Little Black Book of Apps 2012: iPhone, Android and more

App essentials for your phone, tablets, PC and car

Android, BlackBerry, Windows Phone and iPhone apps guaranteed to boost your tech, from smartphones to chevys in 2012

Good news, 2012 is set for a raft of new smartphones and tablets brandishing quad-core processors, slimline bodies and water-proofing prowess, and that doesn't even include the much rumoured iPhone 5 and Samsung Galaxy S3.

Thankfully, T3 has got your back when it comes to apps whether it's the latest apps reviewed on the T3 App Chart or the hottest apps that have landed on our tablets and smartphones each month. But if you are looking for the apps guaranteed to enhance your daily life whether its the grind of a commute or sitting in front of the TV, we've rustled up life-enhancing apps for iPhone, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Phone 7, Smart TVs, Mac and much more that we are calling our little black book of apps...

Little Black Book of Apps: Windows Phone 7

Money

Reuters Finance

Investors need stats and breaking news at their fingertips, and this app offers a huge breadth of financial info. Easy tagging allows you to keep track of key stories.

Price: free

Sport

Premier Leagues +

Keep up with football scores as they happen thanks to self-updating live tiles. You can even moonlight once in a while with two sets of goal notifications running at once. Judas.

Price: £2.49

Fashion

Tie Mentor

Stay abreast of today’s ever-changing cravat fashions with seven types of tie knots explained simply through easy-to-follow visuals. At last, you can ditch the clip-on and dress like an adult.

Price: Free

Shopping

Shopsavvy

Integrated with Bing search, this lets you scan items as you shop and then peruse the lists of cheapest web prices that it proffers. Boasts an extensive selection of outlets, too.

Price: Free

Productivity

Connectivity Shortcuts

One of Windows phone’s foibles is the rigmarole associated with simple tasks. This saves time and hassle by keeping all your battery sapping connections under one tile.

Price: Free

Home improvement

DIY

Does the very mention of DIY make you weep? Piss-easy calculators stop you running out of paint midway through a wall or finding no more tiles are left with only one wall of the wetroom done.

Price: £0.79

Reading

My Reading List

User-friendly suite of tools lets you keep track of all the novels you’ve got on the go, and is one of the few apps to let you flag up future tomes.

Price: £0.79

Medical

First Aid

When it’s time to be a hero, there’s no shame in whipping out an app that’s stacked with simple instructions to help a fellow human. A large and diverse range of fascinating injuries is covered and sorted.

Price: Free

Photography

Pictures Lab

Uncluttered and polished photo-boffer provides myriad touch-up effects at the sought-after, sub-£2.30 price bracket.

Price: £2.29

Travel

GPS Speedometer

Be it running, cycling or even flying, this app reveals current, top and average speeds, keeping you entertained as you rack up the kilometres.

Price: £0.79

title: Best Windows Phone 7 apps Part Two / url: Best-Windows-Phone-7-apps-Part-Two

Music

Ministry of Sound

Fan of the Elephant and Castle-based super club? Want to check out pictures of you “having it” last night? You can with this slick package, and it offers a plethora of radio stations playing the latest “rinsing flavas”, too.

Price: Free

Time Waster

The Impossible Game

Very hard yet also very simple, a bit like Vinnie Jones, this is as addictive as chocolate coated crack swaddled in bubble wrap. Hours will perish as you navigate a block through a 2D platform.

Price: £0.79

Epic Game

The Harvest

A wide-ranging, 3D sci-fi RPG with graphics that show off the power of your Windows Phone and the sort of longevity that’ll have you playing for months on end.

Price: £5.49

News

Pulse

Struggling to keep up with all the news feeds around? Add content from the biggest publishers to the most mentally ill bloggers, and view it all in one of the slickest uis Windows Marketplace has to offer.

Price: Free

Cooking

All Recipes Dinner Spinner

Whether you’re more Heston Blumenthal or Heston Services, this Russian Roulette of nosh lets you choose from thousands of recipes at the spin of a virtual wheel.

Price: Free

Business

QR Business Card

At a crucial meeting and forgotten your business card? avert disaster and give the illusion of competence with this app, which creates a QR code to supply your details. it supports multiple identities – handy if you’re a terrorist or spy.

Price: Free

Networking

WNM Live

Like ChatRoulette without the fear of genitals, this lets you talk anonymously to other WP users over 3G or Wi-Fi. You can share local links and favourite non-crazies for further chatting.

Price: Free

Video

SuperTube HD

Lets you watch or download HQ and HD YouTube videos on the go, with Zune syncing.

Price: £0.99

Organisation

Pocket Recorder

Start recording with one touch from the start menu, tag photos with sounds or create ringtones from your ramblings. A must-have.

Price: £0.79

Education

Nihao

Keep up with the lingo of the next world superpower with this straightforward, interactive Chinese language app. audio and video help you along the path to enlightenment.

