Friday, November 8, 2013

There's an App for that!

RHYS BOWEN:  As a fairly recent owner of an iPhone, I'm still discovering cool apps and trying to decide which ones I'd really use. I'm trying not to over-clutter the phone but I've come up with some I find invaluable:
Evernote is probably my number one. So easy to jot down ideas or even speak the ideas when they come to me and not wait until I get home and have forgotten them.
Dragon Dictation is also useful when I want to speak my way through a dialog that has just come into my head.
Google Maps--couldn't do without it.
iTranslate is great when I'm traveling abroad (except that it gave the Greek translation in the Greek alphabet so I certainly couldn't give a spontaneous response)
Obvious ones like Skype, Pandora, Facebook
Then I have PBS to see what programs I won't want to miss.
Kindle so I can keep reading whenever I have a moment
The Tennis app used to keep me updated but it seems to have gone funny recently.
to relax I have the famous Colorful Aquarium where I get to feed my fish and
iZen where I can rake my Zen garden and move the stones around to the tinkle of bells or sounds of birds.
I also have SleepStream 2 to give me relaxing sounds and images.
For fun? Wordpops and Scrabble. My granddaughter loaded on Templerun but I keep getting killed too quickly to make it fun.
So what suggestions do the other Reds have for indispensable Apps? (or fun games where I won't get killed or eaten)
DEBORAH CROMBIE: I suspect I will be the only one here without an iPhone--I'm an Android girl.  Be we have cool apps, too!!!! I have some version of everything Rhys mentioned, except I play Words With Friends instead of Scrabble.  My daughter beats me every time.
But my favorite is an Android only app called Cover. It customizes your lock screen with the apps you use most, according to where you are.  I have mine set to Facebook, so whenever I unlock my phone, I see a slowly scrolling display of my friends' FB posts.  The imagine move so it's an almost 3D effect, and because of the clarity and resolution of the big screen (mine is a Galaxy S3,) it's like having constantly rotating art as mesmerizing as Rhys's aquarium.  I'm going to go stare at my phone now....

SUSAN ELIA MACNEAL: Hi, my name is Susan and I'm an Apple addict. I adore my iPhone.
My favorite app is eBay ? yes, also addicted to eBay and now I can check my auctions on the go. I also love Pandora radio (set to Madonna/Lady Gaga/Pink/Kelly Clarkson for the gym and Pink Martini for dinner parties), In terms of games, I love Mahjong ? good for the memory and makes subway rides flash by! And the tiles are so pretty......

HANK PHILLIPPI RYAN: Apps. Apps. Hm. I love my iphone, in fact, I love it ridiculously too much. But apps? Not so much. I have no games, not fun stuff, not Kindle and not..not anything. So I am reading this with great interest. I am almost tempted by Rhys's zen garden, but then I would just DO that, and then where would I be? Plus, I ALWAYS forget my itunes password, I think the universe just changes it from time to time, so at the moments I am lured to an app, I never get much farther.
 Two questions: One, what app will let me add to Jungle Red from my phone? RIght now, I can't do that.
Also, what app will let me add a photo to Facebook? My phone used to do that, but it won't any more.

DEBS: Hank, I can add  pics taken with my phone to any of my Facebook pages.  Maybe you need an Android:-)

LUCY BURDETTE: She can't get an Android Debs--once you have an iphone, no going back to the dark side:). Ebay sounds like a good one, though DANGEROUS to the wallet. I do love the Pinterest app, and for some reason, I see Twitter and Facebook more easily on the phone. Other than that? AroundMe for traveling. Tripadvisor. Pages. I did just delete a bunch that I don't use (like a seashell with soothing sea sounds) because I keep running out of space for photos. I think I'm due very soon for a brand new phone...

HALLIE EPHRON: Hank, I can show you how to add pics to Facebook with your iphone. It's easy peasy. You need the Facebook app.
I'm not that into apps, either, except for ones that I use to check on flights and Amtrak. I use those all the time. An eBay app? Sounds dangerous.

RHYS: You gals are no fun! I wanted more apps to lure me away when I should be writing. Except eBay. I don't think I'd better download eBay. I'd finish every trip with several packages waiting on my doorstep. But I want to know from our friends--are there any MUST HAVE APPS we've overlooked?


