App Store Wars

At the moment the three big players in the mobile operating system game are Android, Apple and yes, BlackBerry. As much of a setback as RIM may have had to deal with, recently, due to the whole outage bit, it’s quite doubtful that you may have switched over so quickly. So with these three systems in mind, we put together a list of apps with a budget of Rs.2,000 for each OS.

We’ve covered specific categories that include Productivity, Media, Games, Photography and Odd, but Fun. We’ve had our team of reviewers choose apps based on their own personal usage i.e. whatever OS they’ve been using the longest, and provide a list of apps for each we think you should have. We’ve included only paid versions of apps and none others that are free.


Let's start off with the ever loved Apple iOS. Although, there might be a total of four handsets in all, the iPhone is by far one of the most popular handset the world over. Not that this is any new information, but the reason being the rather seamless functioning of the OS. It's smooth, fluid and the apps designed for the system are neat and visually, quite a treat.

Angry Birds: Rs. 50
One year later, you can't ask to justify an Angry Birds purchase, anymore. It's a must have for every iOS device. Smash those birds into those pigs, and appreciate your value for money every time the app updates to release new levels.


Angry Birds Rio: Rs. 50
So you can either dish out your next 50 bucks on the Mighty Eagle in the regular Angry Birds game or you can spend on Rio. Why would I buy Rio? Because of the epic boss fights. They're a little different from the regular gameplay, but they still involved tossing birds at other birds. Plus, if you've seen the film, you can get a little nostalgic about it.

Fling birds. In Brazil. Win win.

Fling birds. In Brazil. Win win.


Whatsapp: Rs. 50
The one platform that Whatsapp charges money for. Of course, all your friends who aren't on iOS, have the app and refuse to communicate with you on SMS. Shell out the 50 bucks for the app and make them buy you a drink. You win in the end.

Color Splash: Rs. 50
Now, Hipstamatic might be the 'it' photography app for many people, but frankly, those same effects can be added as post production on any photo by a variety of free apps. Color Splash is innovative and intuitive. You can change a picture to black and white and selectively colour in elements. And frankly, my favourite post production effect to add before I upload to Instagram.

Choose what you want to colour in

Choose what you want to colour in


Voice Actions: Rs. 250
Sometimes (read often), you'll be driving and just then you get a message that you have to reply to or you need to call someone without looking down at your phone. Voice Actions acts as a voice-enabled assistant who will not only place your calls, but also 'type' your messages as you speak them. It makes the world a safer place to live in. Rs. 150
If you're like me and you have to look up most new things, including words, that come your way, is a good app to have. It comes with both, a dictionary and a thesaurus function, and is powered by the website of the same name. Plus, it's cheaper than buying a pocket dictionary, which you lose in no time.

GarageBand: Rs. 250
I'm a fan of playing around with sounds and since the music editing app recently launched for the iPhone, why wouldn't I buy it. With SoundCloud out there, it's become easier to record my musings, as well as tinker with various instruments and get the music out there. Except when my voice gets involved.

Play multiple instruments on your iPhone

Play multiple instruments on your iPhone


Reeder: Rs. 250
Reeder is an RSS application which syncs with your Google Reader account (which is required to use this app). The app also allows you to send articles to Instapaper and ReadItLater. What's nice is the developer keeps up with updates from both Google and iOS. So when iOS 5 came out, Reeder got an update that took advantage of the new landscape.  
OPlayer: Rs. 150
VLC was taken away from the iOS App Store a while ago, but then OPlayer came along and saved iOS users from having to convert video files on their desktops to be able to play them on their phones. It plays most major video and audio formats. However, with the iPhone 3G (and earlier) and the 1st and 2nd generation iPod Touch, you can only play native video files, because those devices' CPUs do not have enough power for video decoding.

Play your movies and your music in one place

Play your movies and your music in one place


Documents to Go: Rs. 500
If you're someone who likes to create Word docs and Excel sheets or read PDFs on the go, this is the app that does it all mostly. It's a little pricey, but you get what you pay for. With the purchase you also get a free desktop application, which you can sync with the app over Wi-Fi. Though the app doesn't have spell check, it's pretty useful for when you have to write quick letters or spreadsheets.

Kayak Pro: Rs. 50
Most folks buy their airline tickets online these days and is a pretty useful resource to do this. It scours all the airline websites, as well as other travel websites like Expedia and Vayama to bring you the cheapest ticket. Now search for tickets on your iPhone. There's a free version with ads, but when you've got the dough, why should you be advertised to right?

Star Chart: Rs. 150
This is a rather fun app, especially when you want to show off (guys, this works well to impress a girl on your first date. If you want to impress her that is). The app uses GPS to look at literally, the astronomical landscape of the sky you're under. The app is educational in nature (point to a star on the map and it MIGHT just be a planet!). It's also very very pretty!

