Have a more productive 2017 with these seven apps

Courtney Goldsmith
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Streamline your life with these helpful apps
Streamline your life with these helpful apps (Source: Getty)

The end of the year is nearing and the internet is rife with resolutions. But having a better year in 2017 could be as easy as downloading a few apps.

Take back control from your technology next year with these seven apps for productivity.

Take your to do list to the next level

Any.do syncs up to-do lists on all of your devices so you'll never have to worry about gathering the notes scattered all over your desk again. With simplistic, intuitive design, the app integrates with your calendar (iCloud, Google, etc.) to manage tasks up to the minute. Personalise your calendar, coordinate meetings and share lists for ultimate productivity.

Read more: Working on your smartphone will wipe out all your holiday

Banish distractions

Freedom is the app that will save you from yourself. It uses a limited VPN system to block websites, email and online app content for a certain designated amount of time so you can give one task your full attention. You can create your own blocklist, use pre-made ones or block all online content altogether. Schedule your Freedom time in advance or on recurring schedules to seamlessly integrate the app into your day.

Read more: Nail inbox zero: Six ways to take control of your inbox before 2017

Put social media on auto pilot

Social media has become a necessary evil in our business lives. And sure, you could take the time to post your witty remarks throughout the day or take it a step further and schedule posts individually on each site. But to make things even easier, now you can set out your content for the day all in one place with Buffer. Schedule posts on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and more with this handy app.

Take better notes

Paper is an app that just keeps getting better. What started a simple drawing tool is now a note taking app that puts Apple's Notes to shame. With a few subtle swipes you can create lists, presentations and draw charts or graphs. What makes Paper so great is how similar the experience is to taking notes on old-fashioned, physical paper, meaning you're less likely to lose interest and stop using it.

Read more: These charts will show you when you're most productive

Manage a team

New team management apps are cropping up all the time, but why not stick with a classic? Basecamp 3 organises projects, internal communications and client work in one centralised place. It's features include threaded messaging, quick messaging (called Campfire), to-do lists (called Pings), schedules and document and file storage.

Streamline your life

Customise your phone with Workflow to stop wasting time messing around in different apps. The app's smart design allows it to combine a string of actions into one step. You can cut time on things like calling an Uber after a meeting, finding a shop or ordering a meal by teaching your phone what to do with a single tap.

Read more: Nine commandments to ensure meetings aren't a waste of time

Stop forgetting passwords​

Ever experienced that sinking feeling when you accidentally log out of a program and realise you've forgotten your details to get back in? You might need LastPass. This app generates strong passwords while keeping your log in information safe and sound. The app's password vault can sync to fill in forms on the web through the in-app browser, Safari or Chrome.

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