Earthquake by American Red Cross tops iOS Apps of the Week

by Dan Kricke

Our top iOS apps this week will keep the ground steady beneath your feet, so to speak, thanks to the prominently-featured Earthquake by American Red Cross. If you’ve ever experienced an earthquake, you’ll want to keep that app on hand. Our other top picks this week include news apps, health apps, shopping apps and a political cartoon database.

Earthquake By American Red Cross

Earthquake By American Red Cross is a bit of a niche app. After all, if you don’t live in earthquake territory, there’s nothing you’d need less. But those whot live their life on the (fault) lines should pick this app up immediately. Earthquake features step-by-step instructions for how to handle an earthquake, notifications for when an earthquake occurs near you or your family, and even a customizable alert that will let your friends know that you’re all right via Facebook, Twitter, email and text. Earthquake by American Red Cross also features a listing of open Red Cross shelters and a flashlight feature in case you lose power.

60 Minutes

60 Minutes ($4.99) has been available as an app on the iPad for a while now, but with its latest update it can finally be viewed on an iPhone or iPod touch. To celebrate the occasion the app has added 100 new 60 Minutes segments from various points in the show’s 40+ year run. Segments can now also be filtered by decade for easier sorting if you’re looking for one you remember from way back when. Also, segments can be added as ‘favorites’ so that you can browse your favorite moments quicker than ever before.

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HeartTracker

Just when I think the iPhone has run out of tricks, HeartTracker comes along to prove me wrong. HeartTracker ($2.99) actually measures your heart rate using your iPhone’s camera. All you have to do is put your fingertip on the iPhone camera lens and the app measures your real time heart rate. It also performs a number of calculations like maximum heart rate and calories burned when you supply your gender, age, weight and duration of exercise. Also, HeartTracker features graphs that chart your heart rate history as well as a note function so you can keep track of the way you’re feeling when you check your heart rate. Results can be emailed to whomever you right from the app, too.

ShopWiki

Not satisfied with the price for that new item on your wish list? ShopWiki has a listing of 162,000 stores filled with 244,000,000 products that you can search through to find the very best price. If you’re already out shopping you can use the app’s barcode scanner and find out right away whether someone else is selling your scanned item for less.

POTUS Pick

Although POTUS Pick’s main feature is an animated bit that plays audio from the candidates to show you their foibles, its more interesting side offers up a plethora of political cartoons for perusal. POTUS Pick ($0.99) features a link to over a 1,000 political cartoons as well as a searchable database for comic strip reprints by more than 50 cartoonists. POTUS Pick is a must-have if you get a chuckle out of a political cartoon.