What Are The Top 5 Mobile Apps You Can’t Live Without? [MakeUseOf Poll]

polls   What Are The Top 5 Mobile Apps You Cant Live Without? [MakeUseOf Poll]Last week we asked you for your opinion regarding social logins. The discussion that ensued in the comments was a very interesting one, and I highly recommend that you check it out if you’re at all curious about the subject. But let’s get down to the really important part – the results!

Out of 295 votes in total, 42% said they never use social logins, 24% use them only if there is no other option, 13% think social logins are convenient, 12% think they are OK and use them sometimes, and 10% think it depends on the network they’re asked to log in with.

Full results and this week’s poll after the jump.

Don’t skip the poll’s best comment by Adam Campbell, who won 150 points for his insightful comment!

poll results dec15   What Are The Top 5 Mobile Apps You Cant Live Without? [MakeUseOf Poll]

This week’s poll question is: What Are The Top 5 Mobile Apps You Can’t Live Without?

Want to make some extra MakeUseOf reward points? The most useful comment on the poll will be awarded 150 points!

Deviating somewhat from our regular polls, this week you get a free hand to tell us about the top 5 mobile apps you couldn’t live without this year. 2012 has seen many new apps, many significant updates, and many new mobile devices. Compiling a limited list of options was hard, but hopefully you can all find at least 5 apps you would install no matter what. Can’t find 5? No worries, tick as many options as you want from the list, and next week we’ll find out about the most important and popular apps among MakeUseOf’s readers!

Didn’t find your favorite apps? Want to recommend a great Twitter client, game, or navigation app? Feel free to list your 5 apps in the comments, just to make sure!

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Harshit Jain

Really I cannot live without Evernote and Firefox for android.


I agree, with the Evernote statement. It is a great app! and I havent’ Tried Firefox with android I just might have to check it out, Thanks

Yaara Lancet

Oops! I guess that’s one kind of app I completely forgot to include. Thanks!


My top 6 on Android
Angel Browser, Evernote, GTasks, TuneIn Radio, ColorDict, Repligo Reader

Achraf Almouloudi

Mine is Facebook, Dropbox, Maps, Ucbrowser and Youtube for Android system.

Alex Slutsky

I’d like to mention 2 of my favorite app not specifically listed here, and probably not quite familiar yet to most of the users worldwide, but they are starting to make a vibe.

The first one is an amazing app called WAZE, it’s a navigation app which is unique for it’s live user based data, i.e a person driving somewhere and spots a road block or heavy traffic can publish to other users so they can find a different route. More on WAZE: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Waze

The second one resembles other IM and VOIP programs, but is unique by identifying users by their phone number and allowing you to talk only through internet protocol and doing it conveniently, and sometimes succeeding where others fail. more info: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Viber

Another great one to mention is of course the listed WhatsApp :)

Yaara Lancet

Thanks Alex! Waze is extremely useful and I use it a lot myself. Also know many who use Viber. Great recommendations!

Stay See Kate

My fave apps are:
Yahoo Messenger
some epic games
and some for iphoneography apps….


My favourite apps on Android:
Gmail, Feedly, Pocket, Evernote, Youtube.

Paul H. Rubin

Calengoo, Kindle, gmail, maps, fandange

Dmitriy Tverdov

While apps on author’s list a pretty useful and popular , list lacks lot of apps that also very useful in daily life (and rate higher for me)
– task/calendar managers. Personally i’m in love with GTasks and DueToday (i’m android user obviously), but i’ve heard number of good things about Astrid and any.do and some other “GTD”, managers.
– expense manager is another thing i can’t live without,with my personal favourite being MoneyWise.
-shopping list manager (cloud-enabled), in my case it’s cloud-enabled russian ZaPokupkami (zapokupakmi.mobi), which is MUCH fater and nicer than workarounds like using Evernote or “simple” list in note-taking software.
– note-taking app. GNotes – fast, hassle-free way for taking notes (evernote is too sluggish imo), and it syncs notes (inc. photo , drawings and audio) to gmail account.
– RSS reader . Actually – GoogleReader’s client, GReader . It’s very efficient way for me to read MakeUseOf and Lifehacker ;)

Yaara Lancet

I knew for sure that I won’t be able to think of EVERYTHING, but didn’t think I’d leave out this much! Good thing I included the “Other” option. :)

Thanks Dmitriy!

