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Mother’s Day 2015 – 12 Best Apps for Moms

Moms_Helpers

Every year, more and more moms are getting connected and their mobile use is skyrocketing. These tech savvy moms want their mobile devices to be equipped with the best apps to help them save time, save money and make their lives safer and easier. For Mother’s Day, we compiled a list of our 12 favorite apps for iPhone and iPad and we’re sharing these apps with our readers to help them get more from their mobile devices. These apps are paid, freemium and free. Click on the app’s link to learn more about the pricing.

1. Evernote® – Rating 4+

Click here to find Evernote at the Apple App Store

Evernote is for note taking and it’s considered a best-of-class app. It’s a “freemium” application, which means you can use it for free and choose to be charged for upgrades.

Why is Evernote great for moms? Moms are busy people and can’t keep everything inside their heads. With Evernote, it’s super easy to take notes, organize things found on the web and make checklists. With tagging, moms can easily find the information that they’ve saved in Evernote. I like using the Evernote Web Clipper. It allows moms to “clip” information from the web and save articles, recipes and more in Evernote.

Evernote

2. Dropbox™ – Rating 4+

Click here to find Dropbox at the Apple App Store

When I first started using Dropbox years ago, it was simply a great way to share big files with co-workers, family and friends. Dropbox has evolved over the years and it has become extremely popular for file storage in the Cloud. With Dropbox, moms can store their photos and documents and easily share them with others. 2 GB of space is available for free and more can be obtained with a fee or through other actions, such as sharing.

Why is Dropbox great for moms? It’s an excellent way to back up and share family photos, receipts and other important documents. Moms can scan report cards, homework, kids artwork, etc. and save these items forever in a safe and secure place. No worries about hardware crashes. It also helps to keep the house tidy eliminating paper clutter.

Dropbox

3. LifeTopix™ from LightArrow, Inc. – Rating 4+

Click here to find LifeTopix at the Apple App Store

LifeTopix is an all-one-organizer for work and life. Many use it for life management or small business management. It’s excellent for getting and staying organized. It’s one of the best personal organization apps for families and anyone else who wants to boost their productivity.

Why is LifeTopix great for moms? It’s like having a personal assistant that organizes everything. Moms can organize travel, projects and tasks, events, finances, health and fitness, home assets, bookmarks, photos and shopping — all in one place, which prevents the need to jump from app to app. The Agenda view, shown below, is super handy for knowing what’s coming up today, tomorrow and in the near future at a glance.

LifeTopix

4. Scanner Pro by Readdle – Rating 4+

Click here to find Scanner Pro at the Apple App Store

I recently discovered Scanner Pro and wow I was impressed. Scanner Pro essentially turns your iPad into a scanner, saving you loads of time.

Why is Scanner Pro great for moms? As I mentioned earlier, Dropbox is an excellent way to keep the house tidy by storing documents. With Scanner Pro, moms can easily scan all types of documents, save them in a variety of sizes (A4, letter, legal, business card, etc.), and upload these documents directly to a variety of other apps, including Dropbox and Evernote. Moms can also open these scanned documents in LifeTopix allowing them to associate the documents with projects, events and other LifeTopix items. In the example below, I’ve scanned a bike map which I can access directly from LifeTopix if I get lost while cycling — no need to carry a physical map in my bike pouch.

Readdle

5. What to Expect – Rating 4+

Click here to find “What to Expect” at the Apple App Store

Just about everyone who’s expecting or who’s had a baby has heard of the famous book “What to Expect When You’re Expecting.” This app is based on the famous book. It’s basically a roadmap for your pregnancy on iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch.

Why is “What to Expect” great for moms? This app is especially valuable for first time moms. It offers practical advice, tips, articles, videos and message boards. It also helps moms communicate information with their spouse or partner, which is fun and helpful during pregnancy.

Expecting

6. Finding Rover – Rating 3+

Click here to find Finding Rover at the Apple App Store

Finding Rover uses a new facial recognition technology to make finding dogs easy through a community of users. For example, you take a photo of your pet and upload it to the app. Someone finds your beloved pooch and snaps a photo. Voila! Your pup’s face is matched and found! And did I mention the app is free?

Why is “Finding Rover” great for moms? Every parent knows that losing a beloved pet is heartbreaking for the entire family. Fortunately Finding Rover has come to the rescue.

Rover

7. OverDrive – Rating 4+

Click here to find OverDrive at the Apple App Store

As a leading distributor of eBooks, OverDrive offers eBooks, audiobooks and streaming video from local libraries. In fact, there’s a network of over 30,000 libraries worldwide that offers titles from OverDrive.

