50 Apps That Will Marginally Improve Your Life

With more than 2.5m apps on sale across Apple and Android platforms, we've cherry-picked 50 of the best, most useful and downright entertaining applications to install on your device right now

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PA tool syncs calendar, contacts, email, to do lists, Evernote, Facebook, Twitter, etc. Displays all this info in one feed.

Free, appstore

 

Recruit the Family Guy characters to rebuild the town of Quahog after it has been destroyed.

Free, appstore

Like Angry Birds, fling an avatar (here, skulls) as you negotiate tunnels, springs and chutes, avoiding the pursuing skeletons.

£2.99, appstore

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News and more from "the best news publishers" narrated by professional (US) voice actors.

Free, appstore
 

Type directly into Apple's Notification Centre, save or post to web, without using a third party app.

69p, appstore

Point your phone at any aircraft in the sky to see where it's going, live in 3D. Lets you jump onboard for a cockpit view, too.

£1.99, appstore


Customise your iOS home screen, redesign the look of apps, create shortcuts. Yes, Android owners have done this for years.

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£1.49, appstore
 

The Zero InBox dream comes closer. Mobile email client sorts mail into conversations; swipe to archive or trash.

Free, appstore 
 

Translates to and from 54 languages. Point your phone at an unfamiliar sign, menu, shop, etc and the meaning appears.

Free, appstore

Apple's iOS 8 now allows use of third party keyboards. Input words by dragging your finger (not typing). It works.

69p, swipe-app.com
 

A slimline version of the desktop photo edit tool, APE2 seamlessly contacts with sharing tools.

Free, appstore
 

Time-saving office email client: surfaces important email first then times the rest for later.

Free, appstore 


Addictive music-making machine has drums, bass and lead instruments — and no duff notes.

69p, appstore
 


High-fidelity streaming music portal lets you hear music in non-compressed CD quality.

Free, tidalhifi.com

In the "genetically enhanced" Steampunk world, everything is a weapon. It's great.

£8.49, appstore
 

There are so many sleep apps you could nod off counting them. This one monitors how you feel, your dreams, sleep patterns and predicts optimal waking time.

Free, appstore
 

Battle zombies as Blind Warrior. The USP? This game has no graphics, just gut-churning sound.

£3.99, appstore


Retain ideas and visions by turning them into a mind map. Brainstorm, then organise your brilliant results.

£7.99, appstore 
 

A scanner in your pocket. Lets you organise and export scans as PDFs to email, Dropbox, Google Drive, etc.

Free, appstore

 

Resizable iOS keyboard with text predictor and auto correct. Claims to be "the fastest keyboard in the world".

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69p, appstore
 


Visually stunning hack- and-slash RPG that has you at war with Greek gods and mythical beasts.

69p, appstore


Manages your mental wellbeing with good habits, a positive outlook and deep breathing.

£2.29, appstore

Matchday updates, guides to all 20 stadiums and tips on where to eat, drink, park and stay.

Free, appstore
 

For runners: tracks years of training and everything from heart rate to cadence so you can compare with old workouts.

Free, appstore

Autocorrector learns from your habits, mistakes and writing style to predict your next word. Optimised for iPhone notetaking.

Free, appstore

Snap a bottle label and match it from a database of over 3m wines, each with reviews.

Free, appstore

Explore fantastical architecture and impossible geometry as you guide silent Princess Ida through this elegant, cerebral game that's hit 1m+ downloads.

£2.99, appstore


No city's hosted more famous historical names than London. Learn as you tick off the 2,000.

£2.29, appstore 


FFVI was the classic RPG of the Nineties. This faithful conversion brings back the gameplay and memories with handy updates.

£11.99, appstore

Insiders' travel guides to 11 of the world's top cities, each updated seasonally. You can tailor your guide by local weather.

Free, appstore


The original did 10m downloads. Now this meticulous stargazing tool adds more info, plus augmented reality.

£2.29, appstore


Freemium e-reading: get 1,000 gratis pages from thousands of books, earn credits as you read.

Free, appstore

Splices phone, Facebook and Linkedin details with your calendar, email and voicemail to group people by how you know them.

Free, appstore

Catalogues 700+ species: expertly illustrated and very user-friendly.

£13.49, appstore


Answer questions on a pending choice: the app suggests your cognitive biases (errors).

£1.49, appstore

All the jazz label's giants are in this ever-updating birthday app: part- magazine, part-streaming service, all supercool.

99p, appstore
 

Build an army of orcs, elves and dwarves to fight in this ultra-violent strategy game based on the fantasy world of Warhammer.

£3.99, appstore
 


Search by ingredient and colour, create shopping lists and mix recipes based on their illness-fighting properties.

£10.99, appstore 

Redesign of social-network, magazine-format app adds useful headline service, The Daily Edition, updated at 7am.

Free, appstore
 

App of fortnightly literary journal: get it with a print subscription; or download individual issues.

Free, appstore

Proves fun, memory sharpening and problem solving can co-exist.

Free, appstore

Simple 2D golf game plays like a cross between Angry Birds and Worms. Addictive but frustrating.

£1.49, appstore

An update optimised for iPhone 6's 5.5in screen, with 1080p playback on 6 Plus. New layout, too.

Free, appstore

Find out how much your car is actually costing you, plus the real value of any car you spot.

Free, appstore.com

No dog? Borrow someone else's. Hooks up the dogless with owners for walks, stick throwing, poop scooping, etc.

Free, borrowmydoggy.com

Stop lugging a Bluetooth speaker to parties, BBQs, etc. Stream music from one iPhone to multiple others for an instant party.

Free, appstore

Clear, voice-prompted interface guides you through 12 high-intensity bodyweight exercises in 420 seconds. It's the number one fitness app in 127 countries for a reason.

Free, appstore

Erases text conversations with one click. A boon for those having affairs and/or overly paranoid about state surveillance.

Free, appstore

Generous 15GB cloud storage and file backup service beats Dropbox and others as you don't install it, just log-in anytime.

Free, appstore

Biggest app since Uber? Send money to anyone, anywhere via their phone number. No third-party like PayPal required.

Free, appstore

Any we've missed?

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