Apps have all sorts of uses—some lifesaving, some enjoyably frivolous. A quick scan through the App Store or Google Play Store will reveal how wide and diverse the catalogue really is. However, whether you’re pasting Drake into your photos or managing your entire workload, apps are increasingly where we spend the majority of our digital lives.
So today we count down the 15 new apps that were released in 2015 that are worthy of that previous space on your smartphone.
15. Evernote Scannable (iOS)
There have a been a few notable scanning apps out there for years now, but Evernote Scannable still manages to do something special. Not only is the scanning itself nearly flawless, the app also comes with some really great sharing and tagging options.
The most powerful thing about Scannable, however, is the fact that it plugs into Evernote’s ever-increasing platform of apps and services in just the way you’d want it to—and that’s something no other scanning app can say.—Luke Larsen
14. DSCO (iOS)
Made by the famous VSCO makers, DSCO is their stab at a short video app. It doesn’t reinvent the game, but if you’re a VSCO addict, there’s no question that you’ll love DSCO. As with many of these short video apps, they still haven’t quite figured out the file format problem, but if you’re obsessed with making either silly or artsy gif-like videos, DSCO is definitely worth a download.—LL
13. Darkroom (iOS)
Speaking of VSCO, next is an app that wants to replace that one altogether. It might not have the stylistic strength of VSCO’s default filters, but what is lacks in that department it makes up for in customization.
You can make great filter settings on your own and save them for use later, which is really helpful. Furthermore, Darkroom gets rid of all that messy importing and exporting of photos, which removes one more step from taking a photo to posting it.—LL
12. Spark (iOS)
With the sudden loss of Mailbox, people have desperately trying to find a replacement for their mobile emailing needs. Spark is a new mail client that is a pretty good option—it’s easy to set up, has a clean interface, and even features the Mailbox-influenced “read later” option, which is great for ignoring emails without forgetting about them entirely. It might not be as good as Mailbox was, but it sure beats out that terrible Apple mail client you’ll be stuck with otherwise.—LL
11. YouTube Music (iOS, Android)
YouTube Music is one of those weird apps that seems completely unnecessary for everyone except those of us who are heavy YouTube users. Put together with a YouTube Red membership, YouTube Music is one of the most interesting music streaming options out there. Thanks to all those illegal uploads, you probably won’t find a more complete library on any streaming platform. Throw in the audio-only mode and some nice discovery options and you’ve got a streaming platform that feels surprisingly holistic.
I still would have preferred that they found a clean way to implement this stuff into the primary app, I still really like what Google has done with the YouTube platform.—LL
10. Polarr (iOS, Android)
There are a million photo-editing apps out there, so it really does take something special to stand out. Polarr, the very popular online photo-editing website, now has a mobile app—and it’s every bit as intuitive and full-featured.
Polarr is as complex a photo-editing app as you’ll want to use on your iPhone, but if you’re looking for something beyond Instagram or even VSCO Cam, Polarr is definitely worth checking out. With the ability to make your own filters, as well as use advanced features like Tone Curves and HSL channels, you won’t find a better mobile Lightroom replacement.—LL
9. Apple Music (iOS, Android)
Apple Music, in many ways, is just what we needed in the music streaming world. It’s a good, formidable competitor with Spotify, but is an alternative in terms of both concept and design. If you’ve always hated the way the various desktop and mobile Spotify apps are designed, you may want to give Apple Music a try.
The app puts a focus on two things in particular that set it apart from the competition: discovery and social media integration. These are two things Spotify has always struggled with, so I’m happy to say that even the initial version of Apple Music at least attempts to fill those gaps and gives it a much-needed serious competitor (that has Taylor Swift for what it’s worth).—LL