Recipes, shopping lists and more: apps for a better life

An indispensable companion for our lives: the smartphone has become an indispensable device. At work, in the car, while waiting for a bus, on vacation: smartphones offer an infinite number of apps that make our lives easier.

Most importantly, they allow us to save a lot of time: it may be trite to say it, but thanks to your smartphone you can send an important file before arriving at work or share your shopping list with your family. Actions that until three or four years ago required a fixed location and a couple of hours of preparation, can now be done directly from the smartphone before arriving at work. Even the calendar of appointments has undergone a profound change, now it is the device, through a push notification, to warn us of the working lunch. But that's not all. Smartphones and apps in particular have greatly simplified our lives.

Appointment apps

(Taken from Flexbits)

A personal secretary always with you. This is one of the countless features of smartphones that allow us to simplify our lives. Both Apple and Google have developed a calendar app that allows you to save work appointments, doctor's visits and financial deadlines. And in case we've forgotten, a notification will remind us. But the two native apps on iOS and Android aren't the only ones available: the App Store and the Google Play Store offer us a wide range of choices depending on our needs.

For Apple users, for example, there is Fantastical 2, a calendar app that offers very useful features and integrates support for voice recording: just turn on the microphone and the app will store the appointment or reminder. By entering the date and time of the event, Fantastical 2 will alert the user a few hours before through a notification on the iPhone screen. You can divide the various appointments between the "reminder", "to do" or "remind me of" categories. Also, thanks to Maps support, it allows you to see all scheduled events arranged on the map. L’applicazione ha un costo inferiore ai cinque euro.

Applicazione molto simile a Fantastical 2, ma disponibile sul Google Play Store, è Today Calendar 2016 che utilizza un’interfaccia utente molto simile a quella dell’app calendario disponibile su Android, ma con alcune funzionalità aggiuntive veramente utili. Quando si aggiungerà un evento sarà possibile inserire l’indirizzo e ottenere il supporto delle mappe di Google in caso di necessità.

Le applicazioni to do list

any-do-1.jpgFonte foto: Redazione


Google e Apple hanno provato a cavalcare l’hype sviluppando Keep e Promemoria, ma non riuscendo mai ad avere il successo di applicazioni come Wunderlist e Any.Do. Stiamo palando delle app to do list che permettono agli utenti di realizzare delle liste delle cose da fare o della spesa e di condividerli con i propri compagni di stanza o con i propri figli. These types of apps allow you to solve household problems at work as well and remind your kids to clean their bedrooms.

Both the Google Play Store and the App Store offer a wide availability of to do list apps to choose from. Among the most used by users is definitely Wunderlist, an application that allows you to create to-do lists and involve family, friends and co-workers in your projects. Besides, the application also offers a messaging service that lets you discuss the various items on the list. Besides, you'll also be able to attach PDF files, presentations and text documents to make the shared list more complete and understandable. Wunderlist also offers the possibility to synchronize your commitments on multiple devices: in addition to smartphones and tablets, also notebooks and personal computers. The application is not free of charge and requires the payment of a monthly or annual subscription.

A valid alternative is Any.DO, an application that in addition to to-do lists allows you to store the commitments of the day and to better organize your calendar. You can share your to-do list with your co-workers and thanks to voice recording support you can send your partner your shopping list. Any.Do allows you to manage every single moment of your day and simplify your life. The application is free.

The applications to eat quickly

(Taken from YouTube)

If work goes on all day, in the evening you hardly have the energy to cook a plate of pasta or a steak. But thanks to some apps you can order takeout and eat your favorite dish as soon as you get home. One of the most used applications by Italians is JustEat that supports over 4900 restaurants and thanks to geolocation allows you to find the nearest restaurant to your home. The user can order any dish, from Indian food to pizza, passing through Chinese. JustEat allows you to pay either directly at the time of ordering by credit card or when the food has arrived at home in cash.

On the other hand, for those who, despite the hard day's work, love to cook, the Google Play Store and the App Store provide applications with easy-to-make recipes. Gustosissimo offers over 7000 recipes, from appetizers to desserts and cocktails. Thanks to user comments, it will be possible to find out if a recipe is worth preparing and receive advice on how to deal with the most delicate steps. Instead, the Small Recipes application offers every day a new recipe explained in detail thanks to the explanatory video. In case of problems the user can comment and promptly receive the response of other users or Valentina, the creator of the application. The database contains over two thousand recipes divided into product categories and according to the scope.

Automatizing the smartphone

If This Then That for many will not mean anything, but those who have tried at least once to take advantage of the features of the application IFTTT could not do without. IFTTT does nothing more than automate the classic actions that you do with your smartphone: you want to send a message to your partner to warn him that you have left home? No problem, IFTTT will take care of it automatically thanks to the GPS sensor. Do you want to receive the notification with the weather forecast every morning to choose the clothes to wear? You can set the task on IFTTT and every morning you'll receive a notification with the weather forecast for your city If This Then That supports over three hundred and sixty applications.

After the success of IFTTT other software houses have presented their own application to automate the smartphone: Apple users have available Workflow that offers tools very similar to If This Then That and allows you to create tasks on any iPhone feature, while Android fans can install Tasker that integrates over two hundred actions with the possibility of adding more. At first it will be complicated to correctly automate the use of your smartphone, but once you get the hang of it, life will be much simpler.

Applications to improve your work

Those who are always on the move for work can't help but know Evernote, the most famous application of its kind. Evernote is not just a simple to do list app, it allows you to manage your work and your life at three hundred and sixty degrees. In addition to sharing notes, to-do lists, and projects with your co-workers, the app also works as a small portable scanner: you start your smartphone's camera and with a simple click you can send documents, text files, and images. Evernote supports any type of file, from PDFs to JPEG images, and also lets you keep track of your monthly expenses. In fact, you'll be able to scan receipts and receipts and have a monthly report of how much you spend. The application can also be synchronized with the program for your personal computer so you can continue your work on different devices.

Applications to stay up to date

To stay up to date during working hours is really very complicated, for this reason many software houses have developed applications that allow you to save articles from major national newspapers or blogs of famous journalists. Pocket is definitely one of the most used applications by users: it allows you to save links to articles and read them later directly within the application. The tool provides a reader that adapts to the size of the device offering at any time a perfect reading without problems. You can also use Pocket from multiple devices: smartphones, tablets, notebooks and desktop PCs, always using the same account so you don't miss any links.

If you're looking for a feed aggregator, you can choose from two extremely good applications: Flipboard and Feedly. The functioning is very similar and both applications offer the possibility to read articles from the main Italian websites by choosing the news category you prefer. Each user can create their own personal magazine by choosing the most trusted sources and the most important signatures on the international scene. The applications are free and also feature a desktop tool where you can read your news from a larger screen.