Tuesday, February 9

My Android Must Have Apps

It has been some time since I regularly wrote for a blog and if you would like to see some of my writing or some general tips and tricks check out http://www.thephonestoreinc.com/blog/. One of my favorite posts that relates to this one is http://www.thephonestoreinc.com/blog/2009/09/the-beginnning-of-the-end-for-dumbphones/. Check it out and let me know what you think. I was a late comer to cell phones. 
I am not a person that can say I had a bag phone, or that I used to crank my cell phones for 20 minutes by hand before I could make a 30 second call for $20.00. I never wanted a cell phone for the simple reason I did not want to be reached. I worked many hours and I felt if I was not at work they could wait a few hours until I was back again. Well, I initially had Alltel (which was a decent enough company), then ATT (reception issues), and then I went to Sprint. My time with Sprint I have had a few dumb phones, a Motorola Q, a Blackberry 8830, Blackberry 8330, and now I have an HTC Hero.

I knew for some time I wanted an Android phone. I was waiting for two things, an Android phone worth having, and an Android phone that was based on CDMA and not GSM. I did like the G1, but I was not ready to go back to having a GSM carrier. So after some time I eventually came off of my 3rd party employee plan for Sprint and I upgraded my phone. 
I have had the phone for a month or two now and I really love it. The thing I miss the most is Blackberry Messenger and an actual physical keyboard. I think the iPhone has a superior touch keyboard to the HTC Hero, but it is not a deal breaker.The thing that is making us choose phones now is not necessarily the hardware, but the software that is on it.
When I say software I mean a few things. I mean the OS (Blackberry, Android, Windows Mobile, iPhone OS, etc.), the UI (Sense or MotoBlur), and the applications available for the phone. 
So after a 10,000 word introduction, here are my favorite applications for Android so far:

  1. Handcent SMS
    • A great text messaging app that can replace the stock application. It is free and has many customizable options. I like that it will autosize a picture for you before you attempt to send an MMS.
  2. Seesmic
    • My favorite Twitter application so far. I have tried Tweetcaster, Twigee, and Peep which comes stock on my HTC Hero. Seesmic now has multi-account support and when you refresh it will keep your place.
  3. Ringdroid
    • Awesome free application for clipping music on your phone and turning it into ringtones for you.
  4. Foursquare for Android
    • I was late to the Foursquare bandwagon, but it is a fun little application that allows you to check in where you are at. You can become the Mayor of a place if you check in more than anybody else.
  5. Advanced Task Killer
    • Useful application to help you bulk close several open applications on your Android device. MUST HAVE if you want to keep everything running smoothly.
  6. Amazon
    • I have never been much of a shopper, but Amazon allows me to find the stuff I want fast and usually reasonably priced. The app allows you to view recommendations based on your purchases and track your packages.
  7. Abduction
    • Fun game that allows you to make a cow jump from platform to platform until he gets to a spaceship. Much cooler than it sounds.
  8. Astrid
    • Great to do application for Android. Allows me to stay on track especially since I am a born procrastinator.
  9. Video Player (Jeff Hamilton)
    • Allows you to easily play MPEG4 or 3GPP files from your SD card. I recommend Videora to convert your video files to make sure they work. 
  10. Google Voice
    • I hate listening to Voicemail. This application will transcript it for you and allows you to listen to your Voicemail in no particular order.
If you have any questions let me know. Best way to contact is to e-mail me or send a reply or DM to @gizmoalex on Twitter.

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