I have to confess, I have a new favorite spot to go shopping. It’s open 24-7, everyone is always friendly and the prices are rock-bottom. Sometimes I even get some pretty great stuff for free! Yes, I’m a big fan of shopping at the app store. This store is an amazingly useful place for those who are looking to make the most of their time. Of the hundreds of thousands of apps (short for software applications that run on mobile devices) available for all every type of smart phone, I have found that there are a select few that make the grade for being truly useful helping users stay focused and organized – although I must warn you that none of these include tossing angry birds at rogue hogs (a little shout-out to those who are addicted to the wildly popular “Angry Birds” app.)

If you use a smart phone, but haven’t yet ventured into the world of apps, you’re not alone. Time spent – or wasted – on smart phones has become a serious problem. And that’s where I am stepping in to help you out! I’ve listed here 5 apps I’d like to share with you that have the potential to help you get your life on track by harnessing the power of technology.

Consistently voted best organizing app for families by national parenting groups and publications, Cozi is a free app that helps busy families manage schedules, track shopping and to- do lists, organize household chores, and stay in communication—all in one place. All family members can access Cozi from any computer or mobile device. Cozi helps families to be more productive, so they have more time for the things they really want to do.
Available for iPhone, iPad, Android and BlackBerry; free

An education app great for student, teacher and parent is iStudiez. Available in a free “lite” version as well as a pro version, the award-winning iStudiez app tracks course schedules, lectures and labs, tracks tasks and deadlines, plans and reminds of homework, arranges assignments and provides resources to support both student and teacher.
Currently available for iPhone or iPad; free and pro $2.99 versions

Idea Sketch
For creative types with fertile minds that are always spinning out new ideas, Idea Sketch lets you easily draw a diagram - mind map, concept map or flow chart - and convert it to a text outline, or vice versa. You can use Idea Sketch for brainstorming new ideas, illustrating concepts, making lists and outlines, planning presentations, creating organizational charts and more. With this app, you get the best of both worlds – combining fun and productivity.
Available for iPhone, iPad; free and pro versions

Task-masters, rejoice. Google offers the Gtasks app that simply and efficiently syncs with your Gmail task list – and lets you keep a mobile-only list as well. You also have ability to share your lists or task items easily via Gmail, texting and other options.
Available for iPhone, iPad, Android and BlackBerry; free

Foodies around the world are always looking for the next big app. Here is one that has a lot of potential. Seasons keeps you organized and up-to-date as you hit the produce markets for what is fresh and in season in your area, including the U.S., Canada, Australia, United Kingdom and Western and Central Europe. This app allows you to organize your shopping list, while also living greener and eating healthier by knowing what is fresh and in season. It includes photos and descriptions of produce and helps you find nearby farmers’ markets as well.
Available for iPhone and iPad; $1.99

As you can see, there are a wide variety of apps with great potential for streamlining the many different facets of life from home to work to out-on-the-town. These 5 are the most recent ones that stand out during my time spent shopping – I meant “researching studiously” – in the apps store. And be sure to let me know when you discover something amazing in the apps world yourself.

Author's Bio: 

Carmen Coker is a former U.S. Air Force officer turned professional organizer and productivity expert. She provides organizing resources for small business at www.OrganizedEntrepreneur.com and for home life at www.OrganizeClutterbugs.com