Posts from the ‘review’ Category

best deal on mid size family sedan with leather and sunroof

Researched new, family, medium size to full size, family sedans for my father in-law (aka sedan for a cool grandpa🙂. But found it deceptive how car manufactures advertise their prices without 2 features most if us have to have: leather and a sunroof / moonroof (heated seats and auto transmission as well, but most offer those with leather automatically).
So you see $20k starting price and get excited (Nissan, Honda, etc), but after adding those must haves … you reach $30k – the price range of luxury models (Audi, Acura, etc).
Further, warranty period varies and some offer free maintenance and/or roadside assistance (something that used to be offered only on luxury vehicles, but no longer). All in all, below are is best value for the buck for a mid size family sendans (I found those prices on either or as of march ’13).

A4 | Accord | Altima | CC | G37 | Passat | Sonata

8) Lexus ES 350$37.5k v6 – length: 192.7 inches
Has 4 yr warranty, i couldn’t find if they offer free maintenance, but don’t think so.
Way to expense for mid size. Thus pretty much excluded from this coparo.

7) Honda Accord – no free maintenance, no roadside assistance
Warranty: 3 years / drivetrain – 5 years
i4 – $26.5 EX-L
V6 – $28.4 EX
length: 194 inches
Ironically this is probably choice #1 for older people, not at all in my book. 
#1 wins price, looks, interior and warranty wise.

6) Nissan Altima – no free maintenance, no roadside assistance
Warranty: basic – 3 years / drivetrain – 5 years
i4 (4 cylinder) – $26.3K – SL limited
V6 – $28.2K – SL
lengh: 191.5 inches (still considered mid size sedan?)
Although a looker it is smaller then #1 and interior feels cheaper.

5) Audi a4 –  5k mikes (only!) free maintenance / 4 yr roadside assistance
Warranty: basic – 4 years, drivetrain – 4 years
i4 – $29k
V6 – NOT avail
length: 185 inches – shortest here (mid size sedan)
Audi (owned by VW) kills me with their logic of uber brand that drives and feels very similar to VW, yet charges premium for the features that are standard on VW … And they stopped offering v6 at all!  
On top of it, I like the look and feel of CC over a4.
Also worth mentioning, they are very difficult to negotiate with.

4) infiniti G37 – no free maintainance (“Luxury” ?!), 4 yr roadside assistance
Warranty: basic – 4 years, drivetrain – 6 years
i4 – NOT avail
V6 – $32k
length: 188 inches
Eventhough not the best deal nor free maintanace, 280hp and the only RWD car here puts it ahead of Audi.
3) VW passat CC – 3 yr free maintainance / roadside assistance
Warranty: basic – 3 years, drivetrain – 5 years
i4 – $29k
V6 – $35k
length: 188.9 inches
My personal favorite in the bunch. It’s a looker and has the best interior.
2) AcuraNO free maintainance / 4 yr roadside assistance
[update: has wrong info about maintenance.]
Warranty: basic – 4 years, drivetrain – 6 years
i4 TSX$30k – length: 185.6 inches (mid size sedan)
V6 TL$33k – length: 194 inches (full size sedan)
TL is not offered in 4 cylinder, that’s why I decided to include TSX i4, which is Fairly similar in looks.
TL is the largest in the group – 194 inches, where TSX is 2nd shortest – 186.
TL on the current special is the best deal for v6 medium side family sedan. They also have best warranty and cheap maintainance. Finally this car feels most luxurious of the bunch (note: didn’t bother test driving a Lexus)
1) VW Passat3 yr free maintainance / roadside assistance
Warranty: basic – 3 years, drivetrain – 5 years
i4 – $25k
V6 – $29k
length: 191.6 inches
Amazing deal: 2nd biggest car in the group at 192 inches,  free maintanace (they give loaners!), 170hp 4 cylinder is surprisingly zippy for such a big car, and the sophisticated looks of Audi family are easy on the eyes. Finally $25k is simply best bargain today, especially with German engineering heritage and maintanace perks. 
Ps: my comparison might be considered bias by not including Hyundai or American ford fusion, but lets be honest – ford is not German nor japanese thus not worth $28k for 4 cylinder sedan, no matter how many praises it gets in American press.
Now i must say Sonata is a solid car. I was very impressed how it handled through rain, snow on my 2k road trip, but the interior does feel the cheapest of all the sedans here and … my father in-law does not like the looks of this $24k “Korean” (leather & 4 cylinder – 174hp , 5/10 yr warranty, no free maintenance, 35mpg).
Ps2: Although, it’s worth mentioning 24 mpg (passat) vs 35 mpg (sonata) difference, so assuming 15k miles a year, that’s a significant $700 difference in gas cost between the 2, back in Sonata’s favor (being a devil’s advocate here🙂
But, if you add $500/year worth of maintenance to the price of the sonata and consider the mileage savings … Sonata, “beats” Passat by $200 each year.
ps3: what the world is coming to, when a german sedan is better priced then … korean or an american one …🙂
____________  ____________________
warranty (years) price (thusands) notes
length basic drive
free maintance road assitance 4 cylinder v6
Lexus ES 350 192.7 4 ? ? (dont’ think so) ? x $37.50 most expensive
Honda Accord EX 194.0 3 5 x x $26.50 $28.40 longest
Nissan Altima SL 191.5 3 5 x x $26.30 $28.20
Audi A4 185.0 4 4 5k miles 4 $29.00 x shortest
Infiniti G37 188.0 4 6 x 4 x $32.00
VW passat CC 188.9 3 5 3 3 $29.00 $35.00
Acura TL / TSX(i4) 194.0 4 6 4 4 $30.00 $33.00 longest, best warranty
TSX 185.6 TSX TL
VW Passat 191.6 3 5 3 3 $25.00 $29.00 cheapest i4 & v6

