Written by Emma Vetriano • Published 9th November 2011 • 2 minute read

Image App Sphere

Image App Sphere

There are 5.3bn mobile subscribers (77% of the world population) and smartphones are the fastest growing sector. Add to this the 15 million first-generation iPads sold before the launch of the iPad 2 – and it’s clear how many people are accessing the internet while on the move.

To budding entrepreneurs and web start-ups this is a potential goldmine and naturally, a plethora of apps have appeared on the marketplace to cash in. So, when there are hundreds of thousands of apps to choose from, how do you sort the wheat from the chaff?

Image App Store

Image App Store

Here are our top 10 apps, from the best time-killers, to the ones we simply couldn’t run our lives without.

  • Trainline

Mundane but oh-so-useful. After all who wants to spend their money on something as boring as travel?  Trainline has long been the go-to place where savvy train users make huge savings and this easy to navigate app gives you times and tickets in a few clicks.

  • Bump

The digital equivalent of a business card, simply tap your phone against another device with Bump installed and hey presto! Your photo, email address and phone number will be added to their contacts book… now that is smooth.

  • Dictionary.com

Do you shift in your seat at a misplaced apostrophe or avert your eyes from a spelling mistake? Then you (like us) are a language geek and this app is your idea of heaven. With an inbuiltThesauruss as well, you will never be lost-for-words again.

  • Spottd

Floxx the inventors of FitFinder have produced a second generation location-based app. The new-look version Spottd helps you locate cafes, theatres and anything else going on around you with reviews from other Spottd users to help you make the right choice. Billed as the world’s first ‘social sat nav’ it is all about connecting with others around you whether you know them or not.

  • Amazon

There is a birthday present for everyone on Amazon… And they do a wrapping service with personalised tags. Everyone needs this app.

  • Kindle

This is by far the easiest to use e-book app. It has 1000s more books in store than Apple’s iBook equivalent, although less visual frills.

  • ITV Player, 4oD catch-up, iPlayer

Whether your loyalty lies with X factor or Strictly there’s no longer any need to stay in on a Saturday night wrestling over the remote. Choose which side you’re on in the privacy of your very own mobile device and no one need know about your guilty pleasure viewing.

  • Colour Splash

Everyone has at least one snap-happy Facebook friend whose endless photo albums have resulted in you filtering them out of your newsfeed. Point them in the direction of this app and they will seem like a Photoshop pro in seconds.

  • TED

TED’s talks about ‘ideas worth spreading’, are unmissable and bite-size at 10-20 minutes long. Perfect portable viewing for the commute home.

  • Scrabble

Admittedly this is better on the larger screen of the iPad. Despite this, Scrabble have done a brilliant job at recreating this perennial classic for the digital world. Move over Angry Birds – the Scrabble app is a serious new contender in the mobile gaming sector.