10 Essential Apps for the Savvy Student

We run down 10 must-have apps for the school year.


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Smartphones and tablets are everywhere, especially across college campuses. We've compiled a list of 10 essential apps that every student should consider before venturing to academia's ivory tower.

Work Smarter:

Evernote (iOS, Android. Free)

Feel like taking notes on a pad and paper is so last century? Try Evernote, a mobile app that allows you to take notes on one device and access them across your other devices and computers. You can also sync images, attachments, and a host of other things. Available for your iPhone or Android devices, this is a must-have for anyone who shares notes, struggles to stay organized, or can't read their own handwriting.

Wolfram Alpha ([$1.99 for iOS, $3.99 for Android)

If you're falling behind in that difficult science class, Wolfram Alpha can help you get back on track. Much like the computer from Star Trek, this app gives you just about any facts you ask of it instantly, making it an invaluable asset in the classroom or writing papers. It's especially strong with science and math information.

Dropbox (iOS, Android. Free)

Need to move a large file around, and the school's email attachment limit is too small? Use Dropbox, a free utility that lets you store and transfer huge files quickly. With this app, you won't be scrambling to find an old USB drive five minutes before your paper is due.

Adobe Reader (iOS, Android. Free)

While it's nice that professors are starting to learn that books are an expensive drag on the college experience, many mobile devices fall short when it comes to reading PDF files. Leave those paper handouts behind when you use this app to stay up on your daily reading.

Extracurricular Activities:

Grubhub (iOS, Android. Free)

Sure, the school cafeteria lets you pile on as much food as you can stuff down your throat, but when that just doesn't cut it, you want to find local food, and quickly. The Grubhub app lets you find and order food on your smartphone or tablet without any hassle, letting you get back to "studying" on a Friday night.

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Netflix (iOS, Android. Free with subscription)

Who rents DVDs or Blu-ray discs anymore? With the Netflix app, you can stream movies directly to your tablet wirelessly when you need a break from studying. You'll need a monthly subscription, but you can cancel at any time.

Skype (iOS, Android. Free)

If you're going to a college far away from your hometown, Skype allows you to video chat with your folks and friends back home. You can even call land lines internationally for a small price. This app is a must-have for international students.

Untappd (iOS, Android. Free)

Just turn 21 and you're "new" to the drinking scene? Expand your merry horizons with Untappd, an app that helps you find new places to go, new drinks to try, and see where your friends are drinking. For the advanced user, you can catalog which beers you like by taking a picture of your pint, and even make a wish list of what to try in the future.

Save Some Money:

mint.jpg (iOS, Android. Free)

Now that you're on your own, it's time to manage your finances like an adult. With's free service and app, you can keep your bank accounts tidy and track your budget like a pro. Unfortunately, it can't help with the high cost of books, but it can help you squeeze out a bit of money for other fun things.

GasBuddy (iOS, Android. Free)

If you have to commute or your car is a gashog from 1970, GasBuddy can help you track down the lowest gas prices around you at any given time, allowing you to scrimp and save for stuff that really matters.

Know a must-have app for college students? Tell us about it in the comments below!

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