real world iPhone 4S review / sprint / iOS 5

so, i’ve had “the best iPhone ever made” over the weekend and here are my, real world thoughts:

1) SIRI – yes, pretty amazing … IF it works.

between sprint and/or apple servers issues in the first 2 days. it’s been a very frustrated experience (“i’m sorry, i’m having problems reaching the network”)
but … when it does work. wow
my eastern european accent usually trips any voice recognition app (dragon go has been my favorite so far, but it too has it’s misses)

back to SIRI.
best experience – dictating 1 sentence txt message, in a crowded restaurant. got it 90% right … impressive
worst? trying to dial my friend “ehab” …. i gave up, after the 5th try

“set an alarm in 1/2 hour” doesn’t seem to work for me. “reminders” do, but they are so quiet … i’ve missed one or two already

after using it for 4 days …. although it is not 100% accurate, 85% is impressive

biggest peeve? siri has to reach out to the internet for everything!? seems like a oversight to have to do that for local info, such as your contacts, playlists, etc

2) camera

yeah it’s nice, faster, 8 mb … (can’t really confirm the dimmer environment). but … the reality is that in the end, you’ll take the 8mb picture & upload it to facebook (send it to friends, etc) at … 1mb (if). so in the real world, more doesn’t really mean much … right?

but … take a look at the 2 photos above and you will be able to pick the better one … yes 4S is better, more vibrant, more alive

3) “faster”, “better” battery life

real life improvement? maybe 5%-10% faster overall, but barely noticeable if you don’t play games.

i do have to say, download speeds are twice faster on att – 4gb vs 2gb (even using 1 year old sim card). in real life, maybe 20%+ improvement. when using newer 4G sim, you can get up to 6gb speeds … 3x faster. but that’s only certain cities

battery … i’d say about the same, but … that’s comparing to jailbroken iPhone 4 (so about 5-10% worse … ?)
[update] although i have not experienced any battery problems on the 4S. i’m having a horrible experience with my 4, after upgrading to iOS 5. after extensive testing i found that jailbreak / intelliScreenX & especially stocks ticker are to blame. now, it’s about 80-90% what i used to get on iOS 4.3.3

but … then i played music to apple TV & it drained the remaining 30% in 3 hours

4) iOS 5 – 200 “features”?

if you’ve had your phone jailbroken … you’ll actually miss it (lock screen notification on jailbreak … are better🙂
configuring notification _per_ application is … mentally challenging (there’s a better word for it – sarah p especially likes🙂 )
photo stream is nice, but no option not to post certain pix … & no way to see them on older iOS (eg iPad)

