Over the past year, artificial intelligence has evolved from a futuristic concept to a realistic tool capable of creating AI-generated art, creating human-like conversations through chatbots, and even identifying backyard birds based on their chirping.
That said, the recent boom in AI has brought to the surface apps and tools with the potential to make our workflows — and even our lives — easier. And according to Gartner analyst and AI expert Whit Andrews, AI has a leveling effect that’s only intensifying, he told ZDNET.
“Think of all the people who find it difficult to express themselves in an unfamiliar idiom: whether it’s drawing a picture, drawing a map or explaining a concept,” Andrews said. “Generative AI and other AI applications now make it easier and have really advanced parallels.”
With over 150 AI chatbot apps launched so far in 2023, that intensity already has a solid foundation. While there are many familiar big-name apps and software like ChatGPT, I’ve found the following six apps to be the most useful for time and budget management, fitness routines tailored to your skills, and even mindfulness. After integrating some of these apps into my own life, I think it’s worth talking about them.
Claim it again
Google Chrome extension for time management
There never seem to be enough hours in the day, but Reclaim.ai can find that time slot in your ever-changing schedule. The app uses AI to find the time between your workday and your regular life and weaves in your activities and healthy habits.
It can automatically schedule your meetings and block off time to focus on specific projects, but I love this AI tool for its habitual scheduling. Its AI builds flexibility into your schedule so that instead of telling you to go for a walk at 2pm every day, it will automatically schedule it to fit in with other events on your calendar, or reschedule if a last-minute meeting pops up. .
By using AI to create the right schedule for your priorities each week, it helps you stay on track with both your work tasks and the habits you want to incorporate into your life that you never thought you had time for.
Currently, the app only works in conjunction with Google Calendar, but there may be Microsoft Office 365 integration in the future.
iOS and Android app for budget management
This AI app is made for Millennials looking for an easy way to budget. Cleo interacts with users via chat and uses emojis, memes, and GIFs to get the point across when you spend too much to order takeout.
Its AI integrates tough love humor, which it calls “roast mode” that shames you for how much you spend or how little you save because of certain repetitive habits even the robot knows you should break. Conversely, Cleo may promote you and praise you for your good habits.
Also: An unexpected bill? This AI bot can ‘haggle it’ for you
Clio also has a “Haggle It” feature that helps customers draft letters to help negotiate rent, credit card fees or interest rates, or car insurance rates. A survey by Clio found that about 20% of consumers who negotiated their credit card fees and interest got lower rates and fees, so it’s definitely worth a try.
But overall, the app builds a budget based on your real-life needs and spending habits to set you up for financial success.
App and Google Chrome extension to practice screen-time mindfulness
This Chrome extension has become one of my favorite AI tools because it forces me to slow down and take a break during my work day. Breathhh learns your browsing history over time and keeps track of how long you’ve been in a Google spreadsheet (or how long you’ve been scrolling through social media).
How long you’ve been on a website, what type of website it is (ie for work or leisure) and the tool then suggests breathing exercises or exercises or documents your mood at the right time. By learning your browsing habits so it can intervene.
I’ve found this AI extension reminds me when to take a break and reset my mind so I can avoid the stress of work.
ActiveFence video content control
An AI tool that works behind the scenes of live streaming apps to manage cyber-bullying
95% of teenagers today have been exposed to violent content online. This new AI tool, in partnership with Agora and ActiveFence, isn’t downloadable, but works as an extension for social media sites or live streaming apps.
Content moderation technology works so that when an app developer activates the extension, it takes screen shot snippets at split-second intervals, passing the images to the ActiveFence content moderation system. Then, AI flags illegal content in real-time and can kick the user out.
“What we’ve done with this integration is provide a low code offering that you click a button, you integrate a line or two of code and you’re good to go. And you’ve protected the content that flows through your platform,” said Sid Sharma, Vice President Agora. “We really wanted to make the Internet, and certain live interactions on the Internet, a very safe place of inclusivity where anyone could go and feel safe and not have to worry about keyboard warriors.”
AI can identify specific abuse areas such as terrorism, hate speech, child safety, self-harm, etc. and flag it on the server in a matter of milliseconds.
“The Internet should be a place that people get excited about and feel safe. So ideally, I would see this (AI tool) as a requirement for most platforms out there,” Sharma added. “I very much hope to see a world where live streaming or live video calls are protected, ensuring the utmost safety for mental health and not causing any harm to every consumer.”
iOS and Android app for creating and maintaining workout routines
When it comes to a fitness routine, getting started is the hardest part. It’s hard to know what cardio-weight mix is right for you, exactly what plan to follow to achieve any specific goals, or what’s safe given your current skills without hiring an expensive trainer or going down the TikTok/Pinterest rabbit hole. Hole GymBuddy uses AI to analyze your current self-assessed fitness level and considers body composition factors such as height and weight to create specific workout plans and schedules in just 24 seconds.
You can also tell the app which body parts you want to focus on strengthening, and it will track your progress and increase your difficulty level as you improve.
The app’s handy workout scheduler also creates time in your schedule so you can workout during your lunch break, after work, when you wake up, etc. Can complete personalized workouts for you.
App and Google Chrome extension for content summary
Sometimes, we don’t have five minutes to spare to read an entire article on how to solve an important problem or read an article (unless it’s a ZDNET article, of course) before jumping on a new technology or social media trend. Your morning meeting. WordTune, however, is a handy Chrome extension that uses AI to give you the critical points (or sparknotes, if you prefer) of that article or video.
For example, break down a 3,500-word article into 24 simple focus points, saving you about 10 minutes of reading while still getting the most important information from the article.
Also: How to use Wordtune AI to rewrite text on your iPhone
Wordtune also has app versions for iOS and Android, and the mobile version can create content such as text messages and emails, photo captions, LinkedIn or Twitter posts, cover letters, blog posts, and more. You can ask Wordtune to write you a cover letter applying for the job of your dreams, and it will generate several responses to choose from. Or, more simply, you can ask AI to write a response to a text message when you don’t know how to reply.
In addition to these six tools, there are still many AI applications available to help with productivity and workflow, learn how to develop a new skill, or create professional headshots for free. And according to Andrews’ insight, we’re only on the cusp of seeing AI’s full potential.
“A generation from now, people won’t remember life before this moment when AI made a lot of things more fair,” he said. “There are all kinds of things we can do, and that’s what I love about AI,” Andrews said.