Christmas and Hanukkah will soon be here. Many of you will soon have iTunes gift certificates to blow-why not support a good cause? This week's apps give some/all of their proceeds to charity.
Songs of Love: The first (and as far as I can tell, only) iPhone app released by a charitable organization, Songs of Love's mission is to create personalized songs to help cheer up kids who are battling cancer. It's a free app, but it shows you some of their work and in video and audio form, and has a donations page.
Phospho: Yes, it's another 99 cent flashlight app. Yes, you could just use a Safari page to find you keys. But if you're going to buy a flashlight app, make it this one-Phospho donates 100% of your buck to charities that aim to fight blindness in children and adults worldwide.
iZen Garden: Another popular app genre is the Zen Garden. iZen happens to be among the more well reviewed of the bunch and actually looks pretty cool (different colored sands! Lots of rakes to rake it with!), and it gives 5% of the $3 to the Tibet Fund.
Gratitude Journal: Oprah claims to have changed her life with a Gratitude Journal; this app will give you the same chance. The idea is to write down five things you are thankful for each day-not a bad idea this time of year. You can add photos to your entries as well. 10% of the buck it costs is donated to charities, although the developers don't say which ones.
Qur'an, Bhagavad Gita and Tanakh: The holy books of Islam, Judaism and Hinduism in their complete form, each fully searchable and bookmarkable. The Qur'an even has an audio recording of each Ayah in English and Arabic, and is discounted down to $5 (the others are $10). 100% of all proceeds goes to the Aga Khan development network which helps developing communities in Africa, Central/South Asia and the Middle East.
Now don't you feel all warm and fuzzy?
We covered a lot of great new apps this week on Giz, here they are. And if you are hitting the slopes this holiday like our favorite snowbunny Blam is, check out his Ski and Snowboard app Battlemodo;
• Konami Releasing Silent Hill, DDR and Frogger for iPhone, Too (on top of METAL GEAR SOLID)
This list is in no way definitive. If you've spotted a great app that hit the store this week, give us a heads up or, better yet, your firsthand impressions in the comments. And for even more apps: see our previous weekly roundups here, and check out our original iPhone App Review Marathon. Have a good weekend and a very happy holidays everybody.