Original article written by JD Phillips. Article updated by Cameron Pipkin for Emergency Essentials.
Many people are under the false impression that prepping and technology don't go well together. Don't get me wrong, it's quite easy to assume that survival is all about bushcraft (wilderness skills); but it's not! Survival means using all available resources to get through the toughest of times.
Modern technology plays a crucial role in the development of various kinds of survival gear. Also, thanks to various survival apps, you can put your smartphone to some good use during an emergency.
Top 10 survival SmartPhone Apps
1) Cures A-Z: This application has extensive information about natural/home remedies and can be very handy for treating minor ailments. Even a seemingly trivial illness such as a cold can cause death if it not treated in time. Hence, this is one app that you absolutely must have. It has been downloaded more than a million times and free to use. Moreover, it also has a useful “share” feature that allows you to pass on info to friends and family.(Download Links: I-Tunes App Store - Android App)
2) Knots-3D: Knots have a multitude of uses – from creating makeshift tools to temporary shelters and even rudimentary rafts. This app teaches you how to tie more than 100 knots using a 3D guide. It also features information on which knots are good (and bad) for which particular situations. You can even adjust the animation speed and slow down the more complex knots.
3) SAS-Survival: This is the most complete survival app in our opinion. It contains exhaustive content on all possible survival or disaster scenarios. It teaches you important survival skills such as making fires, building shelters, procuring and purifying water, dealing with extreme weather conditions, responding to natural calamities, self-defense, and a lot more. The best aspect of this app is that it works offline – this makes it very usable if the mobile networks are down. (Download Links: I-Tunes App Store - Android App)
4) Your google drive: You need this to backup all your important data such as identity cards, driving license, passports, home ownership papers, insurance policies, bank accounts, car titles, etc. This way, you can still identify yourself and access crucial financial and personal information even if you don’t have the hard copies with you. (Download Links: I-Tunes App Store - Android App)
6) Edible Plants. There are lots of “plant identification” apps, but if you’re looking for something to help in a survival scenario, you ought to have an application that specializes in edible plants as well. For our money, the best out there is the Edible Plant Guide for iTunes and Android. While the interface may be a bit buggy in places it doesn’t impact functionality, and you get information on over 950 plants and 2,500-plus helpful images. No matter where you live in the US, Edible Plants Guide should provide a wealth of resources for foraging in your area to supplement any supplies or bug-out-bag.
Enter MAPS.ME: an offline map application that includes directions for driving, walking, and biking anywhere in the world. It also includes original travel guides totaling hundreds of entries. People love the detail of the maps, especially in “less-traversed” areas. With over 50 million downloads and a 4.5 star review, it’s a great emergency mapping option.
8) First Aid App by The American Red Cross: This app contains detailed step by step instructions on dealing with a number of emergencies such as heart attacks, car accidents, drowning, fractures, bruises, cuts, snake-bites, diarrhea etc. The Red Cross is an authority in medical aid so all the info on this app is well researched and field tested. The app also has a built-in 911 feature that you can use to contact emergency services. First Aid is free to download and is devoid of ads and spam. All the content is accessible even when you have no internet connectivity. (Download Links: I-Tunes App Store - Android App)
9) Police Radio Scanner. In an emergency, information is your lifeline. It’s right up there with food, water, and shelter for preparedness must-haves. That’s why we recommend a police scanner app as a great addition to an emergency radio. The “Scanner Radio” app on IOS and Android is our top pick. It’s got lots of fun browsing options that let you listen to scanners all over the world by popularity. Our favorite feature for emergencies, though, is the ability to target your specific location and receive notifications right on your phone when major events or emergencies take place. To get full functionality, including those push notifications, we recommend the pro version. It’s a nice upgrade for a nominal fee
10) Army Survival: This is a comprehensive survival guide based on army manuals. It holds effective and detailed information on dealing with extreme situations – from natural disasters to avoid being captured by enemies. You can become a master survivalist if you use this app seriously. Special mention: The bug out bag checklist application is a good platform for beginners. It helps you create your bug-out-bag and tracks the expiry dates of your rations.