With everyone walking around looking down at their smartphone these days, I am always surprised at how little people use those devices to make life easier. I have a few favorite apps and websites that I enjoy and I thought I would share them with you.
1. Planner Plus – This app is not free, it cost $4.99 for the full version, but if you enjoyed using a Franklin Planner you will enjoy this app. I am a MAC user so I link it to my icalendar, but you can use it as your main calendar as well or link it to whatever you use. There is a place for daily tasks, with reminders and the ability to make them recurring. You can make notes and lists and it is as close to an electronic version of Franklin Planner as I have seen.
2. Audible – If you love to read but never seem to find the time, Audible is a nice way to read while you drive, workout, or just about anything. The website is audible.com and you can sign up for free on the site, and then either buy audio books or credits toward the books. If you buy a monthly credit subscription, you can buy more expensive books using your credits. I spend $14.99/month and get one credit and use it for one expensive book. Once you have sign-up, you download the audible app to your phone or iPad/reader and once you purchase your books they automatically download to your app.
3. Hi Future Self – This is an app for those of us who put things on a calendar and then forget to look at it. Let’s say you are supposed to meet your best friend for lunch next Tuesday. You put the item on your calendar and you are good right? Well, you still have to look at the calendar. With this app, you can send yourself a text to the future and remind yourself of your Tuesday lunch date before you forget it or remember only at the last minute.
4. Viber – If you have a limited texting plan, you may want to consider free texting with Viber. As long as you have a wifi connection you can text. They even have a talk option too, but you have to buy time. This is also a great option if you have friends in other countries. We Viber family members in Canada. Note: the newest version of iPhone has a WiFi calling feature as well, however, you are charged for international calling and texting. You need to read all the fine print before turning using this feature.
5. Talk Feature on Your Smartphone – This is obviously not an app, but I find that this feature saves a lot of time. Most of us forget it is there but the more you use it, the better it recognizes your voice and the more accurate it becomes. One can talk to text, make lists, email, just about anything. Great time-saver if you are a slow typer on small screens.
6. Siri – Obviously this is for those folks who have an iPhone, however, some androids offer a similar service and you can use if for all kinds of things. Ask it to find something on a map, or turn on or off a service on your phone. (Siri turn off cellular data) It takes a little time for Siri to recognize and understand your voice, but once it does, it can be a real time-saver.
6. Canva.com – This is available as an app you can use on your iPad and can be used on your desktop as well. This is useful if you like to create postcards, posts for Pinterest, Instagram or use on your website. You can even upload and use your own photography to make graphics. If you are a photographer this is a good site to check out. They have backgrounds you can purchase and some for free. I often make use of my own photos to put on Pinterest.
7. Pocket – Cool little app for people who fall into the trap of surfing and losing time reading articles and viewing videos. If you find something you like you can put it in Pocket and read it when you have some downtime. Its best feature is that you don’t need to be online to be able to read or view, it downloads the info to your device.
There are literally thousands of apps out there that can make our lives a little easier and get a great deal more use from our smartphones. So the next time you wish you “had an app for that” check around maybe someone else needed one too!