Maximise your life with free apps

So many people that I speak to are disappointed with the App Store since purchasing their new iPad or Mac, simply because all the “good stuff” costs money, and very few (good) things are free.

Now I have no problem with this, supporting developers’ hard work, but of course, I am also going to jump at any free promotion of apps in the same breath.

When I then tell said people about these free app promotions, I get that very sad look. Glassy eyes, complete confusion and information overload.

As such, I have been meaning to write this article for ages, to help everyone out there to know how to maximise on any free app promotions that might be happening at any given time.

Here are a few important sites and sources that I personally use to track free apps:

Padgadget lists daily sales, from around 5 apps to up to 100. These sales range from small discounts, to complete 100% off deals.
Luckily there is no middle man involved, it is just a link to the App Store. These apps are only for iOS.

Macstories is a great place to find not only deals on iOS apps, but also OS X apps for your Mac. On top of this, Macstories includes deals on Hardware, Books and other Universal apps for your Mac. These promotions range all the way to 100% off too.

@appstore & #FreeAppOfTheWeek
If you are on the twitters, then follow @appstore immediately. They regularly tweet about new apps, apps getting rage reviews, as well as apps that are holding promotions. 
Once you follow @appstore, you will get updates to the #FreeAppOfTheWeek hashtag. Needless to say, this will include 1 app marked as free for the week. Go figure. 
These will be for the iTunes App Store.

Mac Freeware
Another great site for keeping up to date with free apps for your Mac, but not coming from the App Store.

With these simple 4 sources listed above, you will be inundated with many free apps each and every day. Some you may want, some you won’t.

The only way to make these sources work for you, is to make contact each and every day. Sometimes the promotion is on for a full week, and sometimes it’s only on for 24 hours.
So in order to do this, either visit the webpages each day, or better yet, utilise RSS.

RSS (Really Simple Syndication) is a method where you ‘subscribe’ to websites, and whenever the website gets updated, you get notified, either by email, or by using an RSS application.

Mountain Lion has deprecated its native RSS reader, and so you will need to resort to a 3rd party app.
A simple Google search will yield many results, but I can highly recommend 2.

The first one is Google Reader
A super simple RSS aggregator that allows you to log in via your Gmail account, and subscribe to any website that supports RSS feeds. This runs natively as a webpage, so it will run on any platform.

2nd is FlipBoard
FlipBoard runs on your iPad, as well as your iPhone as a free app, and acts in the same way as Google Reader. 
One huge advantage that FlipBoard has over other iOS RSS apps, is that it integrates with Google Reader, meaning that any subscriptions on Reader are automatically added/removed on FlipBoard. 
Even better, once you’ve read an article on one or the other, it will synchronise to the 2nd. Very useful than trying to manage 2 separate feeds.

So if you are looking for Angry Birds, Infinity Blade, Plants vs Zombies and much much more, become proactive and stay on top of these deals.

If you use a different source that you would like to share, just drop a comment below. 


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