Hi, I'm Allison and I have something to admit.
I really love apps.
There's literally an app for everything, a fact which in itself blows my mind. I've fallen prey to many mindless lifestyle and game apps as well as downloading ones, trying once and immediately deleting. Naturally I'm #TeamiPhone—have been for almost six years now—and have used at least a hundred different apps throughout all that time.
Note: Most of these are available for Android but the links provided are all for the iTunes store.
Another Note: I am not paid to sponsor any of these apps. I'd like to be, but alas I am just writing this article to introduce you to some of my favorites.
Most Successful Dating App:
Clover is a close second
Okay, yes, I love Tinder. I've met tons of people who were gross, but also tons of people who I've developed friendships with. Even though the majority of people on Tinder are looking for hookups instead of relationships, I've managed to have some success in the boyfriend department—therefore, Tinder beats out the other dating apps I've downloaded. Clover is a new one I've tried, and there are many nice people, but the problem with it is that it shows people from all over in your stack. Tinder mainly keeps the prospectives close by.
Game I Play for Hours:
1010! is a close second
This game is SO FUN. So fun. You have to keep merging the squares. It's very similar to 2048 (see below) but you're also supposed to be eliminating the amount of squares at one time on screen, much like GramGames' previous game app 1010!. It's really addicting, I swear. 1010! also comes highly recommended—just as mindlessly entertaining.
Superior Photo Storage App:
"An outside photo storage app," you say? "But we already have the Photos app!"
Yes, we do, however if you're an iPhone user with a Google account (like myself) and you also take a lot of pictures (like myself) then having an outside photos app like Google Photos is your best bet. It stores even the pictures deleted from your phone and they DON'T disappear after 30 days. So it's very easy to recover accidental deletes. Plus, you can search by face, location, month, etc. making finding all your great pictures from the summer of 2010 more streamlined.
Paw-some Cat Game:
Kleptocats is a close second
Clearly there's a reason why this app basically has a cult following. The cats are ADORABLE, the app doesn't require a lot of effort and who wouldn't want to collect oodles of precious nugget kitties that boop around and leave behind fish money???
Honestly, I've put an absurd amount of effort into this game. The developers keep adding new cats and goodies, the most recent being the rare pirate cat Bengal Jack and the two new normal cats Patsy and Chip.
If you like this I highly recommend Kleptocats—you can interact with the cutest object—thieving felines and dress 'em up.
Cutest Weather App:
I had the Weather Channel app for the longest time until I heard about Sunshine. This is the best little weather app; it's really interactive, showing snow/rain/clouds right on the map of your location. Unfortunately, you can't look as far into the future forecast as you can with other weather apps. Sunshine only shows you the next three days and doesn't easily display the temperatures for the day. However, the best part about Sunshine is that it adjusts to your personal temperature-based needs. I tend to get pretty warm between 77 and 80 degrees fahrenheit and early on, I reported feeling "warm" enough times for Sunshine to warn me when I was going to feel the heat. Just try it, you'll love it.
Lovely Language-Learning App:
Tinycards is a close second
The website is just as great! Even though not as portable.
Duolingo is the only language-learning app I've stuck with, using their daily reminders to keep practicing whatever I was learning at the time. There's tons of languages for English-speakers to learn, as well as a variety of languages that non-English speakers have tailored for them. I used Duolingo to keep my French skills (learned in French 101 freshman year) relatively fresh, and recently have been using it to learn some Irish phrases for my study abroad trip to Ireland.
Tinycards is new from the Duolingo guys, and uses flashcards on a plethora of subjects to promote learning! YAY!
Greatest Food App:
Okay, the OG Dunkin' app was great but the more recent revamping of the app is just as such. If you eat/consume coffee from Dunkin' regularly (I'm looking at you, fellow east coast coffee drinkers) you can save lots from becoming a Dunkin' Perks member. Coupons galore, a points system to earn free coffees and the new On-The-Go Ordering are some of the better aspects of this app.
Dumbest App I Can't Help but Love:
If you're a Game of Thrones fan, just download this. Please. It's the greatest thing I've ever realized I needed.
Most Upbeat Fitness App:
I am BY NO MEANS a fitness freak. I'm too lazy and round for that. Nevertheless, I quite enjoy using this app to do a little bit of exercise. There's a few different types of workouts you can do—stretches, yoga, bodyweight—and all are pretty easy and fun for all fitness levels. I mean, if someone like ME finds it easy then it's good for everyone. There's little video clips showing the proper way to do the move and 5-10 seconds between switching exercise moves to give you just enough of a rest. You can also tailor it to your exercise level or desire.
Most Adorable Avatar-Creator App:
Bitmoji is a close second
After its release, most Nintendo fans downloaded this social media-esque app to interact with their friends and answer questions. I personally liked the amazing variety of customization as well as the cute little outfits I could dress my avatar in. Reading my friends' answers to questions was also hysterical, they came up with some funny things.