all the other 200 features? (honestly, i had to go to to remind me, what those “features” are …🙂
wireless sync … nice, but iPhoto doesn’t work wirelessly (maybe i do need to update though)
playlist folders sorting is f ed again (if you put “.” in front of your playlists, you can relate)
mail still can’t search old messages via exchange sync from gmail (google might actually be at fault here though)
iMessage … non of my friends have iOS 5 yet, so no use.
[basically, it’s a feature you’ll never “free” enjoy, since att charges you $20 (!) for lowest txt’ing plan, sprint “includes” it & verizon … as well? (so you basically will pay for texting regardless if you use it or not).]
interestingly, tried to send an iMessage from a deactivated Verizon iPhone via wifi … can’t do. [update, you have to turn iMessage ON, it’s not by default (?!). you also need to have contact’s email address that matches apple ID … i have 4 different email addresses on a good day = a mess. TIP: update your QR business card with the proper email address]
twitter integration – eeeh, as one of my friends recently commented to a photo posted (via twitter) to facebook: “i refuse to sign up, yet to another social service, to see your photos”🙂

5) jailbreaks i miss:

free tethering
lock screen notifications that stay (calendar, 5 day weather, etc)
sbsetting on lock screen
activator gestures
would (if not for sprint integration) – g voice txt
free apps? … not so much, surprisingly

6) disappointed with sprint

i have been complaining about not able to make or maintain phone calls with att for 3 years now …
but when i was not able to check my email, downtown chicago via sprint’s service. i’ve realized …. making that phone call is no longer as crucial as being able to check your email

another annoyance, is the data OR call … will again, make you miss att

yet, another – visual voicemail doesn’t work for me … i could probably call sprint, etc, but why ??? $850 phone should work perfectly, out of box (you’ll pay that other $450 one way or another …)

i do have to say that built-in integration with google voice is amazing: type in the number … that’s it! all your calls & texts to that phone come to your sprint phone now & when you txt/dial from your phone, google voice number comes up. brilliant (att, take notice)

ps: let’s talk about iOS 5 bugs some more (my list) – apple, please take note:

– having to set notification settings, one by one. i have 20 apps on a good day, pleeeeease let me set it once for all
– camera button on the lock screen (even when the phone is not locked) – have you tried to press home button, once you’re there? can’t get out! (can’t see other photos, again even when phone is unlocked)
– battery life – ok, in all fairness, i’ve used 2 diff 4S (att & sprint) & did NOT experience any battery problems, BUT my 4 att … seems to have 1/2 of battery life what it had under 4.3.3. upon detailed testings i finally managed to get a day out of it by: turning off intelliScreenX (stock ticker might be the real culprit here), but then i played music to apple TV & it drained the remaining 30% in 3 hours.
– mail search – still doesn’t work, when it comes to older “on server” messages. first: the default search should be “all”. then i’m not sure if it’s apple or google, but my gmail search via exchange client on iOS hasn’t worked for 2 years now.

my first day with lion mac os x … i hate it

over the years, i’ve learned not to jump on the “new” bandwagon and wait at least a month before upgrading to a new product, software or gadget.
so i’m not in a rush, especially seeing hillarious videos like this one (NSFW 150k+ views).

but, to give apple credit, 2011 MB Air has fixed my 2 annoyances with previous Air: lid up the keyboard & removed pointless “eject” button (thus moving music play keys, where they are suppose to be). so i was excited to test 2011, especially that my in-laws got it & there was no risk of having to go back to Leopard Snow, etc.
apple failed terribly on not putting back the infared for the remotes (yeah, “get apple tv” – $100 – “philosophy” – but you can’t really send power point presentations to apple tv via airPlay, can you?). and to add salt to the wound, they have removed FrontRow app (although there’s a hack for that).

so … i’m writing this on my 2010 Air & will keep it ’till  x-mass,  if not longer … why?

