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

By Tom Pritchard on at

Goodbye June, you are finished. You saw yet another year of gaming announcements at E3, more news on a Netflix reunion for the Top Gear trio, Taylor Swift moaning about Apple and Apple actually listening, Apple deciding it wants to kill Spotify and announcing the UK launch of Apple Pay, and the final Oculus Rift. Oh and don't forget Fallout 4

But now we're heading into July, marking our transition into the second half of the year and the first proper month of summer. As we enter the new month, let's take a look at the apps you should have installed on your phone in the coming month.

iOS Apps

Festvl: It's summer, which means it's festival season once again. If you're planning on going to any number of festivals this summer, you'll need some help. Festvl has everything you need, including line-ups, site information, the ability to create your own personal schedule, and a 'discover' feature that sends you to up-and-coming artists on Spotify and iTunes. Of course signal might be sketchy when you get there, so Festvl has an offline mode to make sure you're in the loop. [0.79p]

Powered Now: If you're self-employed, you know all about having to create invoices to bill your clients. If you want an easy way to get it done, Powered Now lets you do the lot, along with loads of other aspects of business management, on your iPad. Build your invoices, manage your quotes, keep track of all your appointments, and accept PayPal payments all within the app. [Free -- with in-app purchases]

Spark: Email apps are all the rage these days, but they're all mostly the same: an inbox, a sent box, archive, etc. Spark is different because it's fully customisable, and it automatically sorts your email based on whether it's personal, a notification, or a newsletter. On top of that there are smart notifications that only disturb you with important emails, the option to save attachments to your cloud storage option of choice, and much more. [Free]

Office Lens: Shockingly not everything is digital these days, and you need to make some sort of record of physical objects -- be they whiteboards, documents, and whatnot. Office Lens does that for you, and uses the camera to convert them into editable Word and PDF documents. It used to be a Windows Phone exclusive, and now you can find it on other platforms. [Free]

Read our updated list of essential iOS apps here.

Android Apps

Portal: Pushbullet is a fantastic tool for transferring links and text between your devices, and now that idea is being used to transfer files with Portal. The devices have to be on the same Wi-Fi network, but once you connect them you can use a drag-and-drop system to move things between your devices without the need for a pesky USB cable. [Free]

CloudPlayer by doubleTwist: You can't always keep your music stored on a single device, which is why cloud players are a thing. That said, there are a lot of cloud services out there, and that's where CloudPlayer comes in. CloudPlayer creates a jukebox of sorts, grabbing all your music regardless of where it's kept. So whether it's on your device, or stored in your Dropbox, Google Drive, or OneDrive account, you can access the lot. [Free]

Opera Max -- Data Manager: If you want to make your data allowance last as long as possible, this is definitely one for you to try. Opera Max is more than just an app for monitoring your data usage carefully, it also offers you the option of compressing media in all your apps and across the web. It promises to help you get 50 per cent more out of your data allowance, even going so far as to stating that a 10MB video can be compressed down to 3MB. That means everything should load more quickly, which is pretty useful for everyone -- even if you have unlimited data. [Free]

Photos: Obviously one of the biggest releases of the last couple of weeks, Photos is Google's revamped cloud photo-storage platform. It's been getting universal praise for the fact that it has unlimited storage (albeit with limits on file size and resolution), and automatic organisation. [Free]

Read our updated list of essential Android apps here.

Windows Phone Apps

BitTorrent Shoot: What's to be done if you want to send large photos or video files to other people? Email's no good, and cloud storage isn't exactly secure. If this is a problem that faces you regularly, you should give BitTorrent Shoot a try. It uses BitTorrent peer-to-peer connections, so file sizes aren't an issue, and you can send to anyone you like, regardless of the device they use. All they have to do is scan a QR code and the app'll do its magic. [Free]

Whisper Notes: This one is a note-taking app with a bit of social networking thrown in for good measure. Not only can you jot down notes and be safe in the knowledge that they're backed up, you can also share them with the world if you feel like it. Share holiday tips, recipes, or even your shopping list. [Free]

Opera Mini: Opera's lightweight browser has finally made it out of beta on Windows Phone, so you can all enjoy a proper speedy mobile experience. Opera Mini promises to use up less data without ruining your online browsing, navigation optimised to match up with the Windows Phone interface, and a focus on security and data privacy. [Free]

Pushile: Once you start using Pushbullet, you'll wonder how you ever lived without it. There's no official Windows Phone version, but fortunately people are willing to step up to the plate. Pushile offers everything you need from Pushbullet, letting you transfer files links, and notes between all of your devices. [Free]

Read our updated list of essential Windows Phone apps here.