Free Apps that are Worth Your Time

There are a lot of free apps available in the App Store. I’ve gone through quite a few (and have been burned on occasion) to find the free gold available in the app store. This is not a comprehensive list, just my favorite non-games.

Apps You Probably Know About

  • Wikipanion – Wikipedia interface. Easier than going through the web page version, and this version doesn’t have any ads (some of the other free versions did).
  • i.TV – An interactive TV Guide. Keep track of your favorite shows/actors, or browse the list of channels you receive for upcoming shows.
  • YPmobile – The official Yellow Pages application. This is currently sitting on my Top 4 shortcuts list…after almost a month of never using it. Good for looking up things to do in the area.
  • PhoneFlix – If you have a Netflix account, you probably have your eye on a Netflix queue manager. Note: you can’t stream Netflix movies through this (or any current) app! A huge letdown for a device that can handle it. Of course, since Netflix is recently adding streaming in Macs, the iPhone might not be too far off.

Apps You Haven’t Seen

  • Stanza – This is a must-get if the Kindle ever turned your head. Download free books directly onto your iPod/iPhone (they are all public domain, so don’t expect anything recent). Finding new books is extremely easy, as you can download them through the app’s interface. Stanza is one of the few apps I’ve seen that makes downloading new content easy as pie.
  • Frotz – If you’re into interactive fiction (Go South, Pick up wrench, etc) you must get this app. Download new books directly from the app (the interface is not as nice as Stanza, but is still pretty convenient). If you haven’t heard of interactive fiction, or are not a big fan, you should still give this a try. Text-based adventuring on a 21st century device might seem strange, but what other app gives you access to a huge collection of free gaming content?
  • Files lite – Use your iPod as a 200MB storage device. This seems to be the simplest file storage solution for the iPod/iPhone (and it is a surprise that it hasn’t been done before). Providing you have an internet connection, open the app and use the provided web address on your home computer. Once you have files uploaded onto your device, you can view Office docs, PDFs, and images. Or you can save them onto another computer.
  • ICanHasCheezburger – Simple interface for easily accessing a wide selection of macro websites. Includes I Can Has Cheezburger/ and Fail Blog. The app is a quick portal to laffs, although it does not remember your place when you close the app. As with web browsing, press and hold on a picture to save it to your device.
  • Twinkle – If you have a Twitter account, this is my favorite app for viewing the subscribed tweet list – I use this as a secondary RSS reader. Also useful for viewing nearby tweets.

Do you have some gold you’d like to share with the rest of us? List any free apps you’ve discovered that I missed.


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