8) Just for Fun: The Most Ridiculously Effective Fun iPhone App —

So I have to ask, in your opinion, what’s the most ridiculously effective iPhone app you’ve seen. Is it some scan-and-send solution? Perhaps something related to a map or location? For me, I tell you… the one that I keep coming back to … the one that seems utterly impossibly beyond a shadow of a doubt weirdly amazing, has got to be [drum roll] SoundHound. First, realize — it’s totally free. Second, keep in mind, you can *sing* to it. Third, it just *works*. So what does SoundHound do? Suppose you’re driving along in the Land Rover and some radio station suddenly plays this gorgeous rendition of a song you used to hum when you were a kid. You can’t remember the words or title though. You want to tell your spouse when you get home… but … how do you describe it? Even if it *were* on YouTube, how do you know what search terms to use?


Enter SoundHound. You just hold the iPhone up to the radio speaker, click the big button, and in 20 seconds, it’s collected enough sampling to go to work. (Granted, it relies on a connection to the SoundHound hub — so you have to be within cell range. But even if you’re not, it’ll at least log a history of your search, so when you get back to town, it’ll still dutifully go to work.) So what does it *do*? It takes the music you played and studies the chord construction, analyzes the words or melody, then somehow magically searches through all the music that has ever been written or recorded! In about 15 seconds, suddenly, all the famous “Name that Tune” experts are obsolete. I’ve used it dozens of times and — only once have I stumped it. (It was on an NPR program. The jazz pianist was covering something so unique, I don’t even think it had a name.) In every case but that one time, it has come back with the name. “Pass it on.” “There’s Something about the name.” “Yellow Submarine.” You see, it really doesn’t matter. It knows all.


So please — Match that. What’s *your* favorite amazing iPhone ability. Just click in the “Comment” box of the online version of this item. Thanks in advance for your response.

2 Responses to 8) Just for Fun: The Most Ridiculously Effective Fun iPhone App —
  1. Ed Reply

    Shazam is another one that does what SoundHound does. We’re starting to get a noticeable amount of reduplication in the functions of some iPhone/iPodTouch apps.

  2. Joe Steinitz Reply

    OK. I was out at a meeting the other night and they passed out song sheets but the room was dark. One of the people there pulls out her iphone and turns on the flashlight app and reads the words just fine. My wife asks her which app it is and she responds “over40”. But the coolest feature is that it has a magnifier, so you hold your phone over the words and it makes them larger. So, I download the app and the next day am trying to read the serial number on the back of a printer in need of warranty service. Normally this would mean pulling the whole thing out and shining a light on it. This app made it so easy. Not only that, but later I am trying to redeem an itunes card. The redemption code is a bit hard to read, especially as it is scraped up due to removing the shielding with a key. Turn on the light and magnifier and it works great. The magnification is adjustable too! Of course the app is free, though I spent a little extra so I could pass on the advertisements.

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