Price: Free

title: Best iPhone apps 2012 / url: Best-iPhone-apps-2012

Little Black Book of Apps: iOS

Money

iCurrency Pad

Super-quick calculator cum-currency converter keeps itself up to date with world exchange rates, with everything from pounds sterling to guinean francs covered.

Price: £0.69 (or 53 rupees)

Sport

London 2012

Everything you could ever wish to know about the 2012 Olympics in one app. Every event, venue and gold medal Britain will fail to win, right at your fingertips.

Price: £0.69

Fashion

Style.com

Browse videos and seemingly endless photo galleries from the world’s catwalks, with a dedicated men’s fashion tab for dapper chaps.

Price: Free

Shopping

Quickscan Pro

Snap a code on the side of any product and Quickscan takes to the web to ferret out the best possible price for online purchase. That’s sure to make you popular in Selfridges.

Price: £0.69

Productivity

RemoteMouse

Convert your iPhone into an oversized touchpad and even keyboard for your PC. Leaving the couch just became unnecessary…

Price: £1.49

Home Improvement

iHandy Carpenter

With its accelerometer, the iPhone was almost specifically built to be used as a spirit level (and nothing else). iHandy offers this and other nifty DIY tools, including a pendulum, ruler and, er, compass.

Price: £1.49

Reading

Zinio

Never buy a mag again – except ours, obviously. Download whole issues of your favourites and pinch-to-zoom your way through them. Yes, we are on there, if our official T3: iPad Edition is too video- and extras-packed for you.

Price: Free

Medical

3D Brain

A spinnable 3D model of the inside of your noggin. explore everything from the corpus callossum to the Broca’s area and the frontotemporal lobe before even considering going ahead with your long-planned home trepanation.

Price: Free

Photography

Pro HDR

Takes two photos at different exposures and blends them for optimum light balance – dark foregrounds are brightened but without it making the sky appear as if the sun has supernova’d, for instance. Much better than the iPhone’s builtin HDR function.

Price: £1.49

Travel

Tripit

Magically converts airline confirmation emails into information like departure time, gate and seat number for easy, panic-free check-in.

Price: Free

title: Best iOS apps Part Two / url: Best-iOS-apps-Part-Two

Music

SoundHound

Can identify a tune in seconds, even if it’s just you singing or even humming it, and will also find lyrics for some songs. A good backup or alternative to the similar Shazam.

Price: Free

Time Waster

Copter

The classic helicopter Flash game lands on iPhone. save your doomed chopper from smashing against neon green obstacles.

Price: £0.69

Epic Game

Papa Sangre

Superbly dark horror game with no graphics that uses the iPhone’s stereo sound to guide you blindly through the land of the Dead.

Price: £2.99

News

iReddit

A massive online community of “best of the web” sub-hubs, from world politics to Lolcats, now in slick app format.

Price: Free

Cooking

Michel Roux Jr

Rictus-grinned, perma stubbled, double- Michelin-starred chef whisks – and chops, grates and sous-vides – his way on to ios with his own app, replete with video recipes.

Price: £5.49

Business

Secret Folder

Password-protected storage for keeping financial details, billion-pound business plans, and top-secret dossiers. And porn.

Price: £1.99

Networking

IMO

Top-dog instant message client rolls all your accounts into one handy chat app, from MSN to Skype to Steam.

Price: Free

Video

AirVideo

This media streamer pipes video from your computer to your iPhone over Wi-Fi. If it meets a format your iPhone doesn’t like, it’ll even convert it for you.

Price: £1.99

Organisation

White Noise

Force your brain into submission with this excellent sleep hacking app, which drowns out everything from roadworks to sleeptalking spouses with various flavours of droning static.

Price: £1.49

Education

TED

Hundreds of 20-minute talks by top boffins on everything from music to neuroscience, without the TED conference’s infamously hefty attendance fee.

Price: Free

title: Best Android apps 2012 / url: Best-Android-apps-2012

Little Black Book of Apps: Android

Money

EasyMoney 1.0

A handy app that includes bill reminders, budget planner and an expense tracker, so you can stay on top of your finances, both business and pleasure-related.

Price: £5.99

Sport

Sky Sports Football Score Centre Live scores

Commentary, news, and even a pub finder to watch the game in 3D. It looks great, too, though we wonder why they chose Jeff Stelling over Millie Clode as host.

Price: Free

Fashion

Pose: Share and Discover Style

See what trendsetters are wearing, find out where to buy the same, and upload your own pics so strangers can admire your string vest and trilby combo. Also useful to see what to buy the girlfriend.

Price: Free

Shopping

NetVoucherCodes Vouchers

GPS takes a while to find local deals, but it got us £70 off a Samsung Galaxy S II at a Three store, as well as half-price supermarket electrical goodies.

