One annoying issue with iOS is its lack of home screen widgets, forcing you to launch an app to get simple tidbits of information. Timer Minutes to Go is a free app that solves that problem by placing the minutes remaining in your timer in the badge on its home screen icon.
There isn't much else to know beyond that. You set a timer in the app just like you would in the Clock application built in to your iPhone, start it, and watch the badge icon drop down minute by minute. If you want to be warned prior to the final alarm, you can set pre-alarm notifications as well. The notification you get can be customised, too. Overall the app does one thing really well, looks really slick, and is 100% free. That's hard to beat.
TIMER : MINUTES TO GO (Free) [iTunes App Store]