Everytime I think about you, I ipodtouch myself.
November 21, 2008 2:15 PM   Subscribe

What neat things can I do with my brand new iPod Touch?

Yay! My new iPod Touch is in the mail and I should have it in my hands tomorrow! I'm awfully excited for it, considering I decided against jumping ship to AT&T for the iPhone this summer.

What fun and exciting things can I do with it? How do you use your Touch?
posted by santojulieta to Technology (23 answers total) 61 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Install Fring and use it to make free calls via Skype or Google Talk.
posted by jedicus at 2:18 PM on November 21, 2008 [3 favorites]

I play video poker on it all the time.
posted by All.star at 2:23 PM on November 21, 2008

The free application Remote is pretty useful. You can control your PC's iTunes via WiFi.
posted by gkhewitt at 2:34 PM on November 21, 2008

Lightsaber app.

Showtimes for film screenings.

Mostly it's used for taking ALL of my music with me wherever I am. Occasionally there's a video, a few apps (checkers, google earth, AOL Radio, CannonGame)

The oddest thing I've put on it is the US Constitution. People ALWAYS do a double take on that one, asking "Why, that's so random!"
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 2:36 PM on November 21, 2008 [1 favorite]

posted by exogenous at 2:37 PM on November 21, 2008

Best answer: And yeah, the Remote App is damn useful, it lets you control the iTunes on your desktop machine or an Apple TV from your iTouch.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 2:39 PM on November 21, 2008 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: I checked out that previous post last year, but I figured there's probably a crap-ton more awesome stuff this year.
posted by santojulieta at 3:03 PM on November 21, 2008

Best answer: Mine is mostly used for my long train commute every day, so I have the NYT app (slow to download the daily updates, but free), and Byline to sync my Google Reader feeds for offline reading.
posted by p3t3 at 3:04 PM on November 21, 2008

Best answer: I love Stanza. Airsharing allows you to mount the ipod like a wireless drive on your desktop or laptop. Drinks is damn useful. Google Earth is very cool.
posted by rtha at 3:04 PM on November 21, 2008 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Use Seeqpod to find free, streamable mp3's you can listen using the built-in iPod media player

Listen to Pandora internet radio

Use vTap to watch non-YouTube videos on the iPod

Store ebooks on your device (I actually read two full books using this on the iPod, and liked it.)

Play with the classic Labyrinth pinball maze

Use a slick phonebook look-up interface

Browse images and videos quickly with Cooliris

Download all of Wikipedia to your iPod for offline reading (More useful on iPods than iPhones, since they lack a cellular connection)

If you're ambitious, you can also use certain bookmarklets on your iPod. If you have Safari or Internet Explorer, save the bookmarklet links in a folder in your Bookmarks or Favorite Places list, then sync your bookmarks with the iPod.

Here are the ones I have that work:

Tabulate - choose to open links in a new tab
Find in this page - search a page for text
Google cache - go to the Google cache of the current page
Translate - Auto-translate a web page to English
Archive.org - Go to the Archive.org listings of the current page

Getting the long, javascript-based links to store properly can be a little frustrating; MeMail me if you have any trouble.

All of these things are available for standard iPods; you can do much, much more if you choose to jailbreak your device.
posted by Rhaomi at 3:35 PM on November 21, 2008 [5 favorites]

Best answer: I think urbanspoon works for the iTouch. Oddly awesome (odd because it seems so simple).
posted by eralclare at 3:48 PM on November 21, 2008

Urbanspoon does work for the touch. Haven't used it much, but it is cool.
posted by rtha at 4:14 PM on November 21, 2008

"Install Fring and use it to make free calls via Skype or Google Talk."

An iPod Touch doesn't have a microphone to speak through, does it?
posted by newfers at 4:31 PM on November 21, 2008 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Just because I was curious, here's something about the touch and Fring
posted by santojulieta at 4:44 PM on November 21, 2008

Best answer: I've got a bunch of flashcard programs on mine for learning Japanese. Most of them aren't free, but if you've got a commute, they can come in handy, and there are apps for a larger number of languages. There's a solid amount of Education apps, really. Google Earth is snazzy, if you've got a wifi connection.

