October's Essential Apps for Android, iOS, and Windows Phone

By Tom Pritchard on at

Here we are at the end of October. Like every other month an awful lot has happened in the world. We at Giz have a new editor, some new iPads were unveiled to the world, we saw the frankly epic teaser trailer for Avengers: Age of Ultron, oh and we saw some pretty hefty mobile devices from Google at long last.

But like any other month, October had some killer apps unleashed onto the world. Here are the best ones to crop up.

iOS Apps


Transit App: Public transport is a pain the arse. Despite there being apps to keep track of timetables and the like, they usually don't include everything. Transit app tries to include everything possible in cities across the world. London is currently our only signed-up city, with TfL services and, strangely, the Boris Bikes. It's not just for tracking either, you can also use it to compare travel routes to pick the one that's best for you. [Free]


Billguard: Mobile banking is incredible, you can actually keep track of your finances on-the-go instead of printing a statement or accessing a computer. Now wouldn't it be easier to have all of your accounts in one place instead of two or three different apps? That's what BillGuard is for. That and a bunch of other stuff including showing you your spending habits with graphs, searching the internet for money saving coupons, and helping you save. It's only just been made available here, so you should check it out. [Free]


Moments: An app designed to make video clips from your photos in an easy and simple way. So whether you want to make stop-motion clips, time lapses or flipbooks you can do it all. Afterwards you can add a soundtrack, throw in some text, maybe a few filters or frame. [Free]


DICE: This is one for finding gigs in and around London and getting tickets with minimal fuss. The folks behind the app handpick the gigs they offer, and while it might not seem that different from other ticket-booking apps the clincher is that they don't charge booking fees that hike up the price of your evening out. It also personalises the more you use it, and all your tickets are stored as QR codes in the app. [Free]


Read our updated list of essential iOS apps here.


Android Apps


Treehouse: A great way to learn to code in Java, Python, HTML, CSS, PHP, Ruby on Rails, Swift and Objective-C. That covers you for web design, writing apps for Android and iPhone, and more. With over 1,000 videos to help you along the way, Treehouse is a great way to help you learn and remember a brand-new useful skill. [Free -- with subscription]


Heads Up: The thing about notifications is that if your phone is doing something that takes up the entire screen then you might not be able to see the notifications bar. So you have to stop what you're doing to see if it's even worth responding to. Head Up will keep you in the know with a little pop-up to let you know what's going on, and giving you the option to open the notification directly. [Free]


Snowball Beta: Messenger apps are all the rage, yet we still always tend to use the same one or two. Snowball isn't another messenger that none of your friends are using, rather it's a hub to use all your messenger apps. One inbox, that's only one tap away from everywhere in your phone. Cool eh? [Free]


RingSmart: Whatever your phone's ringtone preference, silent or loud, sometimes our location dictates what option we must use (like needing it to be silent at the cinema). By using RingSmart you can set your phone's ringer to adjust automatically depending on your location and time of day, saving you the hassle of remembering to do it yourself. [Free]


Fotoswipe: Remember a few years ago when bumping iPhones together was a novel way to share content? This is a bit like that, except it's multi-platform. Fotoswipe lets you share photos by swiping them across to each other. You can select up to ten photos to send each time, and they can be sent to any smart device that has the app installed. Of course 'any smart device' does not include Windows Phone because the app isn't available there. [Free]


Read our updated list of essential Android apps here.


Windows Phone Apps


Coach's Eye: If you're some sort of sports-person you might not be able to afford a coach to constantly be checking your technique. Well now that invaluable advice a coach can provide can be given by Coach's Eye, which monitors what you're doing and evaluate your performance. Whether it's your golf swing, corner skills, or possibly a tennis serve, this one is there to help you improve. Plus you can play back the video yourself and look for yourself. [£1.49]


Flipboard: This is one of those rare occasional where app devs actually pay attention to Windows Phone and port the app themselves. Flipboard is a personalised magazine that's devoted to bringing you news and reading from across the web. Just tell it what categories you want to pay attention to and it'll do the rest for you. [Free]


Straw: A social polling app designed for you to gather opinions and thoughts from people you know. So whether you can't decide which pub to go to, or which shirt suits you best, you can use Straw. Plus you can get responses in real-time, so you're not left waiting for an unnecessary amount of time. [Free]


PhotoMath: Calculators are fantastic because they've pretty much negated the need to work out minor mathematical problems in our head. Don't you wish you had something suitable for more complex things, though? PhotoMath is just that, functioning as a calculator-like device that can solve equations using your phone's camera. Just snap a picture and let it do it's work. [Free]


Read our updated list of essential Windows Phone apps here.