All Women's Talk

7 Best Reference Apps for the IPhone ...

By Jennifer

Of all the apps on my iPod Touch and iPhone">">iPhone, there are a few I use almost every day — my reference apps. They’re incredibly handy and helpful, and there are thousands available for almost every purpose or topic. I’ve tried so many of them, so I can tell you which is better, or Merriam-Webster… here are the 7 best reference apps for the iPhone… well, at least the ones I use most!

Table of contents:

  1. solar walk
  2. mactracker
  3. moma
  4. whitepages
  5. merriam-webster dictionary
  6. ibird explorer pro
  7. free translator

1 Solar Walk

Price: $2.99 at
This app is a must-have for any backyard astronomer, giving you an up-close look at everything in our galaxy, including the planets (and ex-planets, like poor demoted dwarf planet, Pluto). It’s amazingly detailed, rendered in 3D, and available in a range of languages. It’s so good, it won an Apple Design Award in 2010.

2 Mactracker

Price: FREE at
Wondering when your precious Mac in your mother’s basement was made? Or which OS it can run? This handy app can tell you almost everything about every Mac ever made, and also most Apple electronics and computing products, including the iPhone, iPod, and more. I don’t know why I love this app so much… possibly because I’m a hopeless nerd and Mac devotee?

3 MoMA

Price: FREE at
This app is amazing, a remarkable reference tool for the entire Museum of Modern Art collection, with information on exhibits, tickets, artists, and more. It’s an excellent time-killer, to browse through the collections while waiting in line… and it’s helpful while trying to identify that print you love in the shop widow across the street.

4 WhitePages

Price: FREE at
Find just about anyone, anywhere, on the go with this incredibly helpful iPhone app. It’s actually available for the iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch, giving you access to phone numbers and addresses for people and businesses alike.

5 Merriam-Webster Dictionary

Price: FREE at
Wondering how to pronounce that exotic-looking word, or what it might mean? Curious about whether your prof just used it correctly, or what its origins might me? Look it up with this free app… then figure out how you can use it in your next game of Scrabble!

6 IBird Explorer Pro

Price: $14.99 at
Nearly 1,000 birds native to North America and Hawaii reside in this app, providing all the information you’ll need to help you identify the birds at your own backyard feeder, or in the field. You can search by physical appearance, call, wingspan, or alphabetically, and even keep a checklist of the birds you’ve seen. It even has bird calls built in, so you can make the birds come to you!

7 Free Translator

Price: FREE at
Powered by Google Translate, this marvelous app lets you translate on the go, in a wide range of languages, from Chinese to French to Hindi and everything in between. It’s so helpful while traveling aboard, or even just ordering lunch in your favorite Vietnamese restaurant.

These are my favorite reference apps for the iPhone, but there are literally hundreds of thousands more to choose from… so why not try some of them! Do you have a favorite reference app, and is it on this list?

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