Vail Tech Bytes’ favorite iPhone apps |

Vail Tech Bytes’ favorite iPhone apps

Jessie WilliamsTech BytesVail, CO Colorado

VAIL, Colorado -In anticipation of Apple’s big new product announcement on Wednesday (the long-awaited Apple tablet?) I thought I’d switch gears to mobile phones this week, and share with all you iPhone users some of my favorite iPhone apps to date.

I don’t really consider myself much of a gamer, (unless we’re talking Rock Band!) so I don’t have a lot of games on my iPhone, but I do have a few standbys to keep me entertained in the car, airport or any down time.• Sol FreeYes, I’ll admit it, I’m addicted to playing solitaire on my iPhone. I’m not really sure what the big draw is, other than that it’s a great way to kill a little free time. Flood-it! comes in a close second.• New York Times Crossword PuzzleA constant reminder of just how limited my vocabulary actually is, but a fun, challenging game nonetheless. Have the daily NYTimes puzzles delivered directly to your iphone for a small monthly fee.Others:Some runners up include Toobz, Crash Cart, Yahtzee, Jeopardy, Tetris and Trivial Pursuit. All are good games to have on standby.

I just can’t seem to get enough of my news fix each day, and as such, I have a whole iPhone screen dedicated just to news apps.Some recommendations: AP Mobile (has a local section that pulls in news from the Vail Daily and others), Huffington Post (has a whole section dedicated to Denver and Colorado news), and the national standbys: USA Today, MSNBC, NYTimes and ABC News. For a good international perspective, check out BBCReader.For all my tech news, I turn to Tech Fuse, which aggregates the news from many of the major tech blogs such as Engadget (who also have a standalone app now), Gizmodo, Ars Technica and Mac Rumors, plus a few more.There’s also an AllThingsD app that I just discovered, which pulls in news from the Wall Street Journal tech section.Finally, I also use iCycling for the top cycling news of the day.

The Weather Channel is my main weather app, but with a lot of recent disappointment over the predicted vs. actual snowfall (you know what I mean!), I’ve also started comparing forecasts with AccuWeather and WeatherBug.

Wikipedia, IMDB (Internet Movie Database) and i.TV (TV listings) are all good ones to have at hand.I also use the AT&T Banking app and to keep track of my finances, and myWireless to keep track of my minute and MMS usage throughout the month.And finally ESPN ScoreCenter, especially now with push notifications that send me score alerts for my favorite teams.

I use the basic iTunes app to download my favorite podcasts each week (This American Life!). I’m also a big fan of FlyCast and iheartradio to listen to my favorite Internet radio stations. Finally the Apple Remote app is very handy for controlling the music playing and streaming from my home computers.

Last but not least, some of my favorite specialty apps include:• iVideoCamera – Lets you record video from your iphone, even if you don’t have the iPhone G3S.• Analytics – Works with my Google Analytics account so I can keep track of my Web site stats on the go.• DiscGolf – Logs and remembers my disc golf scores at each hole, and create a course history to show improvement.• Geocaching – An app that any geocacher must have. It allows you to see the closest caches to your current location, then uses GPS to direct you right to them.• Nike Training – Allows you to create a workout plan and then has videos on how to do each activity.• Road Trip LE – Keeps track of your gas mileage.• Packing – Helps create packing lists for all occasions (backpacking, car camping, business trips, etc.) Check items off as you pack them, and keep the lists for future use• Facebook – Access your Facebook account from your phone, and now allows you to sync your friends’ photos with your contacts.• MotionX GPS – Use this app for basic navigation and altitude checks, or record your trek and view it on google earth later.• Calendar with alerts – Never forget another meeting with the calendar app and alerts.Jessie Williams is the owner of Second October Media,, a Web development and graphic design firm in Edwards. Have a tech question you’d like answered? E-mail her at

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