Research/Reporting

Werdsmith

☀☀ Werdsmith is great in theory but not in practice. The app is designed to be a mobile writing studio; users can customize themes, set writing reminders, and choose between three writing templates (markup, novel and screenplay). Journalists could jot down quick notes or write full projects entirely on their phone. But the app doesn’t offer much more than Notes, which is already built into all Iphones. Its biggest flaw: a $4.99 monthly charge to access other users, get five more design themes,  writing prompts, and even basics such as bold and italics. Writers and journalists would be better served by a laptop. —Kyle Dowd

☀☀☀☀ Werdsmith allows users to write anywhere with the backup protection of the cloud and features the cleanest and simplest writing app experience. Writings can be shared with a link, exported, or published to your portfolio. Werdsmith allows you to set writing goals for yourself and reminders that update you on your phone, as well as different ways to track and organize entries. The app can be upgraded at $2.99 to add more space.
— Jamee Lind

☀☀☀☀ Werdsmith helps you write. Its layout is simple and appealing. The app features two main categories: ideas and projects. Both allow the user to write whatever they want in the provided space. If a writer or journalist has difficulty organizing their ideas, this app could be beneficial. The app layout can also be adjusted to a user’s preferences. The app will also remind the user to write at certain times if wanted. Users also have the option of upgrading to a premium version of the app in which more layout presets are available. The app does not assist in writing, such as spelling/grammar checking.
— Garrison Murphy

Pocket

☀☀☀☀ Pocket: quick, practical and timesaving. Reading something interest on-line? Just click and save it for later.  Storage is unlimited. For journalists, users can follow other Pocket users, making it a great way to gather story ideas. Version 6.4.3 is faster and more convenient.  This free app is available to Apple and Android users. Pocket Premium is available for $4.99/month for a permanent library and greater organization. — Olivia Davila

☀☀☀☀ Pocket was created to save articles and other research other materials for later reading. All you have to do is give the app access to your browser on your phone and then click the Pocket app to save website articles, video, images and other content. Pocket is a useful way to follow others, such as CEOs of major companies, to read what they read or to “pocket” it for a future time. Journalists should give it a try: Pocket claims 22 million users and integration with 1,500 other apps. — Jamee Lind

☀☀☀ Pocket helps you find, save and share articles. Users create accounts which can be connected to social media and other news apps to create a “recommended” feed based on the sources the users follow. Pocket can provide a full range of stories and perspectives. At the touch of a button, articles can be recommended to followers, shared with a friend (through the app or email), shared on social media or saved for later. Journalists could use it to share articles and find stories others are talking about. — Victoria Grijalva

Hindenburg Lite

☀ ☀ ☀ ☀ Hindenburg Lite is an audio recording app. It is superior to the built-in smartphone recorder: you can create markers while recording, record your location, make notes after the recording session has ended and share the recording via mail, FTP, SoundCloud, iTunes and other ways. The app has not received a lot of attention, likely because it is the lighter version of an app that costs $30. The free version does stop recording after one minute but editing capabilities are still available and it works very well for being the free version of another app. This app is a free option for an on-the-go journalist who deals primarily with sound. Its ideal use would be creating radio pieces and podcasts. —Carly Henry

Evernote

☀☀☀☀ Evernote is a fantastic way to create reminders, set lists, and to both type or record interviews with its easy-to-use organizational features. The tutorial for using Evernote was all that I needed to be able to note, scan, and organize several pieces of information. The camera scanner crops your documents for you and more memory can be purchased for an additional cost. Options to text, photograph, set reminders, create lists, or record audio can also all be stored into individual notebooks and shared at your will. —Jamee Lind

Instapaper

☀☀☀☀ Your internet browser can be drowned with tabs. Instapaper has found a way to keep them at a minimum. The tool allows you to save articles and videos for later viewing. The Sweet Setup called Instapaper their favorite read later service because it eliminates aimless web searching. It’s available with a Google Chrome extension on your laptop or a mobile app on the App store or Google Play. The app is free and has no space limitations, which is great for journalists who need to keep information in a central spot. Ben Jacobs

☀☀☀☀ Instapaper lets you read online articles, offline. Click on web pages you would like to save. Highlight and comment on articles. Select text to be played back with the app’s text-to-speech feature. All notes automatically sync to a user’s mobile devices and to Instapaper.com. Version 7.3 updates include a newly-free premium version and a corresponding Apple Watch app. Instapaper is ad-free. It operates in 14 languages. Journalists doing quick research can find articles now and save them to refer to later. — Kyle Dowd

☀☀☀☀ ☀  I downloaded this app for keeps right away! It helps journalists (or anyone) stay on top of the news. You can save articles from social media or the web that you find interesting but do not have time to read. The app then stores them for you to read whenever you may want. This app makes articles easy to read with a simple design and easy to use font. This app could be used daily and you can save as many stories as you like. — Alexis Berdine

☀☀☀☀ Instapaper allows users to archive online articles for later reading. The app is also available on the desktop. Your account can be shared between multiple devices and platforms. When on mobile, the user can save an article to Instapaper by selecting it under the share feature that is incorporated into most browser apps. The app also has its own browsing feature that features apps the “editor” picks. One can also highlight text in the app and have text played back using a text-to-speech feature. A journalist could use this to consume and archive other media more easily. — Garrison Murphy