My 10 favorite iOS apps you (probably) don’t have

IMG_0851There are some standard apps that everyone has and loves that I’m gonna skip over here. Pandora, Facebook, Twitter, Google Maps, Instagram… But I want to share my list of slightly more obscure apps I frequently use.

  1. Find Friends – Free. This phone-tracker has two primary uses: for knowing the location of your children, significant other, or friends; or for tracking a group of people for a finite period. I went to a destination wedding recently where the bride created a temporary Find Friends group so everyone knew where everyone else was. The virtual group expired after the wedding was over. It smoothed out a lot of event logistics. You can also get a push notification when a particular person leaves from or arrives at a particular location.
  2. Navigon – $22.99+ depending on the coverage. This is my favorite GPS app. The entire map file is stored on the iPhone itself so it even works when there is no cellular signal. It also has optional (paid) add-ons that will calculate routes using traffic data ($13.99) or will alert you when you approach a speed camera ($4.99). These two features on their own have paid for this app many times over for me. Because of this I often use the app even when I know where I’m going. There are several version available for different regions of the US, the whole US, or different countries.
  3. Photosynth – Free. Microsoft’s virtual sphere photo app is loads of fun. It allows you to do more than panorama – entire spherical pictures that you can interactively browse. The app is infrequently updated and the link to Facebook often breaks down and necessitates a reinstall, but it’s still a really fun app with powerful photo stitching. Here’s a sample photo I took of Chromeo in concert at The Fillmore Silver Spring a few months ago.
  4. Reeder$2.99 iPhone / $4.99 iPad / $4.99 Mac. I’m an RSS junkie and this helps me keep up. It synchronizes with Google Reader so whether I’m reading on my iPhone, iPad, or Mac I am seeing the same content.
  5. Deliveries – $2.99. I do the majority of my shopping online and this app lets me know when things are coming in, all in one view. I can paste a tracking number or an order number from many popular sites such as Amazon or Apple, or  I can scan a barcode with your camera on a package I’m sending out.
  6. cPRO+$1.99 iPhone / $1.99 iPad. This makes searching and posting to Craigslist a breeze.
  7. Untappd – Free. This is kind of like Foursquare for beer. You can “Check In” with a beer as well as a location on Foursquare. It allows you to see what other people are drinking. The app encourages you to broaden your palate by giving you points for trying a variety of brewers and origins.
  8. Airbnb – Free. Find a place to rent or rent your place out. Prices are usually significantly better than a hotel, and you certainly get a more authentic local experience. Sign up using my referral link and we both get a $25 credit.
  9. Postagram – Free. Turn your Instagrams (or other square photos) into old fashioned postcards for $1 each. They get mailed to your recipient for you and usually arrive within a couple of days. It’s great when traveling overseas because your postcards still ship from within the US. Follow this link to sign up and both of us will get free postcards to send.
  10. Zillow – Free. Browse neighborhoods to find out what homes sell or rent for. This app taps into the Realtor database to get information on virtually every home.