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Wolfram Alpha for iPhone packs big features and a big $50 pricetag

When Wolfram Alpha, the (don't call it a search engine!) computation knowledge engine, announced an iPhone app, I assumed it would just be a nice front end for the website. I also figured it would be free. Surprise! The Wolfram Alpha app does a lot more than expected, and it also carries a hefty $50 price tag. This might not be the smartest business decision for Wolfram, considering that App Store reviewers are notorious for complaining that even $10 is too much to pay for any iPhone app.

On the other hand, the app does the kind of high-level math that would make Texas Instruments weep. If you're a student or someone in a math-intensive technical field, it might rock your world. Integrals, derivatives, differential equations, and all of the other stuff I've forgotten from years of math classes? Look no further than Wolfram Alpha. It's more than just a graph generator and equation-solver, though. Wolfram Alpha offers data on everything from finances to books, movies and music, and it's often quicker than the equivalent Google Search.

Is it worth $50? That depends on what you intend to use it for, but it's certainly less expensive (and less bulky) than a graphing calculator.

[via Mashable]

Tags: graphing calculator, GraphingCalculator, iphone, wolfram, wolfram alpha, WolframAlpha