How amazing is that feeling when a friend contacts you out of the blue, when you haven’t spoken to them for a while? One of my New Year Resolutions this year was to stay in more regular contact with people that matter to me. I want to remember the small things going on in their lives and make sure that I have asked about them, as I feel frustrated when I have forgotten something important they are up to. I also want to stay in touch, so I know what is happening with them and that I feel connected even though, with many friends, we are miles apart. This becomes even more difficult when you have moved around a lot, and have friends scattered all around the country or the world.
I have been looking at the best way to help me keep in touch with the people that are important in my life and due to my every growing love of apps, I decided to see if there was anything available that could support me in this mission.
There are a few apps out there that are designed for this purpose and I have reviewed each one below:
Loop is the app that works best for me as it gives me all the functionality I need, is really easy to use and also looks good. You can add friends either manually or from your phone book. If you add them from your address book, it populates the contact section with all the details you have stored and then it allows you to manually add any additional information. you may want Alternatively you can add everything from scratch. It gives you the option of who you want to keep in touch with, how often you want to be reminded to get in touch and then sends you a notification on that date. It also provides a notes section where you can make a note of anything you want to ask your friend about next time you get in contact. I think the beauty of this app is it is simple, but does everything needed to notify you of who you want to speak to and refresh your memory of what you want to chat about. I highly recommend this to anyone who is looking to keep in better contact with friends and family.
Stay in Touch (SIT) is again very simple to use and also very effective. It allows you to keep track of when you last saw each friend, anything you want to note down and also reminds you when you should be getting in touch with them again, based on the time period you have chosen. It allows you to add friends manually or from your address book. It lists your friends in the order of who you have scheduled a reminder to see first. It talks about appointments, but there is no reason why you can’t use it for any type of contact you want to have.
The advantage of Touch Friends is that it pulls all your friends contacts from Facebook, so it’s the quickest of all the apps to be able to add all the friends you want. It also has the advantage that it pulls through all your friends photo’s, which makes it look more appealing. The other great thing about this app is it automatically pulls their birth date in (as long as they have that on Facebook), so there will be no excuses to forget their next birthday! You can add an update about what you last chatted about or what you want to remember to ask next time you catch up. There is no reminder service though, so you would have to use another mechanism to get reminders (or just rely on your memory!)
Bond is slightly different to the others apps. The main focus is about the reminders to get in touch with the people that matter to you, as opposed to the content you wanted to discuss with them. It is great for incorporating all different types of technology that you could possibly use for keeping in touch. You select the different technology you want to use, then who you want to keep in touch with and how often you’d like to contact them. This generates notifications to remind you to make contact. You can open the notification and start the conversation from whatever form of communication you are using. All the contacts pull through from the variety of applications such as Whatsapp, phone contacts, Facebook, Linked in and you can just simply tick which technology you want to use to connect with who. It’s very easy to set up and activate all the reminders, but it hasn’t got the functionality for notes like the others, so its more useful for the prompt to get in touch, rather than the content you want to discuss.
All these apps are useful depending on exactly what element of keeping in touch with your friends you are focusing on. Whether it be the frequency of contact, reminders of what you wanted to discuss or both.
I hope none of my friends are offended that I have taken to use technology to help me keep in touch. If you’re on the list it means I love you and I want to ensure that we stay connected, especially if we are miles apart!
I’d love to hear if you use any of these apps, or any others, or what other hints and tips you have to keep in touch with your friends in the comments below.