Garrett (garote) wrote,

The list of things you can do with an iPhone, from least impressive or surprising to most impressive

This is a subjective list, of course. I'm open to any additions or modifications.

Totally unsurprising.

  1. Call people on the phone.
  2. Keep an address book that is synchronized online.
  3. Set alarms and timers, including vibrating alarms.
  4. Do basic math.
  5. Type and sync unformatted notes.
  6. Send and receive emails, text messages, instant-messages, twitter alerts, et cetera.
  7. Keep appointments with a calendar that is synchronized online.

Somewhat impressive or surprising.

  1. Record, play back, and sync voice memos.
  2. Use as a portable hard-drive (Air-Sharing, FileMagnet).
  3. Estimate currency conversions using up-to-date ratios (Currency).
  4. Take small photos, with GPS tags embedded, and post them online or send them to people immediately.
  5. Make international telephone calls at a discount (Skype).
  6. Mark areas of poor signal coverage and automatically report them to my provider.
  7. Get local and remote weather forecasts.
  8. Watch movies in a tiny screen (Netflix).
  9. Connect to a television and present movie and slide shows.
  10. Purchase and read e-books and music.

Impressive or surprising

  1. Pair with a physical keyboard for easier data-entry.
  2. Calculate resistor color codes (OhmEE, ResistorCC).
  3. Subscribe to video/audio podcasts, play them, and download current episodes.
  4. Scrawl pictures with my finger and save them (Scribble).
  5. Download and install enhancements to the device (App Store).
  6. Record and do minor edits to a video, then place it online or send it to someone immediately.
  7. Record a track of my physical location, and play it back later.
  8. Locate the nearest movie theaters, see their schedules, and book tickets (Fandango, Flixster).
  9. View and manage my bank accounts.
  10. Lose all my money in the stock market (E*TRADE Mobile Pro).
  11. Carry and use a reference for how to recognize various animal tracks (MyNature Animal Tracks).
  12. Carry and use a reference for how to tie various knots, with video and written tutorials (Knot Guide).
  13. Remotely view and crudely interact with the screen of my desktop or laptop (VNC, WinAdmin)
  14. Listen to a continuous mix of new music that the device thinks I will like, based on an ongoing analysis of my selections (Pandora)

Very impressive or surprising

  1. Wirelessly control nearby lighting fixtures, dimmers, and consoles (Luminair (DMX lighting control)).
  2. Display a number pad, and pair it with a nearby computer keyboard that lacks a number pad (NumberKey).
  3. Scan barcodes of almost any product, accessing a worldwide database of products to both identify the item scanned and provide comparative pricing and locating (RedLaser).
  4. Control the presentation of slideshows (Keynote Remote).
  5. Browse my home music collection on it and play music through speakers in different rooms of my house (Remote with an AirPort Express).
  6. Tune my guitar (Guitar Toolkit, OmniTuner, TyroTuner).
  7. Record my voice as I sing along to music, measure my accuracy, and apply automatic pitch correction and harmony (Glee Karaoke).
  8. Search on a map for services of all kinds, and call them up on the phone with one button.
  9. Mine a database of real-estate listings (ZipRealty).
  10. Track plane flight status, with real-time departure info, gate delays, and flight locations (FlightTrack, Live Flight Tracker).
  11. Search for and then book international flights and hotels across multiple airlines (KAYAK HD).
  12. Measure the level and slope of flat objects and sides (Clinometer).
  13. Make a surprisingly accurate guess at the title of whatever music is playing in the environment (Shazam).

Extremely impressive or surprising

  1. Spot tornadoes and get advance warnings with weather graphs (Radar Scope).
  2. Act as a crude and uncalibrated seismometer (Seismometer).
  3. Get a map, satellite view, or street view, all over the world, see my present location, and calculate walking or driving directions.
  4. Hold the phone up to the sky and get a map of what constellations should be visible in that direction (Starmap, Star Walk).
  5. Attach a thumb-sized credit card reader and conduct business transactions (Square).
  6. Locate and reserve a nearby rental car, and when you get to it, unlock it (Zipcar).
  7. Record the amount of tossing and turning done in bed, and use the data to time a wakeup alarm to avoid REM sleep (Sleep Cycle).
  8. Mine and cache a real-time database of plane preflight information, including icing forecasts, wind mappings, radar and satellite images, flight rule and terminal procedure listings, approach plates, VFR and IFR charts, etc (ForeFlight).
  9. Strum a mathematically emulated guitar (Twang).
  10. Automatically report back to the public works department when I hit a pothole in the road, so the accumulated data can be used to dispatch repairs (Street Bump).
  11. Remotely lock, unlock, and start my automobile (Viper Remote Start System, Mercedes-Benz mbrace).
  12. Have a two-way video chat with someone in another country.
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