Five Must-Have iPhone Apps
Article by George Norman
On 10 Nov 2008
There are several things to get excited about when talking about the iPhone – there’s the looks, the touch-screen interface, the ease of use and the processing power. When it comes to the apps on the other hand, there is no denying that they make up the most useful and entertaining part of the device. They can perform all sorts of tasks, from the banal and mundane to tackling “life’s dilemmas” as Apple puts it.

The Tune Bloodhound: Shazam


The Shazam app , which has been featured in the latest Apple iPhone ad, is a handy piece of software that just like a bloodhound will track down a melody and provide you with details such as track title, the band or artist who plays it, and available download locations. Just put your iPhone next to the speakers, and let the software do the job it was designed for.

The Virtual Guide: AroundMe

iPhone applications such as Google Earth and Google Maps are great, no one says otherwise, but they have their shortcomings when all you need is a personal guide (be it a virtual one). If for example you are in a strange city and you want to find a place to eat or somewhere to spend the night, you are better off using AroundMe. It will point you in the direction of the nearest hotels, restaurants, clubs, and even drug stores.

The Virtual Messenger: IM+

As the name suggests, this is an instant messaging program, similar to the Yahoo! Messenger program you have running on your Windows Vista system. Why do you need this particular piece of software? Well, if you want to keep in touch with all your buddies you will need an instant messaging utility that offers Yahoo!, Google Talk, MSN and even Jabber support and is capable of running at a respectable speed.

The Music Provider: FlyCast

Two things caught my eye: the fact that it is a free app, and the fact that it gives the user access to tons and tons of streaming music. What this means is that you can listen to a never-ending list of tunes without said tunes taking up precious disk space. It is similar to an online radio station, but with the added bonus of getting to skip back to a track you liked or skip past tracks you don’t (not all radio stations actually provide this feature, but there are 1,000+ online stations to go through).

The Virtual Library: Stanza

Why not put that great looking 3.5 inch iPhone display to good use, such as reading a good book. The Stanza app is the virtual equivalent of a library, allowing you to access the books you have stored on your machine, as well as granting you a library pass to an incredibly rich collection of online books. Did I mention that turning the page is done through gesture support? Just imagine you are holding a real book in your hand and pass your finger on the iPhone’s screen as if turning a page.

Tags: Apple, iPhone
About the author: George Norman
George is a news editor.
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