  1. There are better than fifty apps on my phone [they came on it] and I have absolutely no clue as to what I am supposed to do with most of them. I am totally inept when it comes to apps; I had to call my daughter in Colorado to find out how to get the Michaels app on my phone so that I could access the coupon [of course, if they’d just print the thing in the weekly advertisement, then I wouldn’t have had all that trouble in the first place]. The Kindle app is there, as are some strange things that I think must be games, but I don’t play games or read on my phone, so they’re just there. If you’re looking for app suggestions, I am most definitely not the one to ask . . . .

  2. Oh! I forgot to add Freshdirect — that's a grocery delivery store/service we have here in NYC — you can actually grocery shop when you're stuck in a waiting room or on a bus or whatever. Brilliant!

    Also, sorry for all the ? in my post — my m-dashes seem to have been converted to question marks. Hmmm....

  3. Facebook app? Oh, thank you! Getting it now. It's jsut that my phone USED to do, suddenly, it won't. Let's see if I can remember my itunes password. Grrr.

    Susan, I want grocery delivery! Yay. DO they cook, too?

    DOes anyone use taxi apps?

  4. Deb, I also have an Android, and love it. Possibly too much.

    Not too much on it, but I do have Kindle, which I only use with my phone, since I own two Nooks. But I read Rosemary's Bitches of Brooklyn on my phone, waiting at the doctor's office, etc. So handy. I use the GPS app when I'm traveling, and get flight updates from Delta (almost the only airlines that flies from CVG). Facebook works really well on this phone, too. Why does the app work better than accessing straight from the Web? A mystery. And I also use the Mobile Hot Spot to access the Internet with my Nook, just hook right into it. Brilliant, since I hate using free, unsecured Wi-Fi in public.

    Rhys, you asked for it, but be forewarned: Candy Crush. It is SO addictive.

  5. Where's the Bus? That's a favorite of mine. Being city dwellers and frequent bus riders it's just great to know if the bus will be along in two minutes or twenty (time to get a cup of coffee). Amazingly accurate too.
    And the Podcast app is fabulous too -- when your eyes are too tired to read or there's not enough light, listen to a great podcast

  6. 3 Cheers for Evernote!

    I'm not a phone person, so the only cell phone we have is an old flip phone that just stays in the car in case of emergency.

    But I have a LOT (too many) apps on my iPad. Evernote lives on my iPad and on my laptop and I think it's the greatest thing since pizza.

  7. Iphone over here, too.

    Rhys, I have the ATP/WTA Live app for tennis scores. It's great for everything exceptthe Slam events and they all have their own apps.

    Audible and Kindle for reading/listening. Goodreads for keeping track and commenting.

    Twitter and Facebook. And I recently added Instagram although I won't add pictures to it. I use it to see what's happening with the Outlander production in Scotland.

    Airline, Hotel and Amtrak apps. Hotel Tonight for last-minute hotels. TripAdvisor, TripCase, SeatGuru (for seeing the seat layout on planes), GateGuru for airport info, Convert for all sort of conversions (temperature, measurement, money, etc).

    Word with Friends, Angry Birds (I admit to the addiction) are my only games.

    Many news sources and music.

    Vogue Knitting keeps track of all my projects, yarns, needles, etc.

    Many more but I realized I don't use most so it's time for a purge.

  8. Where's the Bus!? How exquisitely useful!

  9. Yay, Karen, another Android girl! I think I need an AN DROID GIRL t-shirt.

    Pat Kennedy, wonder if I could get a bus app when I'm in London? That would be fab!

    I do have Candy Crush on my phone but have never played it, although I will play Bejeweled if I'm really bored or stressed. Have not given in to Angry Birds...

  10. I love Pink Martini, Susan!

    I'm not a huge app person, but I love the Shazam app. When you're in a store or restaurant and hear a song you like, you use this app to tell you the artist/song. I love it. I'm always trying to update my music for work outs and walking.

  11. My grown daughter uses something called Sleep Cycle to track (of course) her sleep cycles. Not sure what she does with the information, but she loves the app.

  12. Oh I forgot Map My Walk for keeping track of my walking. It'll actually show me the route I walk and keep track of time and distance.

  13. No smart phone and I'd never want one. I don't even talk on the phone. The bill would just be a waste of money. I would like a tablet, though. We can't all be technologically up to date. It costs too much! I still think App is a funny, short word. I like application better.