Every budding journalist needs a smartphone. Whether you’re using it to stay in touch with your profs and editors via text, scanning your email for tips or playing Candy Crush while waiting for a source to talk to you, up-to-date reporters would be lost without a phone. So whether you’re an aspiring reporter or just the newsiest one out of all of your friends, here are four apps for the journalist in everyone.
Here’s your daily PSA for journalists: always bring your voice recorder. You never know when an interview opportunity will strike, and scrambling to take notes majorly sucks, especially when you can’t read what you’ve blindly scribbled. Handheld recorders are still useful and won’t run down your phone battery, but if you’ve got a decent charge, Smart Voice Recorder is quite handy. It’s no professional microphone – so be wary if you need some high-quality audio – but it gets the job done. The app also allows you to share your recordings via email or social media, and if you’re just playing around like I was before I went to bed, you can actually set a recording as a ringtone. I decided on Ylvis’ ‘The Fox,’ as it was blaring from my computer speakers.
Editor’s note: Though this app is only available on Android, try out Voice Record Pro for a good iOs alternative.
When I got my phone, it came with Flipboard, a news aggregator I use once a month. I expect to use Google Currents even less. Neither of them are bad, I just prefer reading news on my computer. I’m weird that way. Anyway, Google Currents is good for people who do like getting the top stories to their phone. You can get news from a wide array of outlets like CBC and NPR. I even got to read more than a handful of articles from the news sources that usually have a paywall. This app reads like an eBook with full text pages and side to side scrolling. There’s really nothing bad to say, as long as you can remember to use it. And check out pick of the week – the random articles are always the best.
Who doesn’t use this app? No, seriously, who doesn’t know what this app is? I’ve been using the Twitter app since I got a smartphone and it has become that dear old friend that I abandon every once in a while for UberSocial. For those who are not phone addicts like me and don’t use two Twitter apps at once, the official Twitter app meets all of your needs. You get your @ replies, your direct messages, your trends and your timeline. Bonus: it’s quite pleasant to look at. I just keep jumping ship because UberSocial let’s you go farther back in your direct messages plus allows you to create an Inner Circle of people you specifically want to follow (you can also do that from your computer by creating a list). But if you just use Twitter for your news or more importantly, Benedict Cumberbatch news, this is for you.
This app is what its name says, a camera, with all the bells and whistles attached. The camera is probably just like the one on your actual phone with flash and a timer. After you take a picture, you can play around with white balance, cropping and effects. The effects are mainly the ones you are used to with your computer, featuring filters from pop art to sepia. You can share the photos from your phone across apps like Twitter and Tumblr. You can also play around with other photos from other sources on your phone. The app pretty much does what your phone should already do, so it’s a bit anticlimactic, but it does offer an online album, which is great for when your Dropbox fills up.