Free, essential iPhone apps for college students

When the iPhone 3Gs came out, Apple released a commercial that proclaimed "there's an app for that." Google the catchphrase now and it'll pull up dozens of headlines from the day in iPhone app news: "Attend [insert college name here]? There's an app for that." "Need a loan? There's an app for that." But really, how many of those apps (including ones for the new iPhone 4) are essential for day-to-day uses at school? Let's take a look at a few apps that aide college students in the classroom and have a price tag labeled F-R-E-E.

Dictionary.com

It's the most basic reference that we keep going back to since elementary school -- the dictionary. But this dictionary is unabridged and doesn't require an Internet connection. A complete thesaurus is also included.

But a free app does come with a price: advertisements. Many reviews on the Dictionary.com iTunes page point out that there are a lot of ads, which users say intrude on the experience. Be sure to compare the Dictionary.com experience to other free Dictionary apps. Or you could splurge and download the $24.99 Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, which is compatible with both the iPhone and iPad.