What are the First 5 Apps You Should Install on Your iPhone?

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If I were to ask you 40 years ago (1972), what device will be “king of the gadgets” in the year 2012? What do you suppose some of the possible answers would be?  The Sony Walkman? The Atari?  or maybe the Typewriter (Remember the old Radio Shack TRS-80)? I would all but guarantee you it was anything but the phone. Who knew that a phone would become the king of the gadgets, and not the Atari or the IBM 5100 Portable Computer (For those too young to remember these, Google it)? I mean, the phone, for all intents and purposes, is just a phone, right? Well, fast forward 40years to the year 2012. The Walkman has been replaced by the iPod (which is part of a phone now), Atari was replaced by Xbox, PlayStation and mobile games (part of today’s phone) and the typewriter was replaces with an ever evolving series of computers (which are part of today’s phone). Are you starting to see a pattern develop here?

Today’s phone encompasses all of these things. Gone are the days when a phone made “phone calls”, in fact, if you’re like me actually talking on your phone is the least of the things you do on it. Today’s phone not only makes calls bit it takes pictures, sends texts, surfs the internet and houses all these little programs called apps. These apps can do any range of things; from being productive to entertaining. The apps are hosted in App Stores, the most popular of which is Apples App Store; which houses somewhere around 425,000 apps and more are being added every day. If you have a smart phone, and chances are you probably do, then you have no doubt spent considerable time perusing the app store waffling between the free apps to the paid apps, to this app to that app and have no idea which one is good and which one is crap. Well I hope to clear a little bit of that up for you with this post, and point you to some of the Apps that, I think, everyone needs to have on their device.

1. Dropbox (Free)

Dropbox is a free service that can be downloaded and installed on your computers, laptops, any iDevices, or virtually any smart phone. What Dropbox does that makes it a must have app on your phone (and your computers) is it allows to have access to all of your files, pictures, videos, etc. anywhere you are. After Dropbox is installed on your ccomputers and devices, any file that you save to your Dropbox will be instantly available to your computers, iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad and even the Dropbox website! With this Dropbox app you can take any and every file that is important to you wherever you go!!! If you own a computer, and especially a smart phone, there is no excuse for not having this app installed on it. You get 2GB of storage free, and if you want more you have to purchase it. I still haven’t maxed out the free yet and I have countless files in it.

2. Evernote (Free) 

Evernote is by far my favorite app of all of all time. Evernote turns your computer, iPhone and iPad into an extension of your brain, allowing you to remember anything and everything that happens in your life. From jotting down quick notes with ideas, to snapshots and/or voice recordings; you can put it all in Evernote and have it instantly synchronize from your phone to your Mac/Windows/Linux desktop. Evernote has some awesome features; it allows you to create text, photo and audio notes, auto-sync your notes to the Web and your PC, makes text within snapshots searchable (Magical!), mark notes as favorites for quicker access, notes include geo-tagging so they can be mapped and searched. This app should be a native app that comes preinstalled on every smart phone made, it is that useful. Don’t take my word for it, go see for yourself!

3. InstaPaper ($4.99) 

Now this app is a little on the pricey side by way of apps. However, it is worth every penny. How many articles do you come across every day that you don’t have time to finish reading? This is where InstaPaper comes in, it will save web pages for later; offline reading, that’s right Offline! You can send your articles to InstaPaper and before you know it you have your own customized paper to read no matter where you are (in line at the checkout, on lunch break, at a recital, whatever). This is especially perfect for those long articles you find during the day and would like to read, but simply don’t have time right then. I know I personally, have skipped countless articles that I wanted to read, but didn’t have time right then. Even better is that InstaPaper, for most articles, strips out the pictures and presents your article in text only, and the full sized layout is optimized for iDevice screens. Since everything you download to InstaPaper Offline, you can read wherever you want. Airplanes, Wi-Fi only devices away from wireless connections, or we you are somewhere and do not want to eat into your 3G data plan. Oh yeah, did I mention that it also has a “dark mode” that makes the screen black and the words white for night reading? Well, it does. While InstaPaper might be $4.99; its $4.99 worth of pure awesome.

4. Sky Grid (Free) 

If you read News, then this is your app. I deleted all my other news apps when I found this one, because you can roll all of your news source feeds into one app plus, you can choose to only follow your interest, and weed out all the other stuff. When you first launch the app you get a big, large, bright photo grid that gives you all of the top headlines at a glance. It is ranked in the Top 10 for app news, but ranked #1 with me. I never knew getting caught up on the news could be done so quickly. You can also tweet articles, or share to your Facebook page, email, or add an Article to InstaPaper at the push of a button. Like I said, this app is free, so the worst that could happen is you don’t like it and delete it. I don’t think that’s going to happen though.

5. Angry Birds ($0.99) 

This is arguably the most addictive game known to mankind. It is simple to play, but more addictive than cigarettes…well…um…it’d be close…anyway; basically the story revolves around this group of birds that set out for revenge on the green pigs who stole their eggs. Each type of bird has a difference ability of destroying the pigs fort’s. This game will have you occupied for hours and hours; in fact, you will have to pull yourself away from it. The challenging physics-based destruction, cause the game to have a very high reply value. There is a free version out there, but it only has 9 levels or so, where the Full version has 288! If you want, go out and try the free version first, however, you could save yourself a lot of time by just going to the app store and buying the full version, because that’s inevitably what you are going to do anyway; trust me !

Well there you have it, the first 5 apps anyone should install on your phone. There will be more of these posts about different apps coming soon. However, these first 5 should keep you busy for a little while.
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