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November 21, 2017
Apps We Can’t Live Without
Liz Brohan

We live by our mobile devices. While we barely need them to call anyone, we rely on them to organize, inform, and entertain us. We even count on them to make us better physically and mentally.

By looking closely at how devices actually enable these needs, it becomes clear that it’s the apps we engage with that deliver on our wants and desires. But which ones? I recently asked several people, “What app can’t you live without?” The answers are fascinating. Hopefully there are even a few you didn’t know about and will want to download immediately.

Let’s start with apps that keep us informed.

  • Feedly. Those who love this RSS news reader say it is simple and can be used with one hand (probably helps to be coordinated). It also integrates with Evernote and Slack, so sharing information is easy.
  • Weather. Lets you experience the forecast animated in a full-screen graphic. Plus, it helps you decide what to wear each day and if you should carry an umbrella.
  • Flipboard. Load in your interests and passions and get a feed from a variety of sources with relevant content.

Now, let’s look at apps that keep us organized.

  • Mint. This app allows you to manage your money in one place.
  • LastPass. Who doesn’t love the idea of simplifying their digital life? This app does that by storing passwords and logins. And you can track personal information. All you have to do is remember your LastPass master password and it will autofill web browser and app logins for you.
  • Venmo. This app lets you instantly pay others for dinner, bills, rent, etc. The funds are either taken directly out of, or transferred into, your bank account.

Everyone needs apps that help us do our work.

  • Evernote. One responder called it the “Swiss Army Knife of note-taking.” Of its many functions, fans loved that it records audio, understands scribbles, and includes images, video and web pages.
  • Todoist. Get it all done. This app keeps track of everything from simple errands to your most ambitious projects.
  • Google KeepSounds a little like Todoist though this app offers note-keeping that lets you color code options, format lists and personalize them using photos.
  • Adobe Capture. Here’s one to help unleash your creative beast. This app allows you to do such things as create color palettes based on your own images, design vector shapes from hand-drawn pictures or photos, and even take a photo of fonts in the real world and be served up similar fonts to use in your own designs.

We can’t look over apps that simply entertain us.

  • W.E.L.D.E.R. Sounds like Scrabble on steroids. This game lets you weld words in its word machine. You earn points by creating combos and using flashy squares to double and triple your score.
  • Cloud Player. This is embraced by those who have a massive collection of music. You can import files from all the popular cloud services or from your computer and access all the mega-music anywhere you go.
  • IMDb. A binge-watcher’s dream, this app is said to be the authoritative source for movies, TV and celebrity content. Need to know who that actor is? IMDb is sure to help.

Finally, here are the apps that make us smarter or better.

  • Lumocity. Be challenged on a daily basis with games to “improve your brain function.” Choose from vocabulary, planning, logic and memory exercises. You can keep score against other people your own age, those in a certain profession or in a different geography.
  • Lose It. Calorie tracking app to help you reach your goal weight.
  • Inscape. Seeking calm? Try this app that offers a variety of guided meditations that vary in length, type and focus. And because stress is everywhere, devotees don’t just use it on a yoga mat in the bedroom. They plug in on the train, in the car and at work.


Okay, now it’s your turn. Tell me what apps you can’t live without @CBD_LizBrohan.