New parents know that despite the research you do before your child enters the world, babies don’t come with a manual. Luckily, technology often does, and there are many free and inexpensive apps to help make your transition into parenthood a little bit easier.
Instead of spending money on baby monitors, use your smartphone. Set your phone near your sleeping child, and the app will dial the configured phone number—say, your partner’s phone—when the baby’s noises go above the volume you set. This app also comes with a recorder to record and download your baby’s babblings. Available for Android is Baby Monitor, a free app that texts or alerts you when your baby is crying.
BabyPhone Deluxe is available for iPhone, $2.99; Baby Monitor, Android, free.
Subtle ambient sound can help calm babies and lure them to sleep. The White Noise app plays sounds on repeat at various volumes. Based on the reviews, adults seem to like it, too.
Available for iPhone, $0.99, and Android, free for Lite version.
Track your baby’s eating and sleeping patterns, as well as doctor appointments, medications, habits and more with Baby Connect’s timeline interface. Several alternatives are available, including Baby ESP (Eats, Sleeps and Poops) and Feed Baby Pro.
Available for iPhone, iPad and Android, $4.99. A free web component syncs with the app.
Baby Learns Shapes
This app is part of a series of learning apps created by Baby Bus and are made for infants and children up to 6 years old. Games and lessons cover numbers, letters, shapes, animals and more. Just be ready for sticky baby fingerprints all over your screen.
Available for Android, free.
100+ Baby Food Recipes
If you plan to make your own baby food, this app is a handy mobile cookbook. A Lite version is available, but for nutritional information and specific cooking guidelines, the paid version is more thorough.
Available for Android, $1.99
Lullaby for Babies
If you’re tired of singing, “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” for the hundredth time, let this app to take over for you. Choose a song and set it to loop.
Available for Android, free.
While an app should never be used in the place of legitimate, professional medical advice, Kid Care, created by the St. Louis Children’s Hospital, is a good option for new parents who may have trouble identifying a serious ailment. Parents can search by symptoms, and the app will provide information on illnesses or injuries that match. It will also indicate level of severity.
Available for iPhone and Android, free.
Baby Brain Development
This app uses scientific studies to help you track the brain development of your child. Like the Kid Care app, it should not be used in place of medical advice, but it’s a good quick resource to see how your child is progressing.
Available for iPhone and Android, $1.99
I Love Potty Training
Help ease the transition into potty training through the games and features offered with this app. Created by a children’s book author, I Love Potty Training has an interactive story and reward system. It will even send your child a diploma once potting training is complete. Comments from iTunes and parenting websites have mentioned its usefulness with children on the autism spectrum. Two different versions are available for girls and boys, as well as English and Spanish versions.
Available for iPhone and iPad, $0.99.
Parenting Ages & Stages
This app serves as a newsfeed on important news for parents. Enter your child’s information to get relevant information, or search for specific topics.
Available for iPhone, iPad and Android, free.