iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Click to viewThere are a total of 552 different apps in the iPhone App Store right now. We're going to do live impressions of the best ones (and some really, really lousy ones if they're interesting enough). UPDATE: It's over! More at our iPhone App coverage..

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Twitterific: Works just like the desktop version of Twitterific (it gives you access to Twitter), and also uses the iPhone's location-aware features to geotag your tweets. What it doesn't do, like Twinkle, is give you a feed of Twitter users from around you. It does, however, let you attach photos to pics and let you know if your friends Tweet from a nearby location. Overall, pretty good. Ad-supported version is Free; Ad-free version is $10.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

PhoneSaber: Lightsaber application similar to the one on Installer.app. Five choices of iPhone colors and slightly better accelerometer detection for better lightsaber sounds. Free.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Midomi: Song Recognition App that actually works well enough to know when it's being Rickrolled. Free

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

iTunes Remote: Remote control your iTunes and iTV. It's very, very good, and can even rate songs directly from the phone. Pretty much the perfect iTunes remote. Free.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

NetNewsWire: Similar to the RSS Reader on the desktop, which we use daily, NNW on the iPhone lets you read RSS feeds. It doesn't scale images like the web-based Mac RSS reader, so you're going to have to do a bit of panning and scrolling. Other than that, no real complaints. It even syncs with your NNW online account so you can keep your desktop feeds and iPhone feeds the same (in terms of knowing what you already read). Free.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Google Mobile: Location aware searching with auto-suggest, contacts searching as well as local business search (typing in pizza gives you an option to search for pizza near you). Unfortunately, as Lifehacker pointed out, it only searches your contacts, not your calendar or email. One step at a time. Free.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Yelp: Pretty much exactly the same features as the online yelp.com portal, but in a readable format for your iPhone. Search for pizza places, coffee shops, bars or gas stations and you'll be able to check out its hours, the location, the phone number and read reviews. You can drill down from the home screen to Restaurants, Bars, Coffee & Tea, Banks, Gas & Service Stations or Drugstores, or just type in whatever you want. Everyone should download it just to have. Free.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Facebook: Just like the iPhone-customized Facebook webpage, except crashier (crashed when I tried to view the friends list the first time). You can search your friends, do Facebook chat (nice), view your messages and do everything else you could do on the web-based portal. It just crashed when I tried to view my profile too. Free.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Pandora: Your standard internet radio-you pick an artist you like, it recommends similar songs which you then rate to hone its selections. Like always it's better for well-known artists, but its explanation for why certain tracks were picked ("intricate melodic phrasing, a clear focus on recoding studio production, heartbreaking lyrics") are priceless. Pandora claims CD-quality but several tracks sounded compressed. A plus is that streaming works well with very little lag even over EDGE. Album art comes in with that nice page effect; good thing, because that's all you'll be seeing since the app can't play in the background. Free. – John Mahoney

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

IGN Reviews: Easily get IGN game reviews on the go, either by searching for the game title or browsing a list of recent reviews. If you don't trust IGN for reviews, it's not a huge help, but it does give you a decent idea of what's good and what's not if you're at the game section of Best Buy looking for something to take home. Free.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Save Benjis: Think Pricegrabber or Google Products for the iPhone. Search for a particular product you want and it will throw up a list of prices from various retailers. Useful for going shopping and not knowing whether the TV you're buying will be cheaper online (it usually will be).

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Mixmeister: Allows users to perform scratches over the music in their playlist using one of ten available vinyl scratch sounds. I'm not a DJ, but it was easy to pick up and get a decent scratch going right away. Bottom line: it's fun. Free. – Sean Fallon

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

MotionX-Poker: An addictive dice and poker game that shakes virtual dice by actually sampling your shake of the iPhone and simulating the roll. It's the best original game for the iPhone yet. $5 – Brian Lam

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Weight Track A weight log of how much you weigh every day that syncs w/ the website, but also gives you a history of your weight loss. Pretty much just a fancy alternative for a pen and pencil, but not bad if you're trying to lose some weight. Comes with sluggish graphics and animations. Free.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

AIM: It's as solid as you'd expect, supporting away statuses, marking contacts as favorites so you can easily find them, groups, away messages and saved messages while you're away from the app. Because background IM notifications won't be here until September, you'll have to go into the app to check whether or not you have new messages. Still, it's good that you don't lose any. Oh, and that really annoying traditional AIM sound is still here and is still super freaking annoying. Don't see a way to turn that off. But there is a system option to sign off when you exit. Free.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

