Smart Phone Apps

May 2017 – These are apps we’ve found helpful… or in some cases not so much. Initially we had iPhone4 smart phones but these days we have Samsung Galaxy S5 phones. We’ve found most of what we had on the iPhone available on the Galaxy and are fairly confident that’s still true. Here’s what we ‘can’t live without’… or possibly ‘can’t stand’

  • GasBuddy, StormTracker, Adobe Reader, i.TV and Kindle Reader are all available for Android phones and are all free.
  • Sibley’s is a familiar name to you if you are at all informed about birds. Has an integrated database to keep a record.
  • Zomata/ex-UrbanSpoon. Loved UrbanSpoon and felt abandoned when it went away. Zomato was the re-incarnation of UrbanSpoon (they bought the rights to the original database). Initially the app used to read the database sucked, but they seem to be getting things running better now. It’s back in my ‘gotta have’ category… maybe.
  • ALLSTAYS (free) replaced Woodall’s. The latter is now a paid app.
  • TV Listings is a free app that replaces i.TV; i.TV  (also free) is available on Android phones but has recently started failing to deliver correct data.
  • Weather related: Weather (by Macropinch) gives decent weather data, though all weather apps leave something to be desired. It’s free.
    In 2015 I started using Storm Tracker (seems to be from channel 18 TV station in Lexington, KY). Storm Tracker offers a satellite image which you can drag around to anyplace in (at least) North America, plus it has urgent storm/weather warnings which can be setup to push Notifications to the phone (think flash floods, tornadoes and closed roads). Best of all it has a 10 day forecast plus an Hourly predication that varies from 24- to 72-hrs depending on location.
  • My Stocks Portfolio is a free app that I use to track stock data. It’ll chart the data but doesn’t support the use of indicators (moving averages, etc.). You can create a portfolio of your holdings which it values based on purchase price.
  • MapMyWalk allows saving a route of a favorite walk. It’s focus is social media and I’m not a fan, so this may go away when I find something better. Yes, it’s free. If you know of something that just records miles walked via the built-in GPS and ignores social media, please let me know!
  • State Lines is an interesting free app for RVers as it gives pertinent data as you look at he next state you’ll visit: sales tax, gas tax, time zone, seat belt & child safety seat laws, restrictions while driving, e.g. cell phone use, speed limits, etc. really useful.
  • TPE is a free photographers tool that gives direction of sunrise & sunset laid out on a map at a chosen lat/lon. Great for planning a photo shoot.
  • SkySafari 4/5 are apps for identifying constellations and stars. It uses your GPS, inclinometer and compass to figure out where you’re pointing the phone then tells you what’s in front of you. Pricey but I really like it. They have a version for iPad if you have one of those but it’s a separate purchase.
  • News has been a problem… I whine about nearly all news apps I’ve tried (I was a pain in the butt during the 2016 election). But I seem to whine less about the BBC News app. Till I find something better, this is what I use.
  • Hearing aids… it was bound to happen. Thank God for COSTCO! I happened to settle on a brand named ReSound (apparently from Denmark) and has an app (SMART) for adjusting volume, enhancing sound/speech, frequency response, more.

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