Almost everyday, we hear of new smartphone applications ("apps") developed for just about everything — from staying organized to hearing better in noisy environments. It's hard to keep up.
The BrainLine team sifted through many resources to collect this list of Android apps that could be useful to people with a brain injury — and their families and caregivers.
Download a chart of all Apps.
But let's backtrack for a moment. What makes a smartphone different from a regular mobile phone? And what exactly is an "app"?
A smartphone is a mobile phone that offers more advanced computing ability and connectivity than a contemporary feature phone that just allows you to make outgoing calls and receive incoming calls. As smartphones — like the the Android and the Apple iPhone — become more advanced, companies are developing all sorts of games and tools, known as "apps" or applications that you can use on that phone.
Some of these apps have proven to be especially helpful for people with brain injury. The phone can be used to remind you of an upcoming appointment or to take medication, or it can be used like a traditional paper notebook to keep all your addresses, telephone numbers, calendar items, lists, and ideas.
Please note that BrainLine does not endorse these or any specific products.
Search through thousands of ebooks from world famous authors, download them to your own personal bookshelf, and start listening instantly. Great for people who have trouble reading or who retain information more effectively by listening.
ClearRecord Premium is an audio recording app that is able to suppress ambient, background noise. It features the ability to control play-speed without modifying pitch-quality. Great for people with TBI who have problems paying attention in a noisy environment, the app allows the user to record conversations in any type of loud or distracting environment — street, train, classroom, or airplane — while still maintaining clear voice. Slow play speed allows transcription users and new language learners to slow down and listen clearly to a fast speaker while fast play speed cuts short the time required to listen to a long recording without missing any parts.
Evernote helps people stay organized, save their ideas, and improve productivity by enabling them to capture photos, create to-do-lists, recover voice reminders, and more. And Evernote can be accessed across all of the devices a person may use.
A great tool for studying, learning, and remembering new words, Flash Card Maker Pro uses advanced gesturing and text-to-speech capability to provide users of all ages and abilities with a fully interactive brain-building experience.
FlexT9 is a four-in-one keyboard that puts you in the driver's seat for communicating how you want – when you want. FlexT9 gives you the power to seamlessly switch between the Speak, Trace, Write, or Tap input modes. This app is useful for people with a brain injury that experience communication issues.
Use your fingers to write or draw your own personalized "hello my name is" name tag.
The Mild Traumatic Brain Injury Pocket Guide app for healthcare providers gives instant access to a comprehensive quick-reference guide on improving care for people with mTBI. Designed to reflect current clinical standards of care, mTBI Pocket Guide can help caregivers improve quality of care and clinical outcomes for patients. Treatment and therapy providers can use the application to find information on assessing, treating, and managing common symptoms of people with mTBI.
For people who write faster than they type or for those with memory issues, PenSupremacy can help get their ideas down before they fade away. With this app, it's easy to take notes, save sketches, and share ideas.
The Hope for One app focuses on providing support to military veterans and their families who are struggling with post-traumatic stress disorder. The app includes informational videos and testimonials, podcasts from professional counselors and psychiatrists discussing PTSD, links for resources, and a fan wall for people to support each other and share their experiences. People with PTSD — and their loved ones — do not need to go it alone.
PTSD Coach was designed for veterans and service members who have, or may have, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The app provides users with education about PTSD, information about professional care, a self-assessment for PTSD, opportunities to find support, and tools that can help users manage the stresses of daily life with PTSD. Tools range from relaxation skills and positive self-talk to anger management and other common self-help strategies. Users can customize tools based on their preferences and can integrate their own contacts, photos, and music. This app can be used by people who are in treatment as well as those who are not. PTSD Coach was created by the Veteran Association's National Center for PTSD and DoD's National Center for Telehealth and Technology.
View in Android Market >
Smart Hearing Aid converts an Android phone into a handy hearing aid. By amplifying the sound, it helps people listen more clearly to conversations, music concerts, presentations, television, etc. Especially useful for people with hearing impairments or tinnitus, Smart Hearing Aid also reduces background noise so you can focus better on listening to what you are interested in. The app is easy to use and is a recommended for anyone who wants to hear more clearly.
This text-to-speech application is like a "talking notepad"; it will speak what you type. Useful for people who have trouble communicating verbally.
SpeakWrite's voice recorder turns your phone into a fully functional dictation system that allows you to record, edit, and send your audio. Particularly useful for people with limited use of their hands for typing, the app also integrates with SpeakWrite's 24/7 transcription service. Simply compile your dictation, upload, and within a few hours receive your transcribed document.
StudyDroid improves organization by making study materials easily available. It also promotes better recall if people space their practice over time and practice even beyond when material is already learned.
With T2 Mood Tracker, users can self-monitor, track, and reference their emotional experiences associated with common deployment-related behavioral health issues like post-traumatic stress, brain injury, depression, and anxiety. With each self-rating, notes on environmental influences on emotional experiences can be added. Self-monitoring results can be a self-help tool or they can be shared with a therapist or healthcare professional, providing a record of the patient’s emotional experience over a selected time frame.
Especially useful for non-verbal children and adults, TapToTalk turns an Android device into an affordable alternative means of communication device.
A fun exercise for people with TBI, TextTwist2 is an easy and effective way for people to practice flexibility in their thinking. In lightning mode, users try to find the word that uses all of the letters as fast as they can. In Crossword mode, users complete a crossword puzzle using a limited number of letters. And Word of the Day mode offers a daily puzzle.
Touch Calendar makes viewing your calendars easy. See your whole calendar at a glance. No more flipping between different calendar views. Touch Calendar does it all from one zoomable and scrollable view. This app is especially useful for people with attention problems who do better with fewer steps.
Voice4u, is a picture-based, augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) application that helps individuals express their feelings, thoughts, actions, and needs. The app is an easy-to-use solution for learning and communication, especially useful for people with autism, brain injury, or other commuication challenges — and the people around them. Voice 4U helps break down the barriers of communication for people with special needs.
With the Where Am I? app, you can view and share your location, including your city, zip code, telephone area code, and approximate street address as well as the times of sunrise and sunset and GPS latitude and longitude. The app can be especially useful for people who have attention problems or for whom way-finding is difficult.
See our other apps slideshow for iPhone and iPads: 27 Life-Changing iPhone and iPad Apps for People with Brain Injury.
Created by BrainLine.