MySpace Mobile: I have never used MySpace Mobile on another platform, but I can say that the version for the iPhone is very solid. It ran smooth and provided easy access to every option you could find on the regular site. It sure as hell won't make me want to use MySpace again, but addicts who have an iPhone will undoubtedly be thrilled. Free. – Sean Fallon

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Whrrl: Think Yelp, but more-map based and social networking-like. Go to your current location and you can see markers signifying places of restaurants or stores. Click on them to see reviews, write reviews, or place markers saying that you've been there, wanted to go there or that you're there now. This could be cool if you have enough friends using it, but otherwise you're playing around with strangers. Free.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Tiny Violin: A virtual "world's smallest violin" to play to whiners. It plays two tunes which get old fast. Much like the idea itself. $1. – Brian Lam

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Bejeweled 2:If you're a fan of the Bejeweled game, you will love this iPhone version. There are two different game modes, Classic and Action. The only difference in between the two is Action mode has a time limit. Game play works as it should, you touch a jewel you want to move then touch the surrounding spot you want it to move to. There's a Hint feature that will advise you to the best jewel to move. The game uses full use of the iPhone's accelerometer, allowing play at any angle. The graphics and sound FX are great, and overall gameplay is smooth without any problems. $10. -Chris Mascari

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Box Office: Very simple, incredibly useful-gives you a full list of movie showtimes sorted by name, your location (manual zipcode entry or GPS/celltower reading) or Rotten Tomato rating and kicks you to Fandango to buy tickets. So much better than hitting Google for showtimes in Safari. Free. -John Mahoney

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Dial 0: A directory of service 800 numbers with instructions on how to reach a real person for each one, all of them I tried being some variation on "press 0 over and over again." Kind of handy to have all the numbers you might need in one place, but not fantastic. Free. -John Mahoney

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Band: Holy Crap this app is fun. There are five different instruments that all play in landscape mode: Rock Kit, Funky Drummer, Bassist, Grand Piano, and 12 Bar Blues. It's able to record every instrument one track at a time, and each time a new instrument is recorded it replays what's already been recorded. Basically you can make a complete musical masterpiece one instrument at a time. There's even audience sounds for added ambiance. While it has the ability to save all your recordings, sadly there is no way to get those recordings off the iPhone. $10. -Chris Mascari

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

World 9: Start the app and put it in your pocket. As you run and jump it makes Super Mario brothers noises. Free and awesome. -Brian Lam

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Shazam: Will also identify songs through the iPhone's mic-doesn't handle humming and singing as well as Midomi, but is tops at picking up ambient background music. -John Mahoney

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

AOL Radio: Features over 200 stations spanning more than 25 genres of music and over 150 local radio stations from across the US. You can bookmark favorite stations, artists and even link up to iTunes or AOL music when you find a song you like. All-in-all it works well. The sound quality is good, its easy to navigate and you can control the volume right in the app. It also stops playing when you remove your headphones. You can't run it in the background, however. Free. -Sean Fallon

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Sketches: The best drawing and photo mockery tool for the iPhone. You can choose different photo or solid or map backgrounds and drop various icons or draw on images and export them out. No text tool. A little slow but worth $8.-Brian Lam>

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Comic Touch: Overlay text bubbles on images, and warp faces. Unlike the Sketches app, it has a text tool, but that's it. $5.-Brian Lam>

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Crazy Eye: Yeah, this is a program with 10 animations of different eyeballs (dragon, pirate, etc) that switch and move around. You're supposed to hold it up to your face and it's supposed to make you look like a monster or something. It gets old in about 1 minute and costs a buck. -Brian Lam

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

AP Mobile News Network: A great way to browse the wires for news, photos and videos (really reminds me in a way of the presentation on the Wii, sans the spinning globe sadly). Videos kick you to YouTube. But am I the only one that still remembers AP promising some kind of game-changing user-submitted news submission process at WWDC? That seems to be missing in this version, at least. Free. -John Mahoney

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Mosquito: This is an audio/motion game, where you listen to a mosquito buzzing and when it gets close, you swat it by swinging your iPhone. Clever, but for $2, there isn't enough pay off. -Brian Lam

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Urbanspoon: If you're hungry but don't know where you want to eat, Urbanspoon makes finding a restaurant pretty fun. It's like a slot machine, listing neighborhoods, cuisines and price ranges in the three columns. When you shake the iPhone, it spins the wheels, delivering a random restaurant to you. You can lock on any or all three of the columns to get something more specific if you want, and clicking the restaurant name brings you to more info about it. Could be fun if you aren't the pre-planning type. Free. -Adam Frucci