Bitmoji is a new download in my phone but it's cute, especially the ability to send your avatar as emojis via iMessage, Facebook Messenger, email—whatever. Miitomo beats it out because Bitmoji has significantly less customization options.
Most Romantic Japanese Boyfriend Simulation App:
I am very obsessed with these Japanese choose-your-adventure boyfriend apps. I think I've downloaded probably seven of them, all with unique storylines. Naturally, some are better than others: Destined To Love is what got me addicted to this subgenre of simulation games. You are a normal Japanese girl transported back in time to the 1800s, where samurai ran rampant, and are faced with choosing which samurai you want to pursue ~romantically~.
Best Photo Editor:
I'm aware there are many, many photo editor apps and I've tried tons. However, Instagram has always stayed in my phone—the options for editing are phenomenal and there's a reason why its one of the most popular social media/photo editing apps. Sometimes I'll post a picture on Instagram just to have it edited and delete it soon after. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Most Accurate TV-Based Game:
Game of Thrones Ascent
I know, I know. This is the second Game of Thrones app on this list. I like these strategy/simulation hybrid games and when I tried Game of Thrones: Ascent, it immediately made me fall in love and I began alternating between the app and the online version. I liked competing in an alternate, GOT-inspired world and paving the way for my house.
Sidenote - I restarted the game like six times before I was content with my character.
Easiest Sleep Tracker App:
I've been using Sleep Cycle for almost a year and a half now and it's so interesting. I'm able to track the way I sleep. Sleep Cycle shows you how you sleep over the course of the night as well as how you sleep in different types of weather or in different locations. Apparently, I sleep better at my college than I do at home (probably because my roommate's and my bedtime is quite early for college students). It also wakes you up really gently, within a 15, 20 or 30 minute time frame with a little music. You can also use it as a white noise app. IT HAS EVERYTHING.
Most Captivativating Social Article App:
Buzzfeed is a close second
I'm actually surprised many of my female friends haven't experienced Bustle. There's a website too. It's almost like Pinterest, except instead of being primarily images and impossible DIY projects, Bustle shows off different news articles. You can choose the topics for your feed: mine include Astrology, Game of Thrones, Nostalgia, Book News, Body Positive and Style Inspo. It includes articles from all over, even Buzzfeed!
Best Celebrity App:
I am by no means a fan of the Kardashians—sorry not sorry—but as I mentioned before, I'm a fan of simulation games. When I heard I can work my way to the top of the A-List, I was hooked. I also put an embarrassing amount of time into installing the "endless money and stars" cheat onto my game so that I could achieve said goal faster. Admittedly, it made the game less fun once I bought all the clothes, mansions and traveled all over the world. STILL WORTH THAT TIME THOUGH.
Best Bandwagon App:
Note: click on the image to play the original 2048 web game!
In my last couple years of high school, this game was SO COOL. Everyone I knew was playing 2048. Only few managed to get the 2048 tile (like yours truly). I mean, once you figure out how the game works it's quite easy, but it's important you put aside some time to become a 2048 master.
Excellent Texting App (besides iMessage):
I started using Skype regularly once I made a bunch of friends playing an MMO roleplay game and they all lived in California. Skype made it easy to coordinate battle via voice chat, as well as enabled me to message people who I wasn't too keen on giving my number to, just in case they were weird. I'm in the process of teaching my mom how to use it so we can communicate easily via video chat while I'm abroad in Ireland.
Skype beats out other messaging apps like Kik and WhatsApp mainly because of the accessibility of the voice/video chatting feature. Kik doesn't have that sort of chat (probably because it's full of creeps—at least in my experience) and I don't have a ton of friends who use WhatsApp so there's not a point in me messaging people whose phone numbers I already have. The only thing I don't like about Skype is how ugly the emojis are :(.
Easiest Shopping App:
Amazon is a close second
Maybe I'm just obsessed with Etsy products or I've had absurdly good luck, but I have not had a bad Etsy experience thus far. I bought a Van Gogh pendant necklace as one of my first purchases and the chain broke the minute I took it out of the mini plastic bag. I notified the maker and she immediately sent through the mail a new chain. I also adore the little handmade notes sellers often include and how easy it is to cancel an order—even when a boyfriend breaks up with you the week before Valentine's Day. Amazon is great, but the customer service just isn't always there with them.
#1 Music App:
I have to say it: PANDORA IS NOT GOOD.
There is nothing I liked about Pandora. It's too random, too jumpy between songs and not enough cohesion for me. With Spotify's endless stores of music genres, I actually feel like I'm discovering new music. Most of the time I'm not, but I like the feeling. I purchased Spotify Premium for a while—before college made me poor—and it was so completely worthwhile. I honestly don't even have music on my phone because Spotify is so much easier to use. The Discover Weekly addition is just a blessing and I've found oodles of new favorite songs through it each week.