Five Genius Productivity Apps that Will Make Your Life Easier
As an entrepreneur (and former corporate consultant) I’m all about simplifying my life. If there’s an app that will help me save time, keep things organized (without me having to actually do the organizing) and remember the important things then I’m on board. I just wish there was an app that could actually do my laundry for me. But until that day comes, here are some gem iPhone and Android apps that will make your life a whole lot easier:
(iPhone & Android, Free)
IFTTT (rhymes with “gift”) stands for “if this then that” and allows you to automate actions online based on triggers. Gone are the days where you have to manually back up your vacation photos to Dropbox; you can set up a recipe for IFTT to automatically save your photos to Dropbox after you’ve posted them to Instagram. Other fun things you can set up:
- Send you a notification if the weather forecast calls for rain tomorrow
- Send you a reminder to stop at the ATM on your way out of the office
- Automatically put your phone on vibrate when you enter your office or school
- Turn off your Bluetooth and Wi-Fi when you leave your house to save battery
- Send an SMS to your spouse asking “Do you need anything from the store?” when you reach your local grocery store
- Email you NASA’s photo of the day
(iPhone & Android, Free)
I read so much on my phone and constantly find new cool things I want to read but don’t always have time at that exact moment. I could never remember everything, and ended up doing a terribly ineffective combination of bookmarks, reading lists and emailing stuff to myself. Cue Pocket, the app that saves your reading in one convenient location for you to read later, even offline. Bonus: it even syncs with IFTTT (above) so you can automate what gets saved to Pocket.
I am guilty of being that person who never bothers to save any email address, address or phone number ever. So when I need to find someone’s info, I end up doing a big search through my contacts, email and messages murmuring, “I know I have her email somewhere...” Brewster is a godsend. It compiles a new contact list based on all of your online profiles (Google, Linked In, Facebook, Twitter, etc.) Once they’ve been compiled, they update in real time so nothing is out of date. Contacts are available on every device that you’ve synced with your Google account, so they automatically populate when you’re writing emails or sending text messages.
(iPhone & Android, Free & paid versions)
Yes, this one is an oldie but a goodie. If you haven’t started using it yet, you’re missing out. It’s basically the best way to keep a notebook with you at all times where you can jot down just about anything and keep it organized using tags or through search. There’s also a web clipper that works with your favourite web browser (even on mobile Safari if you upgrade to iOS 8) so that you can automatically clip parts of websites or bookmarks. Best part – even text within photos are searchable so you really can take a photo of just about anything and search for it later. The paid version will also keep track of business cards and connect with your Linked In profile. But even the free version is totally robust and gives you 60 mb of syncing every month.
(iPhone only, $2.99)
This one is just for fun. There are so many to-do list apps out there it’s difficult to pick the best one, but this is the only one that condescendingly talks down to you if you don’t get your shit together. “Greetings, lazy human” is how it addresses you right from the get-go. You add your own tasks to a number of predefined tasks in each level, such as “Learn to speak Elvish” or “Build a time machine.” Once you complete tasks, you unlock new levels and games. By doing nothing, you make Carrot upset. DO NOT MAKE CARROT UPSET. I’m going to hide in the corner now.
Have you tried any of these apps or know of any other great ones? Now, go and simplify your life!
Also in The Journal
Ah, airplane travel. It may be a wonder of modern technology but in a lot of ways it is the worst. Like, the dehydrated skin and jet lag and expensive airport type of worst.
But there are ways you can make it less miserable, and this post is a roundup of all the essentials you need on a long haul flight.