While smartphones are great for productivity and working on the move, we all want to kick back, relax and have some pointless and sometimes plain stupid fun every so often.

With this in mind, we've rounded up the best free software for the HTC Touch and other Windows Mobile 6 handsets that will help you to avoid to avoid hard work.

Retro Gaming

Emulation is always a grey area when it comes to gaming, and if you're not careful, it constitutes piracy. You do have a couple of options, though. First, if the game is released to the public for free, which happens with many ancient titles, you can play it. Second, if you own a game, you have the right to make a backup for yourself. Me? I'm backing up games to my mobile phone! So why not try to run some classics between calls?

Here are my favourites.

ScummVM: I love the old LucasArts graphic adventure games. Sam & Max Hit the Road, Maniac Mansion ... I could go on. And I might if I had more room. I still own all the games, and this little software app (made for just about every OS ever conceived) lets me play them on my morning commute.

Pocket IIe: I've been hankering to play Karateka again. Maybe even to hit the high seas with Sid Meier's Pirates and to venture Beyond Castle Wolfenstein. If you feel the same, download this Apple IIe emulator, and you're halfway there. (You'll just need the Apple ROMs.)

Zelda Mobile: This Java-based mobile phone game is a work in progress (currently at 'Demo3'), but it still manages to capture all the fun of a certain old-school action adventure game.

Pocket UFO: I wear my nerdiness on my sleeve, but when I found this fully functional tribute to the classic PC title X-Com: UFO Defense, even my pocket protector cried. This turn-based squad strategy game lets you build bases and launch missions to take down an alien menace. From your mobile phone, of course. If your phone has the horsepower to run Pocket UFO, you really have no excuse to miss this truly awesome (and truly free) game.

Samulos: It seems Tetris-ish, but it's really more like the popular PSP game Lumines. You watch the blocks drop, match the like colors, and deal with more falling blocks. Sounds harmless enough, you say? I'll check back with you in about 2 hours.

Pocket Quake: Want to play a classic first-person shooter on your mobile phone? No problem! Well, one slight problem: The program requires the .WAD file from the original game if you want to savor the full fragging experience. Lacking that, this portable version will also work with the shareware version of Quake. Want to really freak someone out? Try setting this thing up for multiplayer.

Shift: A bunch of goofy-faced colored blocks keep closing in on the center, and you have to make 'em connect. Think of it as a Bejeweled-ish puzzle game that pushes everything toward the middle of the screen.

Pocket Gravity: By all rights, this program is utterly useless, yet, I keep opening it up, creating odd shapes, and seeing how they react with other objects in my little digital sandbox.

  1. Pointless but fun downloads and tweaks
  2. Key customisations for your Windows Mobile 6 handset
  3. The Useful' apps

Want to spend an afternoon playing silly games or doing pointless quizzes on your smartphone? We've created a list of the best free software available for handsets running Windows Mobile 6. You're guaranteed some fun.

Key customisations

Here are some must-have tools if you too hate the look of your Windows Mobile 6 screen and interface.

PointUI Home: iPhone this, iPhone that. I'm tired of people talking about Apple's cool, no-stylus interface. My advice: download this free (and amazingly smart) smartphone application to make your mobile more manageable.

HTC Home Customiser: If you want to give Windows Mobile just a small face-lift as opposed to total reconstructive surgery, HTC Home Customiser is the program for you. With the help of this convenient little application, you can easily change the fonts, icons, and shortcut buttons featured on the home-screen interface that comes on the Touch.

Touch Settings: Out of the box, the nifty finger-swiping interface on the Touch had one small problem - spam buttons! The thing was filled with shortcuts to programs I'd have to pay for that I didn't want, and an obnoxious link button to online stores for buying more crap. They were driving me nuts! I could have downloaded a Pocket PC registry Editor to insert my own shortcuts, but I'm supremely lazy. Touch Settings has all the tweaks I need in one easily accessible program.

NEXT PAGE: The useful apps

  1. Pointless but fun downloads and tweaks
  2. Key customisations for your Windows Mobile 6 handset
  3. The Useful' apps

Want to spend an afternoon playing silly games or doing pointless quizzes on your smartphone? We've created a list of the best free software available for handsets running Windows Mobile 6. You're guaranteed some fun.

The (Yawn) 'Useful' Apps

Yes, I know that billions of useful programs are out there, but here are some go-to applications that I'm using every day.

Viigo: It's an RSS feed reader and then some. This is a must-have mobile app for catching the news while you're on location.

Help 2 Speak: Yeah, when you're a jetsetter like me, a conversational translator is essential. I can't tell you how many times I'll check this program while at the International House of Pancakes. I mean, how do you order a Rooty Tooty Fresh 'N' Fruity in French, German, Danish, Italian, or Spanish?

HelloTwitFace: This microblogging tool gives you easy access to HelloTXT, Twitter and Facebook at the same time. And any program whose name can double for a lame insult is A-OK in my book.

What About the iPhone?

And then there's that whole iPhone thing. Yes, the SDK is out, but if you want to play around right now, you must first clear several hurdles to hack your iPhone apart (aka 'jailbreaking'). Oh, sure, you can play some web games optimised for your mobile, but that isn't the same thing, is it? So we've rounded up a few Apple-centric applications for all you iPeople out there.

Labyrinth: This is a digital port of the old analogue wood maze/ball game. You know, you tilt the thing, avoiding holes, until your metal pellet reaches the end.

Pianist: If you fancy yourself a musician, check out Pianist, which offers a multitouch keyboard for you to rock out on. Want to have an impromptu jam session with your MP3s? It's possible on the iPod Touch version of the app (for now).

NES Emulator for the iPhone: Remember what I said earlier about emulators? Yeah, well, caveat emptor, friend. Someone created a fully functional NES emulator for the iPhone as well.

  1. Pointless but fun downloads and tweaks
  2. Key customisations for your Windows Mobile 6 handset
  3. The Useful' apps