5 Apps That Can Help You Save Big, Or Even Get Paid

Image result for 5 Apps That Can Help You Save Big, Or Even Get Paid

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Many apps we can download on our phones promise to save us money or earn rewards. From scanning a barcode to taking a survey, there are hundreds of programs you can choose from.

One blogger tried dozens of them and narrowed it down to the top five free apps she’s cashed in on.

“All of my family will come to me and say, ‘I’m going to be buying this, how can I save money?’” blogger Sarah Carlson said.

She’s come a long way from clipping coupons for her mom every Sunday — now, Carlson shares her savings secrets on realhousewivesofmn.com. She regularly blogs about the apps she’s tried.

“There are a lot of apps out there right now where you can either save money or make money too,” she said.

And she had no trouble coming up with her top five.

Shopkick

“I think my top money saving app is Shopkick,” she said.

Shopkick offers rewards for shopping online or for walking in to stores. Scan bar codes on products for more kicks or points. Then, redeem them for gift cards or merchandise from Target to Best Buy to Starbucks.

“It’s really easy and that’s why I like it so much.”

ShopSavvy

Shop Savvy made the second pick on her list. Scan the bar code and the app searches stores to find the best price. Most will price match if you find a better deal.

Carlson usually uses it any time she’s about to spend more than 20 dollars for an item. She saved 50 dollars on a TV the last time she used it.

“You’re still walking out of the same store with the same item with 50 more dollars in your pocket. Why not?” she said.

PocketFlip

Don’t bother leaving your home to be able to use the third on her list — PocketFlip is survey-based.

“You go through the surveys and earn points, and once you earn enough points you can cash out for gift cards,” Carlson said.

Each survey is under five minutes. They’re usually based on beauty and home products commonly used.

Ibotta

“These apps are a little bit different in that you make the purchase first and then you upload the receipt afterwards,” Carlson said.

Ibotta pays you cash back on many items, mostly groceries. You cash out once you reach the $20 mark either through PayPal or a gift card.

Gift Card Granny

“Another great app is Gift Card Granny,” Carlson said. “Basically, it’s an app that shows you things that are for sale for less than their value.”

It’s that simple — shop for gift cards less than their value. We saw 21 percent savings for Fandango gift cards for movie ticket savings and 14 percent on Starbucks cards.

Feeling overwhelmed? Carlson suggests just picking a couple of apps and you’ll save something.

“Use the ones that work for you,” she said. “That’s better than saving nothing.”

Another app you might like is called Qapital. Everytime you use a credit card it rounds up to the nearest dollar, and that money goes straight into a savings account.

[“Source-minnesota”]

LG Will Be First to Introduce Phone with Android Nougat — But What Does That Even Mean?

LG Will Be First to Introduce Phone with Android Nougat -- But What Does That Even Mean?

LG (KRX:066570) has announced it will unveil it’s latest phone — the v20 — on September 6. And one thing at least is for certain. The phone will be the first to run the new Android Nougat operating system. But what does that mean exactly and how useful will the phone be for business communications?

The announcements of new smartphones and mobile operating systems are met with great anticipation because of the reliance on these devices. Customers want innovative features and useful applications to improve the way they communicate, work, play, shop and more. So it is not surprising that the level of expectation is that much higher with the announcement that LG’s new flagship phone will be the first to ship with the latest Android operating system inside.

As far as the V20 goes, the only thing LG has revealed is that it will build upon the “rich multimedia” experiences the V10 brought. (That phone was released lasted year.)

But Juno Cho, president of LG Electronics and Mobile Communications Company said in an official release: “The LG V20 upgrades and extends its predecessor’s cutting-edge multimedia features a step further, providing distinctive mobile experience and sets a new standard for premium phones for consumers.”

So any other features discussed in the media are pretty much speculation until LG makes more information available. However, Engadget has reported the V20 will have a “dual front selfie” camera, a second screen similar to the V10, and will be the first phone with a built-in 32-bit DAC (digital to analog converter).

The phone is slated for release in the third quarter of 2016, with no specific date set by LG.

What About Android Nougat?

Nougat is the latest mobile operating system from Android, and just like the previous versions it is named after a sweet treat (even though the popular choice amongst users was Nutella). Google made the developer preview available early, and it is now on version 5, which will be the last one before general availability.

During I/O 2016, Google said Android N (as it was known at the time) will focus on performance, security and productivity, features that are essential in today’s smartphones because they are increasingly becoming part of the workforce ecosystem.

Performance

Nougat has the new Vulkan 3D graphics API, which has been designed to allow developers to get better details into graphical frames. It can improve graphical performance on regular apps by 30 to 60 percent, making gamers that much happier.

A new JIT (just-in-time) compiler will be able to install apps up to 75 percent faster while reducing the compiled code size by 50 percent. This will result in improved battery life because it won’t tax the processor as much.

Security

The popularity of Android makes it a great target for hackers, and the way it is distributed makes it that much more challenging to secure. In order to address this problem, Nougat will implement a three-pronged approach: a file-based encryption, automatic software updates in the background, and media framework hardening to ensure the safety of the device when users are accessing media and media types.

Productivity

Smartphones are used to get things done. Activities can include work, play, shopping, paying bills and a host of other tasks.  With that in mind Nougat has introduced several productivity tools to help in these endeavors.

The new Direct Reply feature lets you directly reply to messages, emails and other form of communications directly from the notification bar. The reply options also include 72 new realistic Unicode 9 emoji glyphs, so you can make your point without having to say a word.

A new multi-window feature will allow users to Split Screen, so you can video conference on one side, while looking at relevant information on the other.

Last but not least is Daydream, Google’s new VR platform. Even though Google will have its own headset, the support in Android Nougat means phone makers that are Daydream-ready will be able to take advantage of the growing popularity of virtual reality.

