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Get Your iPhone Out, We're Going Shopping!

written by: •edited by: Simon Hill•updated: 9/12/2011

Although shopping is seen as therapy by some, there are those of us who find a visit to the supermarket stressful -- that's why we compiled this guide to shopping with your iPhone. Whether it's finding that boutique, writing a shopping list or getting your hands on hot discounts, we're here to help!

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    If the Internet changed the way we shop forever, then imagine how useful the iPhone can be in your shopping endeavors. It's hard to find time to do a lot of things these days, but if you get your shopping organized not only will you be less stressed, you'll have more time for the pleasurable things in life -- although if you find shopping pleasurable in itself we have some treats for you too.

    We begin by getting you organized with some top choices of great shopping apps, and then move onto the dreaded subject of shopping lists. You know you should make one, you know you'll forget things and end up with things you didn't need, yet somehow we never get around to making a list. Well, if you get one on your iPhone not only will you feel organized, you also won't feel like an old lady holding a scrappy piece of paper. We also dip a wooden spoon into the world of cooking, but look at just the apps to help you find recipes with a shopping list feature built-in -- think of it as two apps for the price of one (although most are free!).

    Everybody likes a bargain, so we've rounded up some price comparison apps and those that let you find hot bargains and discounts along with some specific apps for different shopping chores.

    Not sure where to start with your bargain hunting? There are some fantastic options for finding stores, getting tips and knowing where your friends are to meet up for a coffee between all that shopping.

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    Kerching! Great General Shopping Apps

    We'll begin with a round-up of some of the best iPhone shopping apps, and then take a look at a couple of popular shopping apps in more detail -- our reviews of these apps will tell you all you need to know, whether it's a simple grocery shop or buying anything you can think of on eBay.

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    Shopping Lists

    OK, so don't freak out when I mention 'shopping lists', you won't suddenly turn into your mom or grandma, you'll just look really cool as you shop and won't feel so frazzled as you do your shopping. Shopping list apps are really useful and not just for jotting down a list of products -- you can often organize them into shop type, or department of the supermarket. A quick tap once your item is in your cart and it's crossed off the list. You can also utilize barcode scanner apps to compile your list, scanning products as you run out of them during the week and ta dah! They are now on your shopping list, so there's no effort there at all.

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    It's Getting Hot in the Kitchen

    There's nothing more frustrating than finding a recipe you like, to have to trawl through the list of ingredients and write down what you want -- not just that, but how much of it you need. These apps have been chosen not just for being great recipe or cooking apps for the iPhone, but also because with a few taps you can add the ingredients required into an integrated shopping list so the hard work is done for you.

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    Shopping for Electronics & Clothes

    Two of the most popular things we shop for (after food and drink of course), are clothes and gadgets. This section is very specific to these areas, but also very necessary as they can be the hardest areas to find bargains in. Not just that though, but what do you buy the iPhone owner who has everything? Take a look at our holiday gifts guide and get buying for a loved one, or drop some hints to them about what you'd like.

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    How Much?

    Now we come to the big one -- it's all about the money. Price check apps are an indispensable weapon to have at your disposal when out shopping. Check the price in one store against the price online, or even against another store -- think of how much walking this saves! Of course we aren't forgetting that everyone likes a bargain so head on over to our coupons app roundup, or take a try at using Groupon on your iPhone for the first time -- you will save so much money. If you're heading out to the sales and the term 15% off gets you in a fluster as you try and do math in your head, then fret not and use some nifty calculator apps that are also great for working out sales tax.

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    Find the Best Places to Shop

    Of course you can't start shopping at the best places if you don't know where to find them. Here we've grouped together some apps to help you find great shops as well as some general (but useful) GPS apps to help you find your way. Ever used FourSquare? Now might be the time, as they offer tips when you check in to different locations like shops, and you can also keep tabs on where friends are to make catching up so much easier among the hordes of other shoppers. And you know how you usually end up back at that first shop anyway? Well, take the stress out of shopping and use a route recorder app to help retrace your steps with ease.

    Who said shopping was stressful? Using your iPhone for shopping in no matter what capacity is really one of the most useful ways it can be used. Drop us a comment if you have any other apps or tips for iPhone shoppers.