5 Free Apps Worth Downloading
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Sometimes the best apps in life are free. Designers turn out new apps for Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) and Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) smartphone users to keep them happy and attract new customers. Here are five downloads proving that sometimes you don’t have to pay at all to get a great app.
Kindle for iPhone. Yes, Apple has their iBooks and Barnes & Noble has Nook and both are great apps. But with Amazon’s Kindle for iPhone, you get the iBooks and Barnes & Noble inventory plus a whole lot more! The Amazon library encompasses thousands of books, magazines and newspapers and has something to please even the most discerning book worm. It’s an easy way take along stacks of great summer reading at the touch of a download.
Vlingo Virtual Assistant. Move over, Siri and meet Vlingo, a downloadable assistant for Android and iPhones. This hands free VA can send your text and email messages, make calls, search the web, give you turn by turn driving directions, make hotel reservations and buy movie tickets online. If you really get bored, ask Vlingo a question then sit back and wait for the answer – it might just surprise you! Vlingo is probably the closest you can get to having a real VA in the room without hiring someone.
Around Me. When the gas light comes on and there’s not a station in sight, Around Me will locate the nearest one for you. Around Me can tell you all about your local surroundings, which is great if you’re lost or on vacation in an unfamiliar city. It can also locate an Italian restaurant open past midnight or the nearest supermarket. This app has GPS-style driving instructions to help you get to your destination and works on both iPhone and Android smartphones.
Street View On Google Maps. Forget Angry Birds, Words With Friends and Fruit Ninja. If you’ve got a few minutes to spare, download the Street View app, type in a location and enjoy taking a mini-vacation without leaving home. Street View has a 3D interface that allows you a real-time view with amazing clarity. You can stroll along the Champ-Elysees in Paris or walk along South King Street to see the statue of King Kamehameha in Honolulu. This is one app that will have you wondering why you ever wasted so much time on Angry Birds.
Find My Friends got a much-needed update with the release of iOS6. In addition to using GPS and Wi-Fi triangulation to locate members, according to MacWorld: “...[W]ith iOS 6, you can get location-based alerts — like when your kids leave school or arrive home. Find My Friends can also notify others about your location, so you can stay connected or keep track of the ones you love.” It’s a great way to locate friends and family members while enjoying a latte at Starbucks.
These are but a few of the free apps available to Apple and Google smartphone customers. New apps are being released all the time, making it easy to find something of interest that's, best of all, free.
Fool blogger Karen Rogers does not own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this entry. The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple and Google. Motley Fool newsletter services recommend Apple and Google. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. If you have questions about this post or the Fool’s blog network, click here for information.