All work and no play is what many hardworking Americans are facing today. With the prospect of no work at all, it’s no wonder that playtime is being cut back even more. But all work and no play doesn’t always make for the most relaxed or ready for business worker either. There are plenty of options on the game front, but even if games aren’t your thing there are an ever-increasing number of mobile apps that can come in handy, and aren’t just business as usual.
This week I take a look at some of the best “after hours” apps for the iPhone:
Mobile CDN – Apple has been slow to allow the iPhone to access streaming applications, at least until recently. Mobile CDN made news when it streamed footage of the NBA All-Star game live over mobile phones, including the iPhone. Mobile CDN (Content Delivery Network) was the most popular sports app during the game, and the company promises to do it again. So if there is a big event you absolutely need to catch, be sure to see if you can have it streamed to your iPhone.
Xumii – This social address book app is now free for the iPhone, and it combines your handset contacts with friends from Facebook, MySpace, imeem, AIM, Yahoo! Messenger, Google Talk, MSN and Flickr. This essentianlly lets you see all your contacts’ status in one place, and makes it easier for you to chat and share photos – even if your friends are on different networks. And while it is ideal for social networking, I can see it as a good way to stay in touch with your business colleagues as well.
Phanfare Phonton – This latest version of the photo and video-sharing app is now available at the Apple App Store. It lets you share photos with your Facebook network of friends while maintaining an archival copy on the service’s own secure, cloud-based servers. Phanfare offers 1GB of free storage to all users, and premium membership ($54.95/year) includes unlimited storage, as well as discounts for prints, photo books and cards.
iBPM+ – Work hard, play hard and work out hard. Fitness buffs can use their iPhone, or even iPod Touch, to track their performance through this app from iTMP. This fitness app, which is now free for a limited time, transforms iPhone into a heart rate monitor or even cycling computer. It is compatible with most analog heart rate monitor chest straps, including those from Garmin, New Balance, Nike, Polar and Rebok. It will also work with many digital transmitters. Originally developed with cyclists in mind, this app is designed for iPhone users who do their cardio workouts and just can’t leave the phone behind. It will work with both indoor and outdoor workouts.
PSYCLOPS – If you’re looking for a different beat than that of your own heart rate, than maybe you should give the PSYCHOLOPS app a spin. This lets users create custom music mixes, dance moves and even videos, and then share these creations with family and friends. Users can produce a 30 second, four-track music mix and combine a wide array of drums, guitar, bass, pianos and horns and even mix in DJ scratches. In addition to the music, you can also choreograph the mix with digital dancers, and use animated or photo backgrounds. This application is now available from the iPhone store for $1.99. But can you really put a price on music creativity?