It’s that time of year again. The leaves are changing colors, the sweaters are out and everything tastes like pumpkin. And oh yeah, you’re about to lose your mind. If you’re anything like me, fall brings a whole mix of emotions. School classes are long past syllabus week, and starting to kick your ass. Friends want to see you, family wants to catch up, and everything seems to be happening all at once. Were this fifty years ago, you would probably be on the brink of insanity.
Lucky for you, there is some nifty new technology to help you stay on top of your life and in control of your stress, and it resides in the palm of your hand – in your phone. Below are 10 apps that will make college life much easier, so get downloading.
1. Google Drive
Say hello to your new best friend. Google Drive is quite possibly, the most essential thing you could put on your smart phone this fall. By keeping all of your documents, presentations, and spreadsheets under the umbrella of the Drive, you are able to access, edit, and print them remotely. With 15GB of free storage, it keeps everything backed up online, so the next time you spill coffee on your keyboard, you can still access that research paper. You can easily share files and edit in real time, making group projects slightly less terrible. It even has a built in search engine to help you find that report you wrote four years ago.
If your class involves any sort of memorization, the Quizlet app is a total necessity. With Quizlet, you can make your own flashcards, save them online and access them anywhere. With the mobile app, you are able to study wherever you are. It can even be customized to your personal study habits, with built in quizzes, games, audio recordings and so on. It’s essentially the only reason I didn’t fail French (let’s be honest).
It’s a Wednesday afternoon, you just finished your 1 pm class, and you’re absolutely starving. You don’t dare brave the long lines and under-cooked food of the dining hall, but you’re way too broke to eat out. If only there was some sort of app that gave you updates on deals and promotions going on at local restaurants and used your exact location to tell you where the closest food is…Wait, there is. Welcome to the future.
Hooked is designed to allow restaurants and local diners on college campuses to update everyone in the area on any specials and cheap deals, or even the occasional giveaway. It provides users with a list of deals, how long until they expire, and directions to each of the restaurants. At checkout all you need to do is press a button, and voila, cheap food is all yours!
It should be pretty obvious why Skype had to make the list. While college can be an amazing time to make new friends, meet new people, and have great experiences; sometimes you really miss people back home. Whether it’s to ask mom for advice, find out why your friend got dumped, or catch up with someone that’s studying abroad; Skype is the perfect way to stay in touch through its free video chat service.
Evernote is basically a tool for keeping track of… well…everything! It is a work space available for Mac, Microsoft, iPhone, and Android, that allows you to take notes, organize them and keep them all at the tip of your fingers. It also allows you to alternate between typed and “handwritten” notes, add annotations to existing documents, and even attach files, images, and webpages to your notes.
While it’s not a secret that your tuition is expensive, what people don’t tell you is how expensive everything else about college can be. From books, to coffees, to late-night milkshakes, to… whatever else you spend your money on, life can really start to add up when you aren’t used to living on your own.
Mint is a budget app that allows the user to categorize their spending, reminds you when bills are due, keeps track of your credit score, and even provides you with savings tips! Upon downloading the app, you can create a budget based on your monthly income, and log expenses when you make new purchases and pay bills. It is a simply designed and easy to use budgeting tool that reminds you that maybe you don’t need four cups of Starbucks a day. (Or do you?)
Speaking of sticking to a budget, perhaps nothing is sweeter than the sound of the deliveryman arriving with a pizza that only cost you $1.99. $1.99? Was it made of cardboard? Nope. 100% edible food brought to you by EatStreet.
EatStreet is a delivery app, which, similar to Hooked, is constantly updated by local restaurants. The only difference with EatStreet is that you barely need to leave your couch. Food vendors can post specials, delivery menus, and some crazy limited time deals (like, for example, a two-dollar pizza). It also lets the user rack up points that can be redeemed for free food.
8. Pocket Points
No matter how great of a student you think that you are, odds are you find yourself still reaching for your phone in the middle of that horrendous three-hour lecture. But with the Pocket Points app, there’s more incentive than ever to stay off the phone and stay focused. The app is incredibly simple – all you do is open it, lock your phone, and put it away. The longer you go without touching your phone, the more points you earn. The more points you earn, the more discounts you get at local and online businesses! (And if you can’t tell by now, I love a good deal.)
If there’s ever an app that you didn’t know you needed but can’t live without, it’s CamScanner. This ingenious app allows you to take a picture of any document with your smartphone and turns it into a scanned PDF file. It even automatically crops the picture and corrects any imperfections. The app also gives users 200 MB of free storage, as well as allowing you to export scanned documents to other sites like Google Drive. You’ll basically be the most organized person you know.
We all know the feeling of being stuck in a never-ending group text, or the frustration of trying to gather the contact info of everyone in a big group. GroupMe takes care of all of this, giving users a convenient way to talk to huge groups of people at once, without the barrage of annoying group texts. It allows you to easily share texts, pictures and videos. You don’t even need people’s phone numbers. As long as they are your Facebook friend, you can easily text them on GroupMe.
The best part? You can turn notifications off.
Featured Image Source: epilepsyu.com and
Rebecca Lynch is a sophomore studying Physics and Music at the University of Michigan. She loves dogs, hanging out with family and friends, and playing the cello. Follow her on Twitter for some serious nonsense: @MsBaycah