BBQ? Check. Suncream? Check. Summer apps for your smartphone? You’ll find them right here.
Ah, the summer: time to frolic in the sun, get a tan/sunburn, and BBQ to your heart’s content. But, you may be wondering (in the way that only you do), how can you involve the smartphones and electronic devices that so warmed your soul during the winter in your summer fun?
Well, ponder no longer, friend – TechWeekEurope is on hand once more with a guide to 10 summer apps that’ll do their very best to help you make the most of this glorious part of the year.
Hey, hey, hey, I’m getting a boat! Well, not exactly – with GetMyBoat, you’re renting one. Like the wildly-successful Airbnb, GetMyBoat is a free app that lets boat users in over 150 countries put their vehicle up for rent and charter. It’s intended as a more affordable renting service ($100 a day is one price that’s quoted on the site, which is presumably quite good) that takes your location into account: simply boot up the app, and search for a boat that is near to you. Perhaps an app that would work best whilst on holiday abroad, but certainly one worth looking at if you want to ride the waves this summer.
- Hyperlapse from Instagram
There’s a plethora of photo apps available across all mobile platforms, but this particular service – from the good folks at Instagram – is well worth a look this summer. Specialising in producing sharp and polished time-lapse video technology, Hyperlapse uses Instagram’s in-house stabilisation feature to smooth out any bumps in your handheld footage to give it an authentic and cinematic feeling. One such example of said technology is how Hyerlapse can enable the capturing of an entire sunset within 10 seconds, even from the back of a moving motorcycle. And who wouldn’t want that in their lives?
- Water Your Body
In these hot, hot months, no one wants to contract sunstroke: it’s just not very pleasant. One preventative method is to drink enough water to ably assist your body whilst it’s exposed to the sun/kegs of beer for long periods of time – but of course, you already knew that. You’re sensible like that. But, did you know that there’s now an app that can advise you on how much water you need to consume every day? No, you didn’t. Water Your Body records your water intake and reminds you, via your smartphone, when and how much water to drink based simply on your weight. Presented in a smart graph form, it’s a simple yet wholly effective app that’ll cost you zero pennies (on Android) to install.
- Countdown + Event Reminders
So chances are you’ve got lots of events planned this summer: weddings, parties, cutting the grass. Why not plan out your summer calendar on your tablet with this handy creation from Apps Beyond? Highly rated in the App Store, it offers unlimited countdowns and reminders for all of your events to help either ramp up the excitement or put plans in place. Integrate your Facebook events and friends’ birthdays, use the timer/stopwatch function and share event countdowns for even more calendar-based fun.
- Weather Underground
You might already have a weather app installed on your smartphone, but can you really trust its accuracy (certainly not if you have the iPhone’s pre-installed Weather Channel service, which seems to make it up as it goes along)? Well, Weather Underground may actually be the app to place your faith in. Powered by its enthusiastic community of users – 33,000 “personal weather stations” – it aims to “provide the world’s most accurate hyper-local weather forecasts, in addition to interactive radar, satellite maps and severe weather alerts.” So, essentially, if someone in Idaho sees that it’s raining outside, they’ll let the app know. Probably. Stocked elsewhere with interactive weather maps, push notifications and easy sharing capabilities, maybe it’s time to go Underground.
- Wolfram Sun Exposure Reference App
As many of you know, sunburn is one of life’s biggest pains: it can ruin the cherished memory of many a sunny afternoon by making you physically and emotionally suffer in the evening and the days following. But now the good people at Wolfram have devised an app that can help you prepare for and prevent the evils of the sun’s rays. Calculating how long your skin can be exposed to the Sun for – based on variables such as your skin type, location, UV levels and the level of sun protection factor (SPF) that you use – it provides you with the answer to the question: “How long can I sit outside for before my skin bursts into flames?”
- Steak: Timer
A simple concept, this one: you’re cooking your steak on the BBQ. Are you going to leave it to chance or so-called expertise in determining how long you should cook it for? Of course you’re not, you don’t want to waste a good steak. What you’re going to do is download this app to assist with the cooking process. Select the thickness of your piece of meat, choose the way you’d like to cook it (rare/medium/well done, etc.) and the app will determine how long you need to cook it for, when to flip the steak and the recommended temperature that it needs to be cooked at. Nifty, eh?
What better way to enjoy a nice summer’s day than with a finely-concocted cocktail? Well, now you don’t have to rush to your local bar to take advantage of their happy hour prices, as with the Mixology app you can learn to make any drink IN THE WORLD (probably). Free to download and available on iOS and Android, browse through 8000 recipes that use over 1000 ingredients to find that perfect drink to quench your thirst this summer.
- 30 Day Ab Challenge
Not to perpetuate the “Are You Beach Body Ready?” controversy of recent months, but looking and feeling healthy whilst on holiday is an issue that many people subscribe to, particularly in the summer months. People like the cast of Jersey Shore, for instance. So, if you’re feeling the need to quickly develop good-looking abs over the course of 30 days, then this free app on the Play Store may be exactly what you’re looking for. Following a simple daily plan of ab exercises that increase in intensity over time, the calendar layout plans what exercises to do when, as well as when to rest (the best kind of days). Reviews of the app have been generally positive, so it’s worth trying if you’ve the self-discipline to invest 30 days of your life into being told what to do by a programme on your smartphone.
- DinnerTime Plus
The black sheep of our list of summer apps is DinnerTime Plus – not strictly a summertime app, but perhaps one you may find very useful. It was primarily designed to assist parents in monitoring their children’s smartphone activities, enabling them to limit the amount of time that they spend on their mobile devices. So, parents: encourage your kids to go play outside by downloading this app and effectively switching off their mobile phones. Or, why not limit your own online activities by using the app on yourself to limit the amount of time that you stare at your phone, and get outside yourself and enjoy this *hopefully* long, hot summer.