Whether it's a persistent cough, a prescription drug cost or a medical crisis, it's good to be able to access information about your health quickly. These apps can give you answers about your symptoms, track your health over time or get you help immediately in an emergency.


(iOS, Android; free)

For those taking prescription medications, this app can help save money by comparing drug prices at several nearby stores and online pharmacies. The app also provides coupons for some drugs and retailers. Good RX will automatically find stores near your location, or you can widen the search by entering any ZIP code. The app includes a "reminder" feature telling you when it's time to order a refill.

iBP Blood Pressure

(iOS, Android; $0.99)

Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is properly known as the silent killer. This app won't take your blood pressure, but it will let you keep a database of your readings and track the changes over time. You can quickly and easily add your systolic and diastolic readings after each test along with other info. Charts and graphs tell you if your readings are getting better and will even pinpoint the time of day your blood pressure tends to be higher.

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First Aid

(iOS, Android; free)

Developed by the American Red Course, First Aid is helpful for small accidents and can be a life saver in a medical emergency. The app helps you quickly identify problems and offers advice on what to do. In an emergency, you can call 911 without leaving the app or get a list of nearby hospitals with phone numbers that can be dialed with a single touch of the screen.


(iOS, Android; free)

Whether you know what ails you or are trying to figure it out, this app may be able to give you information that can help you get better. Enter a symptom, and AskMD will offer suggestions or ask you for more information about the problem. If you don't have a physician, the app can help you find a doctor near you who accepts your health insurance.

Tech bytes

Windows 10 to launch 'in waves'

Windows 10 will launch on July 29, but even if you reserved a copy, you probably won't get it that day. The upgrade, which is free for most users, will go out first to "Windows Insiders." Microsoft says it will then go out "in waves" with the company "slowly scaling up" the release. Those who reserved their copy will be notified when it is ready to download. -- PETER KING

Vinyl gets its groove back

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Streaming music has put a big dent in sales of physical CDs as Americans streamed more than 135 billion songs in the first half of the year, according to Nielsen Entertainment. But while sales of CDs fell 10 percent, sales of vinyl LPs rose 38 percent. Vinyl records now account for 9 percent of all physical album sales.


iPhone dominates industry's profits

Record-breaking iPhone sales have allowed Apple to gobble up nearly all the smartphone industry's profits. From January to March, Apple accounted for 92 percent of the $16.7 billion operating profit at leading smartphone makers. During the first three months of the year, Samsung sold 30 percent more phones than Apple but earned just $1 in phone-related operating profit for every $6 Apple did. -- LOS ANGELES TIMES