by Jane Parent
The average American teenager spends about six hours per day on the phone and has 32 apps. And they’re not just teen apps — you might like them, too! Here are up-and-coming apps that are popular with teens that may be news to you.
Trending Teen Apps
GroupMe A free group messaging app that works on every platform and does not use data. Users can assign labels to each group, such as friends, family, and classmates; share photos, videos and locations; and create events and personalized emojis. Why teenagers love it: It’s easy to use and does not eat up their data allowance. Plus, the in-app messaging option means teenagers who don’t have unlimited texts won’t go over their limit.
ooVoo A video, voice, and messaging app that also lets users create free group chats with up to 12 people. Why teenagers love it: Just because. This is a popular app for teenagers to log on after school and keep open while doing homework. Parents will like that users can only communicate with those on their approved contact lists.
After School Think YikYak for high school students. Teenagers can anonymously post on message boards associated with individual high schools. Why teenagers love it: For the same reason some teenagers like other anonymous social media platforms. Some say that After School is yet another a place for teenagers to get away with cruel behavior.
ColorTherapy If your teenager loves coloring books, then chances are she’s got ColorTherapy, a digital coloring book. Why teenagers love it: A stress-relieving, digital coloring book with hundreds of stunning pages … what’s not to love?
Mint From Intuit, the makers of TurboTax and Quicken, the free app helps teenagers track spending, create budgets, and set up reminders (time to pay the credit card bill). Why parents love it: It’s a great tool for high schoolers and college students learning to stick to a budget.
Companion Created by students at the University of Michigan, this safety-oriented app lets teenagers get some virtual company on a walk (via GPS). The app uses the phone’s built-in sensors to detect changes in movement—for example, if your teenager starts running—and asks the user to confirm that she’s okay. If your teenager doesn’t do so within 15 seconds, the app notifies the virtual companion and puts the phone into alert mode, emitting siren-like noises and displaying a button to call the police. Companions also receive a text notifying them when the user has safely reached a destination. Why parents love it: Teen apps that help our teenagers stay safe. ‘Nuff said.