Alex Perkins

My top would be Shazam, I have used it so many times over the year to find out that song that I keep hearing everywhere but don’t know the name of.


Only 5?! Dang, that’s tough, but here goes in no particular order:
Dolphin Mini
Google Maps & Navigation

That leaves out a LOT of tough calls if I could only have 5. Some others, though not all, with extremely high value to me include:
ES File Explorer – really hard to not have this as one of the five above!
ES Task Manager
Holo Launcher
Email – for my other accounts such as Yahoo and work
Chomp SMS – for texting
Xmarks – bookmarks
Camera Zoom FX
gReader Pro – for Google Reader RSS feeds
Pocket – for saving and later reading of non-RSS articles
FB Reader – for ebooks
Just Pictures – photo viewer that syncs with online accounts
Repligo PDF Reader
Eye-Fi – uploading pics from camera to phone wirelessly
Barcode Scanner+
ClipSync – for transferring clipboard contents between PC and phone
Audiogalaxy – for streaming music from my PC to phone
Simple Calendar widget
Avast Mobile Security
Jays Headset Control
URL Shortcut – for adding shortcuts to most frquently used sites like Facebook, weather, etc to screen that don’t default to Android browser
BackCountry Navigator – great gps backup with better maps
Peakfinder – for identifying distant peaks while hiking

Yaara Lancet

That’s quite the list! Thanks for sharing. :)

Carla Swade

Mobile apps are a big disappointment. Especially the Android ones. Very “half-baked” in the way they are put together. Not well thought out. And the free ones are inundated with ads. I only use my smart phone for calls, texting and checking the news.

Yaara Lancet

Out of the millions apps available, many are indeed “half-baked”, you say. But there’s still a large number of very good apps, and they’re not hard to find. Is there something specific you’d like to do and can’t find a good app for?


Dolphin web browser
timebox personal history archive

Andrei Bogdan

Shazam , I love that app , couldn’t really live without it = ) , also facebook when I’m bored .

Andrei Bogdan

Youtube as well .


Evernote, Dropbox, Chrome, Pocket, Newsrob


Heh heh… I think I am one of the very last holdouts — I do not use a cell phone — except for very limited occasions (like coordinating an airport pickup).

At home, I am on my Win 7 desktop. But 2-3 consecutive months out of the year, I travel. And I use an Android tablet exclusively. My apps:

1. Google browser
2 Gmail
3. Skype
4. Photo viewer
5. Music player
6. Kingsoft Office (trip itinerary, trip expenses, and journal)
7. Kindle – for guidebooks such as Lonely Planet

Yaara Lancet

No cell phone! Yes, that’s truly impressive. :)

Junil Maharjan

Yeah evernote as well as pocket (read it later) and ebook reading apps.

Fawad Mirzad

The must have application for me is:
Evernote: as i have installed it on my Laptop, Office PC, Cellphone. And works just fine for synchronizing notes and research. whether i find some thing interesting in office, university library or at car when going home. i will have the chance of reading them carefully while laying on bed.
Opera mini: I use it when i am not on university or office WiFi. I need to pay 10 Afs ( $ 20 cents) for each MB of very slow data. so opera mini compression helps me save time and money.
MX player: The media player that helps me play almost any file type in my android phone.
Skype: Just found it best application for calling to friends abroad. and most of my friends are already there.
I use skydrive for back up, angry birds, dictionary, Facebook, Facebook messenger are applications i use.
These are all applications i use at least three of four times a week

Yaara Lancet

Thanks for the list, Fawad!

