A list of my favourite Android apps, kicking off with the only two paid apps I have installed.
BeyondPod (paid app) – For reliability and functionality, this podcast manager beats all of the free alternatives (including bare-bones and buggy Google Listen). Subscribe to your favourite audio feeds via Google Reader and this app wakes up at a set time, connects to your wifi and downloads the latest podcasts from the last 24-hours. Click for a list of my favourite podcasts.
Swiftkey (paid app) – Swiftkey is fast, smart and learns your typing habits and colloquialisms. This replacement keyboard for the stock Android one makes inputting text a lot less painstaking.
Whatsapp (free for 1 year) – Whatsapp gives you free picture/text messaging worldwide to other users – it’s not without its flaws, but it’s worth downloading as it’s the messaging app most people use. Install this, and you’ll resent ever having paid for SMS.
Epistle – Once set up, this fast, lightweight app uses Dropbox to sync text files between your computer and phone. Great for reminders, lists and note taking.
Guardian Lite – Of the many available, this is my preferred app for viewing Guardian articles. This small, superfast app will download the day’s news offline for viewing.
Quickpic – Another small, lightening fast replacement app for browsing your photo/video gallery – a great improvement on the standard stock version.
Runkeeper – The best free Android app for anyone who wants to motivate themselves by keeping tabs on their exercise routine. I use it for hiking – it uses GPS to draw a map of my progress, monitor my speed and uploads the results to Facebook.
TuneIn Radio – This app gives you streaming access to pretty much all-and-any worldwide radio station you can imagine. Stations are grouped by country or genre and can be easily saved for fast access.
CamScanner – Turn any book, presentation board or photo of text into a PDF file. Great for students.
TED Mobile – Easy access to all of the TED library of talks.
Recommended Android Games:
- Words with Friends – a cross-platform Scrabble app.
- PapiWall – a simple but additive platform ball game.
- Drop – a similar game based on timing and precision.
- iRunner – a fast-paced running game.
- Geared – a strategy puzzle game involving cogs.
- Fruit Slice – another simple but addictive swiping game.
- Toss it – throw the paper into the waste bin.
- Unblock Me – another strategic puzzle game.
Recommended Camera apps:
- Photoaf – for 3D panorama shots.
- Retro Camera – vintage/hipster filter.
- FxCamera – another app offering a range of vintage filters.
Other links of interest:
- Keep up with Android news at TechCrunch, Lifehacker, Phandroid and Gizmodo.
- Root your phone and install a custom ROM – use the Android sub-Reddit and XDA Developers to research your model and the different options.
- When rooted, you can customise your system and install a wider range of apps, as listed here.