Which messaging app should you use when you really want to make sure your chats stay secret? Try Signal, an encrypted text messaging system that uses a protocol called TextSecure, which means that users can communicate using voice and text while remaining confident nothing is intercepted in transit over the Internet. And it works with your existing contact book, so long as both parties have Signal installed.

Though Nuzzel was released last year, it gained massive popularity in 2016 as people realized how clever it is. The app works as a news aggregator with a twist: it organizes content users may be interested in because their social media followers have already read and shared them. You can also search for top news on any topic and receive personalized news alerts.

Like Nuzzel, Asana isn’t new, but it’s been supercharged with so many new features this year that it’s finally ready to replace whatever software you’re currently using to track your tasks and projects. The recent addition of boards, custom fields, offline mobile access and third-party integrations have remade Asana into a completely new app. If you’re doing any sort of trackable, taskable work, Asana should be on your short list of apps to download.

Podcasts have become a major phenomenon, and the Castro app provides a streamlined way to listen to your favorite podcasts and discover new ones. Designed like a news feed, the app features charts based on popularity so users can see what other people are listening to. On iOS 10, Castro even integrates with Apple’s iMessage so users can share podcasts directly inside the app. Elegant and powerful, Castro costs $4 for iOS devices.

Google Trips
This app curates your Gmail account to automatically consolidate your flights, hotels, car rentals, and restaurant reservations into a coherent trip itinerary. Users also get at-a-glance information about local attractions, including mappable activity suggestions that you can customize based on your interests and how much time you have. It’s like having Google as a real-life travel companion.

Source: TIME

Posted by Ray Simon

Ray Simon is a veteran copywriter with more than a decade's worth of experience in the field. He studied journalism at Vanderbilt University, graduating Cum Laude in 2007. Ray currently specializes in writing content and news articles for independent publications.