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Etch-a-Sketch: The Etch-a-Sketch game is essentially a doodling app, allowing you to draw free-form with your fingers on the touchscreen, changing the colors and other such things using the controls at the bottom. If you're a purist, you can use the knobs, but that's just as annoying as it is when you're using the real thing. As you can see by my masterpiece above, doing it freehand lets you use separate lines and you can really make great stuff that you can then send to your friends/boss. Just like with a real Etch-a-Sketch, you erase simply by shaking. $4.99. -Adam Frucci

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

NY Times Viewer: Basically the same as the AP viewer-but seems a little more clunkily implemented (it's slow, images don't always load, crashed a few times during test). Not as much video. But still a nice way to grab news for reading offline. Free. -John Mahoney

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Telegram: This is the only app I didn't buy before writing a review. The $10 app promises to send voice messages between people on your friend list or email. I call it expensive visual email. -Brian Lam

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

iZen Garden: Ok, I lied, I didn't review this either. Here's a Zen rock garden game for $8. Last time I checked rocks and dirt were free, so fake rocks and dirt should also be free. -Brian Lam

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Graffitio: This is supposedly a location aware app that allows you to leave virtual message boards according to your location. You can go to a restaurant and say, "the eggs are great!" and the next user. It's free but I wasn't impressed yet. -Brian Lam

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

South Park Imaginationland: Help Butters through Imaginationland by making him jump on mushrooms, collect rainbows, and fly. It's even worse than it sounds; the controls suck and by the time I figured out how to play, I was already bored. Still, the sound effects are great and I love South Park, so let me know when there's a Fingerbang game. $10. -Benny Goldman

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Battle of Waterloo: This is a choose your own adventure text game. About the battle of Waterloo. "Join the Infantry!" or "Lie Down and Take Cover!" Either way, "Save Your $4 Bucks!" $4 -John Mahoney

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Routsey San Francisco: Basically a Next Muni app for your iPhone. You select the SF Muni line you are interested in, and based off your location it will show you the closest stop with arrival times. For some reason the app displays the schedule for the closest stop only. So there is no way to check info for a stop you are not near. $3. -Chris Mascari

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

LifeGame: Based on Conway's Game of Life, this must be the easiest game ever; simply press play, and it runs itself. Watch and be mesmerized as patterns of black dots form into... something. We're still not quite sure what we're watching, but it looks sweet, like a binary iTunes visualizer. Make and play your own patterns for extra fun. Free. -Benny Goldman

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

MPG: MPG lets you keep track of how often you fill up your tank and how much you're spending on gas, just in case you somehow forgot. It's slow as hell on the phone we're testing it on, even though it's a pretty simple, but that might just be because we've overloaded this poor iPhone with apps. When it does work, it lets you keep track of your MPG from tank to tank. If you're working on hypermiling, you can find out just how efficient you've been since the last fillup and see how much you've cut back on your driving. $0.99 -Adam Frucci

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Zen Pinball: Rollercoaster is a pretty straightforward pinball game. The graphics are nice, and it's pretty smooth. Essentially, you tap the right side of the screen for the right bumper, the left side for the left bumper, and flick on the ball release to fire another ball. You can nudge the table by shaking the phone as well. It's fun enough, but you'd be hard pressed to find this exciting for more than a few minutes. $4.99 -Adam Frucci

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Bomberman Touch: The Legend of Mystic Bomb: The developers who totally nail traditional d-pad-plus-two-buttons controls for iPhone games will do everyone a favor-sadly, Bomberman hasn't. Your thumb blocks your Bomberman more than it should. Plus after the first level anyway, gameplay is too slow-not nearly frantic enough to rival the classics. $8. -John Mahoney

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Aqua Forest: This water moving game uses both the touchscreen and accelerometer of the iPhone for controls. With five different categories, Tilting, Touch, Drawing, Warm/Cold, and All Functions there are 50 different puzzles that require either tilting, touching or both. There is even a Free mode, where you can create your own little atmosphere of stuff like water, fire and ice, and then by tilting/shaking the iPhone you can mix it all up. -Chris Mascari

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Mobile Flickr: Full-featured Flickr app, you can browse your photos by sets, tags, and more. Photo browsing is comparable to the iPhone's built in browser, and you can even assign a picture to a contact. It was slow to take pics and save them, but uploading to Flickr over Wi-Fi was fast. The only problem? The picture was upside down on Flickr! $3. -Benny Goldman

