There's an app for almost anything these days, including Christmas.
You can download an app that turns you and family into a bunch of goofy-looking virtual elves, and then you can use that same app to share with the world a festive video clip of you all dancing. There are also a few apps that let your children track Santa's whereabouts on Christmas Eve. You can even view an interactive storybook version of the classic A Charlie Brown Christmas special.
Pocket-lint has rounded up some of the best Christmas apps now available, with the purpose of helping you get into the Christmas spirit. Let us know in the comments if we missed one worth including - and keep checking back, because we plan to update this list over time.
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Best Christmas 2017 apps
Elf Yourself by Office Depot
The 'Elf Yourself' service has been around for years, and you either love it or hate it at this point. Nevertheless, it wouldn't be Christmas if you didn't see at least one or two of your friend's share videos of their families dancing around. If you want to try it, the concept is simple: You take pictures of people and put their heads on elf bodies and then they dance. This one is from Office Depot, rather than Jib-Jab.
On iOS devices, there's an iMessage app included, so you can keep up the fun in iMessage conversations.
ELF Yourself Santa Booth
Those of you who love taking selfies will want to check out this app, which lets you add Christmas-themed filters, stickers, and digital costumes to your pics. Want to add Santa's hat, elf ears, reindeer antlers, or a beard to your selfie? Look no further. Plus, with this app, you can resize these elements so that they actually fit your face. However, not every sticker is unlocked, but there are still tonnes to play with.
How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss
Dr. Seuss' Christmas classic has been given the mobile treatment. With this app, you essentially get a motion comic of the book. The pictures are animated. You get narration and sound effects and background music. It's an immersive experience that can either be read to you or you can read it yourself. Parents can even keep track of their kids' time spent reading. It's totally worth the money.
A Charlie Brown Christmas
You can experience all that A Charlie Brown Christmas has to offer on your mobile device. You're supposed to help Charlie Brown, Snoopy, and the entire Peanuts gang as they "struggle to find the true meaning of Christmas". You can even play Schroeder's piano, go caroling with the Peanuts choir, and more. There's also an iMessage sticker pack so you can fill your conversations with all sorts of nostalgia.
Santa Video Call and Tracker
That's right. With this app, your kid can get a video call from Santa and use the app to track in on Christmas Eve. There's also a Naughty or Nice Scanner, which you can set up to always show nice or naughty. However, you have to pay $4.99 for the full version to access all the extra features. As for video calls, the guy who plays Santa is warm and awesome. You can even record the call to capture your kid's reaction.
Message From Santa!
Does your kid want to text his list to Santa? Now he or she can, and they can even get a phone call from Father Christmas himself. He'll tell them if they're on the naughty or nice list. All you have to do is enter some information, like your kid's age and interests, the reason for the call, and then schedule the phone call. Wen it rings, you give it to your kid. You can even call Santa's voicemail.
NORAD Tracks Santa
The North American Aerospace Defense Command, or NORAD, has been tracking Santa for over 60 years. This year, NORAD has once again released a website and app that lets you track the big bearded man as he delivers presents around the world. You can also enter Santa's Village to learn about different holiday traditions as well as NORAD and it's ongoing to mission to track Santa.
Google Tracks Santa
Google's been tracking Santa since 2004 and has updated its annual Santa Tracker, because it wants kids checking back every day in the run up to Christmas. Like NORAD, the refreshed tool doubles as a hub of activities. Google also an area called Santa's Village, too, and since 1 December, people have been able to visit the village to play games and learn about holiday traditions around the world.
Sure, there is Pandora, Apple Music, Spotify, and a gazillion other music-streaming services but this one lets you enjoy Christmas songs to the fullest, with over 80 stations. You can also subscribe to the premium version ($0.99 for one year) to listen to tunes ad-free.
The Christmas List
This smart app lets you sort your Christmas list and keep a budget. Just set the budget for each person and enter the gift you bought them. You can even track gifts easily by received, shippped, and wrapped. There's also a countdown of shopping days left.
Merry Christmas Card Maker
Those of you who love to create personal greeting cards, should definitely check out this app, which has more than 256 themes and colour and palettes. It also works offline, so you can continue to adjust your cards and customise them without any disturbance.
Toca Hair Salon - Christmas
Yep. This is a Christmas-themed hair salon that lets you style Santa's hair with tools like scissors and an electric hair trimmer and a hair dryer. There are 12 fun hair colors to choose from, eight accessories, and unlimited amounts of fun to be had with Toca Hair Salon.
Christmas Sweeper 3
This is a mobile game that lets you match Christmas-related objects, like ornaments and gingerbread men. It's very Candy Crush-like in that it's addicting. There are also "hard" modes for for adults. This is good fun for the whole family and a great game to play Christmas afternoon.
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