My Favourite iPhone Apps

// September 23rd, 2009 // Blog

This post is dedicated to sister Ammena: owner of a brand-spanking new iPhone. You lucky gal, māshā’Allāh. :)

I reckon that I've had my iPod Touch for a couple of years now, and in that time I have discovered some great applications – and some terrible ones! But let's stick with the goodies for now, shall we?

Islamic Apps

I'll admit, I haven't done a proper survey of all the Islamic apps available. However, my most treasured app in this respect, is certainly iQuran Pro. I have been using it for over a year now, and it became especially useful during Ramadan, alhamdulillah. As well as simply displaying the Arabic Qur'an, it also allows you to download a variety of translations, recitations (played ayah-by-ayah), create bookmarks, notes, and has a nifty search function. I purposely went for the Pro version after downloading the feature limited (but still useful) free version. I think it's important to support quality Islamic products where possible, and so had no problem with shelling out a few dollars in that respect.

In terms of prayer times, and Qibla finder, I downloaded Guidance a while ago. I don't claim it to be the best, but it works, so I kept it!

Social Apps

Facebook for iPhone and Echofon (formerly known as Twitterfon) are used frequently throughout the day, to keep me in touch with my online buddies. Echofon is free, and does the job, so I haven't bothered to experiment with the paid Twitter apps.

I also use WordPress for iPhone from time to time. It's useful for writing short posts on the go, and making quick edits, when you notice a horrible typo that must be killed immediately. It works with both WordPress.com and self-hosted WordPress blogs. Coolio!

Utilities Apps

Light is pure simplicity. All it does upon launch is display a blank white (or colour of your choice) screen, turning your iPhone into a torch. It might sound daft, but I use it almost daily!

Tube Status is an important app for Londoners who are reliant on the Underground network for daily commuting. It simply tells you the status of each tube line, regularly fetching updates from the TFL database.

Air Sharing is a great app for storing files on your iPhone, transferred from your computer via Wi-Fi, i.e., you don't actually plug in your iPhone to transfer the files. It can display the content of pdfs and certain docs, so it is also useful if you want to read files on the go.

Dictionary by the guys at Dictionary.com is amazing! Especially for someone as vocabulary-challenged as myself. I already have dictionary.com as my home page, so I was very happy to have it as an app on my iPod. It contains both a dictionary and thesaurus, and you don't even need to be connected to the net for it to work! Useful for iPod T owners when no free Wi-Fi is available.

Wikipanion allows you to easily search for content on the Wikipedia database. I don't think it's a 'must-have', as I believe the mobile version of Wikipedia that automatically loads in Safari is quite good… but it's a free app, so no real harm either way, inshā’Allāh.

Fun Apps

The largest part of the App Store has to be the Games section! I have downloaded several free games, and have even risked buying a few cheap (usually 59p) apps in recent months, as the free ones are usually quite – well – “pants”, is a word!

The exception to the free=pants rule, however, is Sol Free, i.e., a Solitaire app. This is one of the few games that I have seen other iPhone users play while sitting on the Tube. So I reckon it's quite popular. Anyway, it rocks, and it's free (last time I checked), so go for it!

Most of the following paid apps have a free version that you can download to trial the game.

The best paid app that I have ever played on my iPod – by far – is Toki Tori. I was freakin' addicted at one point! It's basically a puzzle game, where you have to manipulate certain elements on the screen to allow little Toki Tori to collect all his eggs. It sounds lame, but I loved it, and check the App Store nearly every day in hopes of an update! More levels pleeease!

The next best, and one that has been on the most popular download list for a long time, is Flight Control. The basic aim is to land as many planes as possible. They introduced local and global leaderboards, so you're not just competing against yourself, but a lot of other peeps too. I loved this game initially, but am now kinda bored of it. Once you land a certain number of planes, you realize how much time you're wasting on such a pointless activity! That's why Toki Tori is the best, because you actually feel your mind working; it may actually increase your IQ a little bit, as opposed to turning you into a plane-landing zombie.

Harbour Master is similar to Flight Control, but instead you have to bring ships in and out of harbours (wow…). I thought it was even more pointless than Flight Control after around five minutes of game play, but haven't deleted it as I paid for it!

AirPort Mania (there seem to be a lot of these aeroplane games about!) is actually quite good. Maybe even better than Flight Control (certainly cuter), but it's a game you can complete, so it'll lay idle on your iPhone eventually, as it is doing on mine.

Ragdoll Blaster is a recent find, which I quite enjoyed. You have to shoot ragdolls out of a canon, and make sure to hit the target. There are obstacles which you need to shoot out of the way in order to reach the target. The fewer ragdolls you use, the better!

Labyrinth was the first app I ever paid for. It kept me entertained for quite a while, but I haven't opened it for months. You have to get a little metal ball through various mazes without letting it fall in any of the holes. It makes great use of the iPhone's accelerometer, and I think the free version is definitely worth a look. There is a database of user-created mazes, so in a way, the fun will never end (unless you are easily bored, like me!).

Okay, I think that's all – for now. I hope you found my list useful, Ammena!

Which are your favourite iPhone apps?

7 Responses to “My Favourite iPhone Apps”

  1. iMuslim says:

    Btw, forgot to mention an important update for Flight Control, that would potentially make it a lot less tedious: now they have multiplayer mode! You can play against a frenemy via Wi-Fi or Bluetooth. However, I think this feature only works on new iPod Ts and iPhones. I have a first gen iPod T, so no luck for me… plus my geographically-close friends are iPhone-deficient. {sigh}

  2. shaz says:

    thanks for the list! i have pretty much no apps – no time to experiment so this is helpful for me! thanks

  3. mcpagal says:

    salaam! I got an iphone-esque phone with a much better camera, but I feel a wee bit left out when I see all the cool iphone apps there are… inshallah when my contract ends I’m going to try and negotiate for an iphone at the same price i’m paying right now. I’m pakistani, i’m meant to be good at haggling after all…

  4. iMuslim says:

    Wa ‘alaykum salam wa rahmatullah… was that the new LG Touch Screen, or as I call it, the LG iPhone rip-off? Well, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, I suppose. ;)

    Good luck with negotiating! The horrific pricing of the iPhone (excl. steep monthly price plans with O2), are the only reason I don’t have one. I will stick with my ageing iPod T, and my £5/month for life plan on 3G, insha’Allah. :)

  5. ammena says:

    masha’allah.. sorry I didnt comment sooner, I did comment on your FB incase you didnt notice ;) Thanks for this sis… was really useful masha’allah, i downloaded the tube map and tube status apps straight away. Then I figured out how to view all the apps without having to think of what I wanted ;) found ATM hunter which I quickly deleted after seeing the closest they gave me was half a mile away when i was stood 2 mins walk (if that) away from one… as for the comment about the pricing I just want to point out that I got a discount on the line rental and after 4 years with the same phone in Canada, I think I can cope 2 years with the iphone as it saved me forking out another 100quid alhamdulillah ;) So Im def not ‘throwing’ money away here.. well I dont think so lol :D

  6. mummyjaan says:

    Thanks for the list; do you know if there are any apps that let you edit Office documents (Word/Excel/Powerpoint) on the iphone?

  7. iMuslim says:

    @Mummyjaan… None that I’ve ever used myself. I did a quick search & found a few, but no idea if they’re of any use. Soz. :/

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