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Whether you’re a dad of tweens, a middle-aged mom or a grandmother of six, there’s an app for you. And these are our top picks.
Apps for grandparents
MyHeritage offers a great collection of tools for researching and building your family tree. Search through millions of records from different countries via its easy-to-use interface to create your family tree. Don’t forget to update your tree with names, photos and facts about the current generation, too. You can also collaborate with other members and join the thousands who reunite with long-lost relatives through the app.
New York Times Crossword
New York Times Crossword will keep your brain firing on all cylinders. Try the daily (free) Mini game if you have a few minutes or tackle the Crossword if you have more time and a subscription. You can also buy packs that focus on specific topics such as Modern TV or Pride Month.
Apps for parents
Tired of the numerous texts between family members when trying to organise daily events? Or worried about your teens when they’re out and about? Life360 makes it easy to stay connected – and to ensure the safety of your loved ones. Create your own private groups (called ‘circles’) of family members, colleagues or friends and chat with them in Family Locator for free. You can also view the real-time location of circle members on a private family map that is visible only to your circle. When members arrive or leave destinations, you’ll receive alerts, and you’ll also be able to track lost or stolen phones.
Apps for teenagers
It’s tricky keeping up with the hottest must-have apps when it comes to kids between the ages of 13 and 19. They no doubt already have Instagram – and are hellbent on creating the coolest visual content to grow their following. Behold VSCO (also called VSCO Cam). This is a photography app where your teen can create an account and upload or take photos, edit and add filters, and share them with other VSCO users or on other social media sites. Behind the crisp design, there are easy-to-use editing tools, a vast range of stylish filmlike presets, and social features that connect users with fellow photographers.
When it comes to keeping them organised, Evernote always comes out on top. This popular productivity app makes it easy to save documents, notes, lists and web pages. It can also scan handwritten notes and record school lessons and varsity lectures.
Apps for tweens
What about a game you can play with your little one? The Charades app works much the same as the original game, except that the player who must guess the answer holds the phone against their forehead. The other team members will act, sing or describe words (depending on that category that is chosen) to help the player guess, and the object is to get as many correct answers as possible before the timer runs out.
Apps for toddlers
ABC Mouse offers parents a much-needed, guilt-free break from parenting. Add your child’s age in the settings and the app will created a customised experience for kids from as young as two. It begins in a virtual classroom where your little one can select from a number of different adventures, including reading, maths, colouring, counting and music skills. ABC Mouse costs US$9.99 (about R153) per month, but it’s worth every cent.
Don't forget to make sure your family's devices are topped up with data before you start gaming, snapping and organising. Click here to buy data from Vodacom.