2011 Air, or Mac OS X Lion – i should say – doesn’t feel like a finished product!

– firefox dmg file couldn’t mount. my very first impression wasn’t good: download firefox, mount dmg, move to applications & … “can’t open” (WFT? did i just upgrade to windows?). had to re-download twice, delete files & restart the system to get it to work …. brand new, $1400 laptop!
– after using the Air for few hours, system preference crashed! really apple???
– when downgrading the resolution to lower 1152×720 – can’t see bottom menu in iphoto. yeah, minor bug, but contrary to apple’s belief old folks can’t see ant size fonts at native – 1440×900 resolution. i’ve gotten used to upscaled, not so good looking 1152xx720 resolution. but not to have iPhoto scale down accordingly?
– mail app – can’t increase font sizes. the option is there … but doesn’t do anything … yep, restarted. nada. again, very frustrating for old people, who can’t see ant size fonts on the screen!
– video “anatomy of mac” is still leopard on the support site. support section of apple’s website doesn’t seem to be aware of Lion’s existence … yet (but i guess it’s more efficient for the co. to have old folks come to the store to take lesson … maybe up sell them on some crap they don’t need)
drop box folder – doesn’t work out of the box … until you enable sharing on it …
gestures – not implemented on applications like firefox. now this is probably firefox’s fault, but still when making a fundamental OS changes like: stuff scrolls up, instead of down (thank god there’s an easy way to disable that). or making 3 finger left/right swipes, switch os “pages”, instead of website’ visited pages …. should give devs a bit of notice? have a discussion to make sure those “revolutionary” videos, correspond with the actual product experience?
[no apple, safari is not the greatest browser out there … it actually sux. e.g. have you heard of a standard cmd-K shortcut to search? cmd-1,2 to switch between tabs?]
ohh & if you want to understand why 2-finger left/right swipe is a disaster. try to explain to a 70 year old a difference between: 1 finger swipe, 2 finger swipe & 3 fingers … the difference between going left, right, up (the middle one, might be up by then🙂 )
– totally agree with the guy from the video above on, Launchpad doesn’t feel like part of the OS: can’t select multiple apps & move them, can’t manage them via finder. & the name “Launchpad” – again my old folks have no idea that means “application” …
– AirDrop … doesn’t work with older macs. how dumb is that?
dashboard – while you can probably remap “Launchpad” (f4) key back to dashboard … dashboard itself is kinda lost in the “mission control” (another dumb name) … but, ok – that’s a minor annoyance at most.


huh … 2011 MacBook Air, looks nice … but pretty much the same as 2010 (yes, now with a lid up keyboard). did not notice greater battery life. speed … maybe 5-10% faster (but honestly didn’t spend enough time with it).

ok, so i do like the instant integration of yahoo (don’t think that’s automatic with gmail) – when you sing-in the first time, it asks you to plug in the user/password into mail app, it works for contacts & iChat too. nice.

interestingly features, i’ve looked forward to: autocorrect, versions, mail, airDrop … now seem cosmetic conveniences i can live without on Snow Leopard.

so overall, can’t say i’m compelled to upgrade, actually.

overall – Lion OS X feels sloppy.

what’s going on apple? not making enough money? jobs left & attention to detail – we’ve got to love so much about your products – went out of the window with him?
no, i’m not an apple hating a**hole, but i do expect near perfection for a laptop that’s $1400!

but i still love apple

why? no choice, frankly. & i’m brutally reminded of windows in the 90s … by having to wait (3 hours & counting) to migrate my in-law’s PC to mac:
1) upgrade my in-laws’ win XP to SP3
2) so i can install apple’s migration assistant (bit lazy of apple to require SP3 …)
3) so i can migrate … mear 3gb worth of data
will keep you posted, how that goes

[update: sp3 upgrade failed 3 times, then kinda went through, then apple’s migration assistant refused to install even after win said SP3. 4 hours later, i’ve decided to take a USB stick, copy all content of “my documents” & successfully dropped it on the mac … all of which took, 15 min]

google+ plus – not making my life easier … yet

my brief love affair with google+ got stuck on the 3rd date (i mean day :):

– simple sharing rules concept – aka circles

shockingly that’s all. it’s funny how many hoops we are willing to jump through, because we got fed up by,  a free,  yet very unpredictable social network, called FB
[my FB peeves: sucky twitter integration, api that breaks weekly, reason why i loved fb to begin with: auto posts of all of my social tools: youtube, pix, music, blogs, etc – have anyone noticed how they don’t automatically show up in your feed any longer???]

not ready: (but back to google+ … “the hope”)
– no twitter / fb integration.
had to rethink this one … w/ improved sharing rules, all posts will have to come out of + now (instead from twitter, until now), but … even though  i “found” this twittermail solution, it cuts posts off, after 43rd character …
– no simple google contacts -> google+ import. nor fb, nor twitter
(dragging your first friend into the circle seems cool. dragging 100 of them seems like too much work)
– can’t adjust sharing settings after initial post (so when one of my buddies starts cursing, etc … now all of the world can see)
– can’t delete other’s replies to my posts???
– can’t edit post’s (link) description
– can’t delete/edit a contact added on + (i actually edited that contact on g contacts & now i have 2 separate contacts on +)
– spam – yep, in “incoming” i’ve received an invite from “cheap flights” already (i polish, but still)


google, i love you, but … i was looking for a better social network alternative, to make my life easier. i’m going to wait, until you become a cougar … then we can resume our date (i hope).