Ashwin Ramesh

Other than Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, I always tend to use the Gmail app. Pretty useful stuff when you’re on the run most of the times :) Am not much into using an IM client though. Pretty cumbersome on a smartphone. For me, I need to be fast while chatting with friends. The touchscreen keypad doesn’t help me. I often tend to have too many typos. While for sending an E-mail, I tend to be accurate (plus there is not much of an urgency). Then there’s always a game to keep me engaged while I’m bored- Temple Run. One of the best games I’ve played on a mobile. With the help of the badges and rewards when you complete a task, makes it all the more interesting.

I wish MUO comes up with a mobile MUO app in the near future. That sure will feature in my top 5 mobile apps :)

Yaara Lancet

Temple Run truly is addictive. :) You didn’t specify if you’re on Android or iOS, but if you’re using Android perhaps you could try one the sliding keyboards such as Swype, SlideIt or SwiftKey Flow. They make typing on the tiny touchscreen keyboard much easier.

As for an MUO app, we’re working on it!

Ashwin Ramesh

Am on Android.. Yes, perhaps Swype would be a good option. Thanks! And great to hear that you guys are working on the MUO app! Looking forward to it :)

susendeep dutta

My friend doesn’t likes a phone without alternative browser(Firefox),Gmail app,Pulse,Accuweather.

Rohit Jhawer

gmail, Friday and Expenses Manager, springpad and a news app (NDTV).

Tzvi Harris

Waze, google reader, evernote

Vipul Jain

I voted for Whatsapp, Games & Others.
I like to keep my social life at bay, any app relating to them only means more time spent on a virtual life instead of real life. This is why i have no FB, Twitter or other apps installed.
Whatsapp is actually a replacement for text messaging for me. This is my no.1 must have app. All my REAL friends are connected in one group and separate chats as well.
As for the other 4 must have apps/games. Here Goes

2) Adfree. I have my phone rooted, and this app removes all ads in the browser/apps or anywhere on my phone for free! This is how i enjoy free apps like paid apps without those irritating bubbles. I know this is wrong for those making the free apps, but i really cant afford to buy them.

3) PicSay Pro – This is the only app i have ever bought and i daily rejoice my spending. Editing pics, defaming my friend photos and sharing them on whatsapp in our group, this is a must have fun app for me.. :D
All my friends enjoy this one too!

4) Shazam – I love almost all genres of music. So whenever i hear a tune, i just pull out this app to +1 my music library. Must have as well! :p

5) Jetpack Joyride – Just one finger to play this game with awesome graphics and line of gadgets and stuff to retrieve. This is a must have time waster for me!

Yaara Lancet

Great recommendations, thanks!

Humza Aamir

A good dictionary is handy i.e. meriam-webster.

Yaara Lancet

Good one, thanks!

Jack Giebel

I cant live without Chrome, evernote, rhapsody, google maps or youtube, although truthfully all but chrome can be used in browser.


Add Waze – it’s replaced my Garmin

Greg Frye

Facebook, Dropbox, Evernote, GarageBand(or equivalent DAW), Amplitube

Raman Bathina

I cannot say cannot live with these apps because they are only for entertainment.But i feel comfortable with the uc mobile java browser.

Krysia Baker

Besides the ones listed – two others that are indispensible:
– Springpad (similar to Evernote)
– Mighty Text (allows you to send and receive text messages SMS text messages & MMS from any computer using your Android phone number.)

Art Spencer

Evernote! Didn’t make the list, but wow, I use it daily. Can’t be said for every mobile app.

Yaara Lancet

Yeah, weird oversight on my part. Not sure how I could have forgotten it! I knew I was leaving something important out….

Gerald Huber

interesting reading the comments. found some new apps i will check out. for now I use.
Spotify free ( looking for a new one, seems to play the same songs over and over )
Pocket Informer ( bundles all my calendars into one app )
Opera Mobile browser
Honorable mention
-My cookbook
-amazon appstore

Laura Rajsic-Lanier

I have to have Evernote.

