It takes only a few public speaking mistakes to lose an audience. Luckily, you can now solve many of the most common problems--from anxiety in front of a crowd to talking uber-fast--with your  smartphone. As Kit Eaton of The New York Times writes, whether you're giving a TED Talk or just an office presentation, there's an app that will get you  prepared. Here are a few that Eaton suggests, along with others that will address whatever issue is plaguing you.

Problem 1: You're nervous in front of crowds.

Solution: Upload your PowerPoint and practice in front of an interactive audience with VirtualSpeech's Public Speaking. The app may require a virtual headset (see: Google Cardboard), but its realistic, 3-D scenarios are top-notch for training. Free for iOS and Android.

Problem 2: Trouble speaking at a normal pace.

Solution: Pace-keeping app Pro Metronome was created for stage performers to improve their rhythm, but the tempo-setting beats are great for public speakers looking to practice word flow. You can keep track of tempo through on-screen color changes, vibrations, or sound. Free for iOS and Android.

Problem 3: Too many, uhh, fillers.

Solution: Track the amount of times you use filler words such as "like," "umm," and "uhh" with Ummo. The app records your speech, then generates a transcript highlighting where the extra words snuck in so you can avoid them the next time through. Available for $1.99 on iOS.

Problem 4: Poor time-management.

Solution: Feel like a pro with SpeakerClock's full-screen, LED-style countdown clock, which was inspired by the famed TED Talks timer. The no-fuss design also includes a traffic light feature that alerts you when your time is coming to an end. Available for $1.99 on iOS.

Problem 5: Drawing a blank.

Solution: Professional news channels rely on Teleprompter Pro Lite for its easy-to-use prompting features. Simply type your script, select a font, text size, and pace, and go live. The app continuously highlights where you are in the script, so you'll never fumble around with where you left off. Free on iOS and Android.

Problem 6: Keeping your audience engaged.

Solution: Few things are worse than being lectured endlessly. Get your audience involved with Poll Everywhere, an app that generates real-time responses to your shared questions or surveys. Audience members can participate through the app, text message, or a web browser, and the results are ready to display instantly. Free on iOS and Android.

Published on: Jun 9, 2016