What do your stars say?

What do your stars say?


: Rs. 50
If you're someone who's pedantic about their drinks or likes having people over, this is a good app to have. Mixologist has recipes for virtually all the potential cocktails you can make with your average liquor cabinet stock supply. For this Fun category, it would have been very easy to go with a Talking Tom Cat like application (basically a noise maker), but since this app promotes fun times, instead of forcing you to be asocial (which face it, noise making apps do), I'm choosing drinks!

For you alcoholics not-so-anonymous

For you alcoholics not-so-anonymous


Along with Android devices, the number of applications created for the mobile operating system have been growing at an accelerated pace. The Android Market is inundated with apps, be it gaming, utility, productivity, travel, photography, health and even silly weird apps.  Though it entered the market a little later, one wouldn’t be surprised if the Android Market stands at par with the Apple App Store.


ThinkFree Office Mobile: Rs. 500.80
This productivity app lets you edit, view and create MS-Office (Word/Excel/PowerPoint) documents on-the-go. Handling email attachments on handset is often tedious, but ThinkFree Office Mobile allows viewing and sending attachments through email. You also get 1GB of free online storage for accessing documents anytime, anywhere. The app supports in all 8 languages.


Battery Booster: Rs. 49.55
Most of us are always looking for an extended battery life without the need to reach our phone chargers now and then. Battery Booster is meant just for that and the paid version keeps ads at bay. It also serves as a power management app, and displays the battery usage info with auto updates. The Smart Battery Saver provides options to manage Wi-Fi and Bluetooth for optimal battery performance. With my Wi-Fi and Bluetooth switched on all the time, the Battery Booster takes care that these applications are off each time the phone is locked and automatically turned on when the phone is unlocked.


My Backup Pro: Rs. 250
With businesses going online or say mobile, this app comes across pretty handy. The app takes a complete backup (photos, apps, calendar, bookmarks, homescreens and more) and stores it in the online server, while you can also choose to store it on an SD card. The backup can also be scheduled and saved on your existing, as well as on a new handset. 

Daily errands and tasks

Daily errands and tasks




Astrid Power Pack: Rs. 200
It isn’t possible to remember every home or office errand. Here, the Astrid app comes to my rescue. It holds everything from my to-do-lists, reminders, shopping lists, task sharing and more. The instant notification feature (optional) allows task sharing and syncing effectively. The power pack further adds widgets, voice reminders and allows adding tasks using voice. Basically, it ensures that you don’t miss on any work scheduled for the day.  


Robo Defense: 149.89
Robo Defense is an engaging tower defense game with neat graphics and some cool features. In this game, you defend the tower by killing monsters. The paid version offers five maps with timely upgrades and several levels of difficulty that keep you glued to the screen.

Ninja on a fruit slicing mission

Ninja on a fruit slicing mission




Fruit Ninja: Rs. 60.63
This highly addictive game could leave your fingers sore. Get into the shoes rather gloves of a true ninja warrior for an intense fruit massacre. Swipe and slice your way across the screen with its three modes – Classic, Zen and Arcade. Along the way, carry powerups like freezy, frenzy and Double score. The Dojo category lets you unlock blades and backgrounds and you can flash your high scores on leaderboards through Openfeint.


Calorie Counter Pro MyNetDiary: Rs. 199.44
Those like me constantly looking to shed those extra kilos could keep a track of their diet and exercise schedule through this app. This comprehensive diet app has more than 4,16,000 foods in its database. It teaches you to eat healthy, keeps a tab on your water intake and also syncs your food and exercise schedule with MyNetDiary. It brings 500+ exercises and also calculates the calorie intake, BMI and BMR.

Keeps you fit

Keeps you fit




PowerAmp Unlocker: Rs. 259.34
Power amp is a great media app. On installing the PowerAmp Unlocker, you can convert the trial version into licensed version. It displays a launcher icon and incase of limited storage on the phone, you can even move the app to an SD card.  The player supports mp3, mp4, mp4a (includes lossless alac), flac, ogg, wav, wma, ape and wv files. It includes 10 band graphics equalizer for formats, along with separate controls for bass and treble. Lab Pro: 149.89
Create photo montages, collages and add fun-filled photo frames using the Lab Pro app. It offers 450 effects, animated effects, and lets you create contact icons and virtual postcards. Photo montages come with automatic face detection and you can also lay your hands on animated cartoon effects, trendy effects, photorealistic effects and photo filters.


FlightTrack: Rs. 49.71
This app makes it easier to get real time flight status and map tracking of flights across the world. Making it even easier, you can opt for Track by Route, Track by Flight and Airport Delay Map. So, all the your flight info is just a click away.


