I’ve been a faithful user of paper-based calendars for the past 20+ years. Even as someone who is really into technology gadgets, I’ve avoided them in this part of my life to keep things simple. I never wanted to deal with the syncing disasters, battery hassles, and other issues I saw people struggle with on a regular basis. Well, I simply don’t need the paper anymore. I’ve finally found an electronic equivalent that works reliably and easily. It’s my iPhone. The iPhone has come of age. As of today, it’s even available at Walmart!
I live by my calendar. I need it to keep track of many appointments and events so it must be reliable. I have built up the level of trust with my iPhone over the last 6 months. I even use it to schedule fun in my day. I schedule times to go juggle with a friend and my oasis activities that rejuvenate me like working out at the health club. With the event on the calendar, I am more likely to complete those activities. The rejuvenating activities are just as important as my work activities because they keep me healthy and happy. I am also able to prioritize things better when I know I already have an activity that is important to me scheduled for that time.
The iPhone interface is so intuitive that even my kids totally understand it. Even my 2 year old can navigate and find any application they want without any instruction. So I got a couple of special games for them that they can use, for example, when we’re waiting for a doctor appointment. They are “ABC Animals” that shows ABC flash cards and gives them a chance to practice writing their letters and “Adventure” that includes some fun pre-school games where they can learn shapes, colors, etc.
My original iPhone investment was $200…the same as the cost of my old Motorola Razr a few years ago. I couldn’t wait to get rid of that piece of junk when my contract ran out. The size of the Razr was nice enough but the interface was awful. I was forced to scroll through up to three entries for each person in my address book just to find their phone number. Now, with the iPhone, finding a phone number is usually only a few simple finger flicks away. In addition, it seems that nearly every other day some new application becomes available that totally makes my original investment even more valuable. To those of you who are contemplating an iPhone purchase, I’m providing the lists below of all the iPhone applications I use regularly…so far.
Oh, and by the way, don’t forget that the iPhone also works as a phone!
Built-in applications I use nearly every day:
- Calculator – Handy to have with you always
- Calendar – Keeping work appointments and important events. I also share calendars with the family by using Google calendars so we can coordinate baby-sitting schedules, etc.
- Camera – Take a shot and view it in the photo album
- Clock – Time in multiple time zones
- Contacts – All contacts are entered on my computer and automatically synced to the iPhone with other important information.
- iPod / iTunes – Selected songs and podcasts I have with me always
- Mail – Email
- Maps – Turn by turn directions that follow your position and traffic info
- Phone – Use the iPhone as a phone!
- Safari – Explore nearly any internet web site
- Voice Memo – Record quick voice snippets and sync with iTunes or email them
- Weather – Get the temp and current forecast in your area
- YouTube – Watch videos
Other important applications:
- AroundMe – Find almost any important type of business around you (anywhere you are) like restaurants, gas stations, coffee shops, hospitals, parking, taxis, theaters, etc.
- YouVersion Bible – The good book with multiple versions and daily readings
- FaceBook – Keep in touch with friends and family
- Google – Voice search of the internet
- FlightTrack – Get more information about a flight and where it is than the people in the air
- Google Earth – Visit details of nearly anywhere on our planet
- GPS Tracker – Keep track of where you’ve been on a bike ride
- LinkedIn – Track business contacts
- Mobile News – Associated Press articles ready at the moment
- Movies or Fandango – See what’s playing in theaters near you
- PayPal – Send money electronically to people
- Pocket Aid – First Aid and CPR instructions ready always
- Shazam – Automatically recognizes songs on the radio just by listening a few seconds.
- Starmap or Starry Night Mobile – Identify nearly anything in the sky
- TiVo Mobile – Schedule recordings of TV programs at home from anywhere
- WhitePages – White pages phone directory
- YPmobile – Yellow pages phone directory
- Amazon.com – Very cool app that will identify books just by taking a photo of the cover
- Dominos Pizza – Order and track where your pizza is in the process
- Chipotle – Order and jump to the front of the line
- USA Today and FOX Sports – News
- Currency – Convert money amounts around the world
Just for fun:
- Cookbook – Betty Crocker’s recipes on the phone
- Aerolite Free – Asteroids game
- WildWest – Great pinball game
- Cowbell Plus – iPhone percussion instruments
- Cro-Mag – Racing game with cave-man theme
- DigiLite – Digital drum set
- GalaxyImpact – Little Brick Out for the iPhone
- iXmas Tree – Decorate your virtual tree
- Lightsaber – Star Wars saber fights
- Zippo Lighter – Virtual lighter
- iChess Lite – Play chess
- myLite – Flashlight
- Night Stand – The iPhone becomes a digital alarm clock
- Pac-man Lite – The real game from the 80s
- GalagaRemix – One of my favorite old arcade games
- Relax – Create a virtual environments anytime…campfire, mountain stream, under the sea, etc.
- RotaryDialer – The old dialing method available today
- Sol Free – Free solitaire game
- Wings – Fly over mountains and virtual scenery
- Decibel – Meter to see how loud that music is
- StopWatch – Great way to track time
- Clinometer – Ultra level. See exactly how your iPhone is positioned.
- iHeartRadio – Listen to internet radio stations easily
- LogMeIn – Control computers remotely from the iPhone
- Snap – See all the devices (printers, computers, etc.) on your local network
- Air Sharing – Copy PDF, Word, Excel and other files to your iPhone
- MobileFiles – Access your MobileMe iDisk on your iPhone
- FMTouch – Sync a FileMaker database to your iPhone
Web sites designed for the iPhone:
- Fedex Mobile – http://fedex.com/mobile – Track packages
- Google Translate – http://translate.google.com – Automatically translate foreign language phrases
- Weather Underground – http://wunderground.com – Get radar weather
- US Bank – http://m.usbank.com – Great way to bank online via the phone
- and many others…
More iPhone fun:
- Remote – Use to control slides during a Keynote presentation
- Crazy Candle – A birthday candle you can blow or shake out
- Crazy Mouth – Place in front of your mouth for some funny stuff
- EyeTricks – Optical illusions
- iMilk or iSoda – Drink virtual milk or pop
- iMunchies – Eat virtual popcorn
- Walt Disney World maps, wait times, and dining – For our family trip
(Theses lists were updated 10/3/09…since technology changes a lot.)
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