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iOS or Android: Here are the five apps I install first


I do a lot of setting up and resetting of iPhones, iPads, and Android devices, and the other day I noticed that it’s the same five apps I install on both iOS and Android, and in the same order.

Spooky, eh?

So, what are the apps? And what alternatives are there that you might want to consider. Let’s take a look.

Password manager



LastPass


Setting up a new device means entering passwords, and rather than rely in autofill in Google Chrome or the Apple Keychain, I have a separate password manager. I’ve gone with LastPass because this it is packed with features — especially security features that allow me to lock down my LastPass account — and it works on a whole raft of devices.

Alternatives: 1Password, DashLane


View Now at LastPass

Two-factor authentication



Authy


Where possible, I like to have two-factor authentication protecting my online accounts, and where hardware 2FA isn’t possible, then an authenticator app is a good alternative.

While many password managers have authenticator apps built in, I went for Authy because it means I keep my passwords separate, and also get an app that works on pretty much any platform you can think of.

Alternatives: Google Authenticator, andOTP


View Now at Authy

Must read: Can a simple charging mistake cause your MacBook Pro to overheat?

VPN



F-Secure Freedome


I’ve been using this VPN service for years, and while I’ve tried others, I keep coming back to it because it’s easy to use, no-fuss, just works, and the app is one of the best I’ve used (for example, I turn it on, and it stays on, happily running in the background).

The perfect prescription for shady Wi-Fi connections.

Alternatives: NordVPN, ExpressVPN


View Now at F-Secure

Tracker



Tile


I have become quite the Tile convert over the past year or so.

I don’t lose things, but I have been known to misplace things for some time, and to prevent that hassle I now have a Tile in my luggage, laptop bag, wallet, and backpack. I love the fact that I can also use a Tile to find my lost smartphone.

Alternatives: Chipolo, MYNT


View Now at Tile



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