disappointed, real world google tv review

first of all … thx to google & logitech for a free sample of google tv … nice x-mass gift🙂

now … a real world review of google tv … from a user that mostly loves “all google” products and has been using apple tv for few months.

gigaOm has a good article: 5 Ways to Save Google TV

Amen, but here are my other suggestions:

– not intuitive enough. switching between tv n web/search/apps has to be more intuitive (tab key), auto learn what I like & suggest it automatically (eg. import my iTunes fav podcasts)

– simpler remote control (keyboard is so web tv). i get the keyboard’s “need” for this product, but … remote should come with this as well

– should search for my media: videos, music n pix on my network automatically (seamless integration with iTunes and compters that have media) … the fact that it does not … made me put it right back in the box, after 1 day of using it …

– search auto suggestion – related to video/media type of searches (connecting with YouTube auto suggest)

– remove “search web, tv” options  – extra click? why?

Overall: isn’t google suppose to be king of search? – it doesn’t show on this device. It seems google is playing (poorly), catchup with apple. Worst, it feels like google bought web tv (yes, that old microshaft product) and … google branded it. A

s a user it’s a confusing device: doesn’t let me watch my networked media out of the box, does web browsing, but poorly and it doesn’t do the search for media part well either … and i’m not even taking about aesthetics: too many cables and 3 times the price of apple tv.

For now, I’m missing computer for browsing & apple tv for media watching.

To compete: google would have to do all apple does and then be able to find all media content out there, automatically as well (that means bittorent and other video content too … via “rogue”, jailbrake apps).

ohh … the good? i do like the integration and easy setup with existing cable/sat box and plug-ins (although too few & limited)

real world review of the new macbook air

i must say i have been excited about finally getting a worthy laptop upgrade. i’ve been using macbooks for about 4 years now. started with white macbook (intel leopard) for wife – liked it. then had my job order an 08 15′ macbook pro customed: 4gb of mem & 7200 rpm hard drive. which was the best laptop i’ve ever “owned” to date. then had to downgrade to 13′ aluminum macbook “pro” (MBP) 2gb SD slot 4ish hour battery life … then made the biggest mistake of my short apple life … and “upgraded” to shit (aka snow) leopard. 2gb used to be enough on the old white macbook, but after snow … nothing but rainbow wheel of death.

the new Macbook Air 4gb / 128 flash SDD real user review

i’ve had this MBA – new baby for a day now … in one word – it’s a screamer

the good: as Dvorak & others have been trying to tell us for years “it’s the hard drive dummy” (not the CPU that’s responsible for the speed of the computre). it doesn’t really matter if you have 1.8 Ghz or 2.3 Ghz (1.4 probably would be fine as well), but the flash hard drive and 4gb of memory amounts to an amazing speed increase:
– it starts up in 12 sec / 2 sec from sleep. overall flash SSD makes this baby scream, everything is “now”
– RWOD (rainbow wheel of death) is mostly gone. it takes about 30 seconds to open 4 firefox windows with 4-6 tabs on each on the new Air vs 60 seconds on the old one (it only appeared while upgrading mac os)
– battery – i’ve gotten about 5 hours on the 2nd charge … should be close to 6h on few charge-drain cycles
– no CD/DVD – haven’t used it much lately and losing 2lb in the process is certainly worth it
– 2nd USB port … definitely welcome (in comparison to older Air)
– no more fan noise (well known annoyance of the older Air). this baby runs very quietly. while transferring from macbook pro to Air I got a panic attack – fans were humming intensely about 2 hours into the transfer.


silly me … about 1 min after i moved the Air to the side to listen to the concerning noise closer … i’ve realized the true reason for this heat … was the fact that the new Air was placed directly over the fans of old Macbook – therefore causing high temperature. as soon as i’ve placed Air away from the other Macbook’s heat … fans & noise stopped immediately (it does go on sometimes when watching lots of youtube videos or crunching photoshop rendering).

