Everyone has one. It’s amazing… from the youngest pre-teens who can’t get anywhere without their parents, to the sometimes-tech-challenged grandparents, it’s amazing that there’s that one little thing we practically all have, cannot live without, and often find ourselves sleeping with.
You’ve guessed it: the smartphone. Even my beloved Granny has one, although she calls at least once a week to ask me a question about something that “just showed up out of nowhere!” on the screen that she can’t figure out how to disable. I’m just so proud she’s become savvy enough to even HAVE this phone. During my last visit home, I listened to my 9-year old cousin incessantly beg her mom for her very own “blinky phone.” For a few years now, she’d seen her mom’s phone light up in that ever-present blinking fashion, and heard the beeps and tones that just might mean “Mimi is calling!”. I understood… my husband got an iPhone way before I did, and I felt pouty and left behind. I could totally relate to the whining that is necessitated by the lack of this little blinking device, and even jokingly shared with my little cousin some of my bargaining secrets that eventually led my husband to agree to my before-I-was-due-for-an-upgrade upgrade.
One of the reasons these “phones” is so crucial to us all is that the amazing gadgets go way beyond answering and making phone calls. In fact, we barely even call anyone on it anymore… Instead we text, email, and message our way through our social networks, never actually holding a conversation yet staying more connected than ever. The amount of information available to us through these tiny machines is stunning, and easier to access than ever. With the digital space growing frenetically, there’s stiff competition out there in the mobile technology sector, and that usually means good things for us as consumers. One area that’s no stranger to a vast array of options is the apps market! They… are… fabulous. It means you need only click an icon to retrieve saved information, view new products, read the latest news, snap a picture during a night out, or build a grocery list last minute in the grocery store. The options are endless!
I’ve compiled a few of my favorites below… Of course it doesn’t even scratch the surface of what’s available out there, but the hope is that some of these may be new to a few of you, and can be of great help the next time you need to hang a picture straight in your 400 sq ft apartment here in NYC, keep a nutrition e-journal (as if we don’t have enough to track in this busy world!), or comparison shop for the best price online before heading to the check-out line. J Oh, and these are all FREE! What could be better???
What the Font: Lets you take a picture of a sign, poster, etc. and will determine what fonts were used
Epicurious: A whole slew of recipes, categorized
Evernote: Cloud computing at its best when it comes to lists and organizing your life! Automatically syncs with versions of Evernote on your PC, iPad, etc.
Snapcal: Integrates seamlessly with iCal, Evernote, and other calendar apps
CNN: Up to the minute news app
Real Simple: To-do lists galore!
Yelp: The yelp we all know and love, in to-go form
Hopstop: Up to the minute train detours and directions based on what’s currently happening underground
Seamless: SeamlessWeb’s mobile app… Great for ordering when you’re on the way home and want dinner to be waiting!
OpenTable: Reserve tables immediately, before you forget
Meetup: Keep track of all your upcoming meet-ups (meetup.com), and also integrates seamlessly with iCal. You can RSVP and check-in through the app, too.
NYCWAY: Find nearby options in dining, nightlife, coffee shoppes, showtimes, etc
NYTimes: More news!
OPI: For nail polish lovers, this lets you view every shape of OPI nail polish. categorized by collection
Netflix: If you have a Netflix account, this lets you manage it from your app on your smartphone
Instagram: Lets you apply various filters to give your iPhone-taken photos more character
Alarmed: Alarm app that lets you wake up (and fall asleep) to your own customized playlists
Lose It!: Helps you track your daily calories, weight goals, exercise calories burned, etc. Very easy because it already has a ton of food items stored up so you’re not manually entering the statistics for the food
ShopSavvy: Scans barcodes of products/items in stores, and automatically tells you where you can buy it online for a lower price
TMZ: Celebrity gossip app… guilty indulgence!
AllRecipes: More recipes!
WallpapersHD: Pretty wallpapers for your iphone, categorized and filtered
WallpaperFree: Same thing as above, just different images
Handy Level: Ideal for hanging pictures and things straight when you don’t have a level handy