With the New Year just beginning, I wanted to take the time to review my favorite apps that I used on my iPhone in 2013. I also have an aversion to paying for apps when there are so many great free ones out there, so all of the apps mentioned are available for free! Chances are that not all of them will appeal to you personally, but maybe this list will inspire you to try a new app that I have found particularly helpful over the past year. So, excluding major social media apps and not necessarily in order by favorite, my top free apps from 2013 include:
I actually just began using Waze at the end of 2013 but it has been exceedingly useful in some scenarios. It offers free GPS navigation that automatically updates the best route for you to take depending on traffic patterns. It’s user-based, so you can actually see other people on the road that are using the app. Passengers will report cops sighted, vehicles on the shoulder, and other useful information that the app will then tell you to “watch out” for as you drive. All I know is, it took me 5 and a half hours to get to Virginia Beach from Baltimore when I wasn’t using the app, and only 3 hours and 45 minutes to return home when I did use it.
If you are ever travelling abroad, this is a must-have app. You can call and text anyone else that has Viber entirely for free, without having to worry about whatever international plan your service provider might offer. I used this many times over the year with my best friend who was in Thailand, and then I used it to contact people in the U.S. when I went to Thailand in April 2013 to visit her. You just need wifi to use it, so if you’re in a very remote area that doesn’t have wifi then it’s not going to be as useful.
I helped to plan a wedding in May 2013 and did a lot of research on the best wedding apps. I decided that WedPics was definitely the way to go, where people attending a wedding can share all their camera phone pictures in one location. Then, the bride and groom can see and download all the photos at a later date. Some similar apps, like WeddingParty, had a more attractive design but didn’t function as well.
Do you love crafting and roaming the aisles of Michaels? Then I hope you have this app. They constantly post coupons for 40 – 50% off one regular price item, and you can easily have them scan the mobile coupon at checkout. I have used this countless times over the past year.
Is there a new movie coming out on Redbox that you’ve been anticipating for months? If you have the Redbox app, you can actually see which Redbox locations have the movie in stock, and even reserve it for yourself! Much more efficient than driving around to all the Redbox locations in town, hoping to find a newly released movie.
6. iHandy Level
Not so new, but always useful. This is probably one of the most practical apps I have on my phone. I have moved 7 times in the last year and half, and always whip out my iHandy Level to hang anything in a new apartment.
Remember how I said I’ve moved 7 times in the past year and a half? Well another app that helped me was the rental finder PadMapper. You can enter filters for what you’re looking for in a rental (price range, number of bedrooms, etc.). Then, PadMapper pulls from multiple websites that have rental listings online (including Craigslist) and shows you pinpoints on a map of ones that fit your requirements in the area you’re interested in. As a visual person, it really helped me to see all the available listings on a map that I could then click on and be taken to the original listing for more information.
Overall, if you’re not a 23 year old crafty girl that likes to travel and moves a lot, then this list might not wildly impress you. But, these are the apps that I held very near and dear to my heart in 2013 and hopefully one – or all – are something that you’d like to try, too!
– Katy (MOS Project Manager/Copywriter)