App stores are crowded places these days, and because storage space on your phone is often at a premium, you’ll want to find and fill it with not only the best, but also the most helpful apps out there. Because they come and go quicker than the latest fashion trends, and digging through Google Play, the iTunes App Store, or any of the others is such a mission; a little nudge in the right direction is often very welcome. Here are the apps we think you need to check out this week.
Ever since Microsoft decided to drop the wall it kept between its own products and its supposed competitors in the mobile space (though calling Microsoft competition to Apple or Android is a stretch at this point), the computing giant has been cranking out little projects and experiments that no one would have ever expected. After all, the company maintains a very buttoned-up image. Its apps feel like its loosened the tie and untucked the shirt.
TossUp is the latest app to make its way out of Microsoft’s Garage program. It’s a pretty simple polling app meant to help you quiz your friends in hopes of making organizing a bit easier. Get a quick “yes” or “no” answer from everyone with none of the typical hemming and hawing that usually goes along with getting a group of people onto the same page.
When traveling abroad, you’ll come across all sorts of amazing sights, sounds, and smells that you’d never find in your home country. You’ll also run into some boundaries like language and cultural differences that can make you look like the tourist you are. Instead of heading overseas in ignorance, you can get a crash course in culture with FailPop. It presents important information like greetings and customs in funny and memorable ways that will be sure to stick with you. A good way to potentially save yourself some embarrassment.
There’s a certain sensation you get when taking notes. You can almost feel the information sticking as you jot it down, or run the highlighter tip over a line of text. With Liner, you can treat the web like your college textbook (except you’ll actually use it). Mark up news articles, Wikipedia entries, and anything else you come across to bring attention to the important bits of text, then send it off via email, SMS, or social media so you can share it or access it later.
It’s surprising how much we still end up missing, even with devices that have access to just about everything we could want to know. If you want to turn your smartphone into a news ticker, displaying all the things you deem most important, Hooks can help. With over one million pre-made alerts and the ability to customize your own, it’ll ensure you’re on the ball for the things that matter to you, no matter what that might be.
The biggest conversation in music right now isn’t just which streaming service to use, but rather how those services help us discover new music. While Apple is opting for a more human element, you can’t get much more human than Cymbal, a music discovery app that turns you and your friends into tastemakers and trendsetters when it comes to tunes. Share your favorites, browse what your friends are listening to, tag people on songs they might like, and broaden your horizons. All while bobbing your head to the beat.