Category Archives: Articles and reviews about excellent apps

Articles and reviews about excellent apps

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The Best Travel AppsYahoo Video GuideThe Best Weather Apps TED’s Best Apps To Make Everyday Life EasierAnonymous Apps Let Social Media Users Speak FreelyApps To Improve Smartphone Typing Facetune Improve Phone Battery Life Top Ten Traveling Apps – 8 after-work apps10 Productivity AppsPocketIMDBBig Oven – Plan B & Find My iPhoneViddyLayar & JunaioParkerGasBuddyFido FactorRedLaserDragon

Apps | the 12 best travel apps

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A travel pro takes you to the best apps which will make your journeys easier and more enjoyable.

By Stephanie Rosenbloom

Monk pathRecently I deleted dozens of travel apps from my iPhone. Many are great. They allowed me to research unfamiliar places, listen to audio tours and turn my photos into postcards. But travel is about tapping the world, not a screen, so I’m ending the year with an app purge. I’ve kept only what I use often. An app didn’t have to be new (most weren’t) to make the cut, but it had to make travel easier or significantly more enjoyable. Below are a dozen that have earned a spot on my smartphone heading into 2016.

monk walking down path

© photo by Gregory Mancuso

Bravolol This app brand puts basic phrases and vocabulary — “Thank you,” “How much?,” “A table for two, please” — at your fingertips. Continue reading »

Apps | Yahoo Video Guide combines all your streaming apps into one

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The streaming app to rule them all. With Yahoo Video Guide you can quickly find and stream all your favorite TV shows and movies in one beautiful app.

Yahoo Video Guide combines all your streaming apps into oneIf you subscribe to a lot of different streaming video services, you know that picking something to watch is complicated. Yahoo Video Guide makes it a lot easier by showing you all the available options for the services you actually use.

When you first open up the app, it’ll scan your phone for streaming video apps (like Netflix, Amazon Video, HBO Go, ABC, Fox, etc), and then build out a list of recommendations for stuff to watch based on the apps you have installed (you can always add in more services manually if you want).

Yahoo Video Guide combines all your streaming apps into one, iphone androidFrom there, you can search for movies and shows based on the featured tab, by genre, directly from the search bar, or by the awkward GIF-powered “Mood Picker.” You can also rule out paying for anything by filtering away rentals or buy options. The recommendations themselves are a bit generic and aren’t based on your viewing habits, but it essentially makes it so you can browse all the video options on every service at once, which is awesome when you’re in the mood for a particular genre.

Once you pick something to watch, tap the play button and it’ll automatically open in the video app it’s available on. This is a much better option than apps we’ve seen before and should make hunting for something to watch between multiple services a lot easier.

By Thorin Klosowski – Continue reading

Apps | a guide to the best weather apps

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Weather apps are among the most used programs and here is a good guide that shines a light on the best.

The best weather apps for smartphones - dark sky appSearching for the Best Weather App Among Weather Underground, Weatherbug and More

By Molly Wood

Weather can be a great equalizer. It can also be a way to make conversation with just about everyone. No wonder, then, that the weather forecast is one of the pieces of information many of us crave when starting each day — and that weather apps are among the most frequently used programs on smartphones.

Storm app by Weather Underground

Weather apps aren’t all created equal, though. The built-in apps on iPhones and Android phones are perfectly serviceable, offering glanceable forecasts for as many cities as you want, and they’re tied into the phones’ virtual assistants.

The best weather apps for smartphones - Dark Sky rain map

The best weather apps for smartphones – Dark Sky rain map

But weather technology — both the creation and presentation of forecasts — is evolving quickly. It’s worth checking out the options.

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The best weather apps for smartphones - dark sky app

Apps | TED’s best apps to make your everyday life easier

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You’ve likely heard about those smarties at TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design).  I’ve enjoyed their fine podcasts for years and now their staff has come up with the 25 best apps to help make your everyday life easier.

TED's best apps to make your everyday life easier - VSCO Cam appI’ve been using a few of the selections here and have indeed found them quite useful. The app selections cover four categories: For random life stuff, For getting around, For staying organized, For computer and email ease.

 

 

Apps to make your everyday life easier – by TED staff

At our small, fast-moving nonprofit company, everyone does a couple of jobs — and productivity apps help us manage roles that shift between coding, writing/designing and running a full-scale conference twice a year. We asked the TED staff what apps they can’t live without. And beyond the classics—Instagram, Google Maps, Spotify, Uber, Seamless—we found some great apps that might help you too.