I also use CalenGoo to link to my Google Calendar so I can keep track of two school systems, volunteer activities, my editorial calendar and more.

Bumferry Hogart

I’m always on the look out for new apps, but these are the ones that have stayed with me since I first got my smartphone a year ago.

Gmail: I really like gmail (after ruining my hotmail account when they changed to outlook)Its a great little app and although I don’t use email much, when I do I find it to the easier and more user friendly than others I’ve used

Evernote: I am forever thinking of ideas and evernote is perfect for written notes, pictures and voice recording when i don’t have a pen to hand. I even use it for work at times when taking a call I can make a note of any instructions or details needs later on when I’m not in the office. the ability to sync with my laptop is clever and means i can have notes, lists etc on both devices at all times.

Met office weather: Living in England means it is always raining, but sometimes its nice to check if there might be a five minute window where the flooding will stop and that little yellow ball we call the sun might pop out. It has radar viewing as well which is good and weather warnings that come in really handy.

Tune in radio:When stuck in the office on my own I stick tune in radio on. not only to listen to radio stations but I also found 1000’s of podcasts as well. This means i don’t need to have any other devices in my pocket, just a couple of taps to bring up my favourites and I’m away! genius app.

Calendar: I use smooth calendar. It might not be the ‘best’ app around but for me its perfect. It syncs seamlessly with my google calendar sits comfortably on my home page.

Yaara Lancet

Woot! Thanks for the detailed list!

Eric Thieszen

My most used is Gmail, because I have all my other email forwarded to it and I can check for important updates all from 1 inbox.

Paul Forbing

I don’t think I could survive in iOS with my investment in Android. Though I would think the 10 million downloads of Google Maps in 48 hours is an indication of an application a lot of users don’t want to live without.

David B.

The combination of Evernote, Penultimate and the flawed but useful Reminders apps keep my life moving. I still am a big fan of Flipboard too.


It’s awesome (if that’s the right word) to think how easily we can go from ‘who needs this’ to completely dependent app users.
I don’t have a pad or a tablet or anything like that, but I can’t spare those 3 or 4 apps on my phone that help me keep up to date with everything that’s going on in the world (because, of course, there’s always something new happening every 2 min).

So, my top apps:

— Mail (iPhone’s default mail client. don’t need anything better yet)
— Reeder (awesome, clean feed reader. second most used app of the day)
— Chrome (for all those searches)
— Downcast (podcast app, for those daily walks from work)
— Facebook (because even if you don’t want to use it that much, your friends are always puting up something that might be interesting).

Yaara Lancet


Jo Malone

Two not on your list are the Kindle app, and Flipboard

Yaara Lancet

Reading apps… good addition!

Bonnie L. Snyder

My fifth app that I cannot do without is Tonido!

shaurya gupta

I can’t live without 4 things – maxthon browser, skype, whatsapp and viber…These are very essential for me…I think these might be rather important for most of peeps coz these really are important than others out there……The default android browser – is according to me…the worst in my android phone, so there comes maxthon to save coz it syncs with my pc tooo…..Of course video chatting is quite important for me so there is skype…..Viber and whatsapp too are also hellish important coz i can make free calls and save money!!!!!

Tim White

GPS Drive, TurboScan, ADT Home Security App, Delta Airlines App, OpenTable


My Top 5 on Nokia S40 Asha
Facebook (built-in)
Nokia Maps (built-in)
Opera Mini (Nokia Browser, Y U NO have tabbed browsing like everyone else?!)
Bejeweled Twist

Victor Ong

I don’t really need any moblie apps. Possibly only a default browser and a game or two.


Facebook page admin

Rajaa Chowdhury

DropBox/Google Drive (Official app installed)
FaceBook / Foursquare / Twitter (Official app installed)
GMail/Yahoo Mail/Outlook.com/@india.com (all configured in respective official clients and @india.com domain configured in default Android client)
Google Maps (Official app installed), also extensively use other android apps of Google, entensively use GPS directions with Maps
Skype ((Official app installed)



The “change language feature”!