Just because it’s a video game, it doesn’t mean it’s a waste of time like your mother always told you. Today’s iPhone games can be fun and educational, or at least that’s what we’ll claim if anyone asks. With the average gamer being 33 years old now, game makers have grown up to the fact that adults want to play as much as children. There’s a zillion useful apps out there that are geared towards being essential business tools – things like currency converters and translation apps. But what about the fun stuff? The addictive apps that will also sharpen your mind and set you on course to becoming the next company chairman? Here’s our pick:
10. Idle Hands
This nifty little app is perfect if you’re a mobile businessman who relies heavily on your iPhone. The annoying virtual keyboard will become your trusted friend after a few games of Idle Hands, which tests your typing and makes you noticeably quicker in just a week or so. It makes emailing a breeze, and will save valuable time in the long run.
Nothing gets you more ‘in’ with a company CEO than a jolly game of golf, and with this Wii Sports-style app you can practice your swing and get ready to impress for the real thing. Choose from a range of courses around the world and the iPhone will use it’s accelerometer to detect how good your shots are. Just make sure you don’t let go. Another good game that mimics the real thing is Tiger Woods PGA Tour.
8. Trivia Burst
This award-winning quiz game will make sure you’re never stuck for something to say around the water cooler. With over 18,000 trivia questions, which is by far the most in any iPhone game currently available, this little app is an education at your fingertips. You can even add your own questions to the mix, and the more you play the more Amazon.com points you earn to spend online.
7. Easy Relax Ultimate
OK, so a little less on the game side, and more of a straightforward app, but this little gem is a must for unwinding after a tough day at the office, or for helping you concentrate on a complex report. Experts say keeping a clear mind is essential for optimum productivity, so 5 to 10 minutes using this app could actually be time well spent. Binaural beats help you concentrate, relax or fall asleep by inducing the brain to perceive different brainwave states. Play around and see what happens with this hypnotic app.
6. SimCity Deluxe
A complex strategy game where your actions (or inaction) affect the whole of your made-up iPhone world. At $2.99, you get a lot for your money. Build industry and commerce, project manage your metropolis, transform starter locations into prosperous cities… It’s all here. And why is it good for business, you ask? Well, this is life simulation: you can set your Sims’ career-orientated goals, plan out their lives and watch as you build an empire. It’s perfect for anyone who’s in human resources or management, as each Sim needs attention. Neglect them and your city could die. The perfect trial run for your own ambitions.
5. Lemonade Stand
Cheap and cheerful – this easy-to-use business game is exactly what it sounds like: you run a lemonade stand. Originally designed for the Mac over 20 years ago, it’s a simple game that taught children back then the basics of economics. Wannabe business tycoons have to deal with variables like bad weather, traffic jams and lemon price inflation; just like the real life struggles of running a successful business.
4. Civilization Revolution
Similar to the SimCity franchise, Civilization Revolution lends itself to the iPhone very well. However, rather than building cities, this one is more about building world-spanning empires. As your power grows you’ll learn to handle all the stresses that come with it – including industrial action and health issues. The game feels very natural, and although it’s 74mb and a whopping $12.99, it’s well worth the download. Learn to be the next Donald Trump and build an empire on your phone. Bad decisions will come back to punish you and you’ll soon learn that being good in business doesn’t come easy.
3. Brain Challenge
This is a mind sharpening game, which is designed to get your brain up and fighting fit for the day. There’s a whole host of brain tests to take, from improving memory skills to honing your reflexes. The makers claim it’s like having a morning coffee – and will kickstart your day. Perfect if you’re feeling sluggish, tired and uninspired for the coming hours at the office.
2. Hotel Dash
Learn to build a successful business with Hotel Dash. The drama and chaos of running your own virtual hotel is addictive, and it takes true business acumen and ambition to make it thrive. Soon you’ll be renovating and rescuing hotels all over DinerTown, and through good customer relations achieving 5-star service. The vivid Retina Display artwork makes Hotel Dash an added pleasure to play.
1. A Business Tycoon
Buy low, sell high… that’s the basic premise of this game – and actually the basic premise of most successful business models, meaning valuable lessons can be learned from this app. You fill the shoes of the next big business tycoon – think Donald Trump, or the UK’s Alan Sugar – and as well as loads of hot business deals, there are also loads of hot luxuries to buy with your well earned cash. This sophisticated app teaches you about stocks and shares, selling assets, taking loans, lending money and how to read charts and complex data. All invaluable skills if you want to become better at business.