Back to school apps that help you stay organzied

Taylor Williams

Back to school means back to a hectic schedule of trying to balance schoolwork with socializing. What better way to help stay organized than with an app right on your iPhone or Android.

July 2013 is marked as a historical moment in the technological world as Android’s Google Play outgrew the Apple App Store to officially become the largest app market in the world, reported CNN’s Victor Hernandez.

As both markets grow with a large selection of different types of apps including productivity, photography, music, games, etc., students have an opportunity to have information at the tip of their fingers.

“Mobile app users are four times more engaged than those surfing the web browser,” said Laura Fagan on her Salesforce blog.

The following apps are reviewed as some of the top apps on CNET and Huffington Post, ranging in price from free to $3.99.


Pocket allows users to save and view videos, articles and web pages they see online or from apps like Twitter but don’t have time to read. You can also share the articles you find online with your friends. Formerly known as “Read It Later,” this free app is available for iPhone, iPad, Android, Kindle Fire or on your computer, but you don’t even need an

Internet connection.


Step aside pen and paper, this innovative to-do list allows you to generate your agenda for your day as you speak it. Voice activated and sortable, you can plan out homework, social events and manage your schedule across all your mobile devices — and share it with other people. And for the forgetful: You can set reminders for each task.


30/30 is an ideal task-management app for those easily distracted. The app allows you to make a list of jobs to complete and set time limits on each. When the time runs out for a specific job, you will be reminded to move on to the next thing on your list. Unlike paper lists, 30/30 not only allows you to map out your day, but also follow through and reach the goals you set for the day.


An app for the most die-hard music junkies, ShowScoop lets users rate and review any concert, any time. This app makes it easy to record your concert experiences and to plan for upcoming shows. Rate concerts in categories like “stage presence” and “sound clarity,” share photos, read show reviews and create a list of your previous musical outings. ShowScoop also helps you connect with other users to create the perfect network of fellow concert fans.


If you’re on Twitter, there’s a good chance you’ve seen more six-second videos of your drunk friends than you’ve ever wanted to see. This unfortunate trend makes some skeptical about Vine, an app that allows users to loop short video clips for instant sharing on social media. Fortunately, the more creative among us are turning Vine into an artform and redeeming this infamous app.


Flayvr, a free iPhone and Android app, automatically organizes and patches videos and photos from the same event into collections. Once the app creates a collection, it can be shared on social media sites or privately. The app allows users to have a cross-platform experience with plenty of interactivity. Users can zoom in or out, view photos and videos in full screen and even play videos in the background of a slideshow of photos. The Wall Street Journal even named this app one of technology’s most promising start-ups.

KSU Mobile

Available on Apple products and Android phones, the KSU Mobile app allows students to keep up with what’s happening on campus while on the go. It includes a phone directory, class schedule and grades, a campus map, the latest news and a connection to the Kent State library, according to the Kent State website.

Hotel Tonight

A free app designed for same-day bookings, this is your go-to for last-minute travel plans. As described on its website, Hotel Tonight is “for people who didn’t wake up this

morning expecting to stay in a hotel.” The app affectionately calls its users “impulse bookers” and is only available on mobile platforms, allowing customers to pick up deals on unsold hotel rooms. Think of it as the

procrastinator’s Expedia.


With Pixplit, a free iPhone app, users can “take part in a creative dialogue” with friends, says the app’s website. But you won’t be using words — you’ll be using pictures. Pixplitters work together to create photo collages, taking turns adding new pictures to the mix. It’s commonly known as the collaborative Instagram. Each picture is like a prompt waiting for others to contribute, taking a plain photo app and turning it into a social experience.


Along with its online counterpart, Brainscape, available at Apple app store, is perfect for studying for an upcoming exam. The Bold Learning Solutions app allows students to make flashcards for any subject and study them on the go. Students select how well they knew an answer and the app automatically gauges how many times it needs to quiz you. Students can also share flashcards with friends, making it a great group study tool.


This is an effortless solution to note taking. Reminders are a new feature to Evernote, which users have found extremely helpful. The program saves all the information so the user is able to sync the notes across multiple devices, including a computer, smartphone or tablet. Users can also upgrade the app to a premium level for only five dollars each month or use the original free version.


You can manage all your files in your Google Drive, Microsoft SkyDrive, Dropbox and Box accounts using CloudOn. This productivity app, which you can get at the Apple App Store or Google Play for Androids, allows users to share documents, powerpoints and spreadsheets with others. The app will autosave any changes you make using your smartphone, and you can use the FileSpace to view edits, comments and notes made by yourself or your group.

Contact Taylor Williams at [email protected].