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Top 10 FREE and Discount Essential Productivity Apps for Students and Professionals

Top 10 FREE and Discount Essential Productivity Apps for Students and Professionals

1. Evernote

EverNote is a popular note App, when we talked about the Evernote, we will mention about OneNote as well. Actually, I use both Apps. I find the two Apps are similar but different. If you are looking for the efficiency software, I recommend Evernote for the following reasons:

- OneNote: It is suitable for making notes during lectures because it provides full-featured annotations and highlighting tools, as well as freely typesetting. Compared to MS Word, it more feels like a handwritten note.
- EverNote: It is suitable for GTD (Getting Things Done) management, as well as the personal database. Because it has a good synchronization performance on many networks, can be seamlessly combined with Feedly and Pocket, and with the system built-in webpage clipping function can systematically integrate the scattered data that you collected. Moreover, EverNote organization logic is simple and clear, very easy to get started.

OneNote is more suitable for taking complex notes. If you need to take a large amount of notes but the structure is very simple, the Evernote would be a better choice to manage your notes. EverNote is suitable for the collection and archiving of first-hand data, and ONENOTE is suitable for the secondary finishing and creation of materials.

2. Wunderlist Free


Wunderlist is a To-do List management App supports multiple system platforms and devices, like iPhone, iPad, Android, Microsoft, Amazon Kindle Fire, etc., this feature made it stand out of other similar To-do list Apps. Moreover, Wunderlist UI is another highlight; the UI typesetting is "left, center, right columns" on both web and desktop version, that the task list and task content displayed very clear. The pictures, color schemes, and fonts are very simple, succinct, not squandering, and on the mobile version, the list display is changed from three columns to the three-tier list, but there is no uncomfortable in use.

Wunderlist is a Free App, and meanwhile, it also provides a Pro version for premium users and an enterprise version for business users. At present, it seems that the additional functions are provided by the Pro version, such as adding attachments, dispatching tasks, and dialogue functions on the mobile, that are not essential for ordinary users, because I’ve been using Wunderlist for about 1 year, for me, the Free version has met all my needs. Wunderlist has never added ad slots to the free version or web pages. I think this is the team's insistence on UI purity and maximizing user experience.

3. Nitro Pro Up to 28% Off


Nitro Pro

Nitro Pro is a comprehensive PDF solution that includes PDF Conversion, PDF Editing, PDF Creation, PDF Digital signature, and PDF OCR Recognition. Its interface is the same as the classic Office design, so the beginner has no learning curve. There are many PDF conversion tools, as Nitro Pro is a paid software product, its conversion quality is the best among all PDF conversion software products or services I have used. I think Nitro Pro is a perfect replacement of Adobe Acrobat because it has a higher PDF image recognition rate, is much easier to use, and has a lower price.

4. Edraw Mindmaster 30% Off


Edraw Mindmaster

When we talked about mind mapping software, usually Visio will be recommended, but I think Visio is not suitable for beginners, because beginners can't draw beautiful professional graphics. In this case, I would recommend Edraw if you want to pay more attention to visual effects. Edraw is also a very powerful mind mapping software, very easy to use. You can use it as you do with MS Word. If you are a newbie, you can quickly get started. Moreover, its built-in controls are very beautiful and provide rich templates, that can meet various drawing maps requirements.

5. Splashtop Streamer


Splashtop Streamer

Splashtop is an easy-to-use remote desktop tool with more than 16 million users. It allows to watch movies and play games remotely, supports across-platforms using, Win, Mac, Linux, and mobile systems like iOS and Android. It consists of a server Streamer and a client Splashtop.

1) Splash Streamer is a server installed on the computer for remote control. It currently supports Mac OS X, Windows XP/Vista/Win7, and Windows 8 and Linux.
2) Splashtop is a client installed on the mobile devices to control the computer which has installed Streamer. It supports all mainstream systems like iOS, Android, WebOS, Blackberry, etc.
The Splashtop tool is divided into personal version, commercial version, and enterprise version, and the Personal version is free to use in the LAN.
Note: It only completes the connection to control the computer with your mobile phone when you start both Splash Streamer and Splashtop simultaneously.

6. Marinara: Pomodoro Assistant Free


The Top-ranked Pomodoro Time is a free App. It has a clean and concise interface, and meets the requirements for most Promodoro users, and especially suitable for students who often use computers to do work, and users who are studying or working everywhere.

Note: “pomodoro time” refers to the famous time management method. It uses a timer to break down work into intervals, traditionally 25 minutes in length, separated by short breaks.This time management app is based on this rule. High concentration in 25 minutes, that improves learning efficiency. This APP will automatically cut off the phone and information during this time to ensure the most efficient environment.

7. Toggle


As I work for professional service, that needs to record the time and project type spent on each client, If I use Excel to make records, the efficiency is too low, so it forced me to use this software. It supports to automatically record the time that you’ve spent on each project and automatically generate reports for you to analyze the efficiency of time utilization. Toggle is also the only one that supports cross-all-platforms and provides a FREE version to ordinary users.

8. Duet Display Free


Duet Display
Anyone who has used a dual-screen computer will have a total efficiency of double, and the scientific experiments have proved it. The Duet perfectly realizes the possibility of dual-screen work. It has completely realized the function of instantly turning the iPad and notebook connection (Mac, Windows) into a second screen without any delay.

According to my personal user experience, this App is currently the best known "second screen" app. Why?
1. Its core competitiveness is its perfect screen performance, almost no delay. Unlike many other so-called "second screen" apps, those apps generally have a severe screen lagging problem that you can’t use it smoothly.
2. It’s very easy to use Duet Display, almost no learning curve. Just install the App, plug in the data line, and start the App. I have to say if the App can connect wirelessly, it will be perfect. However, it seems that this is very difficult, and those "second screen" apps that claimed to support wirelessly connection are generally reducing the screen quality or reducing the smooth experience.

9. Office Lens Free


Office Lens by Microsoft

It may happen that when you need to scan some files but don't have a scanner at hand, at this time if you can use your phone as a scanner, that the problem will be perfectly solved. But I found that most of the scanning software is paid App, and the freeware always has limited functions. So the Microsoft Office Lens is absolutely the best choice for mobile phone scanner.

The basic functions of Office Lens are not much different from other similar products, such as taking photos, automatically identifying the scanned area, stretching to horizontal and vertical, plus manually adjusting the scanning area, importing photos, etc. In terms of the processing effect of the photos, Scanbot may be better, but in the process of storing the data results, I think Office Lens performs better than Scanbot.

Office Lens previously was a scanning application for the WP platform, but its most significant feature is the storage. Office Lens is a series of MS Office so that the content can be saved as a suitable file format like OneNote, Word, PowerPoint or PDF, but you need to log in to the Outlook account, upload it to the cloud and then download it. It is worth to mention about that it also has built-in OCR (Optical Character Recognition) function, which can be automatically recognized when saved in Docx format, basically automatically recognize the file border, the correct recognition rate is up to 99%, the most important thing is it’s FREE!

10. iStudiezed Pro Free


iStudiezed Pro

iStudiezed Pro is only suitable for students, especially those who are studying in the US. I had been using it during my entire academy time because it was so good. It supports all the essential study functions like the curriculum/homework/exams organization, and sync google cal, iCal, score, and more, all in one package. With this software, I no longer to worry about I'm late to go to class, and forget my homework! It supports all platforms synchronization, absolutely worth to have.
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