Whether we’re using our smartphone to organize play dates or handing over the iPad to keep the kids entertained, we can’t live without our mobile gadgets. But with more than a million apps available in Apple’s iTunes Store and Android’s Google Play market, our smartphones and tablets are useful for a lot more than calls and games.
From baby monitors to vacation planners to virtual assistants for mom, our annual guide to the 50 best apps for parents has everything you need to get the most from your iPhone, iPad, or Android smartphone. Best of all, most of these apps are free or available with free equivalents, so you can give them a whirl without having to put a dent in the family budget.
We hope you have as much fun checking out these apps as we did testing them. Be sure to tell us about your favorite apps, too — we can’t wait to see what you find! — Aaron Burgess
48 / 50
You Rule Chores
- #4 Organization
While we’ll probably never see a system that gets kids to love cleaning up after themselves, You Rule Chores certainly comes close. The app turns chores into a video game, complete with customizable avatars. You enter weekly assignments on your phone or iPad, and with each chore completed, kids earn virtual coins that can be “spent” toward real-world rewards such as an allowance, gifts, or anything else you decide. (All of this stuff can be customized in the app’s menu.) Of course, since You Rule Chores awards your kids’ avatars with power-ups and accessories when they complete tasks ahead of schedule, kids might find themselves less concerned with earning real-world loot. Big emphasis on “might,” of course.
Get it for iPhone + iPad, $3.99