Couples turn to Smartphones to live 'appily' ever after

Valentine's Day is here and love is in the air.

Many singles have turned to online dating to find that perfect person, but for couples what about keeping the romance alive? There's an app for that.

Typically couples are busy at work, traveling for business, raising kids. A hectic schedule can make it tough to stay connected when you can't be with the one you love.

"There are a lot of times throughout the day where we're in meetings, we're on the phone, we're just separated from our loved ones," says USF Mass Communications Associate professor Dr. Kelli Burns.

Dr. Burns knows even in couples' fast-paced lives, a smart phone is typically close at hand. Now, there's a way you and your significant other can live "app-ily" ever after.

"It does seem like anything you can dream up, there's an app for that. It's really not surprising people have come up with apps for managing your relationship," Dr. Burns says.

One app is called "Couple." It's one spot to save and share every aspect of your life from photos, a calendar, and a to-do list. To let the other person know you're thinking about them when you're apart you can send messages, love stickers, and another cool feature: a thumb-kiss. [To learn more about the app, click HERE for an Apple device or click HERE for an android device.]

"You can touch your phone and the other person will see where you're touching your phone on there, and if you touch the same spot on both phones both phones vibrate simultaneously," says Couple Co-founder Oleg Kostour.

"It's as if you were actually in the same place together. It's very physical. It's quirky, but a lot of people really like it. We've had over 3 million people download the app," says Kostour.

"Love Maps" is an app created by counselors John and Julie Gottman. It provides questions to ask your partner to learn more about each other's hopes and dreams.

"I don't think couples purposely stop having those conversations," says couple's counselor Christina Roach. "Whoever you started dating on day one, they're a different person now, just like you are a different person. We have to remind ourselves, we have to continue to get to know them, just like we want them to get to continually know us," Roach says.

If you want to know more about boundaries in the bedroom, try "Kindu". Your partner answers "yes", "no" or "maybe" to suggestions, and only matches are revealed.

"You can use that app to feel it out with your partner, and if they're on the same page it's like, oh, okay we can maybe talk about those," Roach says.

If you're trying to work through a rocky point in your relationship: "Fix a Fight" may be able to help. Soothing words calm tensions opening the door to talk about feelings and finding a solution.

"Are you a couple that's able to have a healthy productive conversation post argument? If you are, than this app is probably going to help you," says Roach.

"Whatever the conversation, if there's too much high-voltage there, that app is probably not the best way to handle it, because you might see a smart phone being thrown out the window," Roach says.

Roach says it's important for couples to remember why you're using the apps in the first place, and not let your phone replace truly intimate communication.

"We are using this app so we're connected. You use the app and then take that into a face-to-face conversation," Roach says.

Here are some additional apps for couples:

Avocado: It's similar to Couple. You set it up with one other person and can text, send pics, keep lists, send kisses only to the one special someone you set up in the app. "We understand the need for a fun, fast, reliable and private way to stay connected to your partner when you're out and about. Something as simple as staying in touch throughout the day can improve and strengthen a relationship." To learn more about the app, click HERE for an Apple device or click HERE for an android device.

Grocery Smart: Grocery Smart shopping list app that allows you to make shopping lists and share them over multiple devices with any one you like. Create a list using the 1,000's of items within the app, or upload your very own. Once you make a purchase, just cross those items right off the list and the changes will be synced across all of the connected devices. "GrocerySmarts" is the world's greatest grocery list app for iPhone/iPod and Android featuring web syncing and easy sharing." To learn more about the app, click HERE for an Apple device or click HERE for an android device.

Mint: One of the most downloaded apps for budgeting and synching bank accounts. A primary stress in a marriage can be financial, so keep that stress to a minimum by being able to see all of your personal finances in one place – from bank accounts, credit cards, to investments. "Your financial life, in one place and easy to understand. We gather all your financial information into one place, giving you the whole picture in a way that's easy to understand and take advantage of. Add the accounts, cards and bills you'd like. See what you have and what you owe. Track your spending patterns, investments and more." To learn more about the app, click HERE for an Apple device or click HERE for an android device.

Wunderlist: "Wunderlist is the easiest way to get stuff done. Whether you're organizing your work, sharing a shopping list with a loved one or planning an overseas adventure. Wunderlist is here to help you accomplish more." Real-time sync instantly updates your lists no matter where you are, and you can share them even simpler than before. Once you have a to-do list setup, you can communicate with the people you have shared it with by leaving comments. One of the best features is that you can set reminders for your lists so you never forget important deadlines. To learn more about the app, click HERE for an Apple device or click HERE for an android device.

Also, the creator of "Couple", is now launching "Quiver". Oleg Kostour talks about the new app that's available February 12, 2015: "It's an app for singles to have real people matching people. Rather than just using a cold, mechanical algorithm like most traditional dating sites, we've built a game that allows someone to play Cupid for other users in the game. We find pairs of people that we think are compatible within the app, and show them to a handful of matchmakers to see if they agree. If enough of them do, the two people get the chance to connect! It's an exciting new way to meet new people, and gives you a way to set up your friends. With Couple behind us, I think we'll be able to develop on of the highest quality dating apps on the App Store," says Kostour.

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