December 11, 2021

National App Day!

Written by kevin-c

Tips & Tricks

National App day? Hey, wait! We're an app! Gosh, you folks didn't have to give us a whole day! Oh hang on, I'm being told this is a day for ALL apps, not just TextNow. I suppose that's cool too.

TextNow came about because we want everyone to have equal access to communication, regardless if you can afford it or not.  With TextNow, you can text or call for free from any Android or iOS device or computer. We have solved the problem of not being able to afford phone service. With our SIM card, you get free calling and texting from anywhere in the US---even without WiFi.

So, for National App Day, we thought we'd shout out some other free apps that solve problems, both big and small.


Hoopla is a tremendous app/website that works in tandem with your local library. It allows you to borrow movies, music, audiobooks, ebooks, comics and TV shows to enjoy on your computer, tablet, or phone --- basically anything that can be delivered digitally. And if you've got a smart TV, a Roku, Apple TV, an Android TV,  Chromecast, or FireTV (whew!) you can stream all this stuff directly to your TV. All for the low cost of nothing.

Flush (iOS, Android)

Arguably the best named app in the history of apps, Flush answers one very simple question: Where's the closest public toilet? Their ever expanding database includes 200,000 bathrooms, and will give you directions to the closest one. What a lifesaver, right? And honestly if that's all it did it would still be ludicrously useful. But it also tells you if the bathroom in question has disabled access, a fee for usage or requires a key --- smart! And it's one hundred percent free.

Drunk Locker (Android)

Talk about solving a problem proactively! A deceptively simple idea, Drunk Locker blocks access to the apps of your choice, preventing you from posting anything hilariously incriminating or embarrassing to social media after having a few too many. You choose the apps you want blocked, including texting, and can even set them on a schedule, for those who like to plan your binges in advance. No more drunk texting your ex from the club on Friday night! Boy I could have used this back in college. Sorry iOS users, it's Android only.

Think Dirty (Android, iOS)

I love the idea behind Think Dirty. See, cosmetics and personal care products are pretty bad at listing what's actually in them. Even worse, they sometimes label as "organic" or "all-natural," when in fact they are neither. Enter Think Dirty--- use the app to scan the barcode on a product, and it will not only tell you the actual composition of that product, but also give you cleaner alternatives to buy. A brilliant solution to a problem I didn't realize existed.

Google Translate (Android, iOS)

An absolute must-have if you're travelling to another country, the Google Translate mobile app is able to translate text on your phone from one language to another in real time, Which, ok, cool, but it can also translate your speech in real time, and play it back in the language of your choice. Ok, also cool, but it can ALSO translate words using the camera on your smartphone. Point it at a sign, and presto! Never get lost in the back alleys of Paris ever again.