Monday, 21 February 2011

Android essentials

Four months and a lot of playing into Android phone ownership, here's a list of the most useful apps I've found. Tools and toys to delight and entertain...

I've skipped the many (many, many) weather apps and the fun stuff like Google Sky, which is amazing once and then you'll only ever run it again to show off your phone. I'm going to save the games for another day too. These apps are less glamorous, but they're must-haves and they're all free!

Advanced Task Killer
Cleans up all the unwanted apps your phone is running in the background to speed it up and save battery. You choose the apps it's not allowed to kill.

Alarm Droid
Fantastic alarm scheduler that wakes you up with music, says hello and then reads you the weather forecast. Multiple alarms and only on the days you choose.

Appbrain App Market
Want to know about all the best apps as they come out? You need this. The Google Market just recommends the same apps forever.

Astro File manager
A file manager and a good one. Does what it's supposed to. online storage on your phone. I like and I like my phone so it's a winner.

Never lose a note or a handout again. Brilliant

Dolphin Browser
Whatever internet browser your phone came with, this is better.

Google Earth
You know what this is already. It's very, very nearly as good on your phone.

Gallery Map
Photos you take on your phone get geotagged with the location where you took them, so of course you'll need them nicely plotted on a map! Why are there so few gallery apps on Android? The HTC standard gallery is functional but not very pretty.

Send anybody you like (via phone or email) a link to a web page with a live updating map of exactly where you are. Works only for as long as you specify and then stops.

GPS Wifi
Turns your wireless on and off depending on where you are, to save battery. If you're out and about away from your broadband, the app turns it off.

Guardian Anywhere
Dowloads the Guardian newspaper every morning for you to read later. Or you could pay Rupert Murdoch for The Daily.

Journey Pro
Fantastic public transport journey planner. You should get Google Maps and Navigation too, but you knew that.

A mapping tool that lets you flick between different providers' maps (Google, Microsoft etc.) and makes waypoints really nice and easy to store and share.

Picasa Tool
I kind of assumed Android would interface on its own with Google's photo storage. This fixes it.

Silent Time Lite
Puts your phone on silent at times you specify. No text message wake up calls at 4am.

Soccer Scores
Best footie scores and league tables app I've found.

Notes , to-do lists and much more. If they add handwriting recognition for uploads then it will be perfect.

You need it for the in-car mode speech recognition. It's genius.

Volume Ace Free
Why is it so complicated to put an Android phone on silent? Now it isn't.

There you go, now you can save loads of searching time, install those apps and spend the rest of the evening playing Angry Birds.

1 comment:

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