These days, you can buy almost anything you need on your smartphone without ever setting foot in a store. But this holiday season, retailers are trying to encourage you to bring your smartphone TO the store, by offering store specific apps that enhance the shopping experience.
So, if you've got to face the crowds, here are a few apps you might want to check out.
1) Westfield, one of the largest mall chains, offers a pretty slick app to help you get around the mall. Let's say you'e at the body shop, sniffing lotions, and you get a craving for a slice at Sbarro. The app will give you the quickest route.
2) Fastmall isn't as pretty, but the app offers maps for every mall. You search for a store, and it appears on the map. You can set filters to show you specific landmarks, like elevators and restrooms.
3) Walmart has embraced bar code scanning in their app, encouraging you to use it on their products to make a list while you shop. If something is out of stock, you can buy it online.
4) Walgreens is typically in the top 50 free apps on iTunes. They allow you scan your prescriptions to get them refilled, and offer pill reminders for your medications.
5) Target's app lets you scan codes in the store and have them shipped to you. On one hand, what's the point as you could have just shopped online. But if you're shopping with a someone and you don't want them to see the present you're about to buy them, you can be sneaky, scan it, and it will arrive at your house later.
The ultimate in sneaky apps is the Amazon Price Check App. Not only do they tell you the price on Amazon, which is often cheaper than an in-store price, but they encourage you to report the price you find in store.
Will apps make you more likely to shop in a store? Or would you rather just stay home and shop online. Let us know in the comment section below.