So your boyfriend just landed his dream tech job in the Bay Area — and while you’re just as ecstatic about the opportunity as he is, it means that he’ll be leaving his life in New Jersey behind to start a new one across the country…without you.
Whether your relationship became “long distance” a year or two in, or you’ve been facing the challenge from the start, long distance relationships are undeniably tough.
However, thanks to some relatively recently developed, amazing technology designed for staying continually connected, “LDRs” are much easier to maintain in 2015. Below are the best digital tools on the market for long distance relationships.
Skype is the easiest app to use for keeping in contact with a loved one who’s far away. It allows you to video chat your significant other for an unlimited amount of time, free of charge. Other features include instant messaging, photo-sharing, video voicemails, and even phone calls (but those you have to pay for). This user-friendly and visually appealing software is a lifeline in many LDRs.
With features that extend beyond video chats, Google Hangouts is a bit more advanced than Skype. It’s a complete messaging platform similar to iMessage or WhatsApp with animated GIF support, stickers, and read receipts. Multiple participants can partake in a single video chat, simultaneously watch YouTube videos, or take pictures in a virtual photo booth that creates an easily accessible shared photo album.
Rabbit is a super simple, no-login-required video chatting website ideal for watching movies or browsing the web with a partner or friend. For example, you and your boyfriend or girlfriend could each pull up a Netflix film and watch it in sync on a virtual screen in real-time. The super-smooth experience boasts less lag and fewer audio stutters than screen-sharing on Skype since Rabbit servers take on most of the heavy lifting.
FaceTime is especially great when you’re on the go. If you happen to walk past a scenic area you both liked to frequent, with FaceTime you can whip out your iPhone and share the experience with your significant other via video chat. It operates best if you both have iPhones, but FaceTime will work with iPads or any camera-equipped Mac computer made in the last few years.
Free on both iOS and Android, Between is an app specifically designed for couples. It offers a shared calendar, a memory box for sharing treasured moments, a 1-to-1 chat with stickers, and voice messages. It also displays countdowns to important dates and the time and weather of your significant other’s current location. This app’s a great tool for those looking to maintain intimacy and stay deeply connected with someone in another part of the world.
Just as it sounds, Love Quiz tests a couple’s knowledge of one another even while they’re thousands of miles apart. Each partner’s turns are color-coded, so there’s never any confusion over whom the question is for. Just remember that this app is meant to be fun! Try not to get too upset if your boyfriend fails to remember which Girls character is your favorite.
Looking for an activity to do with a companion in another area code? Hop on a computer and try Findgirlsdating. It’s a free online whiteboard for painting and drawing that multiple people can use at once. When someone begins a session, he or she can send another person the unlisted link, and voila! You’ve got a private — yet shareable — canvas. The app is fairly new and is improving all the time, but it already seems to work well on touch screen computers and tablets.