We might as well face up to the fact that the attention depleting smartphone in your pocket isn’t going away anytime soon. The best thing to do is fill it with things that help you in your day to day experience of the world. In this case we’re looking at apps, although it’s worth noting that the five apps below are ones you’re probably never going to find useful. Think of it as me being kind and doing some BS filtering for you.
1. Find Nearest McDonalds
I have nothing against free-will. Not a thing, but i will say this: If you’re so desperate for a McDonalds that you need an app to find one nearest to you, you’re in serious trouble in life. what’s more is that if you have any map application all you need do is type McDonald’s in the search field and it does exactly the same thing. When you’re in a foreign country, please do your best to try the local food rather than eating burgers and fries. The app isn’t even free!
Was I? Several times while using this app I ‘checked in’ at places I’ve never been to. It’s a bit like Foursquare but much worse. the user experience is poor and when you’ve used the far superior Foursquare it’s difficult to see the point of iWasHere. There are several functions that I won’t describe here that seem to encourage intrusive, stalkerish behaviours and that alone is enough to put me off. Don’t waste your brain power on this one.
3. Coppertone MyUVAlert
This is an app that beeps at you when you need to reapply sunscreen and suggests products to buy. I think that’s all I really need to say.
I might be going crazy, but an app that measures the electrical output of your travel gadgets seems a bit counter-intuitive. Using electricity to measure how much electricity you’re wasting is just bonkers. I’ve come up with a much better solution: Use your electronic devices as little as possible or not at all when you’re away. Why not enjoy your trip instead of wasting energy by wasting energy.
I’m in two minds about this app. On the one hand it’s hilariously funny in that it lists an enormous number of expletives in foreign languages, but on the other it’s useless to you while travelling unless you want to start a fight and get thrown into a Thai prison. In fact I’d go as far as to say it actually hinders you because it teaches you how to insult people in their home country. Not something you want to be doing as an ambassador for the country you’re from.