Hello, and welcome to the first installment of iWant, iNeed, iRecommend for 2010. This is a monthly series that will, simply put, present the top ten iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch applications from that month. At the end of the year, these 120 applications will then go head to head to see which apps become the top ten for the year. If you would like to read my previous top ten lists, as well as all my other iPhone and iPod Touch application reviews, you can see them here. While this list is subjective (as are all top ten lists), I did my best to base this on actual use, not my own opinion. Enjoy.
10. Engadget for the iPhone
As you might have realized by now, I am quite into this whole technology thing. While I use various sites like crave and Slashdot, most of my news comes from Engadget. Lucky for me, Engadget has decided to release an iPhone app that makes viewing their site much, much easier. You can browse articles, stream their videos (without Flash of course), and customize the look to your heart's content. I love being able to view Engadget on my phone without any distortions. You can grab Engadget for the iPhone and get your nerd on for free.
9. The White House App
Well, the title of this app pretty much speaks for itself. The White House app is provided by the Federal Government (probably with our tax money) in order to get information out to the populace. You can access the briefing room, look at the blog, and look at the news feed. Most impressively, the app allows you to watch speeches, and even live stream them to your iPhone. I believe that the White House app is extremely important, as it allows quick and easy access to important information, and it keeps with Obama's promise of transparency. You can get the White House App for free today.
8. Google Voice
While Apple might have thought that they blocked Google Voice from the iPhone by banning it from the app store, Google cleverly found a way to get on the device anyway. By using Safari, and building a web app, Google is able to run Google Voice on your iPhone, even if the makers don't like it. This allows you to make cheap phone calls, have your voice-mails transcribed (I want this on the iPhone as a supported feature), and send free text messages. Frankly, this is a great idea, and will be useful until Apple figures out how to shut it down. While Google Voice is free to run (but costs to call), the build of the app makes it feel like an expensive purchase. Please note, this will not work on the iPad as it has no speaker/microphone.
7. Guerrilla Bob
Let me just start by saying this: Guerrilla Bob is an outstanding, mind-blowing, absolutely, positively amazing game. Hyped it up enough? Well, probably not, as it would be hard to do justice to this iPhone game. Guerrilla Bob is a dual-stick shooter that takes the normal formula (wave after wave of enemies, limited guns, decent animations) and turns it on its head. With stunning graphics, an exceptionally large arsenal, and actual level progression, this game has become one of the best of its kind. Chillingo seems to have hit the gold here, and they took it by a large margin. You can get your finger on the trigger for only $2.99!
Are you jealous of the fact that the iPhone 3GS can record video? Well, with iCamcorder, you no longer need to be. iCamcorder is an application that allows you to 'record' video using your iPhone, even if it is not the most recent version. By taking 15 pictures a second, and recording audio in-sync, iCamcorder creates a slide show that, for all intents and purposes, acts like a video recording. This is pretty amazing, and it is quite nice to be able to do the latest thing with some older technology. Get your friends together and record your fun for only $1.99. Please note, this will not work on the iPad as it has no camera.
5. Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars
Grand Theft Auto is one of the most innovative series of the last two decades. Continuing on this legacy, Rockstar Games decided to release their latest iteration on the iPod Touch and the iPhone. The game, which is a basic dual-stick shooter, follows Huang Lee as he tries to avenge his father's murder. The game is quick, intuitive, and quite fun to play. While it is intensive (which causes some lag occasionally), the overall feel is polished and outstanding, which, of course, is what we have come to expect from Rockstar. While GTA: Chinatown Wars will set you back $9.99, it is well worth the price.
I hate to admit it, but I am a bit of a nerd (an astounding surprise, I know); when I see a puzzle game, a logic puzzle, or anything that will test my mental capabilities, I go insane. Chillingo (the same people who made Guerrilla Bob, this month's #7 pick) just released one of the more impressive puzzle games on the iPhone. In Cogs, the user simply manipulates tiles and items to create complex puzzles. While it might sound boring, it is actually a lot of fun. Cogs is a game that leaves me feeling both happy and challenged, which is quite impressive. As a great way to erase boredom on long bus trips, I recommend that you grab Cogs for only $.99 right away.
While I believe that Chomp is one of the best apps of the month (and probably will be for the year), I was quite conflicted in telling you about it. See, Chomp is an application that allows you to find other applications. You can view reviews of other apps, see which ones are currently liked or disliked, and leave your own reviews. Furthermore, Chomp will recommend apps based on your own reviews, which means that you will be finding new games and products quickly. Basically, Chomp competes with me and this feature, which is why I was hesitant to talk about it. That said, however, as Chomp is an amazing concept and product, I believe that it is an essential for every iPhone and iPod touch out there. Get Chomp for free today, but be sure to come back — please.
2. Tap Tap Revenge 3
Once again, Tapulous has come out with another iteration of the amazing Tap Tap series. While this would seem to be yet another repeat, the company somehow keeps on innovating and updating their new releases. Like the others, you still simply keep beat with your fingers. Unlike the others, however, Tap Tap Revenge 3 lets you create avatars and play online. The fact that you can take out other players is amazing, and actually makes the game quite fun. Tap Tap has grown mightily in the last few months, and I only expect them to keep growing in the near future. You can get your fingers tapping for free right now.
And the #1 iPhone app from January 2010 is…
“Holy crap!” These were my first words after finishing the first wave of StickBo. This side-scrolling third person shooter allows you to shoot through wave after wave (after wave after wave) of little stick figure enemies. Use a flame thrower, sniper rifle, or my favorite, a simple Bowie knife, as you run across a background littered with enemies, obstacles/cover, and dead bodies. Complete each level only to move onto the next one, which is similar, but is much harder. This game is amazing, and it actually has caused me to yell (curse) at my iPhone many a time. StickBo is one of the best games EVER for the iPhone, and you can play it for free (there are in-app purchases)!
Well, folks, there you have it, the top 10 iPhone and iPod Touch applications from January, 2010. If you wanted to buy all of these applications, you would be set back only $15.96. If you have any suggestions for next month's list, or want to tell me what I missed, please let me know in the comment field.