As the list of smartphone applications just keeps getting longer, Apple's slogan -- "There's an app for that" -- is gaining the ring of truth. Below,
Angry Birds (
As players advance through the almost 200 levels in this game, they launch furious birds of different colors (the white ones drop bombs, the green ones fly like boomerangs) at the hideouts of enemy pigs who stole their eggs.
Beat the Traffic (multiplatform)
You get a real-time pocket-size travel report, complete with color-coded maps that reveal where the gridlock is, how fast traffic is moving around it, and how to avoid the jam.
Epicurious Recipes & Shopping List (iPhone/iPad; Android phones)
With this free cookbook app from www.epicurious.com, discover new recipes, find instructions on how to prepare your favorites, create a shopping list of ingredients, view images of most of the dishes, and read reviews.
Your to-do list becomes a fantasy role-playing game. Tasks become "quests" to be completed by your character (a dwarf, skeleton, or priestess). Succeed, and your avatar earns gold.
ESPN ScoreCenter (iPhone/iPad; Android phones)
Monitor scores and stats live, or program the app to track vital information about your favorite teams.
Flight Control (
In this game, you earn points by successfully landing helicopters and airplanes on runways, aircraft carriers, and other tough spots.
Free Flash (iPhone 4)
It's a no-frills app that turns your camera flash into a flashlight.
Google Goggles (iPhone/iPad; Android phones)
This feature of the Google Mobile App (which gives you localized and voice-activated search results) lets you snap pictures of your surroundings and, effectively, "Google" them. Find out whom a statue depicts, say, or scan a book's cover to learn its latest
Press a button to drop a GPS point wherever you park your car and a map will lead you back there if you lose your way.
The mobile app version of the popular local deal-disher website www.groupon.com uses GPS to locate you and pass along daily coupons for food, clothing, and activities. Cashiers can input a code or scan the coupon from your phone.
Gym Buddy (
Use it to track your reps, weight used, and cardio activity. You also get feedback on your strength gains and can record your own body weight over time.
Snap a picture, transform it with a variety of retro and artsy filters, and share it almost instantly via
Magic Piano (
Everyone from beginners to piano virtuosos can perform by following blinking rays of light. Play solo or in a virtual duet with a random partner from across the globe.
Mint.com Personal Finance (iPhone/iPad; Android phones)
Money-managing website www.mint.com has adapted its simple interface and easy-on-the-eyes budget software for mobile use. Sync Mint with your bank accounts to monitor your money in real time, set and track your budget, and check your investments.
Monkey Preschool Lunchbox (
A virtual monkey helps children ages 2 to 5 play six games that develop their knowledge of matching, shapes, and counting, among other skills.
People with a
NextBus DC (
This GPS-based app tells commuters and tourists when the next bus on a given route in
Pandora Radio (multiplatform)
Plug in the name of an artist or song and Pandora will find similar songs and performers and create a personalized "radio station" for you.
RunKeeper Free (iPhone/iPad; Android phones)
RunKeeper logs how far you run and calories burned, and plots a map of your route. The data are also sent to www.runkeeper.com, where you can chronicle your running history. RunKeeper Pro
Place your mobile device near the source of music you don't recognize and Shazam will record a 30-second bit and search for the title and artist on the spot. Use it free five times a month, or upgrade to Shazam Encore
Siri Assistant (iPhone/iPad)
Your voice-controlled "personal assistant" finds restaurants and makes reservations, pulls up local events and movies, and even books cabs. A voice recognition system allows the app to adapt to your interests over time and suggest restaurants and movies that fit your tastes.
Read reviews of local fare to pick a restaurant, or shake your device to let the "slot machine" pick one for you. If you want, you can specify location, cuisine, and price.
The Weather Channel (multiplatform)
View interactive maps and radar activity, or tune in for live Weather Channel broadcasts.
Words With Friends Free (iPhone/iPad)
Face off remotely against your friends or the game itself in this digital take on Scrabble. Users can participate in several matches at a time and save games for days, so no more twiddling your thumbs while your opponent mulls a move. For
XLR8R Scion City Guide (iPhone/iPad; Android phones)
This travel guide points you to hip spots and events in cities it covers (more than a dozen so far), based on reviews and picks from the folks at
Available at Amazon.com:
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- 6 Essential Rules for Safe Online Shopping
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- Ultimate HDTV HD Television Buying Guide
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- Technology Opens Doors for Investors
- The Art of Self-Marketing Online
- Is Your Next Job a Click Away?
- Archiving Twitter Tweets: Dumbing Down Journalism
- These Financial Blogs Are Worth Your Time
- iPad Launch: Perils of the iPad
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- M.B.A. Programs Are Biting Apple's iPad
- Democracy in Cyberspace
- The Digital Disruption
- Bashing Bosses on Social Media
- New Applications Turning Cell Phones Into Medical Devices
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- Nobel Winner Right About Risks of e-Books
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