We here at pinglio have reviewed a ton of apps this year. So now we’re rounding up each of our top 3 favorites and the download links for you guys. We’re glad to have found these amazing apps and we’d recommend them to anyone. And if you’re looking for some limited-time holiday freebies, there are plenty to in our list. So without further adieu, we present our top 3 favorite apps of 2011.
PATRICK’S TOP 3 APP PICKS
It takes a lot to impress me when it comes to mobile games. I’m not much of a game overall, so iPhone games especially have to really be addicting if they want a spot in my Games folder. Jetpack Joyride has managed to find itself a spot right next to other addicting games I love. While I was never a fan of Fruit Ninja, the developers have created a game I can’t stop playing. The objective is to guide your character Barry Steakfries and his jetpack throughout a secret laboratory without getting nailed by rockets, lasers, and more. Controls are simple: just a single tap to ascend and release to descend. The best part is it’s free (normally $0.99) for a limited time during the holidays.
iTunes Link: Jetpack Joyride (Free… for now)
Next up is Snapseed, an app that usually goes for $4.99 is also now free for the holidays. Think Instagram but with a lot more control. Take a photo or choose one from your library, then it’s time for editing. Increase the brightness, set the saturation, choose your frame, set tilt-shift focusing, and a whole lot more. There are even some preset filters if you’re looking to edit something quickly. It’s perfect for the photo nerds who just itch for customizing every pixel of every photo.
iTunes Link: Snapseed (Free… for now)
I’ve covered this app before, but I can’t imagine what I’d do without it if something ever happened to my iPhone. It took the folks over at Fork Ltda while to bring the beloved device-tracking software to the iPhone. It was requested many times by people who have used Prey on their laptops and Android phones, and it just makes sense to have an app that tracks your mobile device. I’m a huge fan of Prey and I’ve written about it here on pinglio more than once, so check out my other articles for more details on Prey.
iTunes Link: Prey Anti-Theft (Free)
ERIC’S TOP 3 APP PICKS
Keep your life organized with notes and pictures. Download the app on your device plus install it on your computer so you can sync back and forth, keeping all of your items by your side no matter where you are. Free accounts available for the standard user and paid accounts add group collaboration capabilities.
Android Market Link: Evernote (Free)
For the ultimate music lover who wants specific music and wants it now, check out TinyShark. It uses the Grooveshark services but doesn’t require an account, so it doesn’t cost anything to use in a mobile environment. When you search the market for it, you’ll also find the TinyShark Downloader app as well, which does just what it says: downloads the songs to your device. But we don’t condone that.
Android Market Link: TinyShark (Free)
Yes, I’ve already covered it, but there’s a reason I covered it. I love this app. Search, start and monitor torrents on your home computer all from your phone.
Android Market Link: Torrent-Fu (Free)
MARC’S TOP 3 APP PICKS
Now I know there are some Big Brother aspects of this app, and it has been in the news lately, but it can be quite handy. However, it’s up to your friends to participate in knowing their location. They can also choose to do it for a short period of time which is good when you are at a huge location and need to find each other. I use Find my Friends to keep tabs on where my friends and family are, so I don’t have to buy them with a text of “Where you at?”. It’s also great for finding your friends when you are all downtown in various locations and you would like to meet up during Christmas shopping or (my favorite) the pub crawl.
iTunes Link: Find My Friends (Free)
This app is a great example of the new direction Microsoft is taking with Windows 8 and Xbox. Along with new video content on Live, the app has their tiled interface, and it’s easy to check which of your friends are online. While it doesn’t offer device-control functionality that the Windows mobile app for their line of phones, it still does a better job of what other apps tried to do in the past: a great Xbox Live interface to use on your iDevice.
iTunes Link: My Xbox LIVE (Free)
My last pick is not necessarily a mobile app, and it’s not free, but it’s useful for Mac OS X users who have an Xbox 360 and want to use it to its fullest potential. This amazing program allows your Xbox 360 to see your Mac so you can share content and actually use the 360 as the media extender it is designed to be. You can share all content in iTunes as well as photos and video streaming. Also, it can automatically transcode to formats the Xbox recognizes (.wma for one). Once installed, it sits in your system preferences and has a taskbar icon. It does cost $19.99, but after only a few days with the free trial, I was happy to pay it.
iTunes Link: Connect360 ($19.99)