Price: Free

Productivity

PocketCloud Explore

Access what’s on your home desktop from your phone. Means you can work from the pub – just don’t sign off emails with “You’re my besht mate you are…”

Price: £0.99

Home improvement

Home Electrical Safety Check

Breaks down electricals by room, and gives the basics on fuse box, cables, sockets, light fittings, and more. If things don’t go to plan, see the Red Cross app below.

Price: Free

Reading

Gertrude McFuzz by Dr. Seuss

Classic story which you can read or have read to you. You can also set it to go like a slideshow with pages turning automatically. Come to think of it, your children might quite like this, too.

Price: £1.23

Medical

First Aid by British Red Cross

Advice for 18 hair-raising scenarios, with step-by-step advice and tips. Let’s hope you don’t have to use it, eh?

Price: Free

Photography

360 Panorama

Lets you stitch snaps into a panorama, then tilt the phone to scroll around, like you’re bouncing around inside the picture.

Price: £0.63

Travel

Route 66 Maps +

Satnav with augmented reality to map your route on to the real world, so you can see exactly which turning to take. You’re going to need a better excuse for being late…

Price: Free

title: Best Android apps Part Two / url: Best-Android-apps-Part-Two

Music

UberHype

Recommends music based on what people are blogging about. As a result you can impress people at parties by talking at them about your love for top new artistes Scragnugget, DJ Plum and Zyyxxyl 37.

Price: Free

Time Waster

Flick Golf Extreme

Tee off from canyons, fighter jets and icebergs, in this game of quite literally crazy golf. It’s from the folks behind the truly immense Flick Kick Football.

Price: £1.49

Epic Game

Modern Combat 3: Fallen Nation

Amazing first-person shooter with 12-player multiplayer mode and graphics that make most other mobile games look like Snake and finally justifies the investment in a dualcore handset.

Price: £4.99

News

Tech City

Keeps you up to date on the government’s Tech City initiative of startups and companies around Old Street’s Silicon Roundabout in east London. Invaluable for tech groupies and movers and shakers.

Price: Free

Cooking

170,000+ Recipes BigOven

As the name suggests, over 170,000 recipes on your phone, with a recession-busting, waste-reducing mode that suggests what to make with leftovers.

Price: Free

Business

YousendIt

Now, not only can you send large files from your phone, you can sign documents, modify files and save them in the cloud, too. Free (sub required to send files larger

than 50MB)

Price: Free

Networking

Chime.in

Like Twitter, but built around specific interests rather than an endless stream of disparate guff. You can share on Twitter and Facebook, too.

Price: Free

Video

Escape and Control

Jon Ronson’s acclaimed, ongoing documentary series about the dark forces trying to control the internet. At time of writing there were six episodes, but look out for more soon.

Price: Free

Organisation

Awesome! Notifier

Not a great looker, but does let you reply to texts straight from a locked screen, so handy if you’re busy.

Price: Free

Education

My day with WH Words

Uses a story to encourage kids with autism and Down’s syndrome to talk about their day. Also helps with other conversational skills.

Price: £1.93

title: Best BlackBerry apps 2012 / url: Best-BlackBerry-apps-2012

Little Black Books of Apps: BlackBerry

Money

Money for BlackBerry

Keep track of your personal finances with scheduled transactions and multiple accounts making it easy to monitor wonga levels. Also converts currencies.

Price: £10

Sport

ESPN Goals

Get highlight clips, live scores and match stats from Premier League games right as they happen, with whole match highlights and round-up clips soon after the final whistle.

Price: Free

Fashion

Fashion News service by 360 Fashion

Get the most fabulous style articles from the fash-biz, with BBM features in OS7, as well as offline storage and background updates. Balancing on couture’s cutting edge has never been simpler.

Price: Free

Shopping

Sccope UK

BlackBerry’s scan and-price-check app is distinguished by a wish list that monitors prices longer term as they (hopefully) drop, and a name that looks like it’s spelled wrong.

Price: Free

Productivity

MyTasks

Sort your tasks into projects, enable due dates and reminders for them, tag them by colour for sorting, and even mark them at different levels of completion. A life-saver for the scatter-brained.

Price: Free

Home Improvement

Home Improvement Checklist

Never forget essential DIY equipment or materials with this app, which lets you easily create checklists and group them by job.

Price: £2

Reading

Kobo

This Kindle alternative offers a sterling range of books, while its e-reader side lets you adjust the font so you can read clearly even on smaller screens.

Price: Free

Medical

I.C.E.

Enter information such as allergies, blood type and next of kin into this app, and keep it on your home screen. Simple and clear, as it should be. Name stands for “In Case of Emergency” and not, as you might have thought, “Igloo Containing Elephants”.

