A smart phone really helps me keep myself together (You in the back? Shut up.) I have been a user for a couple of years now after resisting since I thought I "didn't really need" one.
Through Verizon and The Motherhood.com, I've introduced you to the Palm Pre Plus from Verizon phone in the past couple of weeks. First, I learned how to use the Palm Pre Plus, and then I explored some of the basics of the Palm Pre Plus.
Now's the fun stuff.
Much of the coolness is found in the world of the available Palm Pre Plus Applications or "apps". In fact, this phone lets you multi-task by running several apps (up to 50!) at once, not something you usually see in a smart phone.
Apps are fun or useful software that expand the function of your phone and they are more than just games or silly, entertainment stuff (though there's that, too). They are accessed and downloaded over the Internet. (The Palm Pre Plus from Verizon requires a data plan that is separate from your Verizon calling plan).
Apps can range from news, travel and books to games, social networking and grocery lists. They are downloaded through the App Catalog on the Palm Pre Plus and there are some cool ones that let you do the things you need to do on the go. Many apps are free, and others are very low cost. I find the App Catalog a little difficult to search, but there are some great things in there!
I can't capture all the apps, and your needs may vary from mine. I am a bit of an app junkie, but here are some useful Palm Pre Plus Apps that I like:
1. Mobile Hotspot - Your phone becomes a wireless hotspot for up to 5 devices (this function costs extra money). Think about that. How many times have you wished you had Internet access for your computer and it wasn't available or the wireless access cost a fortune?
I am loving this feature, as it has allowed me to get some online stuff done while I would otherwise just be sitting in the car when I have some spare time waiting for the kids to get out of sports practice. It's an app that's easy to install and set up and works reasonably fast, though it is a big battery drain, but it sure has been handy.
2. The Weather Channel (free) - Get instant access to forecasts and weather details from The Weather Channel. You can easily see the local radar to know if you should head inside, or if the game should be called off before the downpour. It's also handy to have when you're traveling to find out what's going on in an unfamiliar city.
3. Flashlight (free) - Do not laugh. It's simply a bright, blank screen, but you'd be surprised how often I've used this. It's been used during a power outage, to find lost stuff in the car and to look at a bill in a dark restaurant.
4. Facebook (free) - Need I say more? If it's your thing, keep up with what's going on with mobile Facebook. Great for a quick check if you're waiting for a message or other response.
5. Good Food (free) - This app uses the Palm Pre Plus' GPS function to find great places to eat near you (wherever you're standing) and see what other people recommend. Handy for those, "Whaddya want to eat?" "I dunno, what's around?" moments.
6. TweeFree (free) - I admit it, I'm on Twitter a lot, and I've been giving this free Twitter app a workout. Access all the fun of Twitter, right in your hand.
7. AP Mobile News (free) - I think I get most of my news information from my phone, The AP News app gives you continuously updated news while you're on the go, so you won't be the only one going, "Huh?!" when something happens.
8. Google Maps (free) - The goodness that is Google Maps right on your phone. No, really, imagine being able to find out from your phone where you are, and how to get there.
On a related note, Verizon also has VZ Navigator that uses the GPS function of your phone and provides hands free turn by turn directions, traffic information and more to nearly four million points of interest. It is $9.99/mo. or $2.99 per day (24 hours). Very cool.
9. Rockus Sound Machine ($1.99) - Not sure how it happened, but our whole family is addicted to sleeping with white noise. A sound machine was vital when the kids were babies, and the machine was hard to pack, or we'd be someplace for the day without it, and it was hard to get a baby to nap. This app is a great idea and is wonderful for travel There are 18 sounds that can play indefinitely or be set on a timer.
10. What's for Dinner? - I am notorious for standing in the grocery and not knowing what I'm going to make for dinner, or I have an idea of what I want to make, but I'm not sure of the ingredients. This app lets you search multiple recipe sites and even make a shopping list. While it's $4.99, it provides valuable information for someone like me.
11. Absolute Fitness - I'm trying to get fit through the Your Shape Challenge, and this is a great way to keep track of what I've eaten and my exercise (or lack thereof). I do much better in this area when I can see in writing what I've done for the day.
12. Evernote (free) - This app is the ultimate in keeping information together. You can save your thoughts, pictures, links, lists and more, all in one place.
I'm bad about using a mixture of Post-It notes, computer bookmarks and memory to keep track of stuff. If you're not familiar with Evernote, you should really check it out.
I could go on, but you can see that the Palm Pre Plus from Verizon isn't just for business types, it's great for life management since we're all on the go.
Want a chance to win a $25 gift card to Verizon Wireless? You could put it toward a new phone, or even pay a bill.
Here's how to win:
1. Look at the Palm Pre App Catalog and leave a comment (and a valid e-mail address) telling me which app would really help your busy life.
2. (Optional) For an extra entry, Tweet about this giveaway and leave a separate comment.
3. 1 winner will be picked randomly via Random.org from the comments.
4. Winner has 24 hours to get back to me, otherwise another winner will be drawn.
5. Hurry! Contest ends Wednesday, March 10, 2010 at 10pm CST.
6. Since you are already here, why don't you come see me at my blog Busymom.net? Pull up a chair, and I'll break out the CheezWhiz for you.
Be sure to check out these fine folks to hear more about the Verizon Palm Pre Plus (hint: they have opportunities to win, too):
This Full House
Tech for Mommies
The Full Mommy
Musings of a Housewife
Stay tuned next week, too. I'm giving away a Palm Pre Plus from Verizon!
I wrote this review while working on a Verizon Palm Pre Plus campaign by TheMotherhood.com on behalf of Verizon Wireless and have been given a Palm Pre Plus (and prizes for giveaways) to facilitate my review. My opinions are my own, and I really do think you should check it out to see if it's for you.