Everybody seems to offer you apps these days. There are 2.5 million apps available through Google Play alone. That’s a lot of apps. And with just about everyone trying to persuade you to download theirs, it’s easy to end up with app clutter all over your phone. Decluttering is easy enough – look at what you use and delete what you don’t. But which apps should you have? When shouldn’t you bother to download in the first place? And which ones might be worth keeping for a rainy day if you’re that way inclined? Check out these categories, choose what applies to you, and get started.
1. Manage your Finances
Paranoid about keeping financial management apps like your bank’s app or robinhood app on your phone? That’s why I have a phone password that’s twelve characters long. BUT, it does make life a lot easier. You might resist it to the nth degree, but sooner or later, you’re going to fold. And when you do, you’re going to find that it really is the most convenient way to get your financial business done. How many financial management apps you keep is up to you, but aside from banking and investment, there are also some super-handy budget making and tracking apps to help you keep your spending in line with your planning. Choose what applies to you, make sure you’re working on a secured network and that the app has sufficient failsafes to protect your privacy, and enjoy.
2. Play for Fun
Depending on how seriously you game, these little devils can be a real problem. A lot of them are space intensive data eaters, and it doesn’t end there. Most “free” games have in-app purchases, and when it’s late at night and you’re eager to get onto a winning streak, you might just end up “investing” way more than you can afford. There are people who max their credit cards, and even end up engaging in fraud to finance their games. If you have good self-discipline, you’ll be fine. But if you’re driven to win whatever the cost, that “free” game could end up being pretty expensive. Can you play just for fun? One or two gaming apps should be more than enough to keep you entertained.
3. Find Your Way
It’s not much fun getting lost on the way to an appointment or ending up heaven-knows-where in a city in which you’re not at home. The most up to date “smart cars” have their own built in geolocation features, but a lot of us are still driving the old way. Although Google maps is the go to app, you might not even need it, since a simple search will usually give you the directions you need. Nevertheless, it can be handy at times, and therefore worth having. There are other apps that do much the same thing as well as a few fun extras. Inclined to lose your car in parking lots? There’s an app to solve your problem. Looking for a parking space near your destination? You guessed it! There’s an app for that. Need to find a charging station for your electric or hybrid vehicle? Ditto.
4. Track Down Bargains
These days, it seems like just about every store has its own app. You may not want one for stores you only visit occasionally, but it’s worth getting apps for those you frequently visit. You’ll get bargain alerts, product recommendations based on your shopping patterns (if you also use a store card) and you might even get offers that are only available to those using the app. Admittedly, it’s a bit like having a “salesman” on your smartphone, but if you’re going to buy anyway, why not buy for less? Your store app can turn into a great way to save money – as long as you’re not tempted to buy things you don’t really need just because they’re going cheap.
5. Diet and Fitness Apps
Most phones seem to come with a fitness app, but you may want to take it to the next level with fitness apps that suit your lifestyle, diet and exercise goals, and preferred types of exercise. There are so many options and variations that it would be difficult to list all the things they can do, but variations include special runner’s apps, apps for keen cyclists, yoga apps, and those that offer tailored workout videos. Many of them are free with extra functionality if you go for the premium, paid version, so you can have a lot of fun playing around to find the one that suits you best without paying a cent.
6. Photo and Video Editing Apps
We all love photos, and most folks have at least one social media platform where they share images. Some of the photo editing software on phones is pretty advanced these days, but if you want a few extra bells and whistles there’s plenty on offer. Apart from just making your photos look better, you can get into some pretty deep editing, layering images on top of each other, “airbrushing” to get better definition, and generally having fun being creative with images. Most of these apps have a basic free package to let you test their features, and some even let you use pay features in exchange for watching an ad. Chances are, you’ll enjoy having at least one advanced photo and video editing app on your phone, so try them out and pick your favorite.
7. Social Media Apps
Last but not least, let’s not forget social media apps. It’s unlikely that you will, but they have to be mentioned as they’ll be important in your private life as well as your business. Since we’re all familiar with them already, there’s no point in enumerating them, but there’s one thing worth mentioning here. Most people spend two to three hours every day on social media apps, and some people will spend even more time than that. If your smartphone apps, particularly games and social media, are eating your time, you might want to add a final app to your list: screen time management apps. You’ll be able to see where your screen time is going, and after tha, it’s up to you to decide whether your life will be better if you cut down on screen time.
Just the Basics
In this article, we’ve just covered the basics. According to research, most smartphones will have over 80 apps installed. You’ll use around nine of them on an average day, and in one month, you’ll use up to 30 different apps. As for the rest, you’ll seldom, if ever use them. Those that you do use should make life easier and more pleasurable, and if you’re looking for a single guiding criterion for an app clutter cleanup, then this would be the best one!
Photo by Wilfred Iven from StockSnap
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