Why is OverDrive great for moms? Many moms like to relax with a good book, but it’s hard to find time to get to the library. In this situation, OverDrive is a perfect solution. Also, everyone knows that reading is the cornerstone of learning. OverDrive offers many titles for kids and it’s a great way to quickly introduce new books to inquisitive children.

overdrive2

8. Etsy – Rating 4+

Click here to find Etsy at the Apple App Store

Etsy is a new way to shop. Everything found on Etsy is created or curated by people running independent businesses. Essentially, if you want to find something different and unique, Etsy is the place to find it.

Why is Etsy great for moms? I think most moms would agree that they love shopping on Etsy because of the extraordinary things they can find. It also allows them to support independent businesses. And moms with an entrepreneurial spirit can create their own businesses while taking care of kids at home. In fact, Fast Company reported that Alicia Shaffer’s business named ThreeBirdNest makes $80,000 monthly!

Etsy

9. Calm – Rating 4+

Click here to find Calm at the Apple App Store

Calm is an app for meditation, sleep, relaxation and focus. It helps users learn mindfulness meditation and includes seven guided meditation sessions from 2 to 30 minutes.

Why is the Calm app great for moms? Moms live in a busy world and they don’t have a lot of time to relax and focus on the present moment. When stress takes over, it can take a toll on physical health. Meditation can improve sleep, treat heart issues, relieve chronic pain, lower blood pressure and improve insulin resistance.

calm

10. RetailMeNot – Rating 4+

Click here to find RetailMeNot at the Apple App Store

RetailMeNot is an app for saving money and who doesn’t like saving money? This app provides deals (online and nearby) and allows its users to view these deals by category. “Trending” deals are also provided so users can find the most popular discounts.

Why is RetailMeNot great for moms? It’s an excellent app for saving money and no coupon clipping is required. Moms can just show the retail clerk the barcode on their iPhone or iPad and be on their way!

retailme

11. Skype – Rating 3+

Click here to find Skype at the Apple App Store

Skype is a service that features video calling, voice calling, instant messaging and file sharing. It’s a Microsoft product that was purchased from Ebay in 2011. Skype is similar to FaceTime and Google Hangouts, but it provides some advantages for those who want to video or voice chat with people who use a variety of devices and software. For example, with Hangouts, users are required to set up Google + accounts. With FaceTime, users are required to own Apple devices. Consequently, if you want to video chat with Grandma in Poughkeepsie who’s still using Windows 7 and isn’t keen on social networks, you’re in luck if you’re using Skype.

Why is Skype great for moms? Nothing replaces face-to-face communication, but video chatting is the next best thing. These days, many families are spread around the country and even around the world. If you can’t be with your mom this Mother’s Day, consider helping her set up Skype on her computer or smartphone. This way, you can have video chats regularly — not matter what technology she’s using.

Skype

12. NextDoor – Rating 4+

Click here to find NextDoor at the Apple App Store

NextDoor is a free private social network for neighborhoods. According to their website, over 60,000 neighborhoods across the U.S. are now using NextDoor. When you sign up and open the NextDoor app, you’re presented with a variety of happenings in your neighborhood. It provides classifieds, crime alerts, lost and found and general information such as social events, traffic alerts, HOA meetings and news around your city.

Why is NextDoor great for moms? These days, moms are so busy it’s challenging to stay in the loop, especially if they work outside the home. NextDoor is it has become the new “Neighborhood Watch.” If anything suspicious or unusual is happening, parents know instantly through the optional notifications. It’s also a great way to sell, trade and purchase used items — it feels much more safe than using Craiglist.

NextDoor

Your Turn

We love sharing and reading about useful apps. Please share your favorites in the comments below. Thanks!

10 Best Productivity Apps for Dad

Most dads could use a little harmony and order in their lives — especially those who can’t find two socks that match, are the last to pick up their kids from daycare, or never remember important dates – like anniversaries. Sound familiar?

With Father’s day right around the corner, consider gifting an app or two to dad to help him stay on track. Productivity apps help him record and prioritize all the things he needs to do so he can spend more time doing what’s important — like spending time with you! The good news is, most of these apps are free.

We’ve compiled a list of our favorites based on the simple premise of making life easy — and fun.

Evernote

Evernote App

Evernote App

The Ever­note app is for seri­ous note tak­ing. Dads can take notes at work or at home, cre­ate shop­ping lists or “honey-do” lists, search through their favorite images, and share their favorite mem­o­ries. It’s syn­chro­nized across all of dad’s devices — includ­ing Mac, Web, and Win­dows so there’s no excuses for for­getting an impor­tant item again.

