For many of us, life significantly changed with the advent of the app. No longer do we have to wander helplessly through the streets searching for THE best burger in town, or wait more than an hour to see photos of Aunt Becky’s Hawaiian vacation. Yelp and Facebook have changed all that.
There are over a million apps in the app store, but these are the eight without which life just wouldn’t be right. They are the ones we use daily and maybe even hourly that take up a special place in our phones (and hearts).
Google Maps—we’d be (literally) lost without it
- Caroline Cakebread/Business Insider
Google Maps can get you anywhere no matter if you’re walking, driving, biking or taking public transportation. It can help you avoid major traffic jams and accidents, and even tell you when the next train is coming. Most of us wouldn’t be able to get around without it, and would rather wander endlessly than be confronted with a physical map.
Sure it’s embarrassing to have to walk around in a new city listening to Google tell you to “head south towards Pine street,” but it’s a lot better than the alternative.
Snapchat—your life is too picture perfect not to share
Snapchat has taken over many of our communications. Why go to the effort of typing out a text when you can convey emotions, location and status with a quick snap?
Once you start, it’s hard to stop tapping through your friends stories. And it’s a great way to keep up to date with what’s going on with your friends with whom you’re not in close contact.
The constantly updated filter options are also addicting, and geotags are the best way to show off all the places you went over the weekend.
Venmo—a new way of sending money
Venmo is essential for everything from paying rent to going to lunch with a group. Many of us have stopped carrying cash almost completely, and a “cash only” sign puts fear into our hearts.
Starbucks for iPhone—because lines suck
- Starbucks for iPhone
This is easily contestable for Dunkin Donuts diehards, but because much of America doesn’t actually “run on Dunkin” we’ve declared the Starbuck’s app as a must-have. From placing orders, to paying, to earning gold status, the Starbuck’s app has become as essential as the coffee itself.
Lyft—it’s just so handy
There are few places in the United States and abroad that have managed to keep ridesharing out. It’s just too convenient to pass up. You don’t have to worry about parking, or being stuck out in the cold with no other options in sight.
Sure surge prices can be rough, and having a driver cancel a ride you’ve booked can seriously derail your day. But if Lyft suddenly became unavailable it’s safe to say a lot of us would be left flailing.
Yelp—never eat a bad meal again
Deciding on somewhere to grab lunch can be a herculean task depending on the situation, and there’s nothing worse than wandering around only to land in a bad spot.
Thanks to the vocal members of the Yelp community, before you even walk in the door of a new restaurant, you’ll know exactly how good the service will be, whether you should expect a wait, and what the best thing on the menu is.
You can also use Yelp to find almost anything, from hair salons to auto shops to prisons (really!).
Waze—you’re better than traffic
Once you start using Waze, it’s impossible to stop. The map is “live” and relies on other users to crowdsource information about accidents and slow downs on the road. If there’s a fender bender around the next corner, you’ll know about it almost instantly, and Waze will send you on a different route.
- Caroline Cakebread/Business Insider
This is another contestable one, but Spotify is the dominant player in the subscription based music streaming business and has managed to stay strong despite competition from Apple Music and Amazon Prime.
It has a library of over 30 million songs, and boasts unique features like personalized Discover playlists and New Music Fridays that keep us entertained. Once you start building playlists it’s also a hard one to toss, since you won’t be able to see or access them elsewhere.