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TradeSparky outlines a range of handy smartphone tools available from the convenience of your very own pocket. 

Due to the vast range of apps that have been developed during the rise of the smartphone, the phrase ‘Is there an app for that?’ has now become a standard response for users when first confronted with a problem. Do you want to find someone locally who just wants a cuddle? There’s an app for that. Do you want to see how far you can throw your iPhone in the air? There’s an app for that. Do you want to know what it feels like to count a million dollars? There’s an app for that. 

But with so many apps available in the marketplace, how do you know what is available or if they are any good at solving the problem they have been created for? Thankfully, we have taken the time to sift through the app stores to discover the gems that will make life easier. The apps we have chosen assist with everything from neutral current unbalanced loads to providing quick access to the latest football results. 

Electrical Calculator (£3.99)

The Electrical Calculator app provides access to 49 electrical calculators, and also offers 16 electrical converters through in-app purchases. The calculators are complete with formula and handy circuit diagrams, and range from voltage and horse power, to various efficiencies and energy storage calculators. 

The electrical convertors accessible through the app include field strength, capacitance and linear current density to name a few. For a full list of functions go to the Apple App Store. A free ‘lite’ version of the app is also available. 

Electrodroid Pro (£3.99)
iPhone/Google Play

Electrodroid Pro is an extremely comprehensive and well laid out app which gives you access to approximately 30 electronics tools and references from your smartphone. Functions include a resistor colour code decoder, an Ohm’s law calculator, an inductor design tool, an RMS convertor and an analogue-digital convertor, just to name a few. The app is also being continually expanded and updated. 

iCertifi (free with subscription)

The iCertifi app has revolutionised electrical certification by allowing users to certify electrical installations directly from their phone without the need to sync to a computer. Each certificate is also completely traceable via the unique serial number, which is generated for each document. The app also includes various integrated tools such as instant fuse kA values and a range of calculators (three-phase volt drop, PFC, lux level, resistance, BTU to watts, kW to kVA) to test instrument verification and iZettle technology for secure payments. An Apple Watch app is also available which allows you quick access to a selection of the functions available.

The app is free, but there is a subscription of £64.99 for 12 months to enable you to send unlimited certificates (three-month and six-month subscriptions also available).

Quickbooks Accounting (free)
iPhone/Google Play

Quickbooks is the best accounting app around. The app is free, but you need to be a subscriber to use it. However, the functionality it provides is well worth the investment. The app allows you to do everything from monitoring profit and loss and sending customer invoices to tracking expenses and reviewing bank transactions on the go. If you are self-employed, there is a 30-day free trial available, and at the time of writing, there is a ‘£3 a month for the first six months’ deal available (usually £8). 

Calendars by Readdle (free)

Calendars by Readdle is a powerful personal assistant which is used by over 8 million people. It is very easy-to-use and works well with both Google Calendar and the built-in iOS calendar. But what makes this app any better than the plethora of other calendar apps available in the apps store? 

Well, some of the more advanced functionality includes the ability to manage appointments both online and offline, events can be moved around through a simple ‘drag and drop’ interface and information can be changed rapidly with custom keyboards. Also, for an extra £6.99, additional features such as meeting invites, natural language input and to-do lists are available. 

PetrolPrices (free) 
iPhone/Google Play 

The PetrolPrices app allows you to search and find the cheapest fuel prices within a 30-mile radius of your location. Results can be filtered by fuel type (unleaded petroleum, diesel, super unleaded, premium diesel, LPG fuel), station and distance, and detailed information including a route finder is provided for each station. The app provides coverage of 98% of UK forecourts and the makers claim that users can save up to £240 a year on fuel.

SofaScore Live Sports results (free) 
iPhone/Google Play 

SofaScore is an essential app that will let you keep a close eye on the game, in real time, in between appointments. It is available for Apple and Android Wear watches to allow you a quick glance at the score on-the-go and provides coverage for all leagues and competitions in 22 sports including football, rugby and cricket. Other features include detailed player analysis, a chat section and TV channels information. 

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