This post is inspired by the yearly State of the Apps episode on the Cortex Podcast.
In this post, I want to list some of the apps that I’m using on my devices (in this case iPhone and iPad). There will be four parts: 1. iPhone 2. iPad 3. iPhone + iPad 4. Looking Into. If an app is in the “iPhone” or “iPad” section, it does not mean that I’m using it exclusively on that device, but that I use it mostly on that device.
Note: I didn’t include the prices because they differ depending on the region and which plan you are using. However, I added whether it is free (which usually include a paid premium option or subscription), paid (= one-time payment), or subscription (= monthly/yearly payment).
Overcast (iOS, free with premium option)
Overcast has been my favorite podcast player for a long time now. But to be honest, I haven’t really tried any other player because switching podcast players seems like a PITA.
LookUp (iOS, paid)
LookUp is an excellent English dictionary for iOS. Every time there’s an English word I don’t know or don’t fully understand, I look up its definitions in LookUp.
Pushover is a push notification service. I use it to send myself notifications via scripting, for example on my server or from Shortcuts. If you don’t know why you would need this, you don’t need this. ;)
FiLMiC Pro (iOS, paid)
The default camera in iOS lacks a lot of features, especially when it comes to control. FiLMiC Pro is not perfect, but it offers some more controls when taking videos on the iPhone. The feature I use the most is manual focus and then going very close to a subject (like flowers or animals).
Halide (iOS, subscription)
Halide is an advanced camera app for taking photos. The reasoning is pretty much the same as for FiLMiC Pro. Unfortunately, they recently switched to a subscription model. Because I purchased the app before that, I can use it without the subscription, but if you want to try it now, you need the subscription.
A few months ago, I switched to iA Writer for all my note taking and writing. It is a Markdown-based editor that fully operates on the file system, so in the end you just have a folder structure of plain text files. That’s the main reason I’m using this. However, it is not optimal for note taking and I might try something else for that.
Working Copy (iOS, paid)
Working Copy is an excellent Git client for iOS. Currently I use it mostly for committing and pushing my blog posts from my iPad. The pricing model of the app is interesting in that you pay for all the features the app has at the moment of payment, and you’ll keep those features forever. You’ll also get every new feature for 12 months. After that, you’ll still get bug fixes and some new features, but you’ll need to pay again for all new features. I think it is probably the best compromise payment model out there.
Scriptable (iOS, free with premium option)
Data Jar (iOS, free with premium option)
Data Jar is basically a iCloud-based key-value store accessible via Shortcuts. If you don’t understand this, you don’t need it. ;)
iPhone + iPad
I’ve been using Things as my task and project management app for a while now. I like that it’s native and has a great interface. However, it does lack some advanced features, the iPad app is a separate purchase, and the Mac app is really expensive.
News Explorer is a great RSS client that I started using a few months ago. I will probably write a separate post about RSS and how I use it sometime in the future.
Anki is the flashcard app of my choice for studying Japanese.
Shirabe Jisho (iOS, free)
A great and simple Japanese dictionary.
Apollo (iOS, free with premium option)
The best Reddit client for iOS.
YNAB stands for “You Need A Budget”. It is the budgeting app that I’ve been using for the past few years and every cent I earn and spend goes through it. It is fairly expensive, but definitely worth it in my opinion. (Possibly a separate post on budgeting in the future!)
AdGuard Pro (Website, free with premium option)
The content blocker of my choice. I don’t love it, but it does its job well.
The password manager of my choice. I’m still looking into switching to Bitwarden, but as with so many things, it takes so much work switching password managers, so right now I’m staying with them.
Craft is a native iOS and macOS Notion alternative. Not sure whether it started as that, but that’s how I discovered it. I have only just begun looking into it, but it looks pretty good!
Nobody asked for this, but I thought it might be interesting to some people. What are your favorite apps? Let me know in the comments below!