Learn More About Evernote

Dropbox

Dropbox App

Dropbox App

Dropbox is great app for dads to share their docs, photos, and videos. This free service also lets dads instantly share these items by creating and sending a link to friends, family, or others — whether they are Dropbox users or not. Dads can simply place a folder on their computer, copy any file into that folder — and it becomes available on their other computers and Android, BlackBerry, and iOS apps. This is a fantastic way to share family photos and videos, and any other docs.

Learn More About Dropbox

Toodledo

Toodledo App

Toodledo App

Help dad turbocharge his productivity with this handy to-do list app. Toodledo is a powerful app that goes anywhere with dad — including his mobile devices, in email, on his calendar, or in his web browser. With Toodledo he can set alarms or reminders for tasks that are due, and it can analyze his tasks to make the most of his time. No more excuses for forgetting to change the oil or for picking up light bulbs.

Learn More About Toodledo

LifeTopix

LifeTopix App

LifeTopix App

A 10 best pro­duc­tiv­ity blog post from LightAr­row would not be com­plete with­out a men­tion of our own app, Life­Topix. This organizer app takes an organic view of pro­duc­tiv­ity to truly reflect how things get done in life. Life­Topix goes beyond notes and to-do lists. With Life­Topix, dads can plan com­plex events like a daughter’s wed­ding, a fam­ily vaca­tion, or a large land­scap­ing project. Inte­gra­tion with Ever­note, Drop­box, and Toodledo makes Life­Topix the hub for projects with tasks, notes, and doc­u­ments. Event and project plan­ning includes many ele­ments, such as ser­vice providers, shop­ping lists, book­marks, travel com­pan­ions, itin­er­aries, and more. A powerful cal­en­dar keeps dads on track and fur­nishes handy reminders.

Learn More About LifeTopix

Dragon Dictation

Dragon Dictation App

Dragon Dictation App

Face it. Nobody likes typing on a keyboard when they can easily dictate text or email messages. Dragon Dictation is a voice recognition app that allows dad to naturally speak and instantly see his text or email messages. If dad is saavy with social media, it’s really useful for quickly creating messages for Facebook and Twitter.

Learn More About Dragon Dictation

Zite

Zite app

Zite App

With so many stories circulating every day, it takes time to find information that suits our needs and tastes. Help dad save time searching for articles by recommending Zite to him. He can personalize Zite with the topics that he finds useful, such as Health & Exercise, Politics, Sports, Technology, and Wine & Mixology. It understands the things that dad likes, and gets smarter the more he uses uses it. And of course, helping dad get in touch with the latest news and trends, he’ll be a hit at his next cocktail party or family outing.

Learn More About Zite

Yelp

Yelp App

Yelp App

Most everyone using the Internet these days has discovered Yelp. If you haven’t, it’s the grassroots website that includes over six million reviews of businesses across the United States, Canada, Ireland, and the UK. Reviewers, described as “Yelpers” review everything from restaurants to hardware stores. Perhaps dad is visiting the coast in Northern California, and wants to fit in 18 holes. Rather than wasting time making phone calls or emailing friends, Yelp is a great resource to identify the courses nearby, whether they’re open to the public, and to learn about the challenge and pace of the course.

Learn More About Yelp

OpenTable

OpenTable App

OpenTable App

OpenTable is especially useful for the spontaneous dad who doesn’t call to make reservations until Friday night or the dad who travels on business. This app quickly searches for restaurants in his area on his device, reviews them, and then chooses the restaurant for him. It’s like having his own concierge. You can’t beat that. As an added bonus, he can earn points to free meals — maybe next time he’ll pick up the check.

Learn More About OpenTable

Google Search

Google Search App

Google Search App

Dad’s iPhone or iPad is just not complete without the Google Search app. He can search the web faster and easier. Two cool features include voice search which lets him skip the typing, and Google Goggles which lets dad snap a photo and find more information about the item.

Learn More About Google Search

ESPN ScoreCenter

ESPN App

ESPN ScoreCenter App

For the dad who loves sports, we recommend the ESPN ScoreCenter app as the hub of sports news. This fun and useful app allows dad to easily find the in-progress and final scores of the teams that he follows. It also gives dad news about the players, breaking sports news, and highlights of the leading sports events of the day. He can also view the current standings by sport and division.

Learn More About ESPN ScoreCenter

We hope you found our list helpful. So dads, what’s your favorite time saving or productivity app? How do you stay on track? We’d love to hear about your top 10. Let us know.