Just a few months back I wrote an article on the Top Smartphone Business Apps that was filled with great apps to help boost productivity for your business. Today I wanted to focus on some amazing apps that push the limits of what our smartphones are really capable of achieving. There are certainly a lot of helpful and cool apps for Androids and iPhones out there, but only a small percentage are really utilizing the amazing features that are unique to smartphones. Today we’ll look at the best smartphone apps that are both innovative and inspiring as well as extraordinarily useful and fun.
Google Goggles (iPhone & Android | Free)
This great app from Google allows you to identify nearly any object, logo, landmark, or location with a quick picture. It even recognizes celebrities. Google leverages its extensive database to quickly provide answers to what is puzzling you. Once you snap a quick picture Google Goggles quickly analyzes the photo and delivers relevant search results and other information. The app is surprisingly fast and accurate and has come in handy more times than I can remember. Definitely a super app!
Red Laser (iPhone & Android | Free)
If you are half as frugal as I am and love finding the best deals on the things you buy, then this app is a must have. Red Laser is a barcode scanner that allows you to scan the products you are interested in purchasing and instantly compare to thousands of retailers. You can now rest assured you are getting the best possible price. Not only does this app provide prices from online retailers, it also uses your phone’s GPS to identify the prices in the local stores near you.
Chase Banking App (iPhone & Android | Free)
While a banking app may not seem super exciting on the surface, it’s worth taking a second look. I have always found Chase to be a pioneer in the banking market for new technology such as text banking and other innovative user features. Without a doubt the most amazing feature of this app is the ability to deposit checks from your phone simply by taking pictures of them. Does it get more convenient than that? This app just eliminated the only reason I still go to the bank.
Of course Chase mobile app users can also view their account information, transfer funds, and enjoy all the conveniences of mobile banking, but Chase also allows its smartphone users to pay bills and credit cards as well as complete wire transfers.
Word Lens Camera Translator (iPhone | Free)
Word Lens is truly like nothing I have ever seen before. This groundbreaking apps grants users the nearly magical ability to overlap English over other written languages simply by holding up their smartphone. Word Lens uses your phones camera to view the foreign text and replaces it on your phones screen with English, or whatever your preferred language may be. The app works without internet connection so you can use it anywhere. Check out the video below to see how it works!
Currently this app is only for iPhone, but it is expected to come to Android in the near future. The app itself is free, but each dictionary will run you a modest $4.99. If you are an Android user who simply cannot wait, CamTranslator is the best free app I have found that is comparable.
Talk To Me (iPhone & Android | Free)
If text translation simply doesn’t cut it and you are in need of a vocal translator, look no further than Talk To Me. Simply type or speak your message into your phone and this app will translate your message out loud and in writing into a variety of languages. It’s as easy as that.
SoundHound (iPhone & Android | Free)
As a music fanatic this app is essential. SoundHound allows you to identify a song, album, and artist just by holding up the phone to the speaker. More amazing than that is Sound Hound is also able to identify songs by humming or singing to your phone. Even my crudely sung renditions that have my favorite artists hanging their heads in shame are able to be identified by this program.
Once the song is identified, you can play the full song, see detailed track information, look up lyrics, view similar artists, buy it on Amazon.com, watch music videos on YouTube, and share it through text message, email, and social media. The free version can only be used a set number of times a month, but there is a paid version with unlimited uses and even more features…if you can even believe that.
Beluga (iPhone & Android | Free)
This app is a great way to easily stay connected with the different people and groups you frequently communicate with, even across different mobile platforms. Like BBM, Beluga allows you to quickly send messages to multiple contacts and instantly have group discussions where everyone can see the full conversation. The ability to add pictures and locations to your messages make this app truly unique. You can also create groups or “pods” in Beluga so you can message all your friends to quickly organize a dinner or meeting on the fly.
Beluga allows you to communicate with both Android and iPhone users. If the users you text are not signed up for the service or do not have a smartphone it will simply go to them via email or SMS. Beluga messaging does not count against your monthly text messages set by your service provider, so talk away!
If you like this app, you may want to check out HeyTell for a similar alternative that uses voice recordings instead of text messages to communicate. Very cool!
Know one that we missed? Let us know which super-apps are your favorite and why. If you use any of these apps please leave your reviews here or join the conversation on StringCan Interactive’s Facebook Page. Hop on by for daily updates on everything digital and social to help you stay in the loop.
Image via Sanan Rasheed