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Exposure: This app is just designed for looking at Flickr pics, and has no upload feature. It shows recent pictures taken by others near your location which is cool, but browsing was slow and it only shows one picture per line. Skip this app, it's worth shelling out the $3 for Mobile Flickr, especially when Exposure Premium costs $10 and only removes an ad banner. Free. -Benny Goldman

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

CityTransit: The undisputed king of the NYC subway map apps. It's the only one with the officially licensed maps, it'll plot your nearest subway stations on a Google Map for easier navigation, includes service advisories, includes LIRR and Metro North as well as an antique map, looks beautiful-does it all. And at $2.99 it's the cheapest-don't touch the other two, especially the $15 one. $3. -John Mahoney

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Alarm Free: Alarm Free is a pretty simple, and pretty stupid, app. Basically, it's a picture of an alarm. If you shake your phone, the alarm goes off and makes an annoying noise. Touch the screen to make it stop. Apparently,
it's designed as a self-defense program, and you're supposed to hold it up to an attacker to scare them off. If you hold this up to an attacker, they will steal your iPhone, then probably give you an extra hard beating for assuming they were dumb enough to be scared by flashing lights on your phone. Free. -Adam Frucci

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

GuitarToolKit: A companion app for your guitar that has many different tuning pre-sets (it detects sound via your iPhone's mic), standard tone generation, a metronome and chords. Tuning my bass guitar that I've been too lazy to tune for a year and a half was fast and easy, and the tone generation was useful to remember which note each string was supposed to be. Chords and metronome will be great when I get around to playing it again. $9.99 is about the price of a cheap tuner, but this is even better since you have your iPhone with you always.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Sudoku (The EA Version): There are an infinite amount of ways to make a Sudoku game, some of which are fast and easy, some of which are good and well thought out. This is definitely the latter. EA shows off its decades of game experience with slick menus, smooth animations, good touch sensitivity and even an opening intro. There's even Japanesey background music to help you concentrate. The game itself has intuitive controls as well-intuitive for entering numbers that is. $7.99. Not too steep.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Scrabble: EA's version of Scrabble supports playing against the computer or multiplayer, but only in the sense that you take your turn and pass the phone around. No wireless gaming, which is something we would have liked. Otherwise, there's quite a bit of polish, including a slightly over-long intro movie and the ability to drag letters from your tray into the correct slot. You can play with a grand total of four friends, which is great since each one will be able to chip in $2.50 for this somewhat steep price. $9.99.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Bank of America Mobile Banking: Lets you access your account information to see recent statements, transfer money or find BoA locations. This sounds like it has great potential if it were developed al in the iPhone's UI, but only the login procedure is. The bulk of the application is just their mobile banking web page, which looks really ugly, and doesn't fit in with the iPhone's UI style at all. It's free, but we wouldn't use this unless you really needed to see if some transfer came through while you're outdoors. BoA needs to go back and re-do everything correctly.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

YPMobile: Free Yellow Pages access app that can use your current location to find whatever it is you're usually looking for in the Yellow Pages. Each entry has a star rating and its distance from you. You can also look up events, make a custom list of your own "plans", or add a business to your favorites. It's free and should be quite useful.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Enigmo: It's the same physics-based game where you used various objects to deflect water and lasers from a starting point to an ending point that people have been playing on the Mac for years. The graphics aren't great for the Mac, but they're perfect for the iPhone. Everything runs smoothly and dragging objects around feels natural. You'll have to do a bit of scrolling around because the screen isn't quite as big as you'd like, but it's definitely a fun game. $9.99.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Jared: A stupid yellow face that sings at you. Good thing this is free, because it gets old fast.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

WeatherBug: It's like the default Weather app, but trades slick brevity for ugliness. However, with that ugliness comes a whole lot more information, like the heat index, humidity, dew point, rain amount, wind speeds and wind direction. There's also radar, which didn't actually work for us for some reason, and cameras, which you can use to spy on the high schools and elementary schools that have weather cameras installed. Wait, this sounds kinda pervy. Do you really need all that information? Probably not. It's free though, so if you're some kind of curious monkey, here you go.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Currency: A quick currency converter that shows how much one amount (default s dollars) is in 9 other currencies of your choice. Easy to use and useful when either traveling or when you have to convert money for some reason. Free!

