Fresh iPhone Apps for Jan. 28: Decoded by Jay-Z, Play.fm Streaming, Honk

Jan 28, 2011
Tech

Enjoy some musical education wtih Decoded by Jay-Z, an app packed with content about the rapper and the songs that have made him a legend in his industry. Fans will want check it out, but if beat-heavy dance music is more your thing, you might enjoy the streaming capabilities of Play.fm. We’ve got all the […]

Enjoy some musical education wtih Decoded by Jay-Z, an app packed with content about the rapper and the songs that have made him a legend in his industry. Fans will want check it out, but if beat-heavy dance music is more your thing, you might enjoy the streaming capabilities of Play.fm. We’ve got all the details on those and more on today’s Fresh Apps list.

Decoded by Jay-Z (iPhone, iPad) $9.99 (with $24.99 in-app purchase)

Rapper Jay-Z’s first app combines his lyrics, their meanings, music and never-before-seen video to give fans more than just a behind-the-scenes look at the famous musician, but a greater cultural understanding of rap and its place in history — along with Jay-Z’s. The $9.99 standard app lets you pick from 10 of the app’s 36 tracks and custom-build your Decoded experience, with each song complete with Jay-Z’s lyrics, notes and annotations, as well as background information about the stories and experiences that led to each track. The app also includes a Jay-Z news feed to keep up on what the artist is working on.

With a $24.99 in-app purchase, users get all 36 Jay-Z tracks included in the app, as well a full biography of Jay-Z and 17 unreleased videos. It’s the Jay-Z fan’s full, true mobile experience.

Play.fm Music Streaming Service for DJ Mixes (iPhone, iPad) $3.99

Into dance music? Then you probably already know you’re going to like Play.fm, which takes as its explicit duty the streaming of bass-heavy club dance mixes from DJs all over the world. The app features music from top DJs from 180 different countries, and makes it all available to you on your iDevice, whenever you feel like listening.

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Search functions allow you to find exactly the DJs and mixes you’re looking for, or if you’re less picky, you can filter the selection by genre and other criteria. Streaming is free for 90 days after you download the app; after that, you get five hours of free streaming a month, with any more requiring a little more dough (although the rates aren’t available yet, since premium streaming won’t be around for a few more months). Still, if club music is your bag, Play.fm might be worth a $4 trial check-out for the next there months.

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Honk (iPhone) $0.99

Parking tickets — they’re one of the worst kinds of expense, because they’re usually totally avoidable. The best way to avoid the fines is with Honk, which reminds you of when you’ve got a parking meter expiring and where you parked. The app also makes it easy to keep track of how much time your meter has left, by displaying the timer over its app icon, rather than requiring the app to be open.

Keeping track of where you left your car is easy with Honk, which uses your iPhone’s GPS when possible to peg your car’s location. If that doesn’t work, you can snap a photo of the location and draw over it with your finger on the touchscreen — quickly annotating your image to give yourself notes and reminders.

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Phil Hornshaw

Phil Hornshaw is a freelance writer, editor and author living in Los Angeles, dividing his time between playing video games, playing video games on his cell phone, and writing about playing video games. He’s also the co-author of So You Created a Wormhole: The Time Traveler’s Guide to Time Travel, which attempts to mix time travel pop culture with some semblance of science, as well as tips on the appropriate means of riding dinosaurs. Check out his profile.

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