7 apps to take your device to the next level

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Written for Vancity Buzz by Guillermo Serrano, Vacay.ca writer.


Do you feel pressured to be the one among your friends and family who has one of the latest apps? Here are the seven best apps to pre‐load, gift, or ask for this holiday season. Everyone else around you may feel as if they’re not as smart as their smartphone. You know you’re slightly smarter than your device although Siri and Google still have you beat for now.

Monument Valley by ustwo

$4.59 iOS / $5.99 Android

Monument Valley is an illusory adventure of impossible geometry to help the princess proceed through puzzles and mysterious monuments. Feel good about downloading this app. You’re not playing a game, you’re doing geometry. And, yes, this was the same app featured on House of Cards.

Periscope by Twitter

Free for iOS / Android

Explore the world by watching and creating live video broadcast. It’s like being there, but not actually having to leave the comfort of your SkyTrain seat. When a broadcaster is live they’re sharing video, audio, and location with viewers. Viewers can interact with the broadcasters in real‐time using Messages and Hearts. Follow people to get notified in app. Or watch from links posted on Twitter.

Homestyler by Autodesk

Free for iOS / Android

Do you want to see your renovation project finished before you hire the contractors? Snap a picture of the room and create your own 3D home design playground. Placing 3D models of real furniture, light fixtures, paintings, plants and rugs in your room. Changing the colour of the walls, decorating with paper wall, putting new hard wood floors or tiles.

The Room Two by Fireproof Games

$2.29 for iOS / Android

A mystery puzzler inside a tactile 3D world with remarkable looking tight graphics that instantly invoke the secretive world you’re about to enter. The game was a recipient of a BAFTA award and is the perfect app for a cold winter’s night.

Tune in radio by TuneIn.

Free for iOS / Android

With over 100.000 radio stations from around the world, TuneIn has the largest selection of sports, music, news and talk radio.

Wine Spectator Wine Ratings+ by M. Shanken Communication

Free for iOS / Android

Make better wine choices with quick access to Wine Spectator’s expert reviews so that next time you’re at a fancy restaurant with someone you’re trying to impress, you don’t have to ask the server for their recommendation but an app instead.

Elevate by Elevate

Free for iOSAndroid

Use Elevate, a brain training program, and maybe you won’t need to do so much geometry and can memorize all the wine you have once tasted. This app is designed to improve focus, speaking abilities, processing speed, memory, math skills and more. Each person is provided with a personalized training program that adjusts over time to maximize results.

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