Waze GPS, Traffic Navigation, Map – video tour

For getting around…

CityMaps2Go Pro
This app downloads offline, zoomable, searchable maps of major cities, so that even if you are roaming around Tokyo and can’t read any of the signs, you can still find your way around. “It’s good for people like me who travel internationally but don’t like to get data plans,” says Thu-Huong Ha, of our editorial team.

TED's best apps to make your everyday life easier - Couch to 5k app

TED’s best apps to make your everyday life easier – Couch to 5k app

Word Lens
Another great app for travelers, Word Lens visually translates printed text into your language in real time. When you snap a photo of a sign or document, it shows the image to you in English. “It’s crazy,” says Kyle Shearer of our Events Workgroup. “The translations are not always 100%, but it’s good enough to get by on.” Hello, food menus. Continue reading »

Apps | anonymous apps let social media users speak freely

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These excellent apps let smartphone users share their unabridged observations and life experiences anonymously–Whisper, Secret, Yik Yak.

The best iphone and android anonymous apps let social media users speak freely, Whisper app T By Salvador Rodriguez

Aaron LaRue thought it was comical that a waitress at a Korean restaurant in Los Angeles would give him a fork and his Asian friend chopsticks.  He wanted to post about it on social media, but feared a potential backlash from racially sensitive friends. So he turned to Secret, a new social network that lets users say whatever they want without revealing their identities.

 

Video Tutorial – Secret & Whisper highlight desire for anonymous sharing

“I wouldn’t tweet that. I wouldn’t put that on Facebook,” he said. “So by posting that on Secret, I get to share something that I thought was a funny experience and I have literally no repercussions.”

Secret is among a wave of mobile apps that let smartphone users share their unabridged observations and life experiences anonymously. They are growing in popularity because they allow users to speak freely and instantly about topics they might not feel comfortable sharing or discussing on Facebook and other social networks that require revealing their identities.  Continue reading here

The best iphone and android anonymous apps let social media users speak freely, Yik Yak app

Yik Yak app

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Apps | better smartphone typing is a tap away

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Touch-screen phones have become very good at some tasks but there is one feature that they still struggle to get right–the keyboard. Here are some apps and some setting tweaks to assist your fingers.

Apps, tweaks, techniques to make smartphone typing easier, faster, more accurate

Touch-screen phones have become so astonishingly good at some tasks they have all but replaced landline phones, pocket cameras and printed maps. But there is one feature that they still struggle to get right — the keyboard.

The flexibility of the full touch screen has won out over tactile, physical buttons, leaving us with a keyboard that is just an image on glass and small keys that sometimes get cranky around big thumbs.

Fleksy App – features video

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Apps | 8 excellent apps to make you a better reader

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Eight excellent apps that’ll help you improve your reading ability and become a better literary citizen, while simultaneously boosting your brain function.

Apps to Make You a Better Reader - InstapaperHow many books did you read last year? If your answer is more than one, congratulations: you’re more well-read than about 25% of Americans over age 16, according to a 2012 Pew Internet survey. Ironically, as we become more surrounded by words in the digital age, less of us are finding time to actually read them. The good news is that your smartphone or tablet can help.

Trying to stray from the obvious reading apps, like e-readers, we’ve gathered eight excellent apps that’ll help you improve your reading ability and become a better literary citizen, while simultaneously boosting your brain function. Whether you’d like to read more, faster or some combination of the two, these apps will light your path to wisdom.

by Max Knoblauch

1. Instapaper

Apps to Make You a Better Reader - Instapaper

Apps to Make You a Better Reader – Instapaper

Similar to apps like Pocket, Instapaper allows you to save and download web text for offline consumption. The app reformats the text you give it, giving it a cleaner, easier-to-read lay out and allowing you to focus on the important part: the words.

2. Syllable

Apps to Make You a Better Reader - syllable

Apps to Make You a Better Reader – Syllable

Try reading this paragraph while repeating the ABC’s out loud. You’ll find that you’re reading much faster than normal. This is because you’re suppressing your natural subvocalization, or the internal repetition of words you’re currently reading. In short, Syllable helps you learn to speed read. You choose the text and it does the rest for you, leaving your pacing and grouping fully customizable. Continue reading »

Apps | Facetune easily improves your look in mobile photos

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The Facetune app lets users remove blemishes, diminish dark circles, smooth skin and create many effects that normally take considerable Photoshop training to master.

Apps-Facetune for iPhone, iPad, iPod improves mobile photos easily with pro-like tools,tFacetune by Roy Furchgott

One reason celebrities look so polished in photos is that there are Photoshop artists to smooth every wrinkle, minimize every pore and erase every blemish. The rest of us? We have to live with poorly lighted mobile phone selfies. An app called Facetune helps you look your Hollywood best, even in photos taken on mobile phones.