Whack-A-Santa: Rs. 53
The swiftly approaching season of bells and snow isn’t the only reason why I’ve picked the Whack-A-Santa app. This Christmas-themed app is fun to play with its three engaging modes – Classic, Sequential and Quick. With the recent upgrade, you can now store the game on your SD card.


Pocket Mirror: Rs. 49.63
This app turns your phone’s screen into a mirror. It’s a good bargain for girls, who love looking at their facial reflection anytime, anywhere. As you look into the mirror, it lets you freeze the image and even save it on the phone. You can go ahead and change the exposure by simply tapping the screen.


BlackBerry isn't known for hundreds of thousands of apps available on the BlackBerry App World. While some may see that as a disadvantage, BlackBerry addicts may see that as a blessing in disguise since quite frankly, you'd need more than a lifetime to go through hundreds of thousands of apps.

TuneWiki Pro: Rs. 250

If you like Karaoke, then TuneWiki Pro gives you lyrics with music and minus the ads. TuneWiki's social media player provides you subtitled lyrics to the music in your stored library, music videos that you can watch on your device and Internet streaming radio through SHOUTcast radio. As you play music, lyrics scroll on the bottom of the screen and are available for over 2.5 million songs.
White Noise: Rs. 100

Sleep is something many of us take for granted, only to learn too late that it's perhaps even more important than working out. So, if you feel you need to relax or sleep better, especially if you're in a hotel room, on an airplane or even if you want to take a quick nap at college or office--White Noise provides ambient sounds of the environment you like to help you relax or sleep. Sounds include high quality looping noises such as a running stream, crickets chirping at night, and the soothing sound of rainfall.

good 'ol brick game

good 'ol brick game



Tetris: Rs. 150

This game needs no introduction. It has been around for quite sometime, and scores high because it is fun and addictive. Drop blocks to clear lines—as simple as that. On BlackBerry, this puzzle action game offers race a two-minute clock in Ultra and also Forty Line, where you try clearing 40 lines as fast as you can. Plus, you can enjoy the famous Marathon mode.

Angry Farm: Rs. 250

While Angry Birds is supposed to be coming to BlackBerry soon, till then you can play Angry Farm. You need to help angry animals fight back to clear the farm of marauding foxes. The angry animals are armed with a catapult and they fly through the air like furious birds before colliding spectacularly with the foxes hiding inside protective farm structures.

Light 'Em Up: Rs. 50

A puzzle game with a simple goal of lighting up all the buttons. While you simply tap a button to bump its light, the fun begins when you realise that tapping a button also bumps its neighbours' lights.

Xobni: Rs. 100

Xobni is inbox inverted and is a smart solution for automatically organizing all your contacts in one place beyond your address book. Xobni makes all the people you've ever emailed, called or sent an SMS to, instantly searchable from your BlackBerry. Xobni creates rich profiles for them even if they are not in your address book.  Discover all your contacts beyond your address book, how you know them, when you last talked, and who you have in common.

Scans cards

Scans business cards



CamCard(Business Card Reader): Rs. 500

I attend lots of business events and meetings and storing and categorising cards is a perennial headache. This brilliant app turns your BlackBerry into a scanner and does just what the creator claims--transforms piles of business cards into your phone contacts in several clicks. You need to snap clear card photos either using your BlackBerry's built-in camera or by downloading pictures to your BlackBerry picture folder.

BeBuzz: Rs. 300

BeBuzz enables you to control your BlackBerry's front LED colour to see who is contacting you without picking up the phone. For instance, you can set bright red for calls from your boss, pink for e-mails from your cute girlfriend, turquoise for BBM messages and disco for your fun cousins and perhaps red/yellow when your battery is low. BeBuzz also offers features like Repeating Audible Notifiers, On-Screen Popup Notifiers and Vibrate-While-Ringing.

Wakeful: Rs. 250

Wakeful is a talking alarm clock app that helps you kick off your day productively by providing you with your life's most important information when waking up. You wake up to the latest breaking news (not India-specific though!), local weather and  current stock information based on the world's most important indexes. Waking up was never so fun!

SliderLock: Rs. 50

This app automatically locks your BlackBerry keypad when the backlight goes off to prevent unwanted activity. No more accidental calls because you forgot to lock your phone or accidental app launches that waste battery life.

- BlackBerry App listing contributed by Ivor Soans

Please feel free to add your own choices based on the OS you’re currently using. Do keep in mind this is all within a budget of Rs. 2,000.

Published Date: Nov 12, 2011 04:30 pm | Updated Date: Nov 12, 2011 04:30 pm