Now that the holidays are winding down it’s time to start thinking about which apps to spend those coveted post holiday iTunes gift cards on. In order to assist in your spending, I thought I would share my top 5 most used and favorite apps to drop some gift card money on.
First up is Clear. Clear is a wonderful to-do list app by Realmac Software. Using Clear has made my life measurably more organized and productive. The app does everything I need while staying minimal and distraction free. Creating and managing lists is a breeze. Clear takes advantage of an easy to use and intuitive gesture-based interface to manage lists. In addition to gestures, Clear is able to sync quickly and seamlessly across iDevices and Macs as well, making sure you’re organized on all electronic fronts. Customizable themes and sounds as well as a new iOS 8 widget and list reminders/alarms make Clear a joy to use.
1Password by Agile Bits is an outstanding password manager. Albeit, it does so much more than manage passwords, I’m tempted to call it a digital lifestyle manager. For me, using 1Password has given me piece of mind pertaining to my online security. Every login I create has a unique password, created by 1Password. It has been established that using the same password for every login is a bad security practice. 1Password takes the guesswork out of it and creates a unique login for any and every website you visit. All you have to remember is one password to get into the app itself. Alternatively, on an iOS device, your fingerprint can be used to unlock the app, safely and securely.
In addition to passwords, 1Password can remember identities, including addresses and credit card info. This information can then be autofilled into it’s appropriate field on a web page. This means that with a few clicks within 1Password, you can login to a website, enter your address and credit card and have that item shipped without ever typing a word, or remembering a number. To top it all off 1Password has clients on iOS, OS X, Windows and Android and syncs across said devices. I highly recommend this super convenient password manager.
As a beautiful and simple, yet fully functional podcast client for iOS, Castro, by Supertop, has quickly become my favorite podcast app. The utility of Castro cannot be emphasized enough. It’s simple interface and intuitive features making listening to podcasts accessible, easy and fun. Most of all, Castro is beautiful. The app very cleverly takes the cover image of a podcast and creates a sort of theme on the playback screen based on those colors. Each podcast seems like it’s playing on it’s own personal-themed podcast app. Rich with beauty and features, Castro is simply the best for podcasts on iOS.
Dark Sky by Jackadam is a ‘hyperlocal’ weather app. It doesn’t simply tell you it’s raining today. Dark Sky tells you exactly when it’s raining. Many times I’ve received a notification on my phone from Dark Sky that simply says ‘Snow!’, looked out the window, and it’s just beginning to snow. Dark Sky is powered by a weather service created by the Jackadam team. They aren’t simply aggregating data from other weather resources, they’re the real deal. Because of this, their app delivers. Super accurate weather information wrapped in a gorgeous app skin and bundled with notifications and a widget… Dark Sky is the only weather app you’ll need.
I wouldn’t be much of a gamer if I didn’t include at least one game for iOS. If you don’t have it yet, Threes is a must play. Threes by Sirvo is a cute, quirky, addictive and downright well put together game. It has won many awards including the ‘Apple Design Award’ for 2014. It is difficult to describe Threes, but once you play, it is very intuitive and addicting. There is a 4 x 4 grid of numbers that add to multiples of three, you simply combine matching numbers. For example, a 3 and a 3 combine to make a 6, which you then have to combine with another 6, and so on and so forth. The idea is to get all the numbers on the grid as high as possible. Explaining it is somewhat convoluted, therefore, you should play it for yourself and find out how great it is!
All of these apps would make an excellent addition to any app library. They are immensely useful, fun and well worth their cost. Try them out and report back with your experiences. Also, feel free to post your own top 5 as well!
-Shatter Buggy, Denver