Sebastian Ellis London, Apps, Technology...
London’s tech scene is booming, when people say, ‘there’s an app for that’ chances are they are probably right.
Coming from the north of England, the dependency you can have on your mobile phone isn’t quite at the same heights. There’s a thriving tech scene in the likes of Manchester, Leeds and Newcastle, but some of the quirkier innovations haven’t made their way north of the river.
Within the first few weeks of moving here, I started experimenting with countless apps on my mobile. I've generated a list with some of the most useful ones used by my fellow resident Londoners day to day.
American car sharing company Zipcar lets members hire automotive (small cars, vans) which can be accessed via the mobile app and billable to use by the minute. In the UK alone it operates in 4 southern cities, London being one, meaning you never have to resort to signing away on a 5 year car lease ever again, hypothetically.
If biking is your chosen method of transport, then there are numerous options should you decide not to buy one outright.
This is due to the dockless cycle hire schemes that have flooded the streets with multi-coloured eco-friendly transportation devices ready to use at the moments click of an app.
Lime, which has launched on a limited basis twice in the UK, includes a 250 watt motor and battery should you need to make use of its e-assist. They have learned from some of the mistakes of its non-electric rivals, by partnering with councils to have them picked up and recharged.
Amidst all of this, if you’re looking for the best route around London, Citymapper gives you the fastest go-to route, It measures all of London’s public transport saving you time debating whether to get the tube, bus or just walk. It will suggest a rain friendly alternative too - keeping our reputable British weather in mind.
The challenger bank revolution is one of the more recurrent conversations you hear when in London, and you’re not without choice. If you’d like to do your banking via app there are plenty of offerings from the likes of Monzo, Revolut, Starling, N26. All of these have different products at the moment and are best suited to your personal banking.
If you’re looking for a more dedicated app to help you manage your finances better, Yolt is offering that solution. It allows you to see all your balances in one place, as well as set saving budgets and goals to help your financing needs.
London’s food scene is vibrant with choice on a day-to-day basis, and those choices are made easier with offers at ease from the likes of Mealpal. The New York based company operates globally and offers the ability to choose from a large selection of local restaurants and skip the queue on arrival, all for a reduced price.
Similarly, if you’re interested in cooking, then Gousto lets you buy boxes of pre-selected recipe ingredients with easy to follow instructions to make at home.
Out of battery?
If using all of these apps has left you running out of juice on your mobile, then look no further than ChargedUp. The Shoreditch start-up gives you power on demand through its network of well placed portable charging banks dotted around the centre of London.