Most of us are relying more on our smartphones and tablets every day. These indispensible pieces of technology can help us communicate, keep us organized, wake us up in the morning, and even help us find the keys we dropped somewhere in the car at night. But can your iPhone or iPad help you boost your brain function and make you more productive?
Not surprisingly, the answer is yes. Here are five apps for iOS that can help you work smarter and more efficiently — either directly or indirectly.
What does a memory game have to do with making your job easier? According to several studies, memory games can make you smarter in the short term, improve overall brain function, and even help to prevent dementia. Brainbean gives you eight free games that exercise your mind and improve memory, pattern recognition, and imagination:
- Letter List gives you a letter, and asks you to come up with as many words as possible that start with the letter
- Incomplete Drawing gives you part of a drawing and asks you to complete it with the power of your imagination
- Word Scramble gives you a bunch of letter tiles, and has you make as many four-letter words as possible from those letters
- Pipe Builder has you rearrange six tiles containing pipe segments to form a complete pipeline
Brainbean also includes Mosaic Drawing, Pattern Tiles, Block Builder, and Remote Association.
Learning a new language is another proven way to boost brain function, but actually doing this is harder as you get older. Babbel provides an easy, interactive tool to help you learn a second language, or a third and fourth. Game-like activities are used to help you master words and phrases, and simple listen-and-repeat actions allow you to master pronunciation. There are 14 languages to choose from, including German, Spanish, French, and Italian.
Babbel is free for the first few levels. Advanced lessons are available for a monthly subscription fee.
Adobe Photoshop Sketch
This free-form sketching app from the biggest name in digital illustration lets you draw and sketch on photos or backgrounds that are imported from your camera, device storage, or the Adobe Creative Cloud. You can also sketch on a blank page. It includes five pens and a full color palette, as well as a ruler tool to easily draw straight lines. Adobe Photoshop Sketch is free, and makes a great tool for meetings and presentations.
Adobe Photoshop Mix
Another Adobe product that uses the Creative Cloud, this simplified version of Adobe’s flagship software lets you perform photo editing on your iPhone or iPad. Features include image mixing, enhancing, effects, cut-outs, and crops. And with connectivity to the Creative Cloud, you can access more advanced image editing tools such as content-aware fills and shake reduction.
Adobe Photoshop Mix is a free app, and can be extremely useful in meetings and presentations, especially on larger iPad screens.
While not as versatile or free-form functional as the Adobe apps listed here, Skitch is an excellent on-the-go annotation tool. The app allows you to quickly and easily annotate web pages, PDF files, images and photos, and maps pulled from Apple Maps, allowing for more streamlined communication on the fly.
Skitch is free to download, but it costs $1.99 to get PDF markup capabilities (all other markup features are free). You can also connect the app to Evernote Premium for $4.99.
For more information on how to make your job easier, or to find a job that suits you better, contact the employment experts at The Armada Group. We help place candidates in top positions across the nation – and world.