iPhone Apps

Yesterday in the comments JP asked about iPhone applications that I recommend. It's still early days for iPhone 3rd party apps, but a few stand out so far.

My two most favorite applications would certainly be NetNewsWire (RSS reader) and OmniFocus (productivity Getting Things Done application), but both of those are probably only interesting if you use the Mac desktop versions. They both sync so that you can move easily between the desktop and the phone and manipulate the data in either place.

After those my favorite is the Apple Remote. If you have iTunes, an Airport Express, or an Apple TV you can now use your iPhone to control that music source. You can browse music, set volume, and if you do have an Airport Express you can select which speakers are in use. I used this over the past weekend at Game Day to control the music playing in two different rooms and it worked great. Again, if you don't use iTunes in some flavor it won't do much for you, but if you do you should definitely check out Apple Remote.

Other freebie apps that I've been impressed with are Twitterific, Yelp and Shazam. Yelp is a front end for Yelp (big surprise), and Shazam records a snippet of a song, then sends it off to some internet server and about 80 - 90% of the time it comes back and tells you what song it is. That's really cool. Mocha VNC Lite seems to work as advertised (and it can control a Mac with "Back to My Mac" turned on if you open the firewall port for it). I've downloaded but not yet tried the Wordpress app. Tap Tap Revolution seems pretty fun, but the no-name music is a bit of a bummer. Obviously if it played from your music library it would be a good bit better.

I've used FileMagnet to put a couple of PDF files on the phone and that seems decent. It isn't free, but if you want to read PDF's on the phone it's worth $5.

The only app that I paid for so far that I find disappointing is Super Monkey Ball. The camera interacts poorly with the tilt controls and the game requires you to play something like 10 levels at go without saving - which is very un-iPhone-like. If you shut it off after only five levels when you come back you need to play those five levels over again.

I just bought Cocktails today and I like it for what it does, but it seems really short on tiki recipes (it doesn't know a Shark's Tooth or a Blue Hawaiian for example). I haven't really used it enough yet to pass opinion on the database, but it looks like a nice enough application. Plus it will Twitter what drink you're making!