Facetune app how-to video


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Apps | five to get more battery life out of your phone

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Here are five free apps that will help you extend the battery life of your smartphone.

smartphone-battery-saving-app-t

By Jessica Naziri

“My phone is about to die.” Thanks to my job, this harrowing low-battery experience is something I am used to and always prepared for. I take my charger with me everywhere I go and keep an extra one at work.

Yes, our smartphones are “smart” and enable us to video-chat, play games, take pictures and navigate the world. Unfortunately, battery life has yet to catch up with the rest of the technology. If you also have trouble making it through the day without charging up, you can do the basic tricks such as reducing screen brightness and disabling Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.

five free apps that will help you extend the battery life of your smartphone

five free apps that will help you extend the battery life of your smartphone

One of the biggest power drainers, in my experience, is the vibrate function. And consider switching off key tones. You can also set your ringtones to a low volume to save extra juice.

Beyond that, here are five free apps that can also help extend battery life. Continue reading »

Apps | Top 10 traveling apps help you save money

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Here are excellent apps to assist you in traveling around the world without busting your budget.

Apps---top-ten-traveling-appsThanks to mobile technology, planning a trip is easier than ever. From booking hotels to buying plane tickets, scouting restaurants to figuring out where to go. Our top 10 apps help you explore the world without breaking the bank.

10 Money Saving Apps for Travelers

With the rise in the number of travel apps in Google Play and App Store, first time, and frequent travelers are provided with convenient ways to plan their upcoming vacation. Some of these applications are not only time savers but also efficient tools for cutting your trip’s cost. If you’re searching for money saving apps you can use on your next trip, here are ten of them that we highly recommend.

 

Top ten apps for traveling and saving money on the trip

TripIt

Instead of carrying printouts of your itinerary, TripIt Travel Organizer provides you a virtual solution to bring these important documents on your mobile device. One of Verizon’s suggested vacation apps, it collates thousands of information about travel related companies like airlines, car rentals, hotels, restaurants that they include in their extensive list. Continue reading »

Apps | 8 after-work apps to melt your stress away

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So your brutal workday is over and you’re ready for some great entertainment, but you’re not really feeling your usual takeout and Netflix relaxation ritual tonight. Good news, there’s plenty of great apps out there designed to make sure you have fun.

Smartphone after-work apps to melt your stress away for iPhone,iPad, Android By Lauren Hockenson

These eight apps will pretty much cover any mood you’re in and help you unwind your way — whether it’s lounging around solo, getting together with friends or perhaps meeting someone new. You’ll want to come back to them over and over again for fun ideas and hours of entertainment, helping you ease the stress of your day and feel refreshed for tomorrow’s grind.

Poynt

If you’re planning on painting the town red, it’s important to find the best place possible. There’s plenty of apps to show you where the best and most interesting places are, but if you haven’t already, you should give Poynt a try.

Poynt goes one step further than traditional guides by integrating valuable information within the simple app. For example, if you’re interested in seeing a movie at your local theatre, Poynt will not only give you the name and address of the theatre, but a list of available show times and each movies’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes. These add-ons help you make your decision quickly, so you spend less time thinking and more time having fun.

Apps - Poynt smartphone app for iPhone and Android

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Apps | 10 you need to assist your workday productivity

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These 10 apps perform both simple tasks, such as managing your to-do list, and complex ones, such as allowing you remote access to your computer.

LogMeIn features mobile apps , allow you to access your computer's desktop through your smartphoneIf you’re looking to boost your workday productivity, that smartphone in your pocket can help. The mobile app revolution has produced hundreds of apps to help ease the stress of everyday life. The 10 apps here will get the work done.  by Fran Berkman

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1. Wunderlist

Wunderlist is a free app that will help you manage your daily tasks. It acts as a digital to-do list. The app is not just for lists, but also setting reminders, making notes and sharing events. It is cloud-based, so your data easily syncs across all of your devices.1 Wunderlist is a free app that will help you manage your daily tasks. Continue reading »

Apps | IMDB – excellent app for movie showtimes, reviews & more

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One of the best movie apps is from the Internet Movie Database. Among its entertaining functions, like listing an actor’s filmography and movie trivia, IMDB has a very good showtime section. 

The smartphone might be a moviegoer’s best friend. With a phone and an array of apps, showtimes and reviews are never far away. The app is free on both iOS and Android.

