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Wednesday, February 24, 2010

25 Essential Free iPhone Apps for Journalists and Bloggers

While some of the most useful iPhone apps already come installed — including the Safari Web browser, camera, maps and voice memos — journalists and bloggers often need more apps to be on the cutting edge of any news story. But, often armed with thin budgets, it can be difficult to arm your iPhone like the commando station you require. That’s why we’ve provided twenty-five essential iPhone apps for journalists and bloggers that are totally free.

The following list is categorized and apps are listed alphabetically within each category. We’ve also included a few tips that may help with your journalistic efforts.

Tip: If you plan to use a lot of apps, don’t get caught short with a dead battery. Do invest in an external battery backup to save all your work and keep a charger in your car.

Productivity

Tip: iPhone supports Cisco IPSec VPN and WPA2 Enterprise for secure access to corporate networks. If your office uses Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 or 2007, you can wirelessly push email, calendar events, and contacts to iPhone.

  1. Central Desktop MOBI: Red Oak Technologies has moved this app from beta into a 2.2 version, which makes it more reliable. Us this app to connect to your desktop with workspaces, tasks, events and calendars.
  2. Dropbox: Download files for offline viewing, sync photos and videos and share links. The app works in conjunction with Dropbox’s downloadable programs for Windows, Mac and Linux computers and works even if you do not have access to cellular or Wi-Fi. The online basic version is free. Read more about this app at Mashable.
  3. Evernote: Take notes, create lists, search through images and share information with others. Seamless integration across all devices, including Mac, Evernote Web, and Evernote for Windows.
  4. Google: This app includes maps, Gmail, YouTube and Google’s new Buzz as well as search options — including Google Mobile Search. Read through this site to learn how to incorporate options into the iPhone.
  5. iBillTo: Freelance journalists and bloggers can keep track of client billing information, rates and hours on specific projects.
  6. Instapaper Free: One of the easiest ways to store Web pages for later offline reading. Go to Instapaper.com and install the Read Later bookmark to mark any pages you’d like to read later.
  7. Qik for 3GS: A reliable and fast way to upload videos to the Internet. Includes Facebook Connect, YouTube, Twitter, and Qik.com.
  8. Soonr – Integrated online workspace: Soonr secures documents in the cloud and makes it easy for teams to collaborate on projects when everyone is mobile. Automatic continuous backup of your PC or Mac makes sure that the files you need are available for remote access even when the computers are offline. Your phone or any web browser is your control panel.
  9. WordWeb English Dictionary for iPhone and iPod Touch: Use this dictionary to gain access to 285,000 words, phrases and derived forms including many proper nouns, compounds and phrases. ull coverage of American, British, Canadian, Australasian and Asian English and it works offline. The standard edition is free, audio version is about $5.00 USD.
  10. Zoho Office Suite: Offers six online applications including email, calendar, online word processor, spreadsheet, presentation and database applications. Syncs with online application.

Communication

Tip: You can talk to more than one person at a time on your iPhone and merge up to five calls, depending on your carrier. Conference calling may be an optional service in some countries. Contact your carrier for more information.

  1. Cisco WebEx Meeting Center: Use this application to attend, schedule, start, and cancel WebEx Meetings. Get the full meeting experience with native 3G or WiFi support for simultaneous data and audio. You don’t need a WebEx account to attend WebEx meetings.
  2. Facebook: Facebook for iPhone makes it easy to stay connected and share information. You can view news feed groups, view events, and upload photos and videos, but you cannot view videos that have been uploaded to FB. App includes built-in web browser.
  3. iTalk Recorder: If you are serious about capturing the sounds around you, Griffin iTalk is the app you need for your iPhone. Your recordings are saved for replay on your iPhone or iPod, and you can use iTalk Sync (free download) to drag-and-drop them as high-quality AIFF files to your computer over a Wi-Fi connection.
  4. LinkedIn: Stay connected with your professional network with this free app. Get the latest updates and messages from your network and keep them up-to-date with your status in real-time.
  5. Skype: With Skype on your iPhone or iPod touch you can call and instant message anyone else on Skype for free. You also can call landlines and mobiles and send SMS anywhere in the world at great rates.
  6. TweetDeck for iPhone: Filter messages by columns, create groups and use multiple accounts at one time with this app. If you use the desktop version of Tweetdeck, you can sync across all computers and your iPhone.

Outside the Home Zone

Tips: Before you leave, take a photo of your passport for safekeeping. Should you lose your iPhone, keep it safe by setting a passcode lock. You also can turn off data roaming while traveling abroad to save on data charges.

  1. A Simple to use Translator: Very basic translator that reaches into ten different languages. You select a source and a destination language, enter the text and learn the translation.
  2. Places: Tap one of the preset buttons for coffee, gas, ATM, etc., or enter a place name and you receive information for the best route to that source. Uses Geolocation to find you and to offer the best routes.
  3. TripIt – Travel Organizer: TripIt Travel Organizer puts all your travel plans right on your iPhone no matter where your travel was booked. If you’re a frequent traveler, you might want to upgrade.
  4. XE Currency: Keep track of mid-market rates for every world currency with this app. You can use it offline and the last updated rates are stored on your iPhone.

Stay on Top of News, Information

Tip: Open the Stocks app, then rotate to see breaking news about investments and the stock market.

  1. AP Mobile: You probably know by now that AP is on top of the story both locally and globally. AP Mobile news helps you keep up-to-date with what’s happening anywhere, in your hometown and across the globe. Additionally, you can personalize the news to meet your needs.
  2. ESPN ScoreCenter: Stay on top of the latest scores from hundreds of sports leagues around the world. Get full-season and single-game scoring alerts, game starts, scoring plays, end of period/qtr/half, and final score alerts.
  3. Stanza: Read books on your iPhone or iPod Touch with this highly-rated ebook reader. Purchase popular new books from a selection of over 50,000 contemporary titles available in various partner stores, or choose from an additional 50,000 free classics and recent original works available from Project Gutenberg, Feedbooks, and many other sources.
  4. TED: Inspiration, knowledge, news and story ideas all in one place. This application integrates multiple information feeds from TED into an unique user experience on the iPhone.
  5. The Weather Channel®: Take your weather experience to the next level with in-motion radar maps, traffic cams (select markets), improved graphics and more.
[via Journalism Degree.]

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