Apple’s new mobile apps are amazing

Gaming Music Technology

Apple Apps Store screenshot

Apple boosted the capabilities and usefulness of the iPhone and iPod touch last Friday with the release of third-party applications. The App Store on iTunes has more than 800 native applications, including over 200 offered for free. Most of the apps cost less than $10. Here are a few that I’ve downloaded and really like.

During the opening weekend, customers downloaded more than 10 million applications for the new App Store. I downloaded about 20 myself and while some of them were duds, others are fantastic.

This is a FREE application that turns your iPhone or iPod touch into a Star Wars lightsaber. Yeah, it’s as cool as it sounds. Change the color of your lightsaber and swing it around to hear lots of different sound effects. The effects are tied into your motions so reliving memorable scenes from Star Wars is much easier now. This application has a geek factor of 10, so you must get it. Plus it’s free!

iphone, software 2.0, applications, Apple website

Another great FREE application. This one turns your mobile device into a remote control for iTunes and/or Apple TV. The remote application works with your Wi-Fi network and taps into your personal library of music and movies. Sweet.

This FREE application kind of blows my mind. Basically when you hear a song on the radio or anywhere else and want to know the track name and artist, this application will tell you within seconds. I’m not sure how it works but it’s extremely effective and accurate. I’ve been testing it with obscure indie music and it identifies the band and name of the song every single time.

Another FREE application is Midomi, which does the same thing as Shazam except you can also sing the song into the device’s microphone and it will find the information. For a music fan like me, this is some of the coolest technology I’ve ever seen.

Super Monkey Ball
This video game utilizes the accelerometer (a device inside the iPhone and iPod touch that senses motion, vibration, and shock) to guide a little monkey in a transparent ball through mazes and puzzles. Gather points and reach your goal within the time limit and you win. The graphics are great and the functionality is amazing and reminiscent of Nintendo’s Wiimote. It costs $9.99 and it’s a blast, even if people look at you funny when you play it.

Another 3D video game with superb graphics and an impressive physics engine. Direct animated streams of flowing liquid from the starting point to the destination using various tools like bumpers, sliders and sponges. Simple and fluid gameplay wins the prize here. This game was voted “Best iPhone Game” at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference this year and I can see why. It’s easily worth $9.99.

There are many more cool applications available at the iTunes App Store. Check them out today to see where mobile technology is at and where it’s going.

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Scott Kirchhofer
One of Nerdvana's founding bloggers, Scott Kirchhofer is a graphic artist and designer of the Nerdvana logo, as well as a gamer and comic book movie fan.