This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
In a world where smartphone users cringe at the thought of paying more than 99 cents for the latest apps, can you imagine paying $1,000 for an iPhone app that, say, helps ease your stuttering? How about paying that much for an app that helps you prepare for the state bar exam?
Those are just a sample of the mobile apps that are part of an elite list of software for your iPhone or iPad the most expensive apps on the iTunes App Store.
Here are some of the costliest iTunes apps, according to mobile app data analysts Distimo.
Agro (iPhone/iPad, $999.99) • This app helps agronomists (they study soil management and the production of field crops) create and distribute field inspection reports. "No matter what field of agronomy you specialize in, vineyards, orchards, broad acre farming, sugar cane or small-time domestic, this app will save you time and increase your bottom line by eliminating duplication of paperwork," according to its iTunes description.
MobiGage Laser (iPhone/iPad, $999.99) • A metrology application that works with a Leica laser for the measuring of materials in manufacturing plants. It can be used in the production of airplanes and cars, for example.
"The reason it's $1,000 is because Apple won't let us charge $25,000. That is what the competition is charging for their PC versions," said Frank Ruotolo, president of Titansan Engineering, which makes MobiGage.
BarMax (iPhone/iPad, $999.99) • BarMax is a prep course for either the California or New York bar exam. It comes with past test questions, essays and audio lectures. The company also is planning to produce courses for Texas, Illinois and Florida. And at 1.4 gigabytes, it's also one of the largest apps in iTunes.
Sina Mobasser, co-founder of TestMax Inc., which makes the app, says at $1,000 his app is still a much better value than using more traditional courses.
"The most popular player in [this field] still relies on sending you 50 pounds of books and an iPod full of audio lectures," said Mobasser, who said about 500 students have purchased the app. "And they charge close to $4,000."
iStutter (iPhone, $999.99) • This app helps stutterers with their speech. "It analyzes vocal fold activity and selectively provides delayed auditory feedback (DAF) when the user's speech is too fast or the user is stuttering," according to its description.
iVIP Black (iPhone, $999.99) • A "premium lifestyle" app that's like a license for the good life, it gets you personalized attention and special treatment at select luxury venues such as hotels and resorts. It also allows you to book private jets, yachts, private islands and more. To even own this app, the user must certify that he or she has a net worth of at least $1 million.
Engine Connect (iPad, $999.99) • Now, TV weather forecasters, sportscasters and news anchors can use an iPad to manipulate animations and graphics such as weather maps on the television screen as viewers watch them.
Unlike iTunes, where there are restrictions against selling joke apps that do nothing for exorbitant prices, the Android Market is rife with such apps. They make up some of the most expensive for Android phones, according to Distimo.
Black Diamond ($200) • All this nonfunctioning app does is give you a wallpaper of a black diamond. "Own the most expensive app in the Market. Just Because I'm rich and I can!!" according to its description. (Meanwhile, the Blue Diamond app, which is exactly the same except for the color, is now available for free!)
Vuvuzela World Cup Horn Plus ($200) • At least this app does something. Shake it and a vuvuzela horn on the screen begins to blare. Shake it again and it stops.
Google+: +Vincent Horiuchi