Price: Free

Photography

A+ Picture Effects and Photo Editor

Customisable tools, fi lters and effects for your BB’s snaps. You need a newer handset if you want speedy processing, but the results are worth the wait on older ones.

Price: £1

Travel

TubeBuddy

With live departure boards for London Underground and DLR stations, and a constantly updating screen detailing common transport problems such as “person under train”, “wrong type of dust on tracks” and “runaway horses blocking signals”.

Price: Free

title: Best BlackBerry apps Part Two / url: Best-BlackBerry-apps-Part-Two

Music

TuneIn radio

Your iPhone-owning chums may crow about TuneIn, but it’s actually on BlackBerry, too, offering scads of searchable stations in categories from easy listening to deathcore.

Price: Free

Time Waster

Dragon Fire

Starts off as a gentle exercise in guiding coloured orbs to their destination, but quickly becomes tricky. Fiendishly addictive, it’s a perfectly executed afternoon stealer.

Price: £1

Epic Game

Final Fantasy

More “Initial Fantasy” really, as this is part one of the massively sprawling, classic RPG series. Craft your team from six character classes, then shank Earth Fiends with gay abandon.

Price: £5

News

RSS Guru

A simple, easy-to browse interface complete with picture thumbnails. Comes with feeds from the BBC, CNN et al and you can paste in URLs to add your own faves.

Price: £2

Cooking

Patrik’s Easy Cooking

This doesn’t just let you search for recipes by keyword or browse for types of cuisine, but also tempts you with sumptuous-looking photography and a favourites feature.

Price: £3

Business

Timr

A gloriously simple, paperless way to keep track of working time and/or mileage, via the timr.com web service.

Price: Free

Networking

Ubersocial

This powerful Twitter client offers cross posting to Facebook and the ability to update your BBM status, as well as an Inner Circle feature for seeing tweets from those who fascinate you most.

Price: Free

Video

Player for YouTube

Get access to the video king’s best features in a B-Berry-tailored stylee. View channels, search and bookmark videos, share them and play them in high quality, too.

Price: Free

Organization

Evernote

The ultimate organisation tool syncs with your other devices over the cloud. Upload text notes and image reminders, record voice memos and access your stored notes seamlessly from just about anything with electricity in it.

Price: Free

Education

UK Car Driving Theory Test

Reduce driving-test stress with this little baby, which sets mock tests including actual questions the DSA may ask. You can also revise specific topic areas, when I tap the dashboard…

Price: £6

title: Best Smart TV apps / url: Best-Smart-TV-apps

Little Black Books of Apps: Smart TV apps

Asphalt 5

Panasonic Viera

This TV partnership with Gameloft pays time-killing dividends as this retina searing racer makes its merry way to smart Vieras.

Price: Free

Muzu.tv

Samsung Smart TV

Provides gig footage, music videos and interviews with all your favourite artists, a bit like MTV did when it still used to play music.

Price: Free

Acetrax

Samsung, Panasonic, LG, Philips, Toshiba

Movies on demand to you, sir, from the comfort of your sofa. Some blockbusters, a smattering of oldies, and no subscription required.

Price: Free (£3.49 average rental)

Fandango

Samsung Smart TV

Has you covered when it comes to movies, with release dates, trailers, showing times and critic and fan reviews.

Price: Free

title: Best apps for cars / url: Best-apps-for-cars

Little Black Book of Apps: In-car apps

Ford Sync & Applink

Conjoin your smartphone to your car’s computer, then use mobile apps via the dashboard, steering wheel buttons or voice recognition.

Price: Free

Audi Google Earth

Know where you are, wherever you are, as built in to the A7 Sportback, powered by Nvidia’s Tegra 3 chip.

Price: Free

Dash Command

Uses your smartphone’s accelerometer and GPS to provide a virtual dashboard, showing everything, from engine speed to time travelled in each gear.

Price: £34.99 iTunes; £19.11, Android Market

Onstar remoteLinkapp

Gives you magical powers over your Chevrolet. Scare people with your horn, lock and unlock your doors and check your fuel and oil levels remotely.

Price: Free

title: Best PC and Mac apps / url: Best-PC-and-Mac-apps

Little Black Book of Apps: PC and Mac apps

Desktop Curtain

Overlays wallpaper to hide everything on your desktop. Handy for screen grabs.

Price: £1.19, Mac

Call recorder for Skype

Record video calls and share them with friends.

Price: $19.95, MaC

Recuva

Recover (see what they did there) files deleted from your PC’s trash, camera or MP3 player.

Price: Free, PC

Psychonauts

This forgotten gaming gem from Tim “Day Of The Tentacle” Schafer is the perfect blend of platforming and puzzling.

Price: £6.99, Mac

Eraser

App that rids your PC of any sensitive info by repeatedly overwriting till it’s all a big, unintelligible mess. For when you have to nuke the site from orbit – just to be sure.

Price: Free, PC