Kill time while in line with these mobile apps

Nov 20, 2012

The holiday shopping season is upon us! If you are going to purchase gifts from actual stores (rather than online and via mobile applications) be prepared to wait in line. While there are no apps just yet designed to reduce the wait at a Macy’s or Best Buy, there are plenty of titles you can tap into for entertainment and even a little bit of peace.

Here are five of the best apps to pass the time in line this holiday season.

Pocket (iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, Android) Free

How many times have you glimpsed at a headline of a story from a desktop computer with the intent to read it later when you have a few minutes to spare? Of course, when you’re waiting in line at the department store, you’d rather avoid having to resize the story so you can read it easily on your smartphone. Even worse, if there is a weak cellular connection and no wireless Internet access you’re out of luck. Enter Pocket, an app formerly known as Read It Later. Accessing content through the app is a pleasure and its other features, such as changing text size, sharing through myriad services, and archiving finished content is intuitive. The app also lets you store and view videos offline, and tag content so you can easily find later.

Crackle – Movies & TV (iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, Android) Free

Video streaming services like Netflix and Hulu are great, but they require monthly subscriptions in order to access anything good. Crackle is free, and includes thousands of classic and relatively recent movies and TV shows. One series that you can only access from Crackle is Jerry Seinfeld’s Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee. The slick and hilarious video clips average about 15 minutes in length and include playful interactions with other comedians including Larry David, Mel Brooks and Ricky Gervais and they cruise around in fancy automobiles grabbing cups of joe. What better way to pass the time than watching a show that is literally about nothing!

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Holiday Recipes & Party Planning Guide by FOOD52 (iPhone, iPod touch, iPad) $2.99

Are you in charge of the holidays this year? Whether you are planning a full-fledged Christmas dinner or just a family Sunday supper, Food52’s Holiday Recipes & Party Planning Guide app is the tastiest place to get started. This apps lets you multitask in line as you learn how to shuck an oyster or truss a turkey.

Meditations for Manifesting – Dr. Wayne W. Dyer (iPhone, iPod touch) $5.99

A little meditation each day can go a long way towards improving your life. Instead of spending 20 minutes tweeting nonsense with strangers, spend some quality time with yourself. When you find yourself with that rare and coveted free time to yourself on the bus or even hiding in the bathroom at work, the Meditation for Manifesting app for is a great way to pass the time positively. Dr. Wayne D. Dyer will help coach you to a more optimistic mindset in no time.

Unstuck (iPad) Free

Are all the long lines and holiday stress getting you down? Take your downtime and start to improve your outlook on life with the free Unstuck app for iPhone. Whether you are experiencing issues in your relationship, with a friend or family member, or at work, the Unstuck app is the perfect coach to help you start working through your problem. This positive lifestyle app helps you shake off the negatives and say hello to a more positive you. With the new iPad mini, you can now easily carry this app with you wherever you go. Feeling better yet?

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Brad Spirrison

Brad Spirrison is the managing editor of appoLearning and Appolicious Inc. In this capacity, he has sampled and evaluated thousands of iOS and Android applications. He also holds an M.A. in Education and Media Ecology from New York University.

Spirrison worked in concert with appoLearning Expert and Instructional Technology Specialist Leslie Morris while curating and evaluating educational applications.

A longtime media and technology commentator and executive, Spirrison is also a regular contributor to ABC News, The Huffington Post, TechCrunch, Bloomberg West and The Christopher Gabriel Program.

Spirrison is married and lives with his wife and young son in Chicago. As his son was born just weeks before the debut of the iPad, Spirrison takes his work home with him and regularly samples and enjoys a variety of educational applications for young children.

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