Whether you’re wondering what to install on your new iPhone 5s or 5c, or just wanting to add some new apps to your existing phone that will make your smartphone more useful and fun, this is the list for you.
Best Apps for Productivity
OmniFocus is perhaps the best piece of software yet invented for increasing productivity. It’s more than a traditional to do list, instead taking the philosophy of taking down every task – no matter how small – and organising them based on when and where they can be done. It takes some getting used to, but many users swear it has changed their lives for the better.
Evernote is perhaps the best cross-platform system for storing notes in. While iPhone comes with a Notes application, it doesn’t sync with non-Apple devices and is very limited it what it can store (mainly just text). Evernote stores so much more, and can even convert scanned documents to text for you – useful for class notes.
Best Apps for Social
We could mention the usual Twitter and Facebook, but the chances are that you’ve already got these installed. Instead we’re featuring FourSquare. While the location based social network has struggled to reach a real critical mass, there’s a good chance a few of your friends are already using it. FourSquare has recently become more useful as a local recommendation engine, and by using your previous check ins is better at suggesting coffee shops and restaurants than Yelp and Qype.
Best Apps for Music
If you’re not already streaming music on demand, you really should be. Streaming services have improved a lot in recent years and now offer the same quality sound as downloaded MP3s, and allow you access to an unlimited catalog of music rather than confining you to what you’ve already purchased. Spotify, based in Sweden, is the big player but smaller rivals sometimes have music that Spotify has missed. Try out Deezer for a well established alternative.
Best Apps for Films and TV
Netflix is the undisputed king of online film and television show streaming. They’ve recently gone on an international expansion so more people will be able to watch shows such as Mad Men, Breaking Bad and Portlandia for a low cost monthly subscription. Many TV networks also have their own apps offering on demand video, the best for our money is BBC iPlayer from the UK, although if you’re not currently in Britain you will need to use a VPN to watch content on it.
Best Apps for Navigation
Almost everyone with an iPhone downloaded the Google Maps app after Apple switched to their own mapping service. If you haven’t already you really should. You’ll find yourself using it much more than Apple Maps, only switching back to the default option for cool 3D visuals when you’re bored. Or when Siri, despite increased command recognition, continues to bring up Apple Maps when you ask for directions.
Best Apps for Fitness
Our fitness suggestion might come as somewhat of a surprise, as technically it’s not a fitness app. Bike Hub is a cycle route finder which helps you find a safe yet fast route from A to B by bike. There’s no better way of ensuring long term fitness than switching your car or your public transit commute to a push cycle journey, and this is the app that makes this realistically possible. Combine with a cycle mount for your iPhone to ensure you don’t get lost on route and it will give you turn by turn directions, just like driving a car.
Best Apps for Communication
If you’ve got friends in other countries, or just on other mobile networks, then getting WhatsApp as a means of communicating for free is essential. There’s rival offerings that do the same thing, but WhatsApp is the undisputed market leader.