Sunday, February 16, 2014

A Senior Recommends Apps for Both IOS7 and Android Mobile Devices

I realize that this is quite a come down from our delving into the juiciest tidbits of our Valentine's extravaganza.  However, there is no easier way I can improve your daily life than to recommend which apps you should put onto your mobile devices (phones and tablets). These are given in no particular order but they have survived the test of time to stay on all of my mobile devices. I have got a lot of apps to cover so I will only say a few crucial sentences about each one. I am limiting myself to those apps available for both platforms.  There are many more I could recommend but they are only available for IOS7 (Apple).

The New York Times. I need no other news source.  This does it all for me. Costs me $20 a month to subscribe for the two of us. This is my only expensive app.  Many of my apps are free.  But this is worth every penny.

Overdrive  This is my library app. I use it at the three libraries for which I have cards. Presently it downloads audiobooks and ebooks. The selection is enormous. Free
Yelp gives you the ability to search for restaurants anywhere. Not only do you get all restaurants info but also user reviews are published there as well. Never have a terrible experience again with this app! Free
Google Maps is the only thing you'll ever need to get around or locate anything, short of GPS. I also have Google Earth installed but that is more optional. Free
Netflix Streaming is Jim's only source of viewing. Rebecca and I use other resources as well. Currently all three of us are parked in front of House of Cards Season Two. Roughly $10 a month.
eBay  Both Jim and I use eBay to save money on just about everything. Good for selling your stuff but a godsend for buying. 70% of its items are no longer auctions. They are buy it nowFree
Etsy is the best online resource for arts and crafts direct from the artists and craftspeople themselves, worldwide. It is also excellent for finding supplies for arts and crafts. Also deals in vintage items. Free
Adobe Photoshop Touch  Not for everyone. If you want the most advanced photo editor, this is it. This is the only app I have found which does layers, which is a huge feature for advanced users. $10
Adobe's pdf Reader for mobile devices. Let's you read all your pdf files in one central reader. Better than ereader apps which read pdfs but are built for other formats, like ibooks.  Free
Paprika  Pulls recipes right off a web page and into the Paprika recipe box or lets you copy and paste them into a recipe file. Also files one picture per recipe. $10

Audible app  The app is free but you have to buy the actual audiobooks. Listen to your audible audiobooks directly from Audible's own downloads with this app. No need to use iTunes or equivalent to load these audiobooks.

Kindle eReader app.  Read Kindle books with any tablet or phone using this app. App is free but ebooks are not.
No need to buy Kindle device itself.

Crosswords. I play all of my crosswords on here including my daily New York Times one. $10 plus have to pay for NYTimes crosswords also.

Scrabble I have become significantly better playing scrabble against the computer. The app also lets you play with other users on Facebook through it. $10

Dropbox   Drop your files into a folder on your laptop and desktop and then load it from the app directly into your tablet or phone. Can bypass iTunes or equivalent in this fashion. Free

VLC+  Lets you watch videos in any file format. If you want to pay, there is a better one for IOS7 users called Azul. VLC+ is free.

Houzz  I used this app to good effect when we needed to redecorate going from a home to a condo style apartment. It was a huge help.  Free

Trulia  This app gives you the real estate listings for any area. It is like an MLS for non Realtors. Free

PBS  Watch PBS programming directly on this app. Much better than watching at PBS website.  Free

Wikipedia  Use this free online encyclopedia in app form rather than on a web page on your mobile devices.  Free

Chrome Web Browser.  The only browser I use on everything. $1

NPR Podcasts  You really cannot live without these.  NPR radio shows on demand, whenever you have time to listen. The purple icon is called Podcasts for IOS7 and the orange icon called NPR Podcasts for android. Both are free.

Card Shark Collection.  I play gin rummy against the computer on this every day and have gotten a lot better at it. It has tons of other card games on it. $3

I do have other apps but in many topics, like medicine, I still have not found the one that stops me searching for a better one.  Stay tuned for more apps in a later column.

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