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16 (mostly) free starter apps for Windows Phone 7

Useful, innovative and unique

Here's our pick of the most useful and interesting apps from Microsoft's Windows Phone 7 Marketplace hub


Developer: Loopt
Category: Social

Loopt uses phone locations and identity to create a network of your friends on Loopt: you can see who's nearby, and 'what's happening' via this social network. The app's live tile lets you see whether you have updates (friends sharing their location, commenting etc) without having to log in.

Mental Paper

Developer: NTkachov
Category: productivity
Free trial: unlimited, supported by ads; purchased app, for $0.99 (62p), eliminates the ads.

This is one app that really needs to be seen, and tried out: the developer bills this as the 'thinking man's note pad', a free-form note-taking user interface, with rudimentary copy/paste [take that, Microsoft!]. You can start typing anywhere on a Mental Paper 'page' and build lists, tables, check lists, trees and other formats. It seems to let you type thoughts almost randomly, keeps them separate, and lets you expand them by adding a checkbox, or other feature to further unpack the idea.

NEXT PAGE: Netflix

  1. Useful, innovative and unique
  2. Congress
  3. Fast Message
  4. GoVoice
  5. Loopt
  6. Netflix
  7. Shazam
  8. WeatherBug

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