In a year that had us tapping on our screens more than usual, here are seven apps that stood out for their innovation and purpose.
In a year of little socialising and time spent inside, many of us have been using our phones a little more than usual.
Although there are concerns about the repercussions of this for our mental and physical health, some apps can have a positive impact, and aim to guide us through this time — whether to help us abide by social distancing measures, keep us fit and healthy, or simply to entertain.
The following are seven of the most innovative apps we’ve spotted at Springwise this year.
1. APP IDENTIFIES PRODUCTS THAT REFLECT SUSTAINABLE VALUES
The French app My Label identifies products that meet your values, making it easier for shoppers to find sustainable goods and influence producers.
My Label is one of a growing number of apps that help shoppers to decode product labels. Unlike other options on the market, however, My Label bases its recommendations on consumer preferences. The app allows consumers to select from 20 criteria, including environmental, social and health factors — for instance, you can ask My Label to alert you if there is palm oil in a product. The app can also flag up products from companies that pay a fair wage.
Users scan the bar code with the app, which then informs you if the product meets your criteria. If it does, a green smiley face appears. If it does not, My Label marks it with a red emoji and recommends a similar product that does meet your criteria.
2. A MOBILE QUEUING PLATFORM REMOVES NEED FOR STANDING IN LINE
The Safe Queue app allows businesses to easily create a digital queue when they open the management link. It is then completely under their control when and how many customers can enter their environment, a limit which is instantly visible to users.
For customers, the app uses the GPS on their phones to determine when they are within 1000 feet of the destination, at which point they can join a virtual queue of their choosing. This ensures that they can stay at a safe distance from the venue, while also able to track their position in the queue. When it is their turn to enter, they simply have to confirm their entry at the door with a QR code issued by the app.
3. MAKEUP APP ALLOWS USERS TO TRY ON RUNWAY TRENDS
The NY beauty tech company behind the world’s leading virtual beauty try-on app, YouCam Makeup, and photo editing app, YouCam Perfect, has partnered with the leading on-demand beauty service provider, PRIV. Via the YouCam App, users can have an interactive Fashion Week beauty experience that highlights PRIV’S Runway Trends Collection.
As part of the partnership, consumers were able to virtually try on Fashion Week makeup trends before PRIV provided the looks in real life — including glittering shadows, neon liner, and blue accents.
4. AN APP TO DIRECT YOUR AIMLESS WANDERING
Randonautica, a random location generator that claims to send users to locations influenced by their thoughts, became a hit during COVID-19 lockdowns.
Users simply download the free app, give their location and select one of a handful of “entropy” generators. The app then asks them to focus their minds on their “intent” before spitting out a set of coordinates, which the flaneur can report upon if they choose to follow them.
5. EMOTION MANAGEMENT APP HELPS INDIVIDUALS WITH AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDER
E.Cue is a biofeedback system consisting of a smartphone case and accompanying app. The phone case provides soothing, ridged, natural shapes to help with self-regulation of emotions, and it changes colour depending on the amount of pressure applied.
Using Galvanic Skin Response sensors, the system monitors the physical aspects of each emotion. When a change occurs, the app sends an alert to the user and guides them through a mix of clinically-approved questions and activities. E.Cue is designed specifically to provide on-going support to a user’s traditional methods of managing the disorder, such as counselling.
6. HYPERTENSION APP HELPS HEALTH TEAMS WORKING OFFLINE TRACK PATIENT CARE
The Simple app is easy to use. Designed by Bengaluru-based digital design company Obvious, it enables healthcare workers to operate offline and eases the administrative burden on busy healthcare teams. Many nurses in India see more than 100 patients in a day and often work in areas with low or non-existent internet connectivity.
By working offline, the app allows doctors and nurses to register new patients, quickly find patient records and update details and current blood pressure readings in seconds, as opposed to the four or five minutes currently spent searching for paper records. Data syncs to the secure cloud-based records system when the user accesses a strong internet connection.
7. AN APP THAT GAMIFIES SOCIAL DISTANCING
The SoloCoin app aimed to encourage users to stay at home during the pandemic by rewarding SoloCoin tokens. Tokens earned can then be exchanged for discounts on Amazon, Netflix, Swiggy, Zomato and other services useful during the lockdown.
The app, which came in third at the CODE19 hackathon, was founded by India-based Arbob Mehmood. The 22-year-old is also the founder of Bramble, an application programming interface that allows developers to reward gamers in cryptocurrencies for playing their games.
Written By: Holly Hamilton
25th November 2020