My favorites from the App Store 2008: Looking back.

24Dec08

This year was when Apple introduced the App Store for the iPod Touch and the iPhone. Not being able to sum up all the money for an iPhone plan, I decided to go the iPod Touch way, and have been (until now) a happy camper with it. The App Store has a wide variety of applications raging from very serious business type ones, to gaming ones, to … “pull my finger” ones.

Nevertheless, here is a list of the applications that I have downloaded and enjoyed the most throughout this year.

Ambiance

For only 99 cents, Ambiance does something that I had been waiting for, for a long time. Basically it gives you a list of sounds that you can play. This might sound simple, but works perfectly for people like me who need to block out outside noise, but can’t rely on music, because it will distract them. This way, for example, you can just listen to thunder, the rattling  of a train, or my favorite: pink noise (which basically sounds like high pitched TV static). itunes-store1The price for this application is very reasonable, and it brings a vast number of sounds, including natural ones (such as rain, streams, creeks etc.), artificial ones (machines, trains, fans etc) or noise one (pink noise, blue noise, violet noise, etc.)

In total, I had only very few problems with the app, all related to updating it, but otherwise it has helped me immensely  when trying to focus on work in rooms where everybody is talking. Ambiance also doesn’t look too shabby. It features a nice clean interface that only focuses  on what you want to do: Play and switch between sounds.

Fring

Fring brings several things to the iPod Touch or iPhone that have been missing: Chat and Skype. Although Chat clients like AIM already existed on the devices, Fring lets you log in with almost every chat client there is, including: AIM, MSN, Y!Messenger, GTalk, ICQ and more. Additionally, it finally brings VoIP to the iPhone. Sadly, the abillity to Skype is limited to the iPhone because of the iPod Touch’ missing speaker. Nevertheless you can hear the person speak if you call someone fringfrom the iPod Touch… you just can’t respond.

Fring does have quite a few bugs and crashes at times, but it has been a real life saver when recently my MacBook broke and I had to contact a few friends over IM. Oh and, to top it all off, Fring also serves as a handy Twitter client (although there is better ones available for the iPhone/iPod Touch)
So… how much would something like this cost? This is the surprising thing, fring is absolutely  free!

Guitar Rock Tour

Ok. Let me be honest. I downloaded this application in a rush, and misread the title as part of the “Guitar Hero” series. But when I found out it wasn’t I was actually surprised. The game is quite good and works like every “Guitar XYZ” guitargame out there. Notes appear in rhythm  of the song, and you have to tap them, very similar to the Tap Tap Revenge games. The difference to TTR, is that in this game you can choose between Guitar and Drumset, giving you four strings in guitar mode, and two drums and one cymbal in drum mode.

The game is extremely stable and provides solid fun. It has somewhat of a story of a band getting famous and has pretty ok music available. There is, however, two downsides to the game: First off, the price. in the US store, the App costs 5.99 dollars. This is somewhat still reasonable for a mobile app, but still a pretty chunk of money if we compare it to other games. The biggest turn off for the game is however the loading times. It takes me about six minutes just to start playing a song in career mode. Boring!

But the game in itself is fun, runs stable and is something good to play on a long flight (which is where I’ve mainly tested it out).

Moto Chasemotor

This game is simply awesome. Beautiful 3D graphics for a mobile device, it gives a real feeling of speed, well implemented use of the motion sensor and an ok soundtrack. Also, this game was developed by one of my favorite semi-indie companies: Freeverse. The game is even playable for nongamers because of its user friendly controls. Also, the game shines with a price of only 99 cents! A must have app for the iPod Touch or the iPhone!

Todo

Todo is basically what the app is called: a to do list. It is very easy to set up and has replaced my calendar  in general, since it is also able to sync with Remember the Milk. Adding new tasks is very easy and quick, and even lets you add attendees ortodo locations to the task. Another interesting feature is “special task” in which you can set the task to either “call, go to website or email” followed by a contact, a website or an email address. If the task is then later tapped, the device will automatically go into call mode, web browser, or email mode. The app also lets you customize on how you want to strike out completed tasks (my favorite being with a big red “DONE” stamp), including many styles raging from formal to childish.

The app is also very stable, and has never crashed on me once. The only thing I’d like to see added to it, would be syncing with the 10.5 iCal to do list. The only downside to the app is its price of 9.99 dollars, making it the most expensive one on this list. But I will gladly pay this price for an application that has redefined the way in which I get things done.

Out of the 47 apps I have downloaded this year, these five we’re definitely  my favorites and most used ones. Runner ups include: Twitterrific, Wordbook: A dictionary and Thesaurus of the English language, Tris, last.fm, Tap Tap Revenge: NIN Edition.

Now happy holidays everyone.

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One Response to “My favorites from the App Store 2008: Looking back.”

  1. 1 agk1997

    cool hey are you going to do another one?
    Ps. please come and coment my blog 🙂 😮 🙂


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