By Sandra Quinn

Twenty years ago, most people’s houses would have been filled with books, manuals, DVD’s and CD’s – now many of these have been replaced by apps on our smart phones and tablets.

Apps are wonderful, as many of them are compatible with both Android and Apple and the majority are free or cost a nominal amount, so we are spending nowhere near as much as before on finding things out and having resources and information at our fingertips.

According to data from App Annie, smart phone users spend an average of two hours and 15 minutes on their phones using apps every single day – this adds up to a month in the year.

On average, people often have between 60 and 90 apps on their devices and use about 30 of them each month, often going into about ten of them a day.

We are all creatures of habit and tend to use the same apps over and over again, so here are some of our top app picks in case you want to liven up your app library.

– PocketCast – This one comes with a small charge, but as with most apps, you get what you pay for and the extras are really worth it. For those who commute regularly by train, bus or car, podcasts are ideal to download and listen to while on the move and can also be the perfect thing to wind down with while also upskilling and adding to your information base. The app alerts you to new podcasts from your favourited list, you can download the ones you like and listen to them offline and you get alerts for ones you might like based on your listening preferences so far.

– Trello – This is one for the organisation lovers, the people who love post-it notes, colour coding and generally having everything in its place without any room for confusion or disorganisation. This allows you to organise your work, personal schedule and appointments into funky colour coded folders and also alerts you to appointment and meeting times.

– FreshBooks – For anyone who runs a small business and wants something to get organised in terms of invoicing and keeping track of client payments and deadlines, this is ideal. As with most things, you can get a free version, but it has limited capacity, so perhaps the paid version, which comes in tiers, may be more suitable. FreshBooks will keep client details on file and auto fill the information, send the invoices by email with a note and then you can send reminders and add payments to keep track of income.

– Kaspersky Mobile Antivirus – Many of us buy a new smart phone every year or two, but for anyone who is trying to give their phone more life or prolong it in any way, a good antivirus softeware can be just the thing. This will usually solve most lagging issues, alert you to power sucking apps, tell you when an app is running in the background unnecessarily and generally just save you a lot of time, hassle and hard work, while it works away in the background saving you time, memory and battery power.

– Urbanspoon – Are you often looking for something to do and don’t know what to look up on Google? Then this app might be perfect for you. It is a vast information platform, which provides details to users about local restaurants and places to go, complete with reviews and recommendations.