9 Smartphone Apps We Love and What They Say About Us
In a recent meeting, the Appletonians got into the topic of apps they couldn’t live without. Each member of the team evangelized his or her choice and explained what makes their favorite apps special. Let’s review:
1. INRIX Traffic
INRIX crowd sources data from cellphones, cameras, road sensors, and in-car navigation systems. They also track local events that impact traffic to give you the most accurate picture of traffic while it’s happening. INRIX is trusted by most of the top car manufacturers in the world including Ford, BMW, and Toyota for their in-car navigation systems. INRIX includes a free version where you can add two destinations and the option of adding additional destinations for a fee.
“The only way to make traffic less horrible is to be strategic with it,” said Kendra Haley, our Senior Account Manager. “What’s really cool is it’s super accurate. You can see the flow of traffic, incident reports, and get push notifications for the best time to leave for work. If it says I should leave at 8:03, I leave at 8:03.”
With over 11 million users, Evernote is the world’s most popular online note taking platform. It allows users to take text notes, store photos and audio, save links from websites, create checklists, and has a host of other features. It also synchronizes notes between all of your devices and the Web-based version of the platform. Their slogan is Remember Everything. Evernote has a free version with 60 MB / month of space and limited features and a paid version.
“Evernote has been a total life changer for me,” said Ben O’Grady, Appleton’s SEO Specialist. “I made it a goal to go paperless a couple of years ago and Evernote was the key to that. I take all of my notes on Evernote’s platform and sync between all of my devices. I use virtually no paper. I never lose notes. I can search and find information instantly whereas before I was shuffling through files to find something I scribbled down months ago. If you’re still using yellow legal pads, it’s time to make the switch.”
AroundMe is a “location aware” business and service directory utility app. The app pinpoints your location and proceeds to find the nearest service-based facility in the area, all based on what you’re searching for. You can easily find the nearest restaurants, banks, gas stations—you name it. What’s more, you can even book a hotel or find a movie schedule nearby all within the app. AroundMe recently redesigned their user interface to be simpler and more enjoyable. The app continues to be free.
The head of our Video Department, Mike, is often out on the town shooting footage and at times traveling around the country doing the same. “AroundMe is a great search engine that gives me directions to various locations. Especially pubs!” Whether for a setting, footage or an afternoon brew, whatever locale he needs, he swears this app has him covered.
4. Lose It!
More than another calorie counter app, Lose It! is a seamless digital weight loss system in the palm of your hand. Lose It! personalizes your caloric intake goals based on your personal needs and lifestyle. And that’s just the free version. What sets this app apart are its premium features. You can connect Lose It! to various apps and devices such as your FitBit tracker and even the next app on this list. Premium users can track other health-related factors such as sleep, body fat, hydration and body measurements. The premium version is a subscription-based $39.99 per year. Compared to Weigh Watchers Online’s $227.40 per year price tag, some might say it’s a bargain.
Our Senior Art Director, Dolly, known for her health and nutrition prowess, had this to say, “Lose It! helps me remember regretfully how many cookies I put into my face. Basically, it helps me track calories and plan meals. I use it everyday.” And just like that, Dolly’s secret to nutritional success was revealed.
The over 24 million people who use RunKeeper to turn their smartphone into a personal trainer can’t be wrong. RunKeeper tracks your runs, walks, bike rides, hikes, and more by using the GPS in your smartphone. This app allows you to control and listen to your music during your workout. It also saves your run history overtime to give you detailed information on your progress, or lack thereof. RunKeeper is another app that has made itself compatible to various fitness apps and devices. The main features of RunKeeper are free, but the “elite” version has offerings some may benefit from. At $20 per year, or $5 a month, we recommend the free version for this one.
Art directors and designers spend their workdays sitting and snacking. But Eric won’t be conquered. “I use RunKeeper daily to track all of my runs, set up and follow training plans, compare runs and times, track calories burned, mileage etc. Being able to listen to my music and have the voice chime over the headphones at every 1/4 mile and give my pace, time and distance has made running much more enjoyable.”
Millions use Any.DO daily to remember all the things they want to do and make sure to get them done. The key features include cloud sync, speech recognition, time and location reminders, folders, notes, repeating tasks, calendar view, gesture support and more. In addition, the app actually has a Chrome extension that syncs it to Google Tasks. What’s more, Any.DO is completely free.
It should be no surprise our Production Manager, Trinity Tesler, brought this one up. “By 9am, this app tells me what’s on for the day. Still, I can choose to snooze reminders for a few hours or even days. It categorizes to-dos depending on when they need to be done by, whether the deadline is today, tomorrow, next week or my personal favorite, someday. When I enter what I have to do, I put it in one of those categories and set the reminder I want. When I plan my day it has funny sayings that pop up and say things like “You are awesome, lets do this!” or “go get em tiger!” I swipe a completed task on the screen and a line gets drawn through it. I tap the x and it disappears. The line gesture is the ultimate motivator.”
7. Cozi Family Organizer
Voted #1 mobile app for moms, Cozi promises to keep the whole family in the loop regardless of how jam-packed life might be. Cozi is a platform that makes it easy for the entire family to organize and plan life’s to-dos. Their slogan, Family Life. Simplified. says it all. The app includes a family calendar, shopping lists, to-do lists, a family journal and more. Everyone in the family gets access to the account using the same password. Cozi comes in two versions, a free account with ads and limited features, and a Gold account at $4.99/monthly or $49.99/annually, which removes the ads and limitations.
Our Accountant was adamant about this “must-have” app. “As a mother of 3 children, Cozi helps me manage their activities along with my own jam-packed schedule and it keeps everyone in the loop. When something is entered in the calendar, you check-off the appropriate person and they receive a reminder by text or email. My teenage boys receive their own reminders for their appointments and my husband and mother-in-law receive the ones for my younger daughter. Every Sunday, a schedule for the upcoming week is emailed to all of us.”
8. Photo Editor by Aviary
Photo Editor by Aviary is a powerful photo editing app that combines stylized filters with an array of image-editing tools from color correction to blemish removal. Aviary also licenses out the app’s software to developers looking to incorporate it into their own apps. Photo Editor by Aviary is optimized for tablet screens and is free with additional effect packs for $0.99.
This might sound cliché, but our in-house photographer and graphic designer, Jennifer, claims she literally can’t live without her photo editing apps. Her new favorite is Photo Editor by Aviary, “It’s free. It lets you apply filters, add frames, stickers, rotate, draw on, add text, remove redeye, whiten teeth, remove blemishes, or auto enhance. For designers, it lets you crop as well as adjust brightness, contrast, saturation and sharpness. You can also turn your photo into a meme. It’s like Instagram on steroids and you’re not limited to a square.”
9. RPN Calculator
RPN is a four function calculator designed to replace the standard Android calculator. The large button design makes it easy for touchscreen use. It operates using Reverse Polish Notation, uses high accuracy decimal arithmetic internally, and has a fixed point scrollable display. RPN Calculator is completely free.
Who else but our web strategist and all-around tech guy, Jamie, would talk up a calculator app? “My job requires frequent, though relatively simple math. It may sound silly that a “tech guy” is espousing a simple calculator app, but I seriously cannot live without it and it’s always first to be installed when I upgrade my Android phone.”
Appleton Creative is an award-winning, full-service advertising agency located in Orlando, Florida. Appleton works with local, national and international clients to provide marketing strategies through print, web, social media and video production – all in house. At Appleton, we want to learn about your business, empower your marketing team and be your creative resource. Your marketing goals are worth a conversation: contact us at 407-246-0092 or firstname.lastname@example.org.