Before I get into this topic, please read my article on cancer dedicated to someone special to me, each view constitutes a larger donation to cancer research. http://planetsave.com/blog/2009/07/27/help-me-fight-cancer/
The “green movement” is gaining some steam in the general public, and hey I am all for it. As long as it doesn’t become a fad that fades away into a footnote like slap bracelets and Crocks. The Apple iPhone is the hottest smart phone going today, and with over 65,000 applications in the iTunes App Store and counting, the usefulness of this pocket device goes up all the time. This can only mean that there will be green apps on the iPhone, and of course there will be some clunkers. With all these apps floating around there must be some gems as well. I’ll give some apps a try and tell you what I think, so you, my loyal reader, doesn’t have to.
(Part 2: Paid Apps, will be coming soon, so check back at PlanetSave.com)
Free Apps – Nothing better than paying nothing.
GoodGuide by GoodGuide
iTunes Rating: 2.5/5
The Skinny: GoodGuide helps you find safe, healthy, and green products while you are shopping at the store.
My Review: GoodGuide is a nice little app that rates grocery items from food, to soap, to household cleaners on 4 different categories: Health/Nutrition, Environmental, Social, and Overall rating. GoodGuide also gives nutritional value for food products. Another nice feature for vegans, vegetarians, or those who want to avoid red dye #36, is a list of ingredients. The ingredients list is color coded to tell you all of the concerning items.
I don’t think I personally would walk around with GoodGuide as I shopped at the store. It could turn a trip to the store into an all day excursion. However, if there is an item I’m curious about I would look it up using GoodGuide. It also checks Amazon.com for price comparison. It is also nice for those of you who just want to eat healthy. I would check this one out, and hey it’s free.
My Rating: 4/5
Mission Zero by Interface, Inc.
iTunes Rating: 3/5
The Skinny: Mission Zero Sustainability News is a companion application for MissionZero.org
My Review: Mission Zero is an environmental news aggregation service and voting system ala Digg. There are numerous categories where news stories are submitted, voted on, and commented on. I like the idea of Mission Zero, but the one problem is the user base seems to be a bit anemic. The votes seem to range from 0-5. I hope more people jump on to Mission Zero and make this app more useful.
My Rating: 3/5
Go Green by Webworks and Applications
iTunes Rating: 3/5
The Skinny: You get a new green tip each time you visit the app.
My Review: Go Green is a simple application. You open the app and it pops up with a new green tip. It has a nice little gimmick, where the more you open it, the more grandiose your green title becomes. This one isn’t bad, but the novelty is sure to run down quickly. Still, I would check it out. You are bound to run into a tip that you can use.
My Rating: 3/5
Piqqo Projects by Piqqo
iTunes Rating: 3/5
The Skinny: An online service for presenting carbon reduction projects.
My Review: Piqqo Projects is an app I’m torn about. It is a good idea, and it is implemented nicely. They show different carbon reducing projects, they explain the project, have youtube videos on the project, and nice looking photos from the project. It is a great looking package. However, there are only 5 different projects, and they are only located in Mexico, Hungary, and Ecuador. I would like to see some projects from various locations. Hopefully this app will expand because I see the potential.
iLocavore by Oh My Brain, Inc.
iTunes Rating: 2/5
The Skinny: A tool for “locavores” shop local, buy local.
My Review: iLocavore is a decent enough idea. Environmentalists are into the whole buying local thing, as it reduces your carbon footprint dramatically. Unfortunately, when I searched my area (a relatively large city) no results came up. Looking at the iTunes reviews, it seems to be a common problem. Looks like iLocavore needs to expand it’s database before this becomes truly useful. We shall wait and see.
My Rating: 2/5
Carbon Tracker by Clear Standards, Inc. and Carbon Calc by Carbon Harmony
iTunes Rating: 2.5/5 for both
The Skinny: Outlines your Carbon Footprint
My Review: I put these two apps together because they do basically the same thing. The one difference is Carbon Tracker tracks your monthly carbon footprint against goals you set, where Carbon Calc allows you to compare against the average Carbon Footprint in the US, Europe, and the World. This is a matter of personal preference. Carbon Calc has a few more features, such as offsetting your carbon, but if you want to keep on tracking yourself monthly pick Carbon Tracker. If you are into tracking your carbon footprint often, check these out, otherwise it is a one look and done.
My Rating: 3/5 for both
Have more green iPhone apps you would like me to check out? Comment here or tweet me @danielhohler on www.twitter.com and I will check them out for review.