Best Of 2012: Apps

We're continuing to wrap up our 2012 Year in Review coverage with a look back at the top apps of the year. Below Ypulse Youth Advisory Board member Julia Tanenbaum shares the top apps, which were standouts in 2012.

Best Of 2012: Apps

Instagram

InstagramInstagram became huge this year and in case you didn't know, it's esssentially a social network for photos. Although it includes several filters, which can edit the look of photos to make them look vintage or artsy, the main draw is the ability to share your photos with the rest of the instagram community. You have a photo stream, which operates like a Tumblr dashboard, and updates with your friends’ newest photos. You can also follow anyone you want, but Facebook integration makes it easy to share memories and everyday moments with your friends.

Songify

Have you ever wanted to be a rock star but you can’t sing? Do you love autotune as much as Kanye West? Well then this app is for you! Songify lets anyone become a singer by turning your speech into a song. This app is extremely entertaining and could lead to the next autotuned viral hit.

FlipboardFlipboard

This app goes one step beyond other news apps and combines your news and social media into a “magazine”. After adding your social networks and news outlets, you can see anything from a BBC news story to your friend’s Facebook status update on the same page. The gorgeous and accessible interface, features like commenting, and being able to save stories for later make this app a great way to streamline your news.

Game Apps:

Whale Trail Frenzy

This T3 Award App of the Year nominated flying game was a surprise hit of the year. With its colorful and adorable graphics and time tested Tiny Wings style gameplay, it is easy to pick up and hard to put down for casual gamers and hardcore Halo…

 
 
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Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: “When I hear the phrase ‘The American Dream' I think…A loaded term that is meaningless these days. At this point, I'd be happy if I can manage to live a mostly comfortable, independent life. Is that The American Dream? I don't know.” –Male, 25, PA

When it comes to kids using tablets and smartphones, most of the attention is given to the dangers of it all: what will it do to their attention spans, their minds, or their health? But there are potential positives to their mobile use as well. One (Millennial) mom’s reasons for continuing to give her kids handheld devices include the importance of encouraging their technology and problem solving skills, expectations that they will know how to use them in school, and a hope that her girls will be involved in tech in their futures. (Hip Mombrarian)

This might be the year that vending machines became a full blown marketing trend, and Nike has put their own athletic spin on the tactic. Their recent “secret” vending machine in NYC, the Nike+ FuelBox, dispensed products like hats, shirts, and socks that visitors could only pay for with daily points from their Nike+ FuelBands, encouraging exercise in exchange for goods. (Engadget)

We’ve seen FoMo, the rise and fall of YOLO, and now social media has given us MoMo, the “Mystery of Missing Out.” Unlike FoMo, Fear of Missing Out when you see your friends posting a ton of fun pictures on social media, MoMo is the anxiety that results when friends stop posting. In the words of one Millennial, “’what can be so good that they aren't posting?’” It might seem silly to some, but for a generation used to being connected with friends nearly all the time, the feeling of exclusion that results from being left out and unaware of what’s happening is real. (Jezebel)

The value of higher education is already being questioned by Millennials, and evidence is continuing to mount that college systems and hierarchies need to be rethought. One former Yale professor is making headlines by telling parents not to send their kids to Ivy League schools, and that those who attend are not the “winners in the race we have made of childhood” but that instead elite education produces “anxious, timid, and lost” young people. (New Republic)

Oh, Barbie. She's had a rough year, and Mattel recently released an Entrepreneur Barbie in an attempt to tap into girl power marketing, and revive flagging sales. But is the reality that Barbie is just too perfect for today’s kids? The brand’s offbeat, weirdo Monster High dolls do far better than pristine, “clean cut” blond icon. Tapping into new trends in toy tech and giving Barbie a renewed sense of “imaginative play” might help, but at the same time post-Millennials, like the generation before them, could be turned off by anything that doesn’t show some flaws. (The StarPhoenix)

Quote of the Day: “When I hear the phrase ‘The American Dream’ I think of 1950s cliches, the economic downturn of 2008, and how college debt has pretty much made it impossible.” –Female, 17, RI

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