Developer: Clear Sky Apps LTD
Price: $0.99 Download on the App Store
One of the beautiful things about the iPhone is the endless utility apps that allow you to customize how you use your phone and improve ease of use. One such option specifically designed for people who actually use their phone to call people is Speed Dial Images. Based on the idea that the brain processes the location of images faster than words, Speed Dial Images replaces the native favorites list and lets users assign images to frequently called numbers.
Choosing from a collection of random thumbnail images ranging in theme from sports to food to animals, users simply designate the selected image to a chosen contact. Set up is quick and easy and an image-based favorites collection can be built in just a few minutes. Once saved, the images are displayed, along with contact name, in an organized grid three squares wide. The images can then be rearranged in any order according to user preference and association.
While the basic premise of Speed Dial Images is to simplify and increase the speed of locating frequently called numbers, it also makes a fun directory that would be especially appropriate for kids. Whether or not there’s any truth to the comparison of how the brain processes images versus words, associating images with contacts is kind of fun.
The collection of thumbnail images isn’t terribly limited with 101 to choose from, but quite a few are unoriginal or obscure for many uses – unless you happen to have an ice skating coach or personal chef you want on speed dial. Nonetheless, the random images are novelty in nature and again, just plain fun. Of course, the more contact images you incorporate, the harder it becomes to find names quickly, but it's definitely a visual improvement over the typcial alphabitized index of names.
For practicality and ease of use, Speed Dial Images is a great way to build custom favorite contacts for quick dialing. You can try the free version, which only provides a very limited collection of images, but the launch price of Speed Dial Images is only .99 and it’s a potentially useful utility that is simple to use.