Not For Tourists: Must Have Apps For NYC Locals

So you’ve lived in New York City for years and already mastered the basics.  You’ve waxed philosophical at all the museums, received words of wisdom…

Times Square

So you’ve lived in New York City for years and already mastered the basics.  You’ve waxed philosophical at all the museums, received words of wisdom from a 75-year old Greek woman, torn up a few dance floors, and spotted a few celebrities throwing tantrums.  Congratulations, you’ve made it.  Ready to kick it up a notch?  These apps will give you a new perspective on the world around you and help reawaken the adventurous spirit that brought you here in the first place.

Exit Strategy

While commuters often gripe that the MTA acronym should refer to “Might Take Awhile,” Exit Strategy enables users to exercise some control over inevitable delays and service changes by providing them with a way to shave some precious New York minutes off their travel time.  If you need to be in a specific subway car in order to transfer in the nick of time, or just want to position yourself to be closest to the staircase when you reach your stop, Exit Strategy will come in handy for you.  Jonathan and Ashley Wegener, the brother and sister team behind Exit Strategy, pounded the pavement for three months to compile all of the data for their app.  Whether you’re in a time crunch or just like to pretend you’re a character in a video game, Exit Strategy is the perfect tool for revamping your subway experience.

Museum of the Phantom City

This alternate reality app by Mathbeat Industries gives users the chance to become part of a parallel universe.  The app enables you to view projects that were envisioned for the city, but never implemented, such as Buckminster Fuller’s proposed geodesic dome for Midtown Manhattan. Featuring a map tagged with the proposals, users are informed of their proximity to one of the sites when its respective tag changes color.  Users are even given the option to rate these phantom features as sublime or subversive, beauties or beasts.  Whether you consider yourself a budding visionary or an average Joe, Museum of the Phantom City offers you a radically different vision of the future and the past.


Keeping up appearances is hard work, but UrbanDaddy’s sleek app helps create the illusion of effortless sophistication.  While the UrbanDaddy team prides themselves on providing you with only what you need to know, their app goes above and beyond traditional expectations.  Designed by Fueled, the UrbanDaddy app gives you dining and entertainment recommendations on the fly, offering a novel selection of choices depending on who you’re with (your friends or your mistress), the time of day, the day of the week, etc.  The next time you score a hot date, you’ll be prepared to win serious points thanks to your seemingly inexhaustible knowledge of swanky spots.

Sketch Wiz

In NYC, you’re constantly immersed in and part of an ever-morphing canvas, so it’s only natural to want to capture its beauty as it ebbs and flows past you.  The app market is flooded with a slew of apps that can endow you with enviable photography skills thanks to an assortment of filters that can transform your snapshots into everything from Polaroids to the products of a Toy Camera at the touch of a button.  Sketch Wiz, however, offers the unique ability to turn screenshots into original works of art.  Sketch Wiz gives you a way to impress your friends without ever having to pick up a colored pencil.  Bad news for art supply stores, but great news for you.


While New York may be the city that never sleeps, it certainly still dreams.  Attractor is a “Dynamic Binaural Wave Generator” that works to help you program your subconscious to manifest the reality you wish to experience.  Attractor uses a custom frequency generator which helps to direct your mind to a hypnagogic state, and even enables you to record customized messages to program into your subconscious.  Regardless of whether or not you believe in the law of attraction, Attractor can be utilized in a plethora of creative ways, and depending on the person, can function as everything from a source of motivation to a tool for hypnotic induction.


In what is perhaps the most diverse, dynamic city in the world, it can be difficult to carve out a niche, as so much is constantly in flux.  While much of what happens in life is beyond one’s control, luck favors the prepared.  With these apps, you’ll be poised to make the most out of any situation the city throws at you, however exciting or mundane it is.

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