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(Source: WSFA 12 News)
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PRATTVILLE, AL (WSFA) - No matter what kind of smartphone you have -- an iPhone, Android or Blackberry -- there are literally millions of applications out there. So how do you narrow down the list to the apps that will really make a difference in your life?
WSFA 12 News asked an expert to tell us the ten apps you should have on your phone right now. Jordan Butler manages Mac & More, a computer store in Prattville. So he knows, in order to find a good deal, it pays to shop around.
And our first must-have app does the comparison shopping for you! It's Amazon's Price Check.
"What Price Check does is allow you to scan the bar code of any product in any store and it automatically locates the same product in stores around you at different prices," Butler explained.
Red Laser and Shop Savvy are names of similar apps.
If you're looking for coupons while you're shopping, check out Coupon Sherpa. You can search by retailer or location. And the coupon is right on your phone -- no clipping required!
Headed to dinner and a movie after the mall? The Urban Spoon will help you chose a restaurant.
"Urban Spoon allows you to type in the kind of food that you'd like to eat and it sends you back all the results around you," Butler said. "And it rates the restaurant on customer experience and on price."
Before hitting the theater, be sure to check out Flixster. This app tells you what's playing, where and when. You can even watch trailers, read reviews, and buy your tickets!
If you'd rather listen to music, why not listen to the music you like best? Pandora is an app that creates a radio station which is personalized to your tastes.
Butler told us how it works.
"You put in an artist or a song that you like -- the genre of music that you listen to -- and Pandora will play music related to that genre."
Your phone's GPS feature allows for lots of cool applications. Yelp, for instance, lets you search for the nearest coffee shop, ATM, or whatever you're looking for. Then it gives you directions. A similar app is called Around Me.
You can also search for more sophisticated GPS navigation apps for that next big road trip. We like CoPilot, which comes with voice-guided directions, so you don't have to look away from the road. It's available for a small fee.
Butler says no cook should be without our 6th must-have app -- Epicurious. It's the most comprehensive list of recipes on the web.
"If you were to do a search in the app store for recipes, over a thousand different recipe results would be sent back to you," he said. "What Epicurious does is provide all the recipe apps together into one application."
And if you're trying to stay healthy, keep track of what you eat with the Daily Burn. Photographer John Pyle uses it to count his calories.
"It scans food bar codes and tells me the nutrition facts about it," he said. "It then keeps track of what I eat so that, at the end of the day, I can see my total calories consumed."
To keep track of your finances, enter your data on Page Once. It offers customized financial advice and even sends you alerts before your bills are due.
But our 10th must-have app helps you keep track of something money can't buy. It's called Air Cam -- a live video feed from your computer's web cam. That means, no matter where you are in the world, you can look in on your most precious possessions.
That's our top ten. But you knew we couldn't do a story about apps without touting our own. For news stories, pictures and video, be sure to download the WSFA News app. It will also send you push notifications to alert you about breaking news.
And don't caught in the rain without the WSFA Weather app. It gives you access to exclusive Doppler 12 StormVision radar wherever you are.
There are few more apps, which didn't make my top 10 because they're already so popular. And there are some that are not necessarily popular, but silly -- they didn't fit into the "simplify your life" theme. Either way, I thought I'd share a few of my other favorites: