Software for Tablets and Phones

The software mentioned here is currently being used by myself. Except for the Android section, everything is IOS.  We have one Android phone, one iPhone and three iPads! I did my own reviews, listened to other folks, and finally picked something. If I continue to use it, I figure it is good enough.

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IOS General

      • This should be required use on every iPad. Dropbox gives you 2 gigs of space in the clouds for free that can be used to automatically synchronize between multiple computers on any platform. Yes, you can synch from Android to IOS to Windows to Macintosh to Linux! Even if you only have one computer, an iPad, using Dropbox can give you 2 gigs of extra storage for free without the need for a SD card! Because Dropbox is so popular, most of our genealogy apps link to it. It is easy to use, the hardest part is remembering the account passwords. There are fees for more than 2 gigs. Dropbox differs from other cloud based storage because 1) it synchronizes and 2) using it is built in to so many apps.

      • Evernotes is more than Notes on steroids – it is like Notes and Dropbox combined. Evernotes is one of those tools that the serious genealogist must use for research. A trip to the Salt Lake History Center requires the use of the Evernote powered iPad! Evernote can pull web pages from your browser, photos from your camera, ideas from your head, PDFs from Google, etc.. And then it automatically indexes ever word in every file you have so you can find things in a jiffy (like having you own personal Google). You can categorize everything into folders (like Family names) or let the indexer find it for you. Connecting your smart phone to Evernote lets you up upload genealogical pictures to Evernote from where ever you are.

      • This is a free news aggregator that runs on every platform similar to Dropbox. I use it for daily collection of new posting from the various Blogs I subscribe to. Most of the blogs I follow are genealogy based. This app reads the new entries and feeds them to me. My account is cloud based, so if I sign on from my PC or my iPad, it remembers where I am. My daily breakfast includes oatmeal and tea, a run in Feedly, then my Mail and finally the world news, all on my iPad.

      • Google Earth is like one of the 7 wonders of the world. Only it is free. I am always amazed when I use Earth. When researching the historic lives of my ancestors, I can take a trip to their country without leaving my couch. I can’t say enough, if you have an iPad, get Google Earth.

      • Having a mapping tool is basic needs for Genealogy 101. I don’t care about the debate between the Apple and Google maps, they are both free and I have them both on all of our iPads. Learn how to use them both.

      • if you go anywhere with your grandkids, you have to let them use this app. They will create super movie clips using your existing videos or photos and soon be telling stories like never before. Yes, they taught me how to use it. Use this to create a movie clip about your ancestors and upload it to YouTube!

      • provided with IOS. This is a basic note taker, but it synchs with Gmail! Imagine, even Keep in the Android phones takes notes just fine but it doesn’t synch with Gmail. Leave it to Apple to lead the way. Notes is not fancy, it is one of those Quick and Dirty tools. It just works for simple notes. It can do free-hand drawing too if you aren’t synching with Gmail.

      • is a great note taker, “free hand” drawing tool, sketching pad. You can combine text and images. It is free, works on iPad and iPhone.

      • a really simple photo editor for the phone (from YummyApps) can take pictures with the camera directly or pull them from your photo stash. Really easy to use, not as sophisticated as PhotoShop, but not nearly as complicated either. I use this for quick-n-dirty cropping!

      • pull in genealogical podcasts from Lisa Cooke or the Genealogy Guys and listen when you can. Use your headphones and you won’t bother other folks. Check Cyndi’s List for many names

      • “camera support” tool that allows you to turn paper documents into PDFs or JPGs that look clean and professional. You can make multi-page PDFs. It detects edges, removes shadows and does other things to make a perfect scan. You can save to Photos, Dropbox, Evernote, Google Drive and other cloud services. Includes OCR capabilities. This app receives great reviews everywhere, not bad for free!

      • this free sound recorder is an excellent tool to have when you need to preserve voice. My first experience with this was “saving” a voice call recorded on the telephone from a grandchild to my sister-in-law. We recorded it and saved it as an MP3 and sent it through the mail where it was copied “forever” on her computers. My sister-in-law thought I was a genius for figuring this out! I have since used it to record cousins on trips, instructions from my wife, songs from the radio, whatever. It is easy to use. Take the iPad and interview your older relatives. Either record their video using the camera app, or record their voice using this tool. And then save it as part of your source data.

      • like with the Podcasting app, there are many movie “shorts” in YouTube that are genealogically related that you can watch. FamilySearch has put many self help clips “in the tube”. Just search for genealogy or FamilySearch from within YouTube. Of course, remember your headphones!

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IOS Genealogical software

      • If you have an account and a tablet, you really need to get this free app. It is wonderful for displaying your tree. The app synchronizes with the tree, allows changes to be made, displays photos, processes shaky leaves, and simply looks good. If you have also done the DNA test with Ancestry, that data is viewable, trees and all. The last tree viewed is stored in the app, so it is viewable when access to Ancestry is not available.

      • This app requires a BillionGraves account to run, yet you can’t create an account from within the app. At least I couldn’t. If you are a BillionGraves user, this can be quite handy, as it allows you to upload headstone photos and search. But I couldn’t find the first cemetery I searched for. Online reviews are poor, but local users seem happy. BiilionGraves was built for the smart phone, I think, to help them grow.

      • The app automatically syncs with Tree, so you can pick up where you left off on any device. Take your family tree with you wherever you go—the app works even without Internet access. Browse your family branches, and see portraits of relatives you’ve never seen before. This isn’t quite as colorful as Ancestry, but it is improving regularly. If you use FamilySearch Tree and have a tablet, you should get this app and the “partner” app called Memories. Always free.

      • Memories is designed to allow you to view and add Photos, Stories and Audio files. This is a companion to the Tree app, and requires a FamilySearch account. Always free.

      • This app is obviously designed for the iPhone. And it is pretty basic. It isn’t nearly as good as working on FindAGrave through a browser on the iPad. But it does what it says it will: search for memorials and cemeteries. You can find cemeteries in your local area. It is free.

      • $3.99. Gedview works with gedcoms, no particular application is required. This is not just a viewer, Gedview can also create gedcoms. A large user guide is available which can be stored in iBooks. Since complete trees are kept in the app, no Wi-Fi connection is required to view data. This is the only app in this lineup that is not available in Android. Editing is supported, allowing you to create, change, delete individuals, families, events, facts, notes, and sources. Changes can be exported as a new gedcom file allowing you to import the details back into your desktop genealogy application.

      • This isn’t really a genealogy app, but I keep it in my Genealogy folder because I do DNA testing jointly with my genealogy. It is really called Talking Genetic Terms. It contains over 250 of those genetic terms, defines them and includes a verbal description for those really hard to pronounce words! Quite handy and free from the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI)! Go ahead, pronounce allele.

      • works with one’s ancestral tree on their site,, and allow editing, adding photos, events and information to individuals.

      • viewer works as a companion to your family tree on Rootsmagic desktop software. Links with Dropbox and iTunes.

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Android Phone – Nexus 5X – General

      • An excellent program that displays what your GPS hardware is seeing. This is simple, but effective and it is free. Highly recommended.

      • The traffic cop! Shows where driving is open and where it is not. Highly recommended but little used.

      • Take a picture and let Google tell you about it! I’m still playing with it.

      • Shows you the current weather along with forecasts. So far, it has been quite accurate. Simple and easy to use. Can’t beat the price!

      • I love my blogs, I need to keep up. This lets me do it.

      • So I am addicted to my coffee — this lets me pay by bar-code!

      • I also like my news — and The Guardian has great unbiased international news.

      • This is where I get my cheap news. Gotta keep up with the movie stars!

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Special iPad Links

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