With every iteration of iOS, tweaks their a little, but for the most part, the default lineup of apps remains unchanged since launch. For a lot of us, these apps just aren’t cutting it anymore. Here are the best app to replace them.

5a7983e3e4medium.jpg Superior Replacements to the Boring Stock iPhone Apps

The design and function of many of Apple’s apps is beginning to feel a bit stale, and many people are growing dissatisified with the experience as a whole. On top of that, many of the apps lock you into Apple’s data ecosystem and iCloud. However, plenty of superior replacements exist for Apple’s stock apps. From to Notes, we’ve got you covered regardless of where you’re looking for better options.

maps 2 Superior Replacements to the Boring Stock iPhone AppsApplication to avoid: Maps

Indictment: Apple’s new Maps app has been getting its fair share of bad press lately for numerous mistakes ranging from poorly updated maps, to badly implemented search. Thankfully, you have a few really solid alternative choices.

Superior Alternative(s): Waze , MapQuest , Google Maps (in browser) .

Notes: Replacing Apple’s Maps app really depends on what you’re looking for in a maps app. If turn-by-turn navigation is your thing, then Waze is the best of the free apps that provides it.

However, Waze isn’t that great as a simple map. For that, we like Mapquest. Even though the ads in the app are rather annoying, it’s a simple way to get a top-down view of an area you might already know so you can become more self-reliant in your city . If you’d rather just return to , the mobile version of Maps works just fine.

safari 1 Superior Replacements to the Boring Stock iPhone AppsApplication to avoid: Safari

Indictment: On its own, Safari is by no means a bad browser. However, to get its best , iCloud syncing , you have to use Safari on your Mac. Not everyone wants to do that. Safari also has it’s fair share of usability issues, like the inability to quickly swap to private browsing, and a limited amount of tabs you can keep open at a time.

Superior Alternative(s): Chrome , Dolphin

Notes: Picking the perfect browser for your phone really depends on what you use on your computer. If you’re a user on your desktop, then is the logical choice on your or . It syncs up your history, bookmarks, autofill settings, and everything else across every single device.

If you’d like a browsing experience geared specifically to mobile, Dolphin is a gesture-based browser that offers a fun alternative way to browse the web.

camera icon Superior Replacements to the Boring Stock iPhone AppsApplication to avoid: Camera

Indictment: Apple’s default camera is pretty boring. You can’t really tweak your photos, and you don’t get standard options like a timer or burst mode. As a straightforward point-and-shoot camera it works fine, but if you want more precision you need to dig deeper.

Superior Alternative(s): Camera+ , Camera Awesome .

Notes: Camera+ is easily the most full featured of the iPhone camera apps. Not only does it replicate everything the iPhone’s default camera does, it also offers a ton of built-in photo editing tools, filters, and features. You can also lock the focus, set up timers, and shoot in a burst mode for action shots.

For another similar option, we like Camera Awesome, which offers many of the same features as Camera+, but also includes a number of guides to help you take better pictures. Both are great camera apps that supercharge everything great about the iPhone’s camera. However, neither do HDR photography, so if HDR is your thing, you’ll want to keep the stock camera on hand.

calendar Superior Replacements to the Boring Stock iPhone AppsApplication to avoid:

Indictment: Much like the Camera app, Calendar is pretty barebones in its functionality. It’s not hard to use, but you can’t customize the look of it to really suit your specific needs, and overall it’s a bit hard to see what’s really going on with your calendar.

Superior Alternative(s): Week Cal , Cue , Agenda Calendar .

Notes: You have a ton of options for calendar apps on the iPhone. For a full-featured replacement, we like Week Cal because it does pretty much everything you’d ever want in a calendar. However, for a completely different experience, Cue makes your calendar more of a social experience and works great for people with more social dates than work ones. For a minimalist experience, Agenda Calendar is a simple, but still useful alternative to Calendar.

mailicon Superior Replacements to the Boring Stock iPhone AppsApplication to avoid: Mail

Indictment: Mail is made to work well with Apple addresses, but if you’re using Gmail it doesn’t have a lot of the very simple, but much needed capabilities built directly into Google’s email app.

Superior Alternative(s): Sparrow

Notes: If you use Gmail for your email, then the Apple Mail app is pretty lackluster. Sparrow gives you control over your Gmail with access to labels, starred emails, and plenty more. The newest version of Mail in iOS 6 isn’t bad if you’re not using Gmail, but if you are, Sparrow’s the right choice.

contactsicon Superior Replacements to the Boring Stock iPhone AppsApplication to avoid: Contacts

Indictment: On its own, the Contacts app isn’t much more than a digital replacement for pen and paper. You get basic information, and the new integration helps keep that information up to date, but that’s about it.

