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7 must-have apps for your iPhone and Android smartphone

Whether you're using an iPhone or an Android smartphone, these are apps you need to check out.
Written by Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, Senior Contributing Editor

I love how apps don't see platform borders. There are so many great apps out there that work no matter whether you're an iOS (or iPadOS) user or an Android user. And the more I switch between the two platforms, the more I appreciate this. It is, after all, the apps that make a platform, not the shiny hardware -- no matter how much we like the shiny hardware!

Must read: Paying money to make Google Chrome faster and use less RAM

I love power naps, and I know it sounds weird to say that an app can help with napping, but I've consistently found that I get the best possible power naps using Pzizz.

If you suffer from insomnia, or are just finding it hard to get to sleep, Pzizz can help with that too.

There are lots of features to tweak and play with, and you can use it offline (so no annoying notifications or phone calls can wake you up!).

Setting up a new device means entering passwords and rather than rely on autofill in Google Chrome or the Apple Keychain, I have a separate password manager. I've gone with LastPass because it is packed with features -- especially security features that allow me to lock down my LastPass account -- and it works on a whole raft of devices.

Before I opted to use Dropbox as my go-to cloud storage provider, I was leaving files all over the place and then forgetting where I'd left them.

And then I'd have to trawl through half a dozen services looking for them.

Having one service that I can access across all my devices makes sense. And for me, Dropbox is that service.

Where possible, I like to have two-factor authentication protecting my online accounts, and where hardware 2FA isn't possible, then an authenticator app is a good alternative.

While many password managers have authenticator apps built in, I went for Authy because it means I keep my passwords separate and get an app that works on pretty much any platform you can think of.

I've been using this VPN service for years, put gigabytes on gigabytes of data through it, and never had a problem. I've tried others, but I keep coming back to it because it's easy to use, no-fuss, just works, and the app is one of the best I've used (for example, I turn it on, and it stays on, happily running in the background).

It's the perfect prescription for shady Wi-Fi connections.

A very reliable way to test network speeds.

I used to use this more to satisfy my curiosity than anything, but now as Zoom video conferencing has exploded, I'm using it to make sure my connection is good enough for my meetings.

Again, this is a service I've been using for years, and while I've tried countless others, this is the one I keep coming back to.

I don't lose things, but I have been known to misplace things for some time and to prevent that hassle I now have a Tile in my luggage, laptop bag, wallet, and backpack. Yes, Tiles aren't cheap, but neither is losing your keys or wallet.

Again, this is one of those products that I've tried and tested over thousands of miles in several countries, and it just worked.

I also love the fact that I can also use a Tile to find my lost smartphone.

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