WordPress and Internet radio on the iPod Touch – The future of mobile computing?

After purchasing an Apple iPod Touch recently, I really am quite gobsmacked at how powerful a device this is. There are certainly chinks – the accelerometer is temperamental, the iPhone 2.0 software has crashed more in the space of a month than OS X on my MacBook Pro has crashed in over two years, some apps are more unstable than others (pointing to a lack of quality control at Apple that vets all apps) and the “push” email and other services through MobileMe kills battery life to the extent that it is rendered useless.

But in terms of a music player, a video player and a mobile web browser this device is simply brilliant. The Nokia N series or the E series with Symbian don’t even come close, though the new Opera for Windows Mobile does seem to incorporate some of the best features of Safari on the iPod Touch (haven’t tried it).

Two apps that really stand out.

One, the WordPress App for the iPhone (and iPod Touch). Quite simply, in both design and functionality, it just rivals any PC as a blogging platform. The only drawback is that it is not as integrated with mobile Safari as I would have liked it to be (the iPod Touch and iPhone suffer a great deal from the lack of inbuilt copy / cut / paste features within and across apps) but for basic blogging and even to put up photos, this really works and well. The app is available on the Sri Lankan iTunes Store.

Best of all – it’s open source and free!

The other is not free but is a visual feast as well as extends the range of music on the iPhone / iPod Touch to many times more than what’s stored on the device. The Tuner for the iPhone / iPod Touch works over most “broadband” connections in Sri Lanka and basically is a mobile internet radio client with a snazzy interface. The higher bit rate stations won’t play at peaktime on SLT’s ADSL “broadband” but this is not surprising. On Sundays though and in the night, all’s good and the higher bit rate stations (anything above 96kbps) sound very good. There’s a HUGE range of stations to select from and it just guarantees that you’ll never be at an airport or lounge listening to Yanni or Kenny G again.

Click here to download the app (link connects you to the iTunes App Store – you’ll need version iTunes 7.7 or above)

Working on my iPod Touch recently at a wifi enabled cafe in Colombo, I realised that I was checking email, blogging, listening to streaming music and could monitor the Vikalpa YouTube Channel, read the entire NY Times and Time magazine (even offline), all my newsfeeds and access reminders and OCR scanned notes (through Evernote) and keep up with the goz on Facebook all from this one device.

Magic.

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