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What Is a Lifestyle App?

David Barlev

June 30, 2021 · 7 minutes

These days, there’s an app for almost everything. From counting steps to meditation, there’s a wide spectrum of lifestyle apps out there to help users amplify and improve their daily lives. So what exactly is a lifestyle app?

Simply put, a lifestyle app aims to make your daily tasks more convenient. Maybe you always forget what’s on your grocery list at home — an app like Remember the Milk allows you to keep a running list of household items you need so when you’re out at the store, you have the information right there.

In addition to streamlining your daily tasks, many lifestyle apps let you set goals and track data about your progress toward those goals. Fitness, diet, mindfulness, time management, quitting smoking — there are apps for almost any area of a user’s life that could improve.

Now is a great time to develop a lifestyle app. Since the lifestyle app category is so broad, let’s look at the different types of lifestyle apps out there.

Fitness Apps

yoga student and teacher

Many lifestyle apps emphasize health and healthy lifestyles. Fitness apps are one example of these, and there are so many out there to choose from.

Training & Exercise

Fitness training apps usually provide instruction — either through video, audio, or pictures — to guide users through a workout. Some apps specialize in a certain type of physical activity, such as yoga, pilates, or HIIT. Others offer a wide variety of workouts to choose.

Users might customize their workout to target a particular part of the body or work toward specific fitness goals — i.e. aerobic, fat burning, strength, or flexibility. Users can also pick their favorite music to hear during their workout, or even select an accent for the instructor’s voice. These features help elevate the UX, but are often premium features for those using the upgraded version of the app.

Some popular fitness training apps include Home Workout or Daily Yoga.

Tracking

Other fitness apps track physical activity so users can review their daily activity or workout. Many running apps track a runner’s route and time, giving them information about distance, time, heart rate, and other information about their workout. Some fitness apps track background activity, like the daily total of steps, and others are meant to track movement during a specific amount of time determined by users.

Map My Run, Strava, and Nike Run Club are all popular fitness apps that use tracking data to amplify users’s workout experience.

Coaching/Fitness Club

Coaching and fitness club apps give users the experience of having a personal trainer or participating in a workout class. Some of these apps allow for the streaming of live exercise classes for activities like dance fitness, spin bikes, or HIIT circuits.

Other coaching apps provide the experience of having a live personal trainer, helping them to input information about themselves, set goals, and be held accountable for them. Whether the app comes with a “real life” personal trainer, or if the technology itself is a stand-in for a trainer, users can enable push notifications that remind them to workout.

Some popular fitness coaching apps include Fitness Coach and FiiT, but gyms and fitness clubs are also keen on the idea of creating custom apps for members to access their services remotely.

Wellness Apps

Wellness is a term that has taken over parts of social media, as ideas like self care, body positivity, and mental health have become a part of the mainstream narrative. It makes sense that so many entrepreneurs are developing wellness apps to capitalize on this trend.

Meditation

If you’re looking to improve your mental health and practice mindfulness, there are lots of apps out there that can help with that. Meditation apps are becoming increasingly popular, offering a selection of guided meditations for users to choose from depending on how much time they have and what they’re looking for—such as meditations for confidence, sleep, or anxiety relief.

Some popular meditation apps include Headspace, Calm, and Exhale.

Healthy Habits

There are many wellness apps that generally look to improve other aspects of our daily lives. Sleeping apps like Sleep Cycle track the length and quality of users’s sleep routine. Other apps like Flo even track menstrual cycles to help users track daily symptoms, sexual activity, and any irregularities.

Some people benefit from wellness apps incentivize checking off basic daily habits, like brushing and flossing teeth, a skincare regimen, and journaling. There are wellness apps that allow users to completely customize daily task lists — no habit is too small. Progress happens in the small, daily habits, after all.

In addition to managing healthy habits, there are also wellness apps that help users quit unhealthy habits, like smoking or drinking, and will update users on the benefits they’re likely to experience as they progress.

Diet Management Apps

If you’ve ever gone on a diet and had to track daily food and calorie intake in a notebook, then you know just how helpful a diet management app is. Meal tracking apps like Calorie Counter + Food Diary make it simple for users to enter data about what they’ve eaten and get immediate data about their caloric intake and other nutritional information.

Apps like MyFitnessPal give users the option to input information about their height, weight, and daily activity, set goals for weight loss, then receive guidance about what their daily diet and exercise should look like. Throughout the day, users can track their food intake and exercise output to get feedback on how they are or aren’t on track toward their goals.

Other popular diet management apps include Noom, Nutrients, and MyPlate Calorie Counter.

