5 Google Wallet
Google Wallet makes the list, but just barely. It is in the bottom of the top five not because it’s not a cool app, but largely because it is just a bit ahead of its time. This app allows you to essentially ditch your wallet (or at least your credit and debit cards) and use it as a one-stop gizmo for all your transaction needs: you “swipe” your phone near a piece of specialized hardware at a point-of-sale location and your stored credit/debit account is billed as though you had used the actual card. The idea is cool and is seemingly where everything is headed anyway, but the limited number of Google Wallet-ready shops you’ll find today limit its efficacy. For now.
4 MoneyWise Pro app
The MoneyWise Pro app is quite similar to the Mint.com app right above it. It is essentially a personal budget tracker in just the same way, with the added benefit of being great for the traveler because it features the ability to track your financial life and habits in myriad currencies. It is also pleasantly advertisement free but that’s because it… is not free. It costs seven bucks. If you can afford to travel the world, we think you can handle the $7, though.
Mint.com offers you its free personal finance app and we say take that offer! It is like having an accountant in your pocket! This app helps you track your entire personal financial life, from keeping tabs in your investments to helping you manage what you spend in a given day: the macro and micro come together to help you form a snapshot of your overall position, your future financial path, and how to make the most of your money. If you are willing to take the time to keep your information updated regularly, this app will be a can’t-live-without soon enough.
2 Tip N Split Tip Calculator
Tip N Split Tip Calculator. Let’s face it: calculating the right tip quickly can be trickier than any of us like to admit. Rather than wrapping up another meal spending another few minutes awkwardly trying to remember long division, why not be able to grab your phone, quickly factor in the number or guests you are with, the percent you want to leave based on the quality of the service, and with a few quick taps of buttons, your tip is calculated? The beauty of this app is its simplicity.
We start off with the big dog, pretty much: Yahoo! Finance is widely regarded as the best online resource available for all things financial, from up to the microsecond (practically) tracking of various stock indexes to ridiculously comprehensive historical data on individual stocks, bond yields, etc. to endlessly customizable features, which is what attracts most users of Yahoo! Finance in the first place. Well, now it’s available as an app and it’s a free one at that. While of course you are going to have more options available to you and more ease of use on the actual website, this app makes most features of the full site available at your fingertips. A bit slow on the reload, at times, but hey, it’s a lot of data!
Now, we’re not going to tell you that with these apps you are well on your way to being the next Warren Buffet, but we will say they’ll start to point you in the right direction for managing to be the “Oracle” of your own financial life. Or at least to figure out how much all those espressos are adding up to each month….