Two New (to Me) iPhone Apps

This blog continues to draw iPhone traffic, so here comes an iPhone post to keep you interested.

I installed two new iPhone apps today.

I Can Has Cheezburger
As I probably mentioned in the past, I tend to install apps, test them for a while, then remove them. Very few stick with me for very long.

Today, I found at least one that will, the official I Can Has Cheezburger iPhone app. If you’ve read here long, you’ve probably caught an LOLcat reference or several. Dan mentioned my predilection for cute cats + captions; they make me lulz. I remain unapologetic.

Beyond LOLcats, the ICHC guys have expanded to several other “properties”, including the FAIL Blog (a favorite of Paul‘s, just check his Google Reader Shared Items feed). Each blog follows the same winning (or failing, depending on your perspective) formula: collect user-submitted pictures and captions, sell ads, print money.

I’m not kidding. According to Business Week back in July, they make $5,600 each month, and estimates range higher. Beyond bringing me my daily lulz, these sites represent what I love about the ‘tubes. You just never know what will make money, and you probably can’t copy all the successful “business models”.

Anyway, the ICHC iPhone app is basically a photo viewer for each post, which makes sense. You can switch between the various properties, in case LOLcats don’t do it for you. Win.

One feature I miss already is YouTube integration; the FAIL Blog has loads of video clips, but they aren’t included in the iPhone app, which is a downer. Anyway, the app is simple and does its job well. I suspect other content owners (e.g. blogs) will follow this strategy, since it makes consuming the content easier than in Safari on the iPhone.

I also decided to try Loopt, another location-based social network. I think Loopt was one of the first apps in the App Store, and it was featured in one of the iPhone TV ads. According to TechCrunch, Loopt is the 20th most popular app download, passing Facebook and MySpace (their iPhone apps), over an unspecified time period.

At first blush, it seems pretty functional, but the biggest problem very few people are using it. Loopt found about half a dozen people in my iPhone address box, which it helpfully texted asking to be my friend on Loopt.

However, there isn’t any other way to discover people already using Loopt (e.g. Facebook or Twitter). Sure, I can invite people, but since I’m just testing it out, I don’t want to invite people yet. Plus, invites seem to be through mobile number only, and I don’t know that for most of the people I “know” on the ‘tubes.

David (didn’t he used to blog?) is the reason I tried out Loopt, but as with any social network, it’s useless without the network.

So, now I have Matt, Eddie, David and Dan in my Loopt network, but since only Eddie is in the same state as I am every day, it’s not feeling very useful right now. I guess the jury is still out on Loopt.

Your thoughts on iPhone apps, mobile, LOLcats, whatever? Find the comments.




  1. My name's David and I used to Blog… yes Jake I have lapsed the last month, all the best bloggers laps now and again – a right of passage I think. I'v e been consumed by the awesome products we're developing and working head down full on for a while (you reading boss?)

    As for Loopt, you can try to use the 'Mix' feature to find friends…

  2. At least you haven't blogged about not blogging, that's always funny to me. I'm not really holding my breath Ctrl+F5-ing, no need to let me know.

    I figured you were busy. It happens. As for Loopt's “Mix” feature, I'm not entirely convinced that's a good thing. Debating.

  3. Even the address book isn't that reliable. Eddie was listed as a user, but he had removed the app. He told me over Twitter he readded it to respond to my invite.

    If the market weren't so flat, Loopt would seem like acquisition bait.

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