Top Three iPhone/iPod Touch Apps

There are lots of apps out there now for iPhone and iPod users to choose from, and plenty of reviews within the App Store as well as on the web, so I’m not about to review any apps here. Instead, I thought I tell you about my three most used applications, and why I use them so much. So, without further ado, let’s jump in to the list:

iNewz, news readeriNewz
iNewz is a news reader application that aggregates content from a number of news sources, mostly US ones in the current version. I use it because I spend an hour a day sitting on a bus commuting (half an hour each way), and I guess I’m a secret news junkie. The news is organised into categories, with articles for each category from several sources listed in reverse chronological order. My top categories? Headlines first, always, then World News and Technology news. That normally fills a commute!

Easy Wi-Fi
I have to include Easy Wi-Fi since I spent so much time working on both the initial jailbreak version, and then this App Store version. But aside from that, I do truly find it incredibly useful and I use it almost every morning at Starbucks – handy having that free Wi-Fi account from AT&T simply for using a registered pre-paid Starbucks card. The iPhone normally latches on to the Wi-Fi as I walk in, and one tap gets me online. Not quite as convenient as the background mode the jailbroken version had, but still a lot faster than typing my user name and password into the AT&T web form every morning (and I only have a few minutes in Starbucks most mornings to buy coffee, sync email and load up the Daily Irrelevant).

Last, but not least, Truphone – the voice over IP application that has been around for other mobile phones for a while (and one I use on my Nokia N95 via its built in SIP stack). Needs Wi-Fi to work, but that’s fine by me as I’m usually somewhere where there is Wi-Fi when I need to make international calls. Combined with Easy Wi-Fi to get me online in public hotspots, this means I can keep in touch with folks around the world for very little money. I called my mother over in England while sitting outside a Starbucks in San Jose last weekend – free Wi-Fi from AT&T, Easy Wi-Fi to get me online and Truphone to make a very cheap international call.

3 thoughts on “Top Three iPhone/iPod Touch Apps

  1. Hi John, is the jailbreak version of Easy Wi-Fi still available? I don’t see it in Cydia or Installer, but maybe it’s called something different.

    My friend has one of the app store Wi-Fi finder apps and it is apparently able to not only show what signals are around you, but it can attempt to bring up a website through each one to see which ones will actually work, and then tell the phone to connect to one. If he is telling me this correctly, then it seems possible for the official Easy Wi-Fi to connect to a supported access point automatically, and that would eliminate one step in connecting to a new place.

    About VOIP, the app Fring can be used over wifi to dial and receive calls over Skype and any SIP service that can be defined without getting too weird. From the main Fring page, go to the More tab at the bottom, choose Add-ons, and then you will see Skype and SIP among the possibilities. You can define Skype and SIP at the same time, but only one SIP service can be defined. It knows about a few of the popular SIP services, and you can choose “Other” (or something like that) to define your own. It works fairly well with Asterisk, but sometimes calls won’t go through and I haven’t debugged this yet.

    One problem is once the call is dialed, it does not have any way to bring up a dialpad to send touchtones.

  2. Hello Richard,

    Yes, it is still available in the Installer (called Devicescape Connect – the old branding). If you have a jailbroken version of the 2.x firmware though, you can run Easy Wi-Fi under the backgrounder app and get the old functionality back (info is in the Devicescape forum).

    We are exploring options to see how we can manage the connection step as well, but there are some subtle issues that WiFinder doesn’t handle (nor does it need to for what it is doing).

    I do also have Fring, but I have had very mixed results using it (with Skype), so I still recommend Truphone over Fring for VoIP. Fring does have some other benefits (like IM) andI like the dialer portion giving me the option to make a cellular call or a VoIP call – that could make it a replacement for the iPhone’s dialer app if it gets more reliable.


  3. Pingback: News - INEWZ by ourLivez iPhone App Store Review by

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