Superior Alternative(s): Smartr Contacts

Notes: Smartr turns all of your social contacts into an address book. Instead of simply seeing a phone number or email, you get recent Facebook or Twitter updates. This way, you can see a complete history of your contact with someone, which provides welcome context for those people you don’t talk to often.

phone icon Superior Replacements to the Boring Stock iPhone AppsApplication to avoid: Messages and Phone

Indictment: For the bulk of iPhone users, Messages and Phone are perfectly fine and works as well as Phone and SMS apps possibly could. However, not everyone wants to use their carrier’s phone and messages services.

Superior Alternative(s): Google Voice , biteSMS .

Notes: If you don’t have a lot of minutes through your cell phone carrier, then Google Voice provides a great replacement. With a few tweaks you can make the experience as seamless as the standard Phone and Messages apps.

For jailbreakers, we like biteSMS because it makes sending and receiving text messages a heck of a lot easier. It offers a lot of great features like Quick Reply, contact pictures, and tons more.

icloud Superior Replacements to the Boring Stock iPhone AppsApplication to avoid: iCloud

Indictment: Okay, so iCloud isn’t an app as much as it’s a service, but it’s built into every Apple app (and many third-party apps) and comes stock with every device. iCloud is great if you happen to use all Apple products. However, the fact that it’s difficult to pull documents from it, and you can’t share easily them, makes it a pain to use for anything more than a simple backup.

Superior Alternative(s): Dropbox and Google .

Notes: We love Dropbox for storing all your files, and since most productivity apps (and plenty others) support Dropbox directly it’s an obvious choice as an iCloud replacement for transferring files. Dropbox gives you direct access to every file you make across any device (including photos), and you’re not restricted to Apple’s apps. While iCloud is great to backup your phone, it’s not good for much else.

As for keeping everything else in sync (like contacts, email, calendars, etc) you can set up everything to sync with your Google account easily. The benefit is that you have access to your data regardless of where you are (or if you’re on a Mac). You can push that integration further with all your files with the Google Drive app as well.

find my iphone icon copy Superior Replacements to the Boring Stock iPhone AppsApplication to avoid: Find My iPhone

Indictment: As we learned with Mat Honan’s hack earlier this year, the helpful features of the Find My iPhone app can easily be used for evil.

Superior Alternative(s): Prey .

Notes: Prey doesn’t have all the same features of Find My iPhone, but that’s also part of the appeal. It’ll help you find your phone, but you won’t be able to erase data, or change any settings. If the Mat Honan hack makes you a little wary to use Find My iPhone, then Prey is an excellent alternative.

ibooksicon Superior Replacements to the Boring Stock iPhone AppsApplication to avoid: iBooks

Indictment: Out of all of Apple’s iPhone apps, iBooks is the biggest offender of skeuomorphic design . It makes reading look like a book, and that just feels weird on a digital device.

Superior Alternative(s): Kindle .

Notes: The Kindle app is very simple, but it works really well for reading. You get all types of settings for brightness and fonts to make the reading experience better. Also, your bookmarks are synced across every device you can access the Kindle on. The nice part is you get text on a page and that’s it. No weird formatting, and no book-style overlay.

youtube Superior Replacements to the Boring Stock iPhone AppsApplication to avoid: YouTube

Indictment: YouTube isn’t packed into iOS 6, but if you’re not upgrading to the new operating system, then you’re stuck with a pretty ancient YouTube player that doesn’t do much but play videos.

Superior Alternative(s): Jasmine , YouTube .

Notes: The official YouTube app is just fine for most people who want to watch a video now and again, but Jasmine really nails the experience. Jasmine is easy to use, and you can do everything you can on a desktop from within the app.

voicememos Superior Replacements to the Boring Stock iPhone AppsApplication to avoid: Voice Memos

Indictment: Voice Memos is an incredibly simple app that can record audio, and then share that audio over Email, Messages, or in iTunes. While it works okay, its functionality stops there.

Superior Alternative(s): Audio Memos , Evernote .

Notes: Audio Memos is great because it syncs up across Dropbox, Evernote, and FTP. It also has handy features like a lock code, the ability to link recordings together, and more. If you’re a hardcore Evernote user, the Evernote app also features recording options that link directly into your Evernote account.

notesicon Superior Replacements to the Boring Stock iPhone AppsApplication to avoid: Notes

Indictment: Notes is about as simple as it gets. It’s a writing pad that syncs with iCloud. Not everyone likes iCloud, and a lot of people aren’t fans of the ruled notebook appearance of Notes.

Superior Alternative(s): Simplenote , Drafts

Notes: Depending on what you use Notes for, you have a couple of solid options. We’re huge fans of Simplenote because it makes syncing your notes across a variety of devices simple. It’s also a nice, minimalist writing environment with just a blank page and a spot for text. If you want the ability to organize those notes into different services, Drafts speeds up the process and lets you quickly jot down a note, and then send it off to a variety of different services.

reminders icon Superior Replacements to the Boring Stock iPhone AppsApplication to avoid: Reminders

Indictment: Reminders is an exceptionally cool to-do list app that uses geo-fencing to remind you to do tasks when you’re in a specific location. Unfortunately, they’re not particularly easy to set up and the Reminders app doesn’t come with a lot of options.