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

RotaryDialer: The idea is good-an old school rotary dialer that you use via touch-but the execution sucks. Where's the noise that a rotary dialer makes??! Seriously? You're going to make this app without that noise? Go back and do this again. Free, but disappointing.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Trism: A sliding puzzle game that's slightly similar to Bejweled, but actually uses the iPhone's acclerometer to detect which direction is down. This affects gameplay by changing which direction triangles fall when you've made a match. For $4.99, it's a pretty sweet game.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Jott: It records voice memos and converts them into text notes. Swipe a task after you complete it, and it strikes through the words. I'm more likely to keep track of tasks now that I can speak them instead of tapping them in on the keyboard, but for Jott to be consistently useful they must improve speech recognition and recording length, add more of the features offered in their phone-based service, and send crossed out notes to the trash. Free. – Benny Goldman

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

GoLearn Fitness Plus: This fitness app combines trainer videos that gives you tips about exercising at the gym, running, hiking or cycling. Each workout comes with a demonstration so you know you're doing it right, plus has a log tracker so you can enter in your reps or your miles/time for running and hiking. At $19.99, the "Plus" version incorporates all the other workouts of the four individual versions at half the total price. An hour with an actual fitness trainer like our Sean Fallon costs more than $19.99, and they won't even show you what to do all the time or remember every set you've ever done. There's also a home workout if you're not really the gym-going type. Seriously, $19.99 is cheap for getting in shape and not dying early.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

eBay: A basic looking but extremely well rounded eBay app for the iPhone. By signing in you have the usually My eBay options of displaying what is being watched, sold, etc. What makes this app amazing is its iPhone specific eBay item / page browser. Scrolling through listings is easy and loads fast. Once at an item age, the iPhone displays the most important information with links to bidding, buying, watching, description, and pictures. The pictures page has a gallery style display, which is very nice. Free. – Chris Mascari

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

PayPal: This app is pretty limited and doesn't feel like a finished product. With only two real features, ability to check your PayPal balance or send money, this app is kinda useless. Free. – Chris Mascari

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Expenses: Expenses by Nexonia is a free download, but it actually isn't free. Super lame. You have to pay $10 a month to their subscription service, which isn't worth it unless you're really heavy into expenses for your company and they don't already have a system in place, you can easily keep track of your expenses with the default notes application. $10 a month = no thanks.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Cro-Mag Rally: This game is pretty fun but definitely takes some time to get used to. It's basically Mario Kart for the iPhone with a caveman theme. Steering uses the iPhone accelerometer and actually works well once you get the hang of it. There are 9 different race tracks and 11 different vehicles to drive, which combined with the superb graphics, makes this game a good time. $10.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog


CowToss: The self-proclaimed worst iPhone app ever, CowToss lets you bounce a static animation of a cow up and down on your screen. That's it. Shamefully overpriced at $0.99, unless electronic irony is your thing. - Dan Nosowitz

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog


iMilk: This little app uses the iPhone's motion sensor to tell when the phone is being tipped, like a glass. So if you tip the phone forward, the "milk" inside will drain out pretty realistically. If you shake the phone, it'll foam up like milk. A fun show off app but pricey at $2.99. - Dan Nosowitz

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

iPint: Just like iMilk, only with a more "mature" substance, a 3.5-inch tall glass of beer. Definitely worth the free download, though you must be 17 to order. - Dan Nosowitz

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Crazy Mouth: Similar to Crazy Eye, but with animations of mouths like a robot and a cheerful whistler. The animations are a little more elaborate than Crazy Eye and a little more entertaining. Worth the $1 if you've got it to toss around. - Dan Nosowitz

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Banner Free: Turns your phone into a scrolling LED-style banner. I can see this becoming annoying pretty quickly, when someone downloads it and only communicates with the outside world via scrolling banner. Still, it's fun for now, and free. -Benny Goldman

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Shakespeare: The complete works of Shakespeare condensed into a ~3MB app. Adjustable font size and easy to navigate menus are good, but I'd like to see search and highlighting capabilities. It's free, which is a refreshing change from so many other public domain books that are going for $1 in the app store. -Benny Goldman

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

G-Park: G-Park uses the A-GPS to mark where your car is parked. When you want to return to the spot, press a button for turn-by-turn directions. If you constantly get lost in the parking lot, it's worth the $1. -Benny Goldman

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Mindwarp: "Duuude! Stare at this trippy swirly picture for 30 seconds and then, like, check out your hand! It's insane!" Sorry, I ran out of whatever drug I needed for this a long time ago. $1 -Benny Goldman

