iPhone Life magazine

Jim Karpen's picture

Jim Karpen holds a Ph.D. in literature and writing, and has a love of gizmos. His doctoral dissertation focused on the revolutionary consequences of digital technologies and anticipated some of the developments taking place in the industry today. Jim has been writing about the Internet and technology since 1994 and has been using Apple's visionary products for decades.

RepairPal -- free app for auto repair and roadside assistance

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Let's hope that you never have to use RepairPal. But you really ought to have it on your iPhone just in case. If you're out and about and your car breaks down, you'll need this app. This free application gives you information ranging from diagnosing a problem, estimating a fair repair price, and finding the right mechanic to do the work. 



Ustream — free app for watching live streaming videos and recorded video

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Released just hours before Obama's inauguration, Ustream is an application for viewing live and recorded video, as well as offering interactive chat functionality. (Within hours it had been downloaded nearly 300 times.) Unfortunately, it requires a Wi-Fi connection. All of the content is hosted on Ustream's web site, and the app requires that you set up a login.



Online exhibit of iPhone-created art

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Drawing applications for the iPhone include Brushes and NetSketch. The Telegraph in the U.K. has posted a gallery of images created on the iPhone.



List of free TV show-streaming web sites

AllTechRelated has a great list of free TV show-streaming web sites for the iPhone and iPod Touch. It's amazing what's available. I hope I'm not pointing you to something illegal, though some of the sites are obviously legitimate, such as the offerings from NBC and ESPN.

Update: this web page lists 3 Click, but as of a few days ago, the back door that someone had discovered to access the site for free was closed. Just as well, since I don't want to point you to anything that's not legal.



12 iPhone tricks everyone will find useful

iSmashPhone has a list of 12 iPhone tricks that I think is quite useful. You may already know some of these, but the reason I like this list is that these are tricks that most everyone should know because they make little things on the iPhone easier or more efficient. For example, if you press and hold the .com button, you'll get the option of selecting one of the other common domain suffixes: .edu, .net, or .org.



Ocarina winners announced — contest extended

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Smule's Ocarina app, which lets you play your iPhone like a flute, has been a surprise hit. And their recent contest has ended, with 10 Ocarina performers each winning a $1,000 prize. You can view videos of the winning performances on Smule's site.



Alternate web browsers coming

MacRumors reported this week that Apple, in a major policy shift,  has approved third-party web browsers and utilities and that the iTunes store has begun making them available.



New iPhone tethering rumor: $10/month

I hate to spread rumors .... but this one's good. Maybe too good to be true. I like the idea of tethering — connecting your laptop to the Internet via your phone's data capability when there's no Wi-Fi or other connection available. It's been rumored for some time now that AT&T and Apple are planning to make this available for an additional monthly charge of $30. Ouch.



Make your own ringtones with the free iRinger

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The good news is that iRinger is free and that it lets you create iPhone ringtones from almost any source. You can even extract audio ringtones from videos. The bad news: the app is only available for the Windows OS. (There's a certain amount of irony there.) Once you've created your ringtones, then the application exports them to iTunes. You can Adjust ringtone length, volume, fade in, fade out, and loop gap, as well as add audio effects.



Wi-Fi Finder -- Free app for finding wireless hotspots

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Wi-Fi Finder, which was released last month,  is an app that lets you easily find wireless hotspots — both free and paid. It taps into a registry of 200,000 verified hotspot locations in 135 countries. You simply click "Near Me," and Wi-Fi Finder uses the built-in GPS on the iPhone or the iPod Touch's triangulation capability to find hotspots near you.



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