Our Favourite Apps of 2014
The culture of apps saw no halt in deluge for 2014. From the simple "app"alling to others deserving of standing "app"lause, we took time out of making terrible app-related puns to give you a run-down of six of our favourite in 2014 and no, we didn't include 'Flappy Bird'.
Latecomer in 2014, Bebo Beta for iOS and Android is for the moment, an insanely wacky and purely app based social network. Bebo Beta has had us in the New Slang office lol'ing while figuring out the platform's hashtag based conversations. Much more a social messaging chatroom that its old incarnation, users to communicate through auto-image generating hashtags. The new Bebo, is the ultimate combination of Facebook Messenger, Twitter and Jimmy from South Park (thanks to their enlarged head avatars). The platform has also announced the return of all your old mortifying photos by the end of January 2015. Yikes!
SplitWise eliminates those awkward 'remember that €50 I loaned you?' conversations by tracking all of your debts and financials coming your way. Sign up, invite your mates who you usually loan money or get money from and keep track of it all. Particularly useful if you're a freelancer who needs to make sure the rent money is sorted by the end of the month. One of those simple apps that will make everyone's life easier. (iOS and Android)
The slightly copyright contentious Dubsmash, as LovinTrends previously predicted, has set the internet ablaze with some hilarious moments from friends miming along to moments of pop culture. Uniquely Dubsmash is integrated with social messaging platforms first and foremost- WhatsApp and FB messenger primarily. Lacking a Vine integration is a bit of a missed trick but is indicative of how audiences are moving to still enjoy social but privately with groups of mates rather than big moments of broadcast. (iOS and Android too!)
A geek-out moment came for me this year in the guise of Adobe Shape. This is next-level sci-fi amazing. If you're a design nerd that is. Open the app and snap a photo and Adobe Shape will trace real life vectors turning them into digital paths for exporting and eventual editing within the rest of the Adobe stable- Photoshop, Illustrator. I can't begin to tell you how many times I've used this in 2014. This one is iOS only for now however.
Launched in 2013, Reep Rewards relaunched in 2014 with a much slicker app for iOS and Android combatting their previous Android issues. The premise? Snap your receipts for the chance to earn money back. It's a no brainer really and cleverly tied into customer marketing by the likes of Esso and Unilever. The trade off is sharing your consumer behaviours and average basket size with big data farming. However, if your shopping list isn't too incriminating you can choose to share the info in return for cents back on purchases. Get to €50 and you can withdraw it through your Paypal account.
Lastly my personal Christmas saviour PriceSpy. Available for both Android and iOS, I fired up this puppy while on the hunt for the cheapest prices for Christmas pressies. For example the built-in barcode scanner helped me deduce that I could grab a Kindle Fire HD €10 cheaper in Argos than in PC World, and that the D&G perfume for the mammy could be bought online for €34 cheaper than in Boots. Total saving in one day Christmas shopping = €44. Which was immediately fluttered away on Christmas lunch in 777. Sound!
Seán Earley is Head of Creative Services at New/Slang part of PSG Communications in between craft beer fancying and ice cream obsessions he works with clients like HB Ice Cream, Bord Gais, Gala Retail and VFI. He also sits on the board of the Irish Internet Association.