I'm an impulsive application buyer

Taylor Martin
 from Concord, NC
Published: November 12, 2012

I like applications. No, I really like applications. Better yet, I love them. And I'm known for buying and downloading various useful and pointless applications all the time. Oh, I like mobile games, too. The only person I know that buys more mobile apps and games than I do is David Beren of our network site TmoNews.

I admit that I'm an app hoarder. At any given time, I will have anywhere from 90 to 150 applications – sometimes more – installed on each of my devices. I have purchased at least 51 of the top 100 paid applications in the Google Play Store. And I only clean the unused apps off every few months, meaning my phones are always filled to the brim with an arsenal of pointless apps.

Like I explained last week, though, I am always looking for more uses for my smartphone and, likewise, I'm constantly looking for more useful applications that may give me a functionality I've been searching for. Sometimes I'm in search of something new, an application that's similar to one I already have but looks nicer or operates more smoothly. And I'm always after new time-wasting games.

The problem is that I often act on impulse when it comes to applications. Unlike everything else I regularly shop for, I don't ponder or weigh application purchases. When I see an application or game I think I may like, I buy it. Then and there; no consideration, no remorse … until later.

For example, about a month ago, I was in search of an application that would allow me to mirror my iPad or Android device display on my MacBook Air. After some searching, what I eventually came across was iDisplay, which actually doesn't do anything close to what I wanted to do. Instead, iDisplay allows me to use my mobile devices as additional monitors for the MacBook. Still, it was very cool and I was sold. Five bucks later, there was no turning back.

And a few weeks ago, I was craving a new game for the iPad. I opened App Store, immediately saw FIFA 13 and bought it without hesitation. I also bought Plague Inc., Carmageddon, Real Racing 2HD, Sky Gamblers: Air Supremacy around the same time without second thought.

I don't want to know how much I have spent, collectively, on Android and iOS applications to date. But I'm trying to be a bit more conservative with my purchases. This morning, I saw an application recommendation in the comments section of an article I wrote on Friday. According to the description, Lux does exactly what I need it to do, dim the Galaxy Note II's display below the lowest standard setting. I checked it out in the Play Store and saw it was $2.19 and, surprisingly, decided to wait.

Last week, the struggle was passing up Angry Birds Star Wars. Next week will be another application or game, such as Real Racing 3, and after that another one. Eventually, I will probably cave and buy all the applications and games I've been putting off all at once.

I'm curious, though, readers. Do you buy applications impulsively? Or do you have control? And what's the most you will pay for an app?

I'm working on my impulsiveness. But I set limits a long time ago. With only a rare exception, the most I will pay for an application is $10. I'm sometimes a bit hesitant if the application is over $5. Under $5, there's little consideration. And at $1 or $2 a pop, I have no control. The way I see it, almost any application is at least worth trying for $1, especially with the Play Store's refund policy.

What about you? Do you buy on impulse? Or do you have more self control when it comes to apps? Also, what's your limit? $5? 10? More?