10 (more) absurd iPhone apps

Was our last list of 10 absurd iPhone apps not enough for you? We've got 10 more that will make your jaw drop.

It's been just a month since the App Store hit the streets, and the number of applications has skyrocketed. That doesn't mean they're all winners though. The vast majority are downright useless, buggy, or simply overpriced. Heck, some have even been removed by Apple because of all-around lameness. Since our inaugural list of absurd iPhone apps was a big hit, we've picked another group of 10 that are even more absurd than the first ones.

Note: this list is not the same as the version that was published Monday afternoon. Glagow Coma Scale has been replaced with 40 Cozy's Pour1out in light of creator Brent Thompson's comment about the people it's helped. That's not so absurd.

1. GottaGo
Price: $1.99
This is one of those apps you hope is some sort of sick joke. Designed to get you out of a bad date or an awkward conversation, you can use GottaGo to ring you up with a fake phone call that looks real to your unsuspecting date. All you have to do is set the time like you would an alarm and it will call you, with faked caller ID and everything.

Why it's absurd: Be a decent human being and tell someone when it's just not working. They'll probably respect you more and it'll tie things up better than trying to explain why your apartment being on fire means you'll have to skip dessert.

Track your drinking exploits with DrinkBuddy. Apple/John Moffett

2. DrinkBuddy
Price: $3.99
Having trouble figuring out if you're drunk or not? Why not use your phone? Instead of a breathalyzer, DrinkBuddy uses the ancient art of math to give you generally precise indications of how inebriated you are based on what you've had to drink. Better yet, you can link up with your friends and see what they've had to drink, and record your past benders in a log that can be e-mailed to friends.

Why it's absurd: A night out is fun, but mass quantities of liquids and $200-plus handsets do not mix. Also, the fact that you could accidentally e-mail your mom at 2 a.m. with your Jägermeister exploits seems like a really, really bad idea.

3. 40Cozy.com's Pour1out
Price: $2.99
We've seen the popular Carling iPint, which was later pulled from the US app store--at least that one had a game attached to it. This one by the folks at 40Cozy.com is a dressed up way to sell foam coolers for 40 ouncers of malt liquor, while letting you pour our virtual booze with a simple tip of your phone.

Why it's absurd: There's a built-in liquor store finder in case you need to make a late night run.

Apple/Matthew Chartier

4. HelpMe!
Price $.99
App HelpMe is charging people for what's essentially a speed dialer for calling local emergency services. Assuming you don't have this on the first or second page of your iPhone's home screen it would take just as much work to call 911 if you had added the number to your phone favorites. On the upside there are pretty graphics. The application also lets you specify how long you want it to delay before making the call, just in case you accidentally press it.

Why this is absurd: Having this on your home screen seems like a really bad idea. If there's an actual emergency, dialing 911 is not that difficult. However, explaining to the 911 operator that you accidentally hit a button on your phone can be.

5. Picocalc free
Price: Free
By its name alone, Picocalc seems like it should be an easier-to-use variation of the iPhone's built-in calculator app, right? The developer might have taken this idea a little too far, as all this does is add and subtract. You're missing out on simple division, multiplication, and the myriad of scientific functionality that you get with the built-in calculator.

Why it's absurd: There are a ton of calculator apps available for the iPhone and iPod touch. Many actually offer more than the stock calculator instead of taking away features. At least this app is free.

6. Touch Train
Price: Free
When I first saw this pop up in the directory I thought it was some sort of virtual train simulator. Instead it's a "game" that tests your dexterity skills in hitting one pixel, and one pixel only, on the 320x480 display. There's a target for you to aim for, and your success will be a pop-up status message that says congratulations.

Why it's absurd: You've only have a 1 in 153,600 chance of winning.

7. G-tac
Price: $4.99
Forget using a stopwatch to test your quarter-mile times. This five-buck app will use your accelerometer to start and stop a timer, while calculating your performance--perfect for emulating The Fast and the Furious in your Mom's Honda.

Why it's absurd: No doubt this is something that's fun to do in real life, with the proper equipment and in the right places, but the idea of somebody buying this and ripping around open stretches of pavement seems like a bad idea. Not to mention--the accelerometer being that accurate--the thing doesn't even work properly as a level.

8. Girlfriend Caller
Price: Free
This little gem exists solely to give you one-click calling to one person--presumably your significant other. It works great, but once you set it up the number cannot be changed without uninstalling, and it keeps track of all your calls with a little number badge over the app's icon.

Why it's absurd: Just like deleting a number from your phone book after a breakup, you'll need to delete this app to make any changes. Also, the counter that tells you how many calls you've made might creep your friends out.

See also: Call Now, an app that does this same thing for $4.99, and the slightly cheaper You're #1 that costs 99 cents.

9. National Threat Advisory
Price: Free
This app used to cost money, but has recently gone free. With just a single touch you can see what the national threat advisory is in one of its five majestic colors. Great for folks who keep 40,000 gallons of water in their bunker.

Why it's absurd: Being this scared of terrorism means the terrorists have won.

Fix dead pixels with Pixelmetrist--maybe. Apple/Jackie Y H Li

10. Pixelmetrist
Price: $2.99
If you've managed to get one or more dead pixels on the display of your iPhone, this app will let you see by turning the screen one of several colors. It also applies "rapid color changing functionality" to attempt to fix a "stuck" pixel.

Why it's absurd: You can get the same functionality using this Web page, which will do both the test and repair free of charge. Also, as mentioned before, the display has more than 150,000 pixels in a 3.5-inch space. Even if there is a dead pixel or two it's not going to pop out as much as it would on something like a 70-inch TV or a PC monitor. According to Apple's discussion forums, Apple has no official pixel policy, so if you do find one you can go get your phone replaced while it's still under warranty.

Any we missed that you think should have made the cut? Leave 'em in the comments.

About the author

Josh Lowensohn joined CNET in 2006 and now covers Apple. Before that, Josh wrote about everything from new Web start-ups, to remote-controlled robots that watch your house. Prior to joining CNET, Josh covered breaking video game news, as well as reviewing game software. His current console favorite is the Xbox 360.

 

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