I thought it would be a nice idea to share a list of my favourite apps that I have either found in 2018, or continued to use through 2018 as a blog post. Here goes.
Telegram continues to be my most favourite medium for communication. It’s easy to use, available on multiple platforms, offers the flexibility of sharing files and offers e2e encrypted communication between devices the chat’s launched from.
Also I saw many friends move from WhatsApp to Telegram in 2018, and I am very happy about it.
Keybase is probably my top choice for sharing secure information. Unlike Telegram, it offers the flexibility of enjoying e2e encrypted communication between all the devices the user has. To be more clear, while e2e chats on Telegram are available only on the device the chat’s launched from, with Keybase one can enjoy e2e chats on all devices, with realtime synchronisation.
My privacy-focussed choice for apps continues! I also moved from Gmail to ProtonMail in 2018, and I am very happy about it. I have written about the move here that you should read.
I also signed up for Mastodon, on mastodon.social, as an alternative to Twitter and other social networking accounts. While there is no official client for Mastodon on Android, Tusky is fantastic. It offers the ability to use multiple Mastodon accounts at the same time, lists, blocking, muting and supports saving of drafts as well!
There are a few other Mastodon apps for Android as well, with Mastalab being another popular one, but I haven’t had a reason to move away from Tusky yet.
I also came across NordVPN’s $99/3 years deal, thanks to a colleague, and I signed up right away! It’s a nice little VPN app that allows usage on upto 6 devices – works well for my family!
While I gave up on Gmail for ProtonMail, I also gave up on Google Photos for SmugMug. SmugMug on Android feels snappy and I am happy with their lowest paid plan, which offers unlimited storage as well!
It looks like I haven’t mentioned Signal yet. Not much to differentiate between Signal and Keybase, but it’s another encrypted chat system that works good for family needs. I have been reading a lot on Signal vs Keybase, and while it looks like each has its own pros and cons, I am happy with both.
My usage is pretty much split, in that I use Signal for family while I use Keybase with friends.
1Password and Bitwarden
I cannot miss 1Password and Bitwarden. Until 2018, I did not use password managers and when I joined Automattic, I realised password managers are an absolute need for any internet user.
While I signed up for 1Password at work, I needed a solution for families. 1Password for families looks great at $5 a month, but I wanted a cheaper solution and that’s when I came across Bitwarden. At $10 an year, it felt to be the best choice for family/personal records, and I signed up!
Both the Android apps are fantastic, and you should try them if you haven’t so far.
Disclaimer first, I work for Automattic, the company behind Simplenote. 🙂
Simplenote is a nice little note-taking app that synchronises all updates across all the devices I use. I use it mostly for work purposes. It offers the ability to tag notes, use markdown to compose and publish notes online so that it can be viewed by others. You should try Simplenote if you haven’t so far!
I didn’t start using Forest until a week ago, but I like it now! It’s an app that helps you focus on your goals and stay away from your phone. When you start the timer, a tree starts growing. When you do something on the phone instead, the tree dies.
What are your favourite apps that you have discovered in 2018?