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Gizmodo's Essential iPhone Apps: The Best of 2009

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Each month, the best new iPhone apps-and some older ones-are considered for Gizmodo's Essential iPhone Apps Directory. Who will join? Who will live? Who will die? Here are the best of December, and of the entire year.

For the full directory of Gizmodo's Essential iPhone Apps for 2009, click here. Here are the best of the month, and what we've added to the directory:

December's Best Apps

For a single-page view, click here.


Essential App Directory Inductees


As you can see, it was a hell of a month in the App Store—we're adding a fair few of the month's best to the Essential Directory.

Pastebot, for giving the iPhone the clipboard it deserves, and coming so close to greatness (lack of backgrounding capabilities are the only thing holding it back, and not the dev's fault). $3

N.O.V.A, for finally showing the world how to make a proper FPS on the iPhone. $7.

Mint, because as far as personal finance apps go, things don't get much better than this. With the last few updates, it's become basically perfect. Free.


Dragon Dictation, for getting voice recognition right on the first try, and providing an extremely useful tool for text input. Free.

Gorilla Cam, for offering most of the features of a paid camera app for free.

Ustream, for giving iPhone users live video streaming capabilities they can actually use, and for not neglecting older iPhones. Free.


Bing, for providing decent, well-packaged alternatives to services that Google previously dominated, and even improving on some of them—I'm looking at you, maps. Free.

And that's it! What counts as an essential iPhone app changes all the time, and so should our guide: If we've missed anything huge, or you've got a much better suggestion for a particular type of app, let us know, or say so in the comments. We'll be updating this thing pretty frequently, and a million Gizmodo readers can do a better job at sorting through the app mess than a single Gizmodo editor. Enjoy!