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Top 10 apps for over 50s

Woman on phone 

To revive an old joke about smartphones: we possess a device that is capable of accessing the entirety of information known to man...and we use it to look at pictures of cats and get into arguments with strangers. 

Of course, we do use it for other things as well, such as games, keeping in touch with relatives on the other side of the world, and even accessing useful information to make our lives that little bit easier. Although there's nothing wrong with a bit of Grumpy Cat or the occasional <ahem> civilised debate. So here are gransnetters' top 10 apps for over 50s - some helpful, some funny, and some just downright silly. You decide.

1. Candy Crush

Candy CrushThe seemingly innocuous game of matching three or more sweets to earn points and progress to the next level has become phenomenally popular on a global scale, and gransnetters' number one choice reflects this trend.

Mamie is a bit of an expert: "I have got to the end and am waiting for 560 onwards." But annodomini, on the other hand, "can't imagine how [Mamie] managed that. It will take me to the end of the century to get that far on CC at the rate I'm going! Oh what a time-waster that is!"

 2. Facebook

Facebook Since its inception in 2004, Facebook has been integrated so completely into our lives that it seems almost superfluous to even mention it in a list of useful apps - it's just something we use every day and take for granted, like sliced bread. Over 1 billion of the 7 billion on the planet use it, but of course that still leaves room for a few more (give or take 6 billion).

So if you're not familiar with it yet, this sums it up nicely: 

"I love Facebook as it has put me in touch with so many people from my life that I would not otherwise be able to see, i.e old school friends who have emigrated and family who live on the other side of the country. It is lovely to see how they are getting on, pictures of their children/grandchildren, comparing notes on said children/grandchildren, etc. I wasn't sure at first, but now delight in seeing what friends, old and new, are up to." gratefulgran54

3. Twitter

TwitterTwitter is equally popular with gransnetters, for different reasons. "I've found you get a quicker response by posting on Twitter than by contacting Customer Services - they don't want problems 'out there' for all to see, haha." MrsSB

"I like the fact that its parameters encourage contributors to be pithy and often witty. I also like its immediacy." vegasmags

4. Dropbox

DropboxDropbox is a super-useful app that allows you to sync documents and other media across all devices. It means that even if your device is damaged, your work is saved. 

Versavisa says: "Dropbox is my preferred choice for moving documents around my devices or sharing with others. You can choose whether others can just view the files or actually amend them." 

rockgran agrees: "Useful things are Evernote and Dropbox for keeping notes and documents synced across devices." 

5. Touchnote

Touchnote"Have found the Touchnote app very useful. You can use photos from your iPhone to make cards and postcards which are printed and posted for you in several different countries, depending on the address of the recipient. Price is reasonable considering cost of overseas postage, although useful for thank you cards in the UK too." Purpledaffodil

"It's such an easy way to send a photo." baubles

6. Angry Birds

Angry BirdsAngry Birds, a game that involves toppling obstacles with the use of a slingshot, is another addictive app enjoyed by GCs and gransnetters alike. Ariadne has played "every Angry Birds available..." and shysal is also a bit of a whiz in this area, having "completed Angry Birds plus Rio, Seasons, Space and Star Wars with no problem. They involve logic, physics and geometry, which suits me."

 7. FaceTime

FaceTimeThe video and audio calling app is Apple's answer to Skype, allowing users with compatible devices (iPhones, iPads, iPod touches, iPads, and Macs) to keep in touch with family and friends around the world at no extra cost (except data usage if you use 3G). Cretin says: "I look forward to receiving these calls very much...granddaughter, aged seven, puts her face into the screen shouting 'Nanny Nanny!' It's absolutely wonderful to receive such a welcome."

And ninathenana's grandson "regularly reads to other grandparents in Germany via FaceTime. [Her daughter] sets him up with the book prior to making the connection."

Hint: It's best to stick with Wi-Fi connections - 3G calls guzzle data and could easily exceed your data usage limit.

8. Scrabble

ScrabbleThe popular word game in online format allows you to play against others or the device, to play in different languages and force-forfeit slowpokes who take too long with their turn.

"I have 'met' some really interesting people on Scrabble chat...There are many people who are trying to improve their English too." HMHNanna

"I play Scrabble on Facebook at 3am! There's always someone around to play with." boheminan

9. Google Maps and Google Earth

Google MapsGoogle Maps has been extremely useful to gransnetters who - somewhat paradoxically - wish to escape the virtual world for a while. "I go for miles on Google Maps, and take a look round all the nice villages before actually driving anywhere!" Ella46

Of course Google Earth is an excellent way of preparing for a real-world trip, but you could just go on a virtual one instead. "We are off to Barra again in July but I am so 'homesick' for the place that I spend hours on Google Earth wandering about there." Granny23 

10. National Trust

National TrustThe National Trust app is a great source of inspiration if you're looking for ideas for days out. Choose from over 400 National Trust places or find out what's on near you. It will also remind you of upcoming events.

"National Trust is useful for up-to-date information." Versavisa












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