The Appcast #8: March 1, 2009 – Apps That will Stand the Test of Time

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This week’s core topic: Stands the Test of Time – Our Top 5 Apps that Stood the Test of Time.

You can find the full show notes below the cut. Episodes can be downloaded by clicking the Episodes tab above.

Intro Music: Borderline D.U. Mix  from Mixter Two – I Don’t Know What I’m Doing by Brad Sucks.

Show Outline:

  1. Introductions
  2. Reader Mail
  3. Music Match Contest (Submit an entry via admin@the-appcast.com)
  4. New Apps for the Week
  5. Core Topic: Our Top 5 Apps that Stood the Test of Time.

New Apps discussed for the week ending on March 1st, 2009:

  1. 793390 Rocketron – Free – An RSS Reader that reads to you? Sign us up. Play through the news like you would with an iPod. Definitely worth a try since it’s free and the voice even manages to escape the usual robot-like sound pitfalls.
  2. 251124 Word Fu - $0.99 – The latest from ngmoco, the guys that brought you Rolando and MazeFinger, is actually a wordgame with a bit of a twist. Spell out words using the supplied letters, earn bonuses and power-ups to help make more words, and shake the iPhone to pretend you know Kung Fu. A bit hokey, but worth a look if you are a big wordgame fan. Even for it’s simplicity, ngmoco manages to really tune up the graphics and even incorporates some subtle 3D.
  3. 207749 Instant Domain Check – Free -  Check to see if the domain you desire has already been registered by some feisty scoundrel. Taken? Then submit a backorder request and wonder if the spot will ever open up. Quick, fast, and free, Instant Domain Check is an app you never think of right away, but sometimes just want for that quick domain registration thrill.
  4. 065668 Cooking Mama – $6.99 – Though pricey, this version of the Nintendo DS hit is quite good and does create a dilemma for the Cooking Mama fan: this or the DS version? Though still very simplified, this version of Cooking Mama is just as good as the DS one even though it costs a third of the DS cartridge price. Dice, boil, and fry your way to victory with one of the surefire titles that will be one of the first games to spark the iPhone vs. DSi war.
  5. 817675 Evangelion vol. 3 Picture Stamp – $1.99 – Released as a tie-in to the new Evangelion movies, this picture stamp set is just a fun little way to spice up your regular photos. Unfortunately, it doesn’t include all the characters and pictures you’d be looking for. However, if you’re a fan, it’s worth taking a look.
  6. 900092 Sway – $4.99 – Like LittleBigPlanet’s little brother, this charming swinging-based platformer is as beautiful as it is fun. Sway has all the right elements: great graphics, very fun gameplay, and a bevy of options and unlockables. There’s a lot to do, though most of it is discovering even more challenging levels, but for the price, you really can’t go wrong. Fans of DK: King of Swing for the Gameboy Advance and DS will also possibly find themselves in love with Sway’s nicer touch-based controls.

Picks of the Week:

075666 Photokeys (Bob) – $3.99 – Need a quick menu for Photoshop but don’t want to clutter up your screen or memorize countless commands? Photokeys allows you instant access to commands by acting as an additional menu with plenty of options for customizing the menu to your tastes. Bob’s test went without a hitch.

199856 Zen Bound (Kevin) – $4.99 – An amazingly beautiful game with a unique gameplay mechanic involving twisting rope around a 3D object. Peaceful, relaxing, and still challenging, Zen Bound is easily one of the best 3D mobile games available. The rope physics were very realistic and definitely set this game apart from any other puzzle game you’ve ever seen.

Silly App of the Week:

231439 PunchBob (Kevin) – $0.99 – Punch a guy named Bob. Simply a gag choice since Kevin just couldn’t resist mentioning it because of it’s name.

588695 DeLorean Time Circuit (Bob) – $0.99 – A recreation of the dashboard from the DeLorean from the Back to the Future trilogy. Just a skinned clock, but simply neat if you just happen to own a DeLorean… Has themed sounds as well as some kooky functions.

Core Topic: Our Top 5 Apps that Stood the Test of Time

We go back to something a bit more personal and reflect on which apps we have kept with us for quite the while. Nothing too serious, just a quick look back at the apps we truly never remove from our iPhones.

Bob’s Apps that Stood the Test of Time:

731758 Easy Email – $0.99 or Free Lite version – Quick and functional is the name of the game, and Easy Email continues to want to play. Spellcheck and the notepad-esque interface make the whole process very quick and the constant updates have proven the app still has the staying power that keeps it on the iPhone.

086967 Gasbag – Free or $0.99 Pro version – Search for the best gas prices around you and even upgrade to the Pro version for an ad-free and loggable experience. The latest update gives the map interface a much-need facelift as well.

940039 Where To?$2.99 – A very graphical app that helps you find what you’re looking for. Basically, turn your iPhone into a GPS device with plenty of information about the places around you or any other place you’re interested in. Random restaurant choice has been a somewhat fun experience as well.

946910 WootWatch – Free – A great app for any Woot shopper. Easy-to-use, quick, and addicting, WootWatch brings the wonderful world of Woot! to your fingertips through this very streamlined app. Even includes an “I Want One” button for instant travel to the purchase form. A bit slow for Woot Off!s, but the shake-to-refresh is a bit nice for it.

926166 Rotary Dialer – $0.99 – Head back to the past with this phone skin that lets you remember the fun days of having to use the rotary of a phone to let Grandma know you’ll be late for supper. Though intended to be a gag, the sounds and sensation of the old phones is quite intact here.

Kevin’s Apps that Stood the Test of Time:

993459 Shazam – Free – Fingerprint music anytime and anywhere. Quite possibly now the most lauded app on the show, it still remains as one of the few apps that will never come off the phone due to it’s constant usage.

058814 Sportacular – Free – Quick way to check up on sports scores across many different leagues. Immediate and to-the-point, just the way a sports fan likes it.

712243 Wurdle – $1.99 – A quick wordgame that gets right to the action and continues to grab you for more. Tons of fun and instantly understandable for even the most novice of players, Wurdle is quite easily the most universally appealing game on the iPhone. No fancy 3D graphics or amazing music found here, just amazingly addicting wordgame action.

910350 Yelp - Free – One of the few apps that stays on because of it’s usefulness in the city. Find out the best reviewed places to eat, drink, sleep, and even have your clothes ironed. Though limited in use outside of the major metropolitan areas, Yelp has always been a lifesaver when you’re stuck in the city and looking for a good place to grab a bite.

265667 Lightsaber Unleashed – Free – Turn your iPhone into a lightsaber. Swing it and make the usual humming noises! Feel like a dork! For free!

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