The essential dad apps you need for Father’s Day 2018

Picture the scene. You’ve arrived back home to your parents’ house to honour the long years of support and sacrifice that your father put in to help you become the semi-functioning adult that you are today. You’re holding the perfect Father’s Day gift. You thought about it for weeks. You have carefully arranged the present of a lifetime. 

*record scratch* Oh wait…


Father’s Day 2018 is rapidly approaching, and you have nothing. You could race to the shops to get a generic and most likely ill-advised present, or you could wing it with a coupon for hugs that will be embarrassing for both of you. We’ve got a third option for you that means you won’t have to face the hell of the shops on a Saturday and you can still be the cool kid that’s keeping your father young. 

Enter the curated smartphone makeover. With just a few taps and a few minutes, you can transform your father’s smartphone from an overpriced and under-utilised calculator into the pocket-sized entertainment hub of his dreams, which he starts to use for more than just making phone calls and sending you incomprehensible texts.


If you download this mix of practical apps and entertainment portals to your dad’s phone, so he’ll think of you every time he opens his phone. Regretfully also probably when he’s on the toilet, which is where the majority of dad browsing occurs…

BBC Sport

This might be an obvious choice but hey, you’ve got to give the man what he wants. If your dad has a sporting obsession there are endless great targeted apps but for the footy/rugby/cricket/anything-with-a-ball lover, we suggest good ol’ BBC Sport.

Download, free, from iTunes and Google Play



If your dad loves a bit of TV, you need to introduce him to Netflix. He can watch comedy classics like Only Fools and Horse, documentaries ranging from history to sports and more movies that he can shake a stick at. That’s not all, thanks to Go Binge, he can watch them all wherever he likes (yup, even in the garden shed) without using any of his data allowance.

If you really want to secure yourself some favourite child bragging rights, hook him up with a SIM only plan so he can start binge-watching right away.


Stitcher Radio for Podcasts

Think of this as your modern day mix-tape that updates every week. Download Stitcher and you can curate a program of podcasts tailored to your dad’s interests. If you don’t know where to start, we suggest Radio Lab, Planet Money, 99% Invisible, and Here’s The Thing with Alec Baldwin as safe bets.  

Download, free, from iTunes and Google Play


Super Swiss Knife

Two words: bubble level. Even if your father prefers the P-U-B over DIY, this tool is full of useful features like a magnifying glass, a compass, and a flashlight. Our favourite feature is undoubtedly the level. Just watch and enjoy as your dad proceeds to balance his phone on any level surface he can find to either prove the crookedness of said item or attempt to disprove the accuracy of the level. Fun times either way.

Download, free, from iTunes


Classic Rock Quiz

An obvious choice for the Creedence lover in your family. Let him test his knowledge and see if he knows his Big Star from his Beatles.

Download, £0.99, from iTunes and Google Play


7 Minute Workout Challenge

We all want our fathers to be happy and healthy for a long time. For most, the motivation to get off the couch is hard to find so help him along with the 7 Minute Workout Challenge. It’s a great first step and shows your dad that you care.

Download, £2.99 from iTunes, £2.70 from Google Play


Bird Song ID Automatic Recognition

If your dad is the outdoorsy type, consider this the birder’s essential app. Take hikes to the next level and let your dad get his ornithology on.

Download, £3.99 from iTunes, £2.99 from Google Play


Voxer Walkie Talkie Messenger

Now this is a slow burner but if you can get your dad to use it you won’t regret it. The Voxer Walkie Talkie allows you to record quick (or not so quick) voice notes back and forth with just a tap. There’s nothing like listening to someone find a bee in their hair in real time. No more stunted emails or overly formal texts. Just pure unedited dad-LOLs.

Download, free, from iTunes and Google Play



Main image via: Getty via Russ Rohde

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Source: Three Mobile Hub