.so am vry ecxited

  107. John Rodriguez says:

    It’s great to have an iPhone, but moreover to have the best applications in it makes it look more fresh and smarter to work on. Likewise, the best applications are scattered in this blog post for user’s choice to choose the best from it. I love to have the Calendar application for my iPhone to organize things better and smarter way. After all, it’s my smartphone and I must make it smarter.

  108. Christopher Harris says:

    This blog is one of the best i have read about i phone apps, some of these apps i didn’t know even existed. The Pay-Pal app works great for my past time which is selling things on eBay, now thanks to the is post it is so much easier to transfer money to my account or buy things that i would like to receive!

  109. Daniel Robinson says:

    All of those apps look very useful especially Evernote. I’m going to look into that one for sure. I’m not 100% sold on the Sleep Cycle app, however. In fact I’m not sure I’m 10% sold on it. I understand the basic theory behind it but I just don’t see how it can work as described. I’m really not sure it is something anyone would need as well.

    But the other 8 apps are very cool.

  110. Hey Daniel,
    you must be a j.o.b. worker… am I right? And you wake up with the alarm because you have to go to work.

    But those of us that work at home, are self-starters, and design our activities for ourselves, the danger of falling out of sync with the “world” is very real.

    If I needed one reason to get an iphone, it would the the sleep cycle, but luckily I have manufactured my own solution and never allow myself to move out of sync more than an hour… it gets harder to get back to track when the discrepancy is bigger.

    Anyway, I really enjoy reading all these comments and the hip remarks.

    Sophie

    PS: Robert, I think you have hit a nerve with this article. I stand corrected… lol

  111. Michael Davis says:

    Iphone are very useful when compared to the normal mobiles. The easier access to internet and pocket data makes it adorable to possess and use. It is so simple and easy to get one. There are even payments options available for Iphones. The blackberry is a nice brand to pick on.

  112. I possess a blackberry and consider it to the the best Iphone ever. The access of notes and mechanisms are that simple and cute to use. It was easy to get one online and the shipping was convinient. IT is safe and reliable. The Iphone has easy access to it’s applications.

  113. Kenneth Thompson says:

    I would like to make some comment on iphone.Apple iphone contains lot of new software which can very beneficial to the people.The applications seem to be very interesting.But I as a customer would prefer to have this because the application process is not demonstrated fully.this phone is only useful for skilled professional.I would prefer that it should have some proper demonstration technique and easy operation system .The cost is not worth for a person who do not want to operate the special software.

  114. Robert Plank says:

    Kenneth,

    iPhone is really easy to use… even Lance’s 3 year old daughter can figure it out.

  115. Thomas Thomas says:

    about best i phone apps
    twit-tie is a best twitter client.it works as desktop.
    kindle-physical kindle can not be changed. it provide some free information.e book reader facility is also available with it.we can use them .

  116. Richard Hall says:

    These are great. I am always looking for new apps for my iPhone. The only thing that I think you are missing from your list is BUMP – I dont know what I would do without it. It is great and all you have to do is BUMP 2 phones together. I am for sure going to go and check out some of these on the list! Thanks

    httpv://


    Click Here to Play Video

  117. Robert Plank says:

    Bump is cool. Except I don’t want most people in my phone, or the bump shares too many numbers (work and home when all I want is cell) … but I use it every now and then, it’s not in my top 9 though.

  118. Michael Davis says:

    Best iPhone app for me is the Amazon app, especially the “remembers” function.

    I have a host of the social networking applications, but I find both Echofon (Twitter) and Facebook a distraction and nowhere near as capable as the full sites. Similarly ebay and autotrader are good for a quick status update but aren’t functional enough to replace the full web versions.

    I only ever fly BA so I have the British Airways app rather than FlightTrack.

    Favourite useless app is iPity. Entertains my friends 3-year old for hours at a time.

    httpv://


    Click Here to Play Video

  119. Robert Plank says:

    Michael, I use the “Baby Apps” iPhone app to entertain my almost-2-year-old nephew. It has a piano, fake phone, buttons to identify farm animals, stuff like that. He’ll probably like iPity too.

    Amazon.com “remembers” feature is crazy! For those of you who don’t know, this is where you take a picture of something and they identify it for you. I once took a photo of an “Elmo” pajama slipper and it even identified it… pictures of book covers… it gets it right most of the time.

  120. Well, when making a choice between iP and Nx1…iP faded away as far as usability is concerned!

  121. Robert Plank says:

    How is the iPhone less usable? Just because you can’t hack and slash it as much? As soon as iPhone has the dictation feature for all text forms it’ll be caught up.

  122. My favorite iPhone app (that also runs on the iPod Touch) is iFart by Infomedia/Joel Comm. It’s fun and a great way to alert people to stay away from your iPhone when you go to the bathroom. To see the surprise in a child’s face when the phone sounds a big fart when picked up is priceless – and certainly explains why they say a photo is worth 1000 words. :-)

  123. My favorite app is a thing called iAdsense. It is a real time look into my Adsense account so that while I am out and about I can see just how much money I have made from my niche sites.

    Jason C. Maxwell

  124. chris says:

    How is streamtome not on anyones top? An app that allows you to view almost infinite pcs with just an ip address is pretty amazing. You can pick and chose what to share so it only shares things you want such as movies, pictures or music. Even spreadsheets and other work/school projects could be made viewable. Definitely worth checking out if you havent heard of it.

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