We’re dead modern around here – which is why we like to use our smartphones to help save money. You’re already paying out for the phone’s monthly bill, so why not make it work for its keep with some of the nifty money saving apps below?
- RedLaser – FREEiPhone & Android
This clever app lets you use your smartphone’s camera to scan the barcodes on products you find in shops, and instantly find prices for the item online. It’s bad news for bricks and mortar stores, but good news for the rest of us, as you’ll often be able to find what you’re looking at for a lower cost. It’ll even compare online prices against each other, so you can get the best deal going.
- WhatsApp – FREE to download, 65p per year subscriptioniPhone, Android & Windows Phone
If you’re still paying for all your text messages, you’re throwing money away! This is a particularly useful app for pay as you go mobile users, as it means no more pricey 12p messages. Instead, you simply use the internet to send as many messages back and forth as you like, for less than £1 per year. The only catch is that whoever you’re texting will need to have Whatsapp too – but handily enough, once installed the app shows who in your phone book already has it.
- Onavo Extend – FREEiPhone & Android
This app gives you another clever way of reducing your monthly bill. If you find you’re overspending on data or hitting your limit each month, Onavo will help you to cut down on the amount of data you’re using without changing how you use your phone. Once it’s installed, it quietly does some magic to every website and image you look at, making them much smaller before they reach you. You won’t notice the difference as you use the web, but you’ll be using up a fraction of the data that you normally would.
- Meter Readings – 99piPhone
It might seem a bit boring, but this app is great way of keeping track of how much you’re spending on gas and electricity. Simply key in your current meter readings, and you’ll be able to see how much energy you’ve used and how much it will cost you. The app’s built-in graphs will track the cost over days, weeks, months and years – meaning you can plan your energy spend, and won’t have any nasty surprises when the next bill comes through the door. And if you don’t have an iPhone, similar money saving apps are available for Android.
- GoodBudget – Free, or £3.50 per month for the premium ‘Plus’ versioniPhone, Android & Web
There are plenty of budgeting apps out there, but we like to keep things simple. GoodBudget allows you to separate your monthly outgoings into up to ten ‘envelopes’ – you might have one for your commuting costs, one for your energy bills, one for your rent, and so on. You’re soon easily able to see how much real disposable income you have left each month. You can make annual envelopes too, and create savings plans. There’s a premium version you can subscribe to, but we think the free version is great, and more than enough to get started with budgeting and saving. If you don’t have an iPhone or an Android phone, you can even use the website on your PC or Windows Phone instead.