Other than that, music and (lots of) movies. If you can find a decent converter, you can catch up on a lot of stuff. I'm rewatching the Wire, averaging about 1.7 episodes a day on my commute. Sports, as well. Very handy, even just using it out of the box. There are some fantastic apps out there, though.
posted by Ghidorah at 4:49 PM on November 21, 2008

I use mine basically as a web browser next to my bed now that I have an iPhone, but Instapaper was my very favorite app when I used my iTouch to get me through long, boring meetings. If you can get it to work on the Touch, Snatch can be used to control a Mac remotely, like a wireless mouse. If not, the Remote app from Apple is very useful.
posted by TochterAusElysium at 6:26 PM on November 21, 2008

This isn't really fun or particularly exciting, but it's a damn useful trick that I wish I had known earlier.

When your iPod goes to sleep, you have to tap it on and unlock it (pretty much always a two-handed operation) to access anything. Handy for pockets, not so handy if you want to change the track you're listening to. Just double-tap the round button, and the track and volume control will come up, without unlocking the whole thing.
posted by charmcityblues at 6:51 PM on November 21, 2008 [5 favorites]

A lot of the answers so far have focused on interesting utility-esque applications, which is good. But there's some great games that you can get as well.

For me, by far and away the best game you'll want to get is Topple. Think of it as anti-Tetris. Instead of clearing blocks, you want to stack them as high as you can. In a time limit. And the blocks don't always often match, meaning they can... topple over. But never fear! If your tower of blocks start to topple over, the accelerometer in your iTouch can be used to try and stabilize them.

I also highly recommend reMovem free, Tris (if you can find it), and the unimaginatively named Cannon Game. There's also a Magic 8-ball that's useless 99% of the time but great fun when you're drinking with friends or at a party.

Now that I've pointed you to some great games, I'll throw in my 2c regarding useful apps that I haven't seen mentioned yet.

First there's Shazam, which is very useful for when you hear a song on the radio or TV that you like, can't remember (or don't know) the name of. Just load Shazam, stick your iphone up to the speaker and within a few seconds, Shazam will usually tell you what the song is. Very handy. I also recommend WiFiFoFum for finding out if there are any WiFi networks you can tap into nearby and myLite, just because its useful to have a flashlight sometimes.

I'll also add my support to those up-thread who said that AirSharing is useful, and say that if your a Star Wars fan, then I'll also support the recommendation for the Lightsaber app. Like the Magic 8 Ball, it's useless but fun all the same.

By the way, you know you can save Metafilter to your Home screen, right?

Finally, can I also recommend three web pages that will be invaluable to you as you start life with your iTouch.

First there's the iPhone OS version history page at Wikipedia, which is handy for finding out what the latest firmware update (one was released today, by the way) changed, and for finding ou what the next update is likely to include.

Secondly, there's two iPhone blogs that have made it into my daily browsing run. They are The iPhone Blog and TopIPhone News. Don't let the iPhone in the name scare you off; both cover news related to the Touch and the iPhone.

That's all I've got for now. If I think of anything else, I'll let you know.
posted by Effigy2000 at 7:54 PM on November 21, 2008

If you enjoy synthesizers, get Noise.io. I spend countless hours on it. There is also Bloom, that'll relax you at night. And Simplify gives you access to your whole iTunes library. I also enjoy using Wikipanion to acces wikipedia.
posted by ddaavviidd at 8:26 PM on November 21, 2008

charmcityblues, you are my hero!! I can't believe I didn't know that, and I've had my touch since launch...
posted by gemmy at 10:58 PM on November 21, 2008

I've had mine for a year now, and I've found the most valuable apps are the free ones that allow offline reading. Instapaper gets another vote from me, as does NetNewsWire for NewsGator users (or Byline--not free--for GReader users.)

For personal organizing, Evernote. All free (except Byline) and all allow offline viewing, which makes the iTouch a hundred times more useful--especially if you spend a ton of timujes on public transport and planes, as I unfortunately do.

I've got a Samsung Blackjack II (blech, long story) and these offline apps allow me to avoid using the atrocious Windows Mobile interface for nearly everything but calling, IM'ing and Tweeting while on the go.
posted by mister barnacles at 10:43 AM on November 22, 2008

Install orblive and watch TV on the go.
posted by gergtreble at 9:35 AM on November 23, 2008

2nd-ing Bloom. It's like buying an infinite number of Brian Eno albums for $4.
posted by snofoam at 8:10 AM on November 24, 2008

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