Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Tech Tuesday: 5 Cool Android Apps

I'm going to do a quick review of 5 cool Android apps (some of these are available on iPhone as well and I will note those as well).  These are some of the apps that I use most often and I find very useful but in no particular order.


1.  Dropbox (Android Phone, Android Tablet, iPhone, iPad)
Dropbox is a pretty cool application.  I love it for keeping my documents in sync on all of my computers, but it's also awesome that I can access any of these files remotely with my phone.  Just download the Dropbox app from the Market (or app store) and login.  Then you're good to go!  On the iPhone you can view some basic files, but on Android you have full access to any file you want.  You can download documents and edit them in whatever editor you have on your phone.  You can also upload an updated version when you're done easily.  I use this to send files to my phone all the time and I'll be using it with Polaris office on my new Transformer to do document editing as well.  Market link




2. Pulse News (Android Phone, Android Tablet, iPhone, iPad)
Pulse is a news reading application.  Pretty straight forward.  It does what you'd expect a news reader to do, but it just looks awesome doing it.  The tablet version is also really cool.  It handles the larger screen size very well by showing the articles in a side panel when you touch them to read.  One of the best parts for me is that it syncs with my Google Reader!  It's great to keep track of articles that I read on my computer as well.  The app gives you the option of viewing the article in "Text Mode",  a simple view of the article with embeded images only, or "Web Mode" which shows the article as it would appear on the website itself.  The app also features a pretty cool looking widget to put on your home screen for easy access to new articles.  Market Link  Home Page


3. Plume (Android Phone, Android Tablet)
Plume is another Twitter client.  I know, like there aren't enough of those right?  Well, so far Plume is my favorite for a few reasons.  It's very clean looking.  It supports logging in with multiple accounts (for those of us with split personalities).  It's got a fantastic widget that will let you scroll through new tweets if your launcher supports it.  And finally, it has a tablet version as well!  The tablet version looks much like the phone version but it shows 3 columns of messages, your timeline, your mentions and your direct messages, all on the screen at once.  You can also view the timeline along side whatever tweet you happen to be reading as well on the tablet version.  The developers are also the same developers of Beautiful Widgets, another cool app.  It's free but they also have a paid version as well that removes the tiny ad at the top of your timeline (which is very un-intrusive as is).  Market Link Free  Market Link Premium (~$2.83)  Home Page



4. Amazon App Store (Android Phone, Android Tablet)
So I know this isn't an app like most of you would normally think of.  It's an app to download apps!  A whole new market.  Well, most of the apps in the Amazon App Store are exactly the same as those in the Android Marketplace, but Amazon will have sales from time to time and you can snatch up some great apps on the cheap.  Especially since Amazon has a program where they will have one premium app that you can get for free each day!  I check it daily, if not just to see if the free app is worth getting.  That's how I got SwiftKey Keyboard, Shazam Encore, Chalk Ball, FlexT9, Fruit Ninja, PewPew2, and Flight Control totally free!  (All great apps, perhaps for another review)  Get the App Store  Browse the Apps



5. ADW Launcher (Android Phone, Android Tablet [Experimental])
Think of a launcher as your home screen.  It's what holds all your icons, what runs your app drawer, what displays all your widgets and all that.  ADW is an alternative to whatever your phone came with that is chuck full of options.  It lets you customize just about anything and even download different themes from the Android Market.  It's fast, and adds features like resizable widgets, scrolling widgets (Pure Calendar and Plume both support this) as well as gestures to launch quick actions.  The developer also maintains a premium version, ADW EX, that has a few more features and custom animations.  Definitely check out the pages for these and watch a few clips since it's hard to get an idea of it from pictures.  ADW Market Link  ADW EX Market Link (~$3.28)

I hope you liked these reviews!  I'm an App addict so I have plenty more to share in future posts.

3 comments:

  1. Interesting on ADW Launcher. I use LauncherPro (I can't stand the out-of-the-factory home screens) and I've been pretty happy with it.

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  2. Yea, I've used LauncherPro and it was pretty nice too. ADW just seems to have even more settings and I started using it first. I they are both pretty awesome options. Especially the widgets that come with LauncherPro+.

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