Tidy up your apps for the New Year

by Nikkita Dixon

With 2011 well and truly behind us it’s time for a smartphone spring clean to clear out all of those unused apps. If you’re anything like me, you’ve spent the year downloading anything and everything and now have pages of apps that have (at best) only been used once or twice. Not only does this make navigating your apps tricky, it also slows down your device.

Here are a few steps to help you get your smartphone tidied up for the New Year:

Start with the apps you haven’t used before
Things like Nutritional Tips and Motivational Quotes might have seemed like a good idea at the time, but if you haven’t used them yet you’re probably not going to in the near future. More than likely the app hasn’t been very useful either so you’d be better off searching for a newer and more effective one.

Delete your novelty apps
Apps like Bubble Wrap, Random Noise, PianoDog and many others of the like are great time wasters and are good for a laugh. You probably had a lot of fun with these apps in 2011. Now that it’s 2012 though, it’s out with the old and in with the new. Get yourself some new time wasters. Hang on to Angry Birds though – it never gets old.

Get rid of any double ups
Most people by now will have grouped their apps together under titles like ‘Photography’, ‘Productivity’, ‘Lifestyle’ and others of the sort. Keep the ones you use on a regular basis and turf the rest. I know I kept my CamWow app for months before I realised I hadn’t touched it once. Personally I’d prefer to stick with a few apps that I’ve mastered than to clutter my wall with similar apps I don’t use.

If it doesn’t work for you, it doesn’t work
iFitness and WebMD might be really well-designed apps. They might even have been recommended in a few Top 10 lists over the years. However, if you’re not the type of person to use that sort of thing they’re simply a waste of space. I held onto iFitness for years thinking the variety of fitness routines and exercise options available were a sure-fire way to inspire some fitness in the lounge room. I can safely say I’ve not felt like exercising in my lounge room once, and besides, my lounge room is far too small a space for working up a sweat. No matter how good the app is, if it doesn’t work for you, it’s not worth keeping.

Try to find apps that combine several of your existing apps. It saves space and keeps things simple. I used to have an entire folder devoted to my various social networks and messaging services. Now I use and app called IMO which offers a dashboard for all of them. Another good one is Kayak which effectively made my ‘Webjet’, ‘’, ‘Flight Tracker’ and ‘Currency Converter’ apps redundant with its all-in-one user interface for travel.

Now that your smartphone is nicely spruced up for the New Year, you’re ready for the bombardment of new and more exciting apps hitting app stores in 2012. Keep an eye on the iiNet Blog for more ideas on apps to add to your repertoire.

*All mentioned apps are available on iPhone and Android platforms, with the exception of WebJet which isn’t available in the Android app store and iFitness which has been recently taken off the iPhone app store shelves.

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