It was just a few days ago when we first heard that flashlight apps specifically for the iPhone 4′s camera light were in the works and several have appeared in the App Store. We took a quick look 8 (!) of these (plus another look at the first one we found a few days ago) that appeared in the App Store today help you decide which one is best for you. Of course, iPhone 4 owners only need apply since these apps will not work with any other iPhone models.
lightON is the dead simplest iPhone 4 flashlight apps so far. As soon as you open the app, the iPhone 4′s LED light turns on and stays on.
There are no virtual switches to turn it off – you’ll need to exit the app to do that.
LED-Torch is a small step up from lightON in that it offers a way to turn off the iPhone 4′s LED light within the app. The only item in the app’s interface is the “Double tap to toggle on/off” instruction and it works as claimed.
The iPhone 4′s LED light turns on as soon as the app is opened.
LED iLight shows you a virtual flashlight barrel, complete with sliding switch. We must say that this virtual flashlight looks a bit rough around the edges, in case you care about this sort of thing. You have to toggle the switch to turn on the iPhone 4′s LED light since it does not turn on automatically when you open the app.
If you leave the light switch toggled in the on position when you leave the app, it will stay on when you go back to it.
iFlash for iPhone 4 offers a strobe feature, along with a warning at start-up letting you know that the strobe can induce seizures in some, on top of the basic flashlight feature. The iPhone 4′s LED light does not turn on when you first open the app and you need to tap the virtual Flashlight button to switch it on, though it will remember the on position for the next time you open the app. The Start Strobe button does exactly what you expect it to and a slider offers some control over how fast the light strobes.
While this app probably offers the most functionality in a pure flashlight app so far with its strobe feature, the interface is unpolished and unattractive in our eyes.
LED Torch Flashlight takes a similar approach as LED iLight but with a picture of what looks to be an actual picture of a standard silver 4-cell Maglite with a virtual on/off switch overlaid on the barrel. The LED light must be turned on with the switch since it doesn’t go on automatically when you open the app. The first time we used the app to turn the light on, the Camera app’s iris animation displayed for a brief moment, though this didn’t happen when we closed and opened the app up again.
Like LED iLight, if you leave the light switch toggled to On when you leave the app, it will stay on when you re-open it.
With its fantastic price of $0, this app wins the category so far in our eyes. It may not be the prettiest or offer other features, but it does the job of turning your iPhone 4′s powerful LED camera light into a flashlight.
LED Switch offers the cutest interface out of the bunch so far, showing a virtual wall switch that must be flicked up or down to turn the light on and off. When the light is off, the iPhone’s display is dimmed to provide an even more obvious visual display that it’s not in the on position.
Flashlight – For iPhone 4 turns the iPhone 4′s light on immediately upon opening the app the very first time. The on position is noted with a virtual green LED at the bottom of the screen. Tapping on a virtual button in the middle toggles it off and on accordingly, with a virtual red LED light at the bottom acting as the opposite indicator.
The interface here is another virtual flashlight barrel with a bit more polish in its design than LED Torch Flashlight and LED iLight.
When it comes to the virtual flashlight barrel interface theme, Flashlight 4 offers the nicest-looking one with a red virtual sliding switch to toggle the light on and off. The app turns the LED light on each time you open the app, even if it was toggled off the last time you used it.
We looked at CameraLight the other day and found that it didn’t work quite as we had hoped, but we did want to note that the bug that would not let the iPhone 4′s LED light remain on when the app was opened when we first tried it has been fixed.
The camera feature it offers still seems to be of little value but there is now a switch to turn the camera off and along with the Dim button to turn down the screen’s brightness, it should be a bit easier on the iPhone 4′s battery as well.
We think this is just the beginning of flashlight apps for the iPhone 4 and this category is going to get crazier than it ever was back when developers only had the iPhone’s screen to use. Now we’re just waiting for an app that not only allows the use of the LED light and the iPhone 4′s screen as dual-flashlights but also lets you enter text that it can convey using Morse code with either light. Morse code has a real opportunity to make a comeback here. Just wait and see.