On the iPhone version, showtimes are listed prominently upon opening the app. This section is ready with default data, including the movies showing that day at local theaters. The user interface couldn’t be simpler.

IMDB movie app review

The films are split into new releases and “also playing” films, and the showtimes are sortable by movie or by theater.   Continue reading »

Apps | BigOven – 250,000 recipes, your grocery list, menu plans & much more

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The Big Oven app is a great demonstration of why recipe apps can be better than recipe books. It lists over 250,000 recipes, with a powerful search engine that offers many options for finding a recipe you’d like.

BigOven has a “leftovers” search trick, excellent for using up spare food in your refrigerator. And if you just want to be surprised by a new recipe, you can see recipes that Big Oven users nearby are cooking, or dive straight into a random one.

The app also comes with a suite of tools to make cooking a meal easier — like its virtual grocery list, based on your chosen recipes. If you’re a keen menu planner, then you may also love its calendar-based planning feature. The recipes are clearly arranged. The app looks just like a traditional glossy book — right down to its photos and clearly marked sections telling you how many people each recipe serves, its calorie content and its reviews.

But it is actually a huge searchable database of recipes that people have uploaded (you can use your device to upload one of your own).    Continue reading »

Apps | Locates lost or stolen smartphone – Plan B, Find My iPhone

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When your dear smartphone is lost, Plan B, Find My iPhone and other apps can reunite you. They find iPhones & Androids so check them out now before it’s too late!

By David Pogue

Last week, I lost my iPhone on a train. I used Apple’s Find My iPhone feature to track it to a house in suburban Maryland, and the local police were able to return it to me. Because I’d tweeted about these developments, the quest for the phone became, much to my surprise, an Internet-wide, minute-by-minute real-life thriller.

Plan B video demonstrates its use

Several readers wrote to ask how to set up their own phones to be findable. As you’d guess, given last week’s experience, I have some strong feelings about the importance of setting up Find My iPhone or the equivalent on Android phones.    Continue reading »

Apps | Viddy – the Twitter for videos is a life-streaming movie studio on the go

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Viddy is a smart phone app for editing and sharing mobile videos. This app is a simple way for anyone to capture, beautify, and share short videos with the world.

By Andrea Chang

During a recent appearance on the “Today”show, Justin Bieber was helping co-host Matt Lauer get up to date on the latest technology.

“All you need to get is a Viddy account,” the teen pop sensation said.

“A what?”

“Viddy. It’s like a new app. It’s dope.”

Video tutorial for Viddy – funny youtube video clip

Bieber is not the only one singing its praises. Called the Twitter for videos, Viddy has quickly amassed 38 million users since its launch just 16 months ago. Users shoot short video snippets, known as “viddys,” and upload them from their iPhones and other mobile devices for their followers to watch. Like tweets, viddys capture everyday moments, with one caveat: They have to be 15 seconds or shorter.    Continue reading »

Apps | Layar & Junaio – “augmented reality” apps add digital information to the real world around you

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Augmented reality covers the many ways of adding digital information to the real world around you, using a smartphone’s camera.

By Kit Eaton

It’s clever and very futuristic, but you can still try it out now easily with the Layar and Junaio apps. A relaxed late evening stroll along the esplanade in my seaside hometown may not seem like the ideal opportunity to test out what may be the cutting edge of mobile app technology, but it was this week.

On the walk I’d noticed an enormously large cargo ship, with giant cranes on its deck, floating in the sunset haze a few miles out at sea, and I was curious what the ship was named and where she was from. Fortunately there was an app for that. An augmented reality app.

Apps That Present Highlights of the World in Front of You

Layar – Innovative AR and Interactive Print Solutions

Print comes to life with Layar, Scan magazines, newspapers, posters and other print materials enhanced with Layar and then watch as extra digital content appears. Layar allows you to interact with print in a whole new way! Continue reading

 Layar – mobile Augmented Reality browser app


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Apps | Parker-finds parking spaces, can pay & reserve spots

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Tired of driving in circles? Have a meeting downtown and can’t find parking? Want to reserve a spot ahead before heading out to your favorite restaurant? Wish you could pay for parking with your phone? Now you can with the Parker app.

Parker app finds and pays for parking spacesWant your navigation system to give directions, traffic, and show you where to park? Now, you can! With Parker, you can find everything you wanted to know about where to park all in one place. Just start up Parker via your smartphone, tablet, the web, and in-car navigation system, and Parker will help you:

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Video tutorial on the use of the Parker app

  • Find a place to park on-street and off-street with real-time and static information
  • Voice guidance – let’s you know where parking is nearby
  • Search by points of interest or address    Continue reading »