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by Eric P. Jackson

The 10 Apps I Use Every Day

At last count, there were 1.3 million apps on the Google Play store and 1.2 million apps on the Apple App store. That's a whole lot of games, gadgets, and useless garbage. When I'm shopping for apps, I'm looking for game changers; those apps that become a productivity tool I use each day.

My current top ten are listed below. I've removed those that are essentially utilities provided by Apple (mail, messages, calendar, contacts, etc.)

10. Yahoo Sports

ESPN may rule sports broadcasting in your mind (definitely not mine), but not on my iPhone. Yahoo Sports will keep you up to date on scores in just about every sport you can name (including Cricket, cycling, IndyCar, MMA - yes, every sport). You can get instant updates for your favorite teams and even follow along play-by-play when you can't get to a television or radio.

9. Hanx Writer

For those of us who actually learned to type and did it on a real honest-to-goodness typewriter, there is something about that clack-clack-clack-ding-shook sound that is satisfying and mesmerizing when you really need to get some writing accomplished. Actor/Director Tom Hanks created the Hanx Writer (iPad app only) to combine his love of typewriters and technology. Combined with my ClamCase, I write with Hanx Writer every day and I've found it to be a constant, useful companion.

8. Buffer

There is a bit of art to making an impact on social media that goes beyond content: it's timing. How do you know the best time to tweet? You don't need to...Buffer knows. Simply add your account, "buffer" a tweet, and Buffer does the rest, sending the tweet when you'll get the most engagement from your followers.

7. Pocket

It's not always convenient - or even visually possible - to read everything you find in digital format. Fortunately, Pocket makes it easy. Simply add an article, webpage, or email to Pocket by using the "share" button in Safari (and a variety of other apps) and the content is magically saved to your account for consumption later. To make life even easier, Pocket saves the story in a readable format with nice big type.

6. DropBox

One of the original 'cloud' services for the average consumer, DropBox makes it easy to share documents between nearly any device across the web. A must-have for people on the go.

5. Feedly

Finding content on the web hasn't been a difficult task in many years. With Feedly, content is served up from a variety of sources you choose, all in one easy to read and simple to share format. It also plays well with the aforementioned Pocket.

4. Evernote

Another content-based app, Evernote enables the user to manage content they've generated or found elsewhere, across the cloud and on multiple devices. Once I've written a blog post draft in HanxWriter, I edit and add formatting in Evernote. It's also where I keep my recipe for sausage balls. It's that important.

3. Spotify

Music is central to my life. When my massive music collection became more than I wanted to manage, I made the switch to 'rented' music. Instead of buying individual songs or 'albums,' Spotify charges you $10 a month for the premium version, enabling you to listen to anything and everything in their catalog. I'm rarely disappointed.

2. TweetBot

You've probably already figured out that I have an affinity for Twitter. Facebook is for connecting with the people you know. Twitter is the people you wish you knew, and TweetBot is the tool. It's fast, has TONS of info and features other apps - even the Official Twitter app - don't have.

1. LastPass

You need LastPass. Of any app listed here, this is the one I'm commanding you to download. You also need to go ahead and pay for the premium service. In light of the myriad breaches and the never ending stories of people hacked because of weak passwords, it's time YOU got off your duff and started taking password security seriously. Do it.