We continue our guide to the best free apps for iPhone, covering news, photography, entertainment, work and social apps.
Our next category is:
If you live in, or are visiting, one of the 40 cities that Citymapper covers (just London, Birmingham and Manchester in the UK, but there are a few more in the US, for instance), you're in for an informational treat. The free app kits you out with maps and suggested routes, real-time progress for the nearest bus and tips such as best carriage or station exit.
FREE | Download Citymapper
If you've got a bit of free time - particularly small and otherwise useless bits of free time here and there - and want to learn or brush up on a language, then the Duolingo app is probably the best place to start. A decent range of languages is offered, and while the courses include all four disciplines (reading, writing, speaking and listening) it's easy to skip the audio tests when you're in public and don't want to be embarrassed.
The gamification elements - you build up a streak of days when you've practised, and topics you've completed start to deteriorate if they're not kept up for a while - provide clever motivation so you don't give up. There's no substitute for total immersion in another language, but this is a very decent second-best.
FREE | Download Duolingo
It's time to take sides: are you Apple Maps or Google Maps?
Actually, the joy of free apps is that you can hedge your bets and try both as much as you like. Apple Maps is now used by far more iPhone users, but this is obviously influenced by Apple's own app getting preferential treatment - location links from the Mail app, Safari and so on will always default to Apple Maps. And Google Maps has a lot to recommend it.
Indeed, while Apple Maps has done a good job of catching up over the past few years, adding public transport directions for example (Google Maps had that features before Apple Maps existed), most users reckon Google is still ahead, and we'd strongly recommend that you download Google Maps and test it out for yourself. What people need from a navigation app is accuracy, and we still feel that Google is more reliable.
Having a translator at hand can be expensive. Thankfully Google created Google Translate, a free app which provides you with a basic translation to almost every language imaginable. It's a useful app to have on your phone, especially if you like travelling abroad and need to quickly and roughly know what something says.
London Live Bus Countdown
Bus checker apps, such as this free example for Londoners, fit into the category of apps that quietly improve your life.
Stuck at High Barnet late at night with no idea if it's worth waiting for the next 184? Hook yourself into the TfL mainframe and see a ticker of approaching buses and their approximate times. (With the emphasis on approximate - look out for the crushing disappointment of the very occasional 'phantom bus'. But that's down to glitches in the system, rather than the fault of the app builders.)
There are adverts - such is the price of free. You can remove them for £2.99/$2.99, which incidentally is the same price you'd pay for the rival bus checker app we tend to favour, London Bus Checker.
National Rail Enquiries
Having the ability to know when and where your next train is can be extremely useful. Whereby using the National Rail app allows you to plan your journey and even check for delays. As we all know there are always delays on public transport... so this app comes in very handy!
Navmii GPS UK & ROI
Navmii is a free satnav app available for the UK, Ireland, USA and other countries from the App Store. It operates just as a TomTom or Garmin satnav would: you enter a postcode or an address, and it provides a quick and effective route to get you where you need to be.
Additionally, you can also carry out a Google search for a business name then navigate to that business based on the results fed back to the app. It may be free, but it gets the job done.
FREE | Download Navmii for iPhone (UK & Ireland version; search for 'navfree' on the App Store to see the huge number of other versions)
This extremely useful app allows you to arrange your travel plans with greater ease. You can check live train times (including delays and cancellations), check the platform as you rush out of the taxi or bus and even buy UK rail tickets on the fly. What more could you ask for?
This app provides fantastic information for those that like travelling, by providing users with the chance to view and read reviews, find photos of iconic places and restaurants and even see the map of a city. The app is a must-have when you want to go on holiday and have access to an internet connection.
FREE | Download TripAdvisor
Tube Map London Underground
As someone who commutes and works in London, having a map handy with service information is really useful. The Tube Map for the London Underground does just that and gives you the vital information at the touch of a button. Furthermore, if you happen to get lost on the Tube or unable to find a map, the app will allow you to see the London Tube map even when you're offline.
There's a Night mode now, too, showing the routes still running after most of us have gone to bed.
It's easy to have an issue with Uber the company, related to its aggressive workplace culture, its lack of diversity and the way it treats drivers. It's up to you if you're able or willing to put those ethical issues to one side. But if you are, then on a purely technical level Uber the app has been a disruptive revelation and a huge convenience to millions of users eager to get from A to B quickly and cheaply.
FREE | Download Uber
Wheely is a free app that adds convenience to the cab-booking process, and may even save you money. Because the journey fee is agreed before you step in to the vehicle, you know exactly how much you're going to pay regardless of how long the journey will take. Given London's notorious traffic, that can only be a good thing.
And if you do get stuck in a jam, all of Wheely's vehicles offer free onboard Wi-Fi so you can keep working as you wait. Or, let's face it, you can send emails, surf the web, tweet about your predicament and generally faff about as only the internet allows you to faff about.
FREE | Download Wheely
Apple's Maps service features built-in Yelp reviews of local business, but if you don't like Maps - or just want to get straight to the reviews - the company's own app is free. The information available (especially on restaurants and bars) is pretty detailed. As well as reviews, you get pricing, nearest transport options, photographs, opening hours, and even information on ambience, noise level and expected attire.
Yelp is certainly worth downloading. It's a good way to find local listings, and a good tool for business owners too.
FREE | Download Yelp for iPhone
Want more brilliant free iPhone apps? The list continues on the next page!