There are apps you can use for short bits of time and put them away. Then there are those games and other types of apps that will keep you up all night. These titles either provide you with addictive gameplay or enable you to keep watching or reading your favorite tales until the sun comes up. If you don’t mind being a night owl, these five apps will keep you busy through the wee hours of the night.
Stories to Keep You Up All Night
For the first app to keep you up all night, we have Hooked, because it’s so enticing. Reading has fallen by the wayside a bit, but Hooked looks to bring it back. You get stories in bite-sized chunks, because the tales are all text-message based. They’re scary and tension-filled, too, which will keep you on the edge of your seat all night long.
Spooky backgrounds with frightening texts
Every story in Hooked plays out through a series of text messages. You tap on the screen to get to the next message, and the fear and anticipation builds. These stories will keep you on the edge of your seat, anxious to read what happens next. As fright builds, you just can't put your iPhone down because you want to make sure everything is going to turn out okay for the hero of the story.
Auto-play for those times you don't feel like tapping
If you long press on the screen, the story will begin to play automatically. This is great for those times when you don't want to have to keep tapping on your screen as if you were playing Cookie Clicker. You can easily pause playback when you need to catch up, and then start it back up again when you're ready for more edge-of-your-seat excitement.
Free, but with in-app purchases
This is the biggest letdown of Hooked. After a few dozen messages in the story, this page pops up. You're out of what the app calls "Hoots," which means you have to wait for the timer to count down before you can read more. That timer increases each time you use it; mine was 30 minutes the first time I reached the end of my hoots for that time period, and now it's climbed up to 40 minutes. If you decide to make an in-app purchase for unlimited hoots, you can get rid of this screen (for a while).
Binge All Night on YouTube Videos
When you get tired of reading, or are too scared to go on, then it’s time to switch to something more light-hearted. Nothing really beats YouTube for finding just about anything you might want to take in. Whether you’re keep up with the latest prank compilations or jamming to must videos, YouTube probably has what you’re looking for.
Help the Chicken (or Whatever Animal You Prefer) Cross the Road
Maybe you’d rather play a good, casual game. Back in my childhood, the main addictive games were Super Mario Brothers and Frogger. We’re lucky today, because we still have versions of those great titles. For your hopping pleasure, little can beat Crossy Road.
Why'd the chicken cross the road?
To avoid being dinner, and also to get to the other side. We all know how the nursery rhyme goes, but in this version there is no other side. Sure, you’ll encounter lots of stopping points, but there is no end-all other side. Surprise! It’s an endless game! As you move across the treacherous path the screen moves with you. You know, like the old school Mario games. You stop for too long to contemplate your next move and you’ll be smash by the screen. So the cars, trains and trucks are not your only nemesis. Time is also not on your side. So keep your pace and your wits to get the highest possible score.
You've heard us talk a lot about the cute characters in Crossy Road. Sure you start with the chicken, he's classic and adorable, but the more you play the more you can unlock. Use your coins to play the arcade game in order to win new characters. Then scroll through the list and pick which one you want to take your chance with. The characters in color are the ones you have, but you can see there are many to unlock giving you another reason to keep crossing that road.
Record and share
Crossy Road adds another layer of fun with the FaceTime recording feature. You can literally record yourself playing and since this is such an action packed game you are sure to capture some pretty crazy facial expressions. Once you're done, aka get smashed, you can also share the video to show of your skills, or lack there of.
Catch Up On Your Favorite TV Series
If you start getting a bit sleepy during your bout of being up all night, maybe watching a little television might help seal the deal. Then again, maybe this will just enable your insomnia, as you binge-watch Friends or 13 Reasons Why. Whatever your pleasure or poison, the Netflix app is sure to help you either way.
Want to binge on the latest season? Check out these cord-cutting options for ways to do that
Another App With Endless Stories
Still hours until dawn, and we’re back to reading. This time, let’s go for some more variety with Tap – Chat Stories by Wattpad. These are still text message stories, just as creepy as before, but with a way to pick your own poison.
Choose your story from a large collection
Tap allows you to choose your story before you read it, so you can browse through an immense collection of frightful tales. These come from Wattpad, an immense repository of self-published stories. These stories are almost always frightful tales, sure to keep you on the edge of your seat.
Read along with the text message tales
Like similar apps, Tap stories play out in a sequence of text messages between two people. You follow the action SMS by SMS, and the tension builds with each one. Pauses play an important role in keeping you on edge, as you begin to wonder if the other person is ever going to respond, or if they've been taken out of the story. This is true suspense with a modern-day technological spin.
Switch stories and your place is saved
If you decide you want to switch stories for a bit, you can do that without having to go through everything all over again. The app automatically saves your place, so you can read through several stories in a night, switching between them if you get to scared to continue with one.
Did you make it all night, or did you finally fall asleep? I’ve spent hours binging on Netflix and YouTube, finally falling asleep. When I get to reading stories on Hooked or Tap, though, I’m up all night. The same holds true for playing Crossy Road; I just can’t put it down. What about you? Let us know your favorite insomnia-pleasing app in the comments.