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5 must-have back-to-school apps for your computer and smartphone

Chances are good that you use more than one gadget to help with schoolwork. If you have a laptop or desktop computer and do-it-all smartphone at your disposal there are some great applications which can be a huge help at school regardless of which device you've got your hands on.

From taking notes in class to accessing files at home to staving off forgetfulness, these five highly-useful apps are ready to lend you a hand at all times!

Those of you who need to work on projects with other classmates should definitely check out Dropbox. A free 2GB account gives you plenty of space to store and share documents, images, lecture recordings, or just about anything else. DropBox offers desktop apps for Windows, Mac, and Linux and mobile apps for Android, Blackberry, and iPhone -- plus there's a handy web interface. For anywhere, anytime access to files, Dropbox is an excellent choice.


Like Dropbox, Evernote has apps for just about every device you'd want to use it on. Use it to record voice notes during class, scrawl important details just like you would in a paper notebook, clip items from relevant websites you visit... Put simply, it's one of the most versatile and powerful note-taking apps you'll find for any computer or phone.

Remember the Milk
When I was attending the University of Kentucky, my "reminder service" consisted of my forgetful roommate and an 8.5x11" whiteboard on the back of our door -- which was frequently covered by a hoody. Having a to-do app like Remember the Milk would have been an extremely handy way to stay on top of assignment deadlines. RTM can sync with just about any calendar software and alert you via email, SMS, Twitter, or just about any other method (apart from magical white owls).

You'll need a pro account for the best experience on your mobile, but it's well worth the $25 per year. That should be an easy sell to your parents if you don't want to pony up yourself.

The longtime standard for voice and video calling from a computer, Skype also offers a mobile app for iPhone, and Android and Blackberry apps are on the way. Free calls to your family and friends means more money for happy hour at the off-campus... er... book store. Yeah, that's it...

At first blush, TeamViewer might seem like an odd choice for this list -- but hear me out. If you've got two computers and you're away from one, there's always a chance you'll need to access a file on it. It's happened to me a hundred times. TeamViewer lets you jump in remotely and transfer files or take control over your system no matter where you are. With iPhone and iPad apps and a browser-based client built with Flash (so you should be able to run it on an Android 2.2 phone), TeamViewer is an excellent way to make sure you can always get at your computer.

Got another great app for school which is just as useful on your phone as it is on your desktop or laptop? Share it in the comments!

Tags: android, back to school, BackToSchool, blackberry, features, iphone, linux, mac, student, windows