A few years ago, the apps we could not live without were casually addictive games that created a small black hole in our daily commute. Now apps are playing the role of matchmaker or acting the part of digital concierge when it is late and we really need a cab (Uber). Here is a list of the top 10 apps you must have.
Venmo. The free app allows you to exchange payments with people you know via your smartphone, linking to your Facebook friends and email contacts, as well as your bank account.
Instagram. Most know of Instagram, even if they do not have the app. This photo sharing app has become all the rage among celebs, and regular folk. Instagram has a staggering 150 million monthly users.
Tinder. Tinder lets users trawl through photos of other singles on their smartphone, swiping the ones they like to the right and those they don’t to the left. If two people swipe each other to the right, Tinder notifies them of their “match.” Part of the appeal is never knowing about all those left swipes.
Uber. The car-for-hire app finds a driver within your vicinity and, assuming you are in a metropolis, can often send it to your doorstep within minutes.
Waze. This was the first app to build up an enormous data bank of maps and traffic reports through crowdsourcing. Bought by Google for $1 billion earlier this year, Waze created a highly accurate navigation services by tracking the GPS coordinates of its users.
Whatsapp. In the increasingly crowded market for messaging apps, WhatsApp was the first to offer a free texting service that synched with your mobile number and address book so that you didn’t have to register with a username.
Snapchat. The app lets you share photos overlaid with text and drawings to one or more friends, before it deletes itself after a few seconds.
Pandora. This publicly-traded music streaming service has 71 million monthly active users and accounts to 70% of Internet radio listening, which can be streamed for free (with commercials) or commericial-free for a monthly fee.
QuizUp. You compete with friends and total strangers in trivia matches based around a number of different topics. This one has been around in the iTunes store for a while, but it is a recent additional to the Android/Google Play store.
Shazam. The app uses the phone’s build-in microphone to recognize and identify a song being played. This is perfect for catchy TV commercial tunes, or songs during a television show or movie.
The tagline “There’s an app for that” is coming true. Whether you are interested in finding a ride home, finding a date, or finding out what that catchy song is during a movie, there is an app that will help. Beware that most apps ask to track your location, and if you are not okay with that, the app may not download. Overall, apps are a good thing. They simplify life, and can help add time to your day, which is always a great thing.