Friday, February 20, 2015

Travels: Travel Apps, Part Two

Continued from



Peek is worth a look thanks to a quirky customization feature; when you first open the app, it runs through a photo-based quiz to determine your travel personality. Subsequently it will tailor suggestions based on your answers; I found it to be pretty accurate. It will be fun to watch Peek add locations and attractions. (Though there aren't many destinations yet outside the U.S., a spokesperson tells us that they're on the way.) Free for iOS; also on the Web at


There is a bit of a buzz around the Trover app at present, and when you see it you will understand why -- it performs like a location-based Instagram. When you search on a location, instead of giving you listings or addresses, Trover shows you a grid of pictures on which you can click for a bigger photo, more info, a map and directions.

Trover is crowdsourced, which can introduce quality control and completeness problems, but I found it to offer some good inspiration for things to do and see. In my own area there was a picture of a giant tire on a football field -- but it's a college town, so hijinks are just part of the fun. Free on Android and iOS



For aviation geeks, Flightradar24 can be a somewhat mind-blowing experience; center your map at your house or any other location, and you can see all the planes in the sky above. Tap on one of the planes and you can see the type of plane, tail number, flight origin and destination, flight path, altitude, speed, GPS location, and more. $3.99 for Android and iOS, $3.49 for Windows; also free on the Web at


FlightAware's app is a companion to its website that allows you to search by flight number, tail number or route; it is a much more limited view than Flightradar24, but lets you track the location of friends, or your own flight if you have onboard Wi-Fi. Free for Android, iOS and Windows



Travel can be filled with downtime perfect for catching up on your online reading -- if you have an affordable Internet connection, that is. Enter "read later" apps like Pocket, which allows you to download articles and even videos for later offline perusal, both from the Web as well as from more than 800 apps like Twitter, Facebook, Zite and Flipboard. The app syncs across multiple devices as well, letting users choose something on one device and have it available on another later. Free on Android, Blackberry, iOS, Windows and more


Timelapse photography is the photography trend of the moment, and Hyperlapse (by Instagram) is the best of the lot. It is incredibly easy to use, creates clever timelapse videos right on the spot, saves them to your phone's photo reel (no forced sharing or in-app-only access) and lets you share them almost effortlessly. An image stabilization feature and a timer that shows while filming how long the timelapse will be separate it from the native timelapse apps on some newer phones. Free for iOS

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