FilesDIRECT faves: free iPhone apps

As a bit of a break from our usual posts, we’ve decided to poll the staff here at the FilesDIRECT office to get a list of everyone’s favorite iPhone apps.

(Photo credit)

One of our top picks is iBooks - Apple’s free e-book app. The built-in search, easy organizing and bookmarking, and pdf-reading capability all make this a perennial favorite. Make sure you’ve got iOS 4 before you pick this one up so you can get all the latest features.

Bump made the grade as a networking app: all it takes is a quick fist bump and you can share photos, contacts, and calendar events, become friends on Facebook, and more.

Zoocasa got the thumbs up by our CEO himself as a real estate search app that is simple and easy to use. It shows you local homes that are up for sale and displays them as a Google map. You can filter the results by number of bedrooms or bathrooms, as well as price. It lets you view photos as well as agent contact info, and email the info with just one tap.

The next 3 apps made it onto this list because most of our staff travel internationally on a regular basis:

XE Currency is a powerful (and popular) currency converter powered by - access current conversion rates on over 180 currencies.

Next up is TripAdvisor. This handy little app lets you find flights, restaurants and things to do wherever you’re travelling. It includes over 35 million reviews, and it works with your iPhone’s GPS to get you directions and point out nearby options.

The last of the “travel app trio” is Flight Tracker, which lets you search for and track upcoming flights, and keep track of relevant details like gates, arrival times, baggage claim info, flight delays, etc. It’s biggest draw is that it suggests alternative flights (and their connections) so that you’re not entirely at the mercy of the never-that-reliable airline industry. While not really free, at $0.99, it’s so close that it might as well be.

A fun free app (if you’re a Star Wars nerd, anyways) is Lightsaber. On the off chance you haven’t tried this yet, it does just what you think: creates a big glowing line across your screen and produces all the sound effects of the elegant weapon from a more civilized age.

Game-wise, it’s hard to beat Monster Kill for sheer manic enjoyment. You have a wall. Monsters come down the screen and try to break through your wall. You kill the monsters. Repeat. A simple but effective formula.

So there you have it - some of our favorite apps. What are yours?