Superior Alternative(s): Checkmark

Notes: The nice thing about Checkmark is that it’s dead simple to use. Three taps and you have a location-based reminder. You don’t need to futz about in menus or anything else. Checkmark also works just like Apple’s Reminders app. When you’re in a certain area, you’ll get a notification reminding you to do something. As a trigger to get things done, it works remarkably well and is much easier to use than Reminders.

musicicon Superior Replacements to the Boring Stock iPhone AppsApplication to avoid: Music

Indictment: Until iOS 6, the Music app hadn’t been updated or changed since it first launched. Now, it’s a little slicker looking, but it’s still the same experience.

Superior Alternative(s): Panamp , Groove 2 , Track 8 .

Notes: Depending on what you want from a music player, you have a few different choices. Panamp is a much faster experience than Music, and even though it hasn’t been updated in a while it’s still a slick, easy-to-use experience. Track 8 is another visual overhaul, but it’s definitely a better option for anyone looking for a more visual player. If you’re not happy with Music’s boring playlist creation, then Groove 2 does it all for you automatically. Groove 2 creates smart, interesting playlists on the fly, and does a much better job of choosing music than Music.

podcasts Superior Replacements to the Boring Stock iPhone AppsApplication to avoid: Podcasts

Indictment: When Apple released its Podcasts app, it pulled those podcasts out of the default Music app and stuffed them inside an ill-fitting, counter-intuitive container. The Podcasts app’s best feature is the fact it auto-downloads new podcasts, but it’s not very easy to use, has an overly-complicated menu, and isn’t the prettiest thing to look at.

Superior Alternative(s): Downcast , Podcaster .

Notes: Downcast does everything the Podcasts app does, and it does it much better. You can also use it to create customized playlists , and turn your podcasts into your own radio station. If you’d prefer a podcast app that functions about the same as the old Music app, then Podcaster does the trick.

stocksicon Superior Replacements to the Boring Stock iPhone AppsApplication to avoid: Stocks

Indictment: Stocks is great for quickly glancing at a few stock prices, but it doesn’t have enough options to fully track your portfolios, or take an in-depth look at the stocks you’re investing in.

Superior Alternative(s): Stockwatch , Bloomberg

Notes: If you need more than just a glancing info at your stocks, then both Stockwatch and the Bloomberg app provide all types of customizable information. You can create your own tickers, track stocks, and plenty more. You don’t get the option for the stock ticker in Notification Center, but at least you’ll get more useful information.

weather Superior Replacements to the Boring Stock iPhone AppsApplication to avoid: Weather

Indictment: The default Weather app is fine for quickly glancing at the current temperature and looking at the upcoming forecast, but its usefulness stops there. You can’t get an in-depth look at incoming weather, nor can you see otherwise common calculations like wind, or “feels like.”

Superior Alternative(s): The Weather Channel , AccuWeather , Weather Underground .

Notes: It’s not hard to find a weather app in the App Store, but the big ones made by the Weather Channel, AccuWeather, and Weather Underground are the most feature-rich for most people. All of these apps give you access to full five day forecasts, up to the minute data, and pretty much everything else you’ll ever need.

calculatoricon Superior Replacements to the Boring Stock iPhone AppsApplication to avoid: Calculator

Indictment: For most people, the default Calculator app is perfect for a quick calculation, and the added scientific calculator in landscape mode fills in the gaps for most people. But if you need features like graphing, you’ll have to head into the App Store.

Superior Alternative(s): QuickGraph .

Notes: You have a lot of options for graphing calculators in the App Store, but QuickGraph is on the coolest of the free options. On top of normal calculator functions, you also get 2D and 3D plotting, a library of equations, photo library saving, and plenty more.

videos Superior Replacements to the Boring Stock iPhone AppsApplication to avoid: Videos

Indictment: The only real with the Videos app is that its playback is limited to just a few different formats. If you download a lot of videos in a variety of formats, Videos simply doesn’t do the trick.

Superior Alternative(s): GoodPlayer

Notes:GoodPlayer can handle a ton of different formats (way too many to list here). It’s also a perfectly functional video player that does everything you’d expect, including subtitles, cropping, mirroring, and more. That said, the stock Videos app has access to decoders the other video apps don’t and can often play in higher definition.

Obviously you don’t need to go through and replace every stock Apple app on your homescreen, but if you’re looking for more function out of your phone, you’ll need to replace at least a few of them.

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Superior Replacements to the Boring Stock iPhone Apps [IPhone Downloads]