Time & Task Management Apps

lifestyle app user

When it comes to keeping track of appointments, events, birthdays, and work projects, sometimes the standard calendar app doesn’t cut it. There are plenty of apps out there that help users manage their schedule. Many even allow sharing to other users for optimal calendar management.

Time management apps like TickTock allow users to set reminders for appointments, events, and even work meetings, which can take a lot of the stress out of managing a schedule.

Task management apps hold daily to do lists, grocery lists, and any other lists users deem useful. OurGroceries lets multiple users access the same running grocery list, which can be edited in real time so that two members of the same household don’t buy the same item twice.

Popular task and time management apps include Workflow, Trello, and Remember the Milk.

Music Apps

Kids today hardly comprehend the days of mixtapes and burned CDs. Thanks to mobile apps, virtually any artist, album, or song you want to hear is always at the tip of your fingers in a variety of music applications. What an enhancement!

Here, Spotify reigns supreme. Offering both a free or subscription (and ad-free) version, Spotify lets users customize and enhance their listening experience. From curated playlists to recommended artists, Spotify analyzes listening preferences and offers custom musical selections accordingly. It also gives users the power to create their own playlists, follow favorite artists, mark their favorite songs, and view their friends’ listening activity.

Bandcamp and Soundcloud are two other popular music apps that give users the ability to upload their own audio content to share with other users. Apps with this feature are powerful for new and lesser-known artists.

Travel

There are a lot of details to keep track of while traveling, and lifestyle apps focused on making travel simple aim to take the headache out of traveling.

Looking for a place to stay? Apps like Airbnb and Couchsurfing make it easy to find available homes, rooms, or couches in your travel destination. With ratings and host profiles, it’s easy to find an accommodation that will be a good fit on your trip.

While you’re on the road, it can be easy to lose track of how you’re doing on your travel budget. Apps like Trail Wallet make it easy to track your spending once you’ve started your trip, and even break your spending down into helpful categories like food, transport, and accommodation, so you’ll never get back from a vacation with just pennies in your bank account again.

Other travel apps can help you find affordable gas nearby, like GasBuddy, and can give you a breakdown of local dining options, like LocalEats and Urbanspoon.

Dating

Modern times require modern solutions, and that certainly applies to modern dating. Apps like Bumble and Tinder allow users to create profiles to help them draw the type of person they’d like to date. These apps go as far as limiting the search to a specific area code, and give users the power to set the criteria for their ideal mate, including age range and gender identity.

Tips for Building a Lifestyle App

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With so many niches to fill within the lifestyle app industry, and with healthy lifestyle app downloads on the rise, now is a great time to develop the next best lifestyle app.

Here are some tips to remember to make your lifestyle app great.

Good UX/UI Design is Key

UX/UI design can make or break an app, especially when it comes to tracking and managing data about our everyday lives. With so many options on the lifestyle app market, apps are only competitive when their software development teams knows how to design a clean, compelling, convenient, and user friendly program.

Simple Registration

Any app that tracks data and is customized for users will require account creation. However, if this process is complicated, you’re likely to lose users before they even get into the application. Make the process for creating an account simple by allowing users to connect it to existing accounts, like Facebook or Google.

Social Integration

Don’t underestimate the power of social networks in improving and managing users’ lifestyles. Connecting with friends and family to see the data they’re sharing with their lifestyle apps can enhance the UX and encourage users to spend more time on the app.

Push Notifications

One could easily see why push notifications are particularly helpful for keeping users on-track toward their goals. From exercise to food diaries, we all need reminders to use the apps that need us to input data for an optimal experience. Be sure your app design prioritizes encouraging users to enable push notifications to get the most out of your app.

However, don’t overdo it. Push notifications have to be useful if anyone is to enable them. Reminding them to revisit the app is pointless, but reminding them that they have unfinished registration might draw a few extra sessions.

Design a Lifestyle App Now!

With so many lifestyle apps out there, you have lots of opportunity to make a better version of an existing app. Go where no other lifestyle app developer has gone. If you’ve got an idea for a lifestyle app that would make fitness, wellness, travel or dating more convenient and exciting, now is the time to get your idea off the ground.

Ready to take the first step in developing the next big lifestyle app?

Click here for a free consultation with a mobile app expert!

About David Barlev

David is the Co-founder and CEO of Goji Labs. David loves working closely with passionate founders to understand their vision and help them build beautiful applications while focusing on risk-mitigation. As an author, he focuses on informative and educational blogs that enable our clients to make the most of their businesses.

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