Android Nougat will have a total of 250 new features, and phones such as the LG V20 will come ready out of the box so users can have a better experience when they communicate, work and play.

Image: LG

More in: Google

[“source-smallbiztrends”]

Samsung Flow Connects Tablet, Computer — Even Your TV

Samsung has unveiled Flow, a new device handoff feature that will eventually let you start an activity on one device and move it to another.

This means you could eventually get an email notification on your smartwatch then switch to your smartphone or tablet to read. Finally, you could switch to your laptop when you’re ready to type a response, all without leaving the application or even the document you’re currently working with.

If this whole concept sounds familiar, it is. Just recently, Apple introduced Continuity, another handoff feature available on devices running the company’s new OS X Yosemite operating system.

The caveat: for Samsung Flow to work, all your devices will have to be from Samsung.

The company gives a brief overview in this demonstration video of just how Samsung Flow will eventually work:

As you can see, Samsung claims the feature will eventually work over a full range of media products — including your TV.

This means, when Flow is implemented, you will be able to receive notifications of phone calls even while you’re watching television — if you wish to, that is.

There are three main features to Flow, according to a report from The Verge. Those features are called Defer, Transfer, and Notify.

Using the Transfer feature, apps and other activities will be able to be switched among enabled devices. You will be able to switch work activities — like reading and editing a document — for example from one device to  another. But the Transfer feature could also be utilized for things like moving a video call from your laptop to your smartphone.

The Defer feature will allow you to put off an activity until later. When you Defer an activity, Samsung claims, it will be stored at the exact place you left off until resumed. That means an email or article you’re reading would resume at the same line where you stopped reading, for example.

As discussed earlier, the Notify feature would allow for some some notifications across all devices.

Incoming calls and low-battery warnings could appear on any device that’s connected to Flow, for example, Slash Gear reports.

To enable the Flow feature on a Samsung device, the Flow icon — a triangle-like design — would be selected opening a menu of options. To transfer an activity to another device, for example, you would choose from a list of available devices where you want your work to go.

Samsung Flow was just recently introduced to Samsung developers so it may be some time until it’s actually available on any of the company’s devices, according to Engadget. But the overview does give a hint at the kind of workflow flexibility Samsung users may be able to look forward to.

Image: Samsung

More in: Samsung

[“source-smallbiztrends”]

LG Will Be First to Introduce Phone with Android Nougat — But What Does That Even Mean?

LG Will Be First to Introduce Phone with Android Nougat -- But What Does That Even Mean?

LG (KRX:066570) has announced it will unveil it’s latest phone — the v20 — on September 6. And one thing at least is for certain. The phone will be the first to run the new Android Nougat operating system. But what does that mean exactly and how useful will the phone be for business communications?

The announcements of new smartphones and mobile operating systems are met with great anticipation because of the reliance on these devices. Customers want innovative features and useful applications to improve the way they communicate, work, play, shop and more. So it is not surprising that the level of expectation is that much higher with the announcement that LG’s new flagship phone will be the first to ship with the latest Android operating system inside.

As far as the V20 goes, the only thing LG has revealed is that it will build upon the “rich multimedia” experiences the V10 brought. (That phone was released lasted year.)

But Juno Cho, president of LG Electronics and Mobile Communications Company said in an official release: “The LG V20 upgrades and extends its predecessor’s cutting-edge multimedia features a step further, providing distinctive mobile experience and sets a new standard for premium phones for consumers.”

So any other features discussed in the media are pretty much speculation until LG makes more information available. However, Engadget has reported the V20 will have a “dual front selfie” camera, a second screen similar to the V10, and will be the first phone with a built-in 32-bit DAC (digital to analog converter).

The phone is slated for release in the third quarter of 2016, with no specific date set by LG.

What About Android Nougat?

Nougat is the latest mobile operating system from Android, and just like the previous versions it is named after a sweet treat (even though the popular choice amongst users was Nutella). Google made the developer preview available early, and it is now on version 5, which will be the last one before general availability.

During I/O 2016, Google said Android N (as it was known at the time) will focus on performance, security and productivity, features that are essential in today’s smartphones because they are increasingly becoming part of the workforce ecosystem.

Performance

Nougat has the new Vulkan 3D graphics API, which has been designed to allow developers to get better details into graphical frames. It can improve graphical performance on regular apps by 30 to 60 percent, making gamers that much happier.

A new JIT (just-in-time) compiler will be able to install apps up to 75 percent faster while reducing the compiled code size by 50 percent. This will result in improved battery life because it won’t tax the processor as much.

Security

The popularity of Android makes it a great target for hackers, and the way it is distributed makes it that much more challenging to secure. In order to address this problem, Nougat will implement a three-pronged approach: a file-based encryption, automatic software updates in the background, and media framework hardening to ensure the safety of the device when users are accessing media and media types.

Productivity

Smartphones are used to get things done. Activities can include work, play, shopping, paying bills and a host of other tasks.  With that in mind Nougat has introduced several productivity tools to help in these endeavors.

The new Direct Reply feature lets you directly reply to messages, emails and other form of communications directly from the notification bar. The reply options also include 72 new realistic Unicode 9 emoji glyphs, so you can make your point without having to say a word.

A new multi-window feature will allow users to Split Screen, so you can video conference on one side, while looking at relevant information on the other.

Last but not least is Daydream, Google’s new VR platform. Even though Google will have its own headset, the support in Android Nougat means phone makers that are Daydream-ready will be able to take advantage of the growing popularity of virtual reality.

Android Nougat will have a total of 250 new features, and phones such as the LG V20 will come ready out of the box so users can have a better experience when they communicate, work and play.

Image: LG

More in: Google

[“source-smallbiztrends”]