on the fence:
– LCD – similar to aluminum macbook one. old Air was too “matte” – as in you really had to look at the screen at a direct 90 deg angle, otherwise you stopped seeing portions of the screen. new one seems very crisp, but haven’t used it in the sun yet … big problem for the glass-covered macbook pro. [cont. under “screen resolution”]

the bad:
– no illuminated keyboard … apple giveth, apple taketh away – but why? why taking away good features? it fit just fine on the old air …
– no infrared – no remote … again, old Air had it. appleTV solves this problem at home, but what if i want to give a presentation … now i need to buy another dongle remote?
– screen resolution – WTF you say? but … i really don’t see an advantage of 1440×900 resolution on a 13′ screen. it makes everything smaller. 1280×800 was a perfect balance for the 13′ screen. now i have to squint or get ridiculously close to the screen to see anything (yes you can zoom in the text/pix on z browser, but bookmarks are tiny now). solution? crappy one, emulate 1280×800, but then you’ll feel like you’ve moved back in time to CRT. (at least it’s bright enough, so you can “illuminate” your keyboard … by tilting the screen onto the keys). [update: possible solution to this problem]
– design – WTF you say again? … i admit it’s sexiest laptop out there. full size keyboard, 13′ screen. not even an inch at its thickest … or is it? due to the optical illusion apple wants you to believe it’s … thin, but honestly just because bottom is curved doesn’t mean it’s not there.
functionality over sexy. i’d be much happier with square all-around design, which would give a little extra space …  wishfully that would fit infrared & illuminated keyboard.

the joke: eject button … what exactly is it for? no spinning mechanism on this baby what’s-so-ever. and thus resulting in a movement of volume buttons …  one to the left. i tried to eject memory stick to no avail. WTF?  i gotten used to this keyboard layout for the past 4 years …


this could have been a perfect laptop … best macbook every made. it’s sexy, functional and the  fastest macbook i have ever had in my hands. but … small-god-complex Steve Jobs believes in “apple giveth, apple must taketh away”
… but why take away good features Steve?
– $1,500 certainly ain’t cheap in today’s world of $400 decent 13-15′ laptops
– is apple really going to lose so much money that they have to take away features?
– has the increase in the battery size prohibited in fitting those old features?

from a faithful mac user (so far) – you actually need more memory and faster solid drive in order to run crappy snow leopard / flash combo at a decent speed, without looking at a rainbow wheel of death all the time (new apple gay propaganda?🙂.

so Steve; please bring illuminated keyboard and infrared back to Air, fix the 1280×800 resolution display on 13′ & drop the price by couple hundred. you’ll have the best, sexiest laptop ever made … and made by apple of course.  your profits won’t suffer that much, but the end users will reward you with happy praises

best FREE iPhone apps

picture-51 i’ve used iPhone for over 6 months now & even though in the beginning you couldn’t really have a clear phone conversation, apple has stepped up & fixed all the problems and now …. yes, i’m a fan.

but, this post is about BEST FREE applications for iPhone, so here you go: [best of the best sir are in bold & italics]


  • google mobile app – not only has decent voice recognition, but you can easily find your contacts and local stuff (pizza, etc)
  • gmail, google calendar, tasks [web]- build in email client sucks, so if you want to be able to search your gmail, see conversations again, etc – it’s all possible via the web (i’m just not sure why google has removed calendar “quick add” from there ….)
    … but if you do use build-in mail app – firemail will let you type your email horizontally and then send them back to the regular mail app
  • facebook – if you’re an addict … you got to have this app
  • iTalk – record audio: voice memos, sounds, etc – then download to your computer
  • discover – yes, you can use your iPhone as a hard drive / over the wifi
  • WiFinder – find open WiFi spots around you
  • Easy Wi-Fi – if you use starbucks’ free wifi connection a lot, this is a life saver (no more waiting for txt, etc)


  • yelp – looking for a good restaurant whenever you are?
  • trapster – would you like to avoid a speeding ticket and know where are the speed traps or where’s the nearest traffic light camera?🙂
  • pandora, and iHeartRadio – radio on iPhone is decent – iHeart let’s u listen to most of the local radio stations even if you’re elsewhere (hot 97, v103, etc)
  • shazam – “what’s the name of that song”? – this app will tell you, by simply putting the iPhone next to the speaker … amazing
  • fring – best IM client:Skype,  MSN, ICQ, Google Talk, etc – although i never succeeded in making a skype call … yes, over wifi
  • drinks free – tells you how to make most of the popular drinks out there


not “best”, but good enough to list:

  • accuWeather – better then build-in weather, especially the radar & real feel
  • twitter [web] – it’s free & it does the basics
  • nbc traffic camera – 1/2 of the cameras don’t work, but it’s only such app that’s available for free
  • remote – controls your iTunes, so you can be a better couch potato🙂

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