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Scribble: A simple drawing application with four colors and one brush size. Pictures can be saved to your photo library, but can't be edited once you leave the app. Not the best sketching app we've seen, but it's the most free. -Benny Goldman

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Frisbee Golf: This game takes the only good part of playing disc golf-going outside, maybe drinking a beer-and ditches it. Too hard to aim, too much unnecessary 3D and not very fun. To the hippies that would buy this: You're better off saving your money for what you normally spend it on. $3. -Benny Goldman

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Loopt: A location based social network app that will display what your friends are doing and where they're at. There are a slew of features like uploading pictures to show what you are doing and even integrated Yelp! reviews on the map. Overall the app works great and is pretty fun but will drain your battery like a motherfucker. Free. -Chris Mascari

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Cube Runner: Cube runner follows the Monkey Ball style of using the accelerometer for tilt-based controls to navigate your...um...arrow through a drab-looking mess of cubes. It's intuitive and fun, but once you get tired of chasing the high score, there's little reason to go back to it. Free. -Adrian Covert

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog


Tetris:Let's be honest - Tetris isn't exactly the most ambitious project for a company like EA Games. That's probably why the company's iPhone port is a little overdone. The basic gameplay functions are well thought out and the touch-focused controls are completely intuitive, though we'd be pretty disappointed to find any kind of learning curve for a Tetris game. EA obviously wanted to use a bit of the iPhone's rendering capability, but the graphics are gaudy to the point of distraction. Anyone looking for a simple, clean port like Tris (from the jailbreak days. See you soon, Tris...) should probably pass, but if you need a fix now I guess you don't have much of a choice. At $9.99 you can expect a decent competitor to pop up at a lower price point, if not for free. -John Herrman

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog


Twitterific: Great implementation of the service - smooth menus, fast updates, can embed photos and locations in your tweets natively. And it looks great. Free with ads, $10 without. -John Mahoney

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog


Twittelator: Gets the job done, but it's buggy. Occasionally can't connect to the server, and the interface is not nearly as polished as Twitterific. Free. -John Mahoney

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog


Twittervision: Cool visualization of tweets from around the world in real time that matches the website of the same name. Also lets you track location-tagged tweets that are in your area and provides very basic updating. Fun, but use it with Twitterific, not instead of. Free. -John Mahoney

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Mocha VNC Lite: Mocha is a VNC client that supports full QWERTY and safari-like zooming as well as landscape mode. Double click works, but right click doesn't, but there is no official App store equivalent so this is your desktop remote client of choice. -Brian Lam

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Twinkle: This Twitter app oneups Twitteriffic by not only showing who's twittering, but where they're doing it. Paired with a great UI, Twinkle is a winner. Free. -Matt Buchanan

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

Aurora Feint: Aurora Feint is a bastard mix of Bejewled, tilt controls and an RPG (laying the groundwork for an MMO). Sounds weird, but it's pretty damn fun. -Benny Goldman

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog

MealSplitter: MealSplitter is a tip and check splitting app to help you figure out who owes what at the end of a meal. Unfortunately, it evidently does a lousy job, unable to calculate separate meal prices correctly: one person's expensive item will be split evenly among everybody. - submitted by Kenny Crochet

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iRetrophone: Rotary phone UI for the iPhone. You enter numbers and hit call. Funny, great sound effects, but not worth $3.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog


NetSketch: Cool Bonjour-like collaborative drawing app for passing notes and crude anatomical sketches over Wi-Fi. See our video review here. $8

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog


Where: Yet another geo device, this one linked to yelp, starbucks, zipcar, skymap and gasbuddy locations, each on different maps. It even has buddy beaconing, but I'd rather just use yelp and loopt for buddies. Bad news: Doesn't always work. Good news: It's free.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog


Crash Bandicoot: Crash Bandicoot Nitro Kart 3D is a Mario Kart-like 3D racer with Crash Bandicoot at the wheel instead of the chubby Brooklyn plumber. For $9.99, we expect better.

iPhone App Review Marathon Liveblog


MLB's At Bat: If you like baseball, buy MLB's At Bat. It's worth $5. Every game today, yesterday and tomorrow with a full inning-by-inning rundown and video highlights in a slick interface. On Wi-Fi, they load fast, and you can make out the back of a player's jersey while it chugs at a solid framerate. On 3G, you'll wish a pop fly knocked your eyes out. - Matt Buchanan

All reviews written by Jason Chen, unless otherwise noted.