Apps for iPhone: My top 10

When speaking to other mobile geeks the conversation always ends up with asking the question "which is your killer app?". I never seem to find a good answer to that question. Mainly because I have too many killer apps, but also because my killer apps are those that fit in to my own life in a perfect way. They're not sexy in any way and they seldom come with a cool design. Its all in the functionality. These conversations usually end up with me trying to explain why my calendar is so useful because it syncs to five different calendars or why taking pictures of everything with Evernote really makes my life easier. Which usually bores the living daylight of anyone and the conversation quickly switches to them showing me a new game of theirs.

This post is about my favorite 10 apps for the iPhone and naturally these are the ones I use the most and therefore have on my start screen.

iPhone startscreen

Anyway, here is my list of my top apps for the iPhone right now. I'll give a quick explanation of the apps, but I'll save the details for other blog posts.

  1. RTM (Remember The Milk)
    This app i simply amazing. It keeps track of all my to-do's and it syncs to a web application, which makes keeping track of everything easy. It even keeps track of where to do stuff. On the Android-app you can set an alarm to go off when you are near the place of the task and I expect this with be in the iPhone-app soon.
  2. Twitter
    I have a really hard time choosing my Twitter-client but right now I'm in to Twitter. I also TweetDeck, HootSuite and Seesmic installed.
  3. MobileRSS
    A free reader for keeping track of all blogs I subscribe to.
  4. Instapaper
    All links saved for reading later. All my browsers have the “Read later”-button installed and when pressed the items show up in Instapaper, either on my phone or on the web application.
  5. Evernote
    This is the app that, apart from RTM, I could not live without. I take photos of everything I have to remember and Evernote OCR-scans all text which makes it searchable for later. In combination with the desktop client this i powerful.
  6. Calendar
    I know, it’s boring including the calendar but this is where I live my life. I keep track of everything.
  7. Facebook
    Had to include this but my main social network is Twitter. But I still check in to Facebook from time to time to keep up with my friends there.
  8. Dropbox
    Download to your computer and whatever files you put in the Dropbox folder shows up on all connected computers and on your phone.
  9. 1Password and/or Passpack
    Passpack is my main place for all passwords. I actually have unique paswords for all services, and this is possible when using Passpack. Though the mobile client is slow and doesn’t work in offline mode. For this I use 1Password.
  10. RunKeeper
    I try to work out some times and RunKeeper helps me keep track of my progress.

The apps that didn't quite make it

  • iPod
    I listen to quite a lot of sound books and also I always keep a few movies in here for those moments...
  • Spotify
    Will probably be in the top 10 as soon a I have my iPhone 4 with multitasking. Right now i just don't use it on my phone.
  • Safari
    Probably the app I use the most, but always as in-browser in another app so it just doesn't qualify to the list.
  • Camera
    Like Safari I probably use this quite a lot, but often from another application.
  • OurGroceries
    Just downloaded and hardly tested but worth mentioning. When my wife gets her iPhone this app will probably kick in and simplify our shopping as well as other stuff.
  • TripIt
    Really cool app for travelling. It even has offline storage of everything you need to know for your trip. Unfortunately I don't travel that much.
  • Nordea
    The app for my bank. Quite good for other stuff too, like currency and keeping track of expenses.

Keeping track of 129 blogs

I currently subscribe to 129 blogs. As you can imagine this works up to quite a bit to read, and if I miss a day I'll probably end up with 150+ blog posts to read, since some of my subscriptions are quite productive.

My wife once asked me how I have the time to visit all these blogs. Well my answer was: "I don't". As most of you know a rss reader is essential when keeping track of many blogs. Since most blogs have quite a few comments to every post I sometimes visit the actual blog, but mostly I'm in my tool. The tool I use is Google Reader and on my iPhone I have MobileRSS. In my case Google Reader works like a charm. I've tried a few desktop applications but I always seem to come back to the web based reader.

To keep track of everything i have a quite simple system. I keep my the subscriptions in three folders named 1, 2 and 3.

In folder "1" I keep the blog posts I read every day. These are the interesting ones, and more importantly they are always interesting. I seldom scan these posting, I read them every time. Usually I'll find maybe 5 posts here every day, which makes it quite easy to read. Most of the blogs here belongs to friends or has in some other way got my attention. Interestingly enough no blogs about development made it here.

In folder "2" I keep the interesting stuff. I don’t have to read this stuff every day, but when I do I usually open every post and read a few lines to quickly determine if it's for me or not.

In folder "3" all other stuff goes. I usually scan the headers in this folder to see if the topic is interesting or not. I open some posts and read them but in the end i press "mark all as read" and I'm done.

The way I want it to work is that every blog has to prove itself to me. I usually start with putting them i "3" and if there good enough I'll just move them to "2" and so on.

Anyway, that my take on the whole blog reading issue. Do you have a better way?