Key Apps Every College Student Needs on Their Smartphone Home Screen

We’re all college students with a million deadlines, meetings, and other stressors on our mind. I’m here to pop in and talk about the key apps that I think every Furman student should have on their smartphone home screen to help stay on top of the game throughout the semester. Here’s a list of apps that helped me navigate my way through my first year of college: 

1. Google Docs: This app SAVED me so many times throughout the year. Because of its autosave feature, I could work away for hours and never once had to worry about clicking the save button because I knew my precious work would never disappear.  Additionally, you can share your documents with other students, professors, and literally anyone with a Gmail account. By doing this, the recipients can make comments and edits on your work which proves to be super helpful for group projects settings, a place to collaborate and write down ideas, and a fast and efficient editing system. Because SoHo (South Housing) is SO far from the lib (a whole 5-minute walk), sometimes late at night I would share my google doc with my roomie who basically lived in the lib and she would print it for me. 

2. GroupMe: I had no idea what GroupMe was before I arrived at Furman. However, I quickly learned that at Furman, people make a GroupMe for everything. Acappella group? GroupMe. A group of people who all own Crocs? GroupMe. The entire class of 2022 all in one group chat? You can find it all on GroupMe. This is definitely an essential for all college students, but especially Furman students. This app also has super cool features that you can’t find on iMessage: you can have up to 500 people in a chat, you can make and send polls, and you can make gifs. Overall, GroupMe is an essential app to have and I would most definitely put this app in the first row of my home screen. 

3. Doodle Jump: Now, this game was really popular in 2011, but it totally made a comeback (In McGlothlin 200) this past year. College life can be stressful, and sometimes you just need to take a 10-minute break. My roommate and I would sit on our dorm room floor and play the multiplayer version of this game almost every night during the first semester. Our passion for this app became so intense, we even encouraged the girls across the hall to play with us! The mindless yet stimulating act of watching the little yellow character bounce across your phone screen is the way to go for all your study break needs and encourages a healthy level of competition between you and your friends.

4. Spotify: This is probably my favorite app ever. First off, being a college student allows you to purchase a package with Spotify Premium, Hulu, and Showtime all for $4.99 per month! Switching over to this plan was life-changing and I highly recommend investing if you haven’t already! Spotify has pre-made playlists for literally any vibe you’re going for, and the app also makes it super easy to make & share playlists for whatever mood you’re feeling! Also, you can follow your friends/see what they’re listening to, and you can download music so you can listen to it offline! How can it get any better than that ?! (Pro tip: My favorite late-night study playlist is called All-Nighter by Spotify. 10/10!!!) 

5.   Instagram: This is such a classic app, but it has good reason to be so popular. Insta is such a great way to stay in touch with friends and family from home, while simultaneously keeping up with your people/activities at Furman! Also, Furman has so many different accounts that showcase what is going on around campus— from different athletic accounts advertising games to the bookstore account posting about giveaways with some cool Furman merchandise. I love showcasing all the awesome things about Furman and Greenville to my family and friends, and this app is undoubtedly one of the best ways to do it.  From posting sunset pics at Bald Rock to funny selfies taken with my Bio class, Instagram is a great way to stay connected and involved in your friend’s lives. (Pro tip: Set a timer for a small portion of time so you don’t get too carried away with ASMR soap carving videos like I do) 

6.  B&N College Bookstore: I think this app is so underrated. For starters, you get a 20% off coupon for one school spirit apparel item just for downloading the app and registering. Additionally, there are tons of other offers given throughout the school year. I have my notifications for the app turned on, and every once in a while I would get a reminder telling me there was a flash sale on sweatshirts, polos, Nike gear, etc. The Cafe portion of the Barnes & Noble bookstore also gives offers throughout the app, including but not limited to: A free drink after you buy 10, two-dollar pink drinks for the entire summer, and buy one get one free frozen hot chocolate. Although all these features are great, my favorite feature is how you can order textbooks so easily through the app. This can avoid lines and confusion at the bookstore during the crazy rush throughout the first few weeks of the semester. 

7. Quizlet: I totally understand and respect that everyone has different study methods that work for them, but Quizlet has always been my go-to. The app is super user-friendly and you can use various ways to study your flashcards including matching, typing the word, basic flashcard style, and a speed game. I personally love Quizlet because I would make the flashcards on my laptop, then study the flashcards on my phone before bed each night, when I woke up, walking to class, or really any other time I had downtime. Your account is synced on your phone and laptop, so any changes I made on my laptop would instantly also change on my phone which was awesome. 

8. The Weather Channel: I think I checked this app at least five times a day. Being from Florida I know all about unpredictable weather, but I wasn’t expecting Greenville to be as unpredictable as it was my freshman year. After getting caught in a downpour one too many times, I downloaded this app and would always check the radar before I left for class so I could properly gear up with my umbrella or rain boots. Because Furman is such a walkable campus, there aren’t too many options for transportation during the rain, so just be as prepared as you can to get a little wet. (Pro tip: When it is raining and you choose to drive to class, ONLY park in a parking lot that corresponds with your parking pass color. However, if you’re a freshman living in SoHo, I personally think you’re better off walking!) 

If you don’t already have these apps, I highly recommend you give them a shot! Best of luck as you start this semester! If you have any questions or concerns about Furman please reach out to me! And as always, Roll Dins! 

Have a happy week!

Alex


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