My 5 Favorite Android Apps

This year I got my first smartphone, the HTC Thunderbolt. Within a couple of weeks I was in love with the phone, but still had no real idea how to use it more fully.

Enter apps. I’m still somewhat hesitant to download a bunch of them but there are a few that I have downloaded and stuck with that I like a lot, for different reasons. I thought I’d share mine here and then see if y’all come up with some I should try. These are Android apps, so if you don’t have an Android you might not be able to use all of these, though I think some of them are universal.

1. TweetCaster. This is what I use to access Twitter on the smartphone, and I have to admit that I love it. I first tried using TweetDeck, which I have on my computer, but it just didn’t work the same. However, Tweetcaster allows for some of the same type of customization that TweetDeck does on the computer, and I loved it so much that it became my first apps purchase for the pro version.

2. Evernote. This was recommended by a local friend of mine and was one of the first apps I downloaded. It allows me to keep track of information by typing it into a program on my computer or on the smartphone and having things sync between them. On the computer I use it to keep lists such as groceries and medications, and on the phone I use it to save links I come across while on Twitter that I can view later in a larger space on the computer. It has many other uses as well.

3. SPD – it stands for Super Private Conversation. I downloaded this one because I kept getting repeat messages and sales calls from people I didn’t know. This allows you to block someone the first time and you never have to deal with them again. With new legislation that’s being passed we’re all going to be getting more sales calls, so I see this coming in handy as time goes by.

4. Shortyz. Hey, we all get to have some fun, right? In this case it’s a crossword puzzle app that downloads digital crosswords from some of the top periodicals in the country like the NY Times and USA Today, as well as a host of others. You get to program which ones you want and whether you want it to automatically download them or wait for you to ask.

5. Comic Strips. Y’all know I’m a big kid at heart. I also don’t subscribe to a daily newspaper anymore and rarely buy the Sunday paper. The only thing I cared about anyway was the comics pages. This app allows you to select from a lot of different comic strips and it downloads them automatically every day. You can view them when you’re ready, as it retains, at least as far as I’ve seen, up to 3 or 4 months worth of each.

That’s all I have. I have tried some others but all have fallen somewhat short, including, of all things, the Firefox app. But I expect I’ll keep trying some of the free ones as time goes by.

10 thoughts on “My 5 Favorite Android Apps”

  1. This year I also get my first smartphone based on Android, previously I was using one based on Windows Mobile. I have used the first app, but I must admit that I haven’t tried the rest. Very often I use Quickoffice Pro, which opens all major office documents and actually have the ability to edit attachment to email in place. I also like Cool Reader which turns the phone into ebook reader, supporting all major formats. I also use another app for audiobooks and I was surprised that I can find all classic books for free.

    I think I definitely need to mention few utilities which I use very often – the first is task killer, this definitely speed up the phone and clean the memory as often apps remain open even already closed, Wifi Analyzer and one free antivirus package for android which I cant remember the name, but works like a charm and check email attachments, downloads and file transfers from PC.

    1. Carl, I have some apps that do some of the things you mentioned, but I couldn’t put them at the top of my list. One that, if I do another of these, that I may be adding I just learned about yesterday called Vlingo, which drastically improves the voice recognition process on the Android.

      1. Definitely there are many apps, I also quite favor language learning programs and few other science and tech. I think it will be definitely a good idea to include more in the next article. personally never heard about Vlingo and I will definitely try it now.

      2. Carl and Mitch, has either of you tried Iris, too? It’s supposed to be the Siri for Android. (Siri is the voice-activated “personal assistant” on the iPhone 4S.) It’s still being furiously developed, but the current version is already awesome. I’ve tried Vlingo, too. It’s another powerful voice-recognition app for Android.

      3. Erich, truthfully I’m slow at testing things on the smartphone because I don’t want to load it up with lots of stuff. I’m still getting used to Vlingo, and thus far I like it enough to not need to test anything else.

  2. I have a Nokia N96 which uses the Symbian operating system to allow me to use apps. I am hoping I can get an Android phone in early 2012 as I think it batters any of the apps that are produced for Symbian.

  3. Hi, Mitch. I run an Android website. I’m elated to find something about Android on your blog. I have Evernote, too, although I don’t use it as much as Astrid. Besides, it’s rather hard to type longish notes on an Android smartphone. On a tablet, maybe. But, on a smartphone–quite cumbersome, even with SwiftKey and Swype installed as alternate keyboards. I’m not sure if the HTC ThunderBolt came with HTC’s FriendStream app. I find FriendStream rather tightly integrated as a convergence point for my Facebook and Twitter accounts.

    1. Erich, FriendStream does come with the HTC, but I don’t use it because I don’t want everyone connected like that for my own goofy reasons. The Thunderbolt is one of the larger phones, so I don’t have that many problems typing anything on it, but I find it works great in tying content that I’d rather read later on with my regular computer and my lists of stuff I need to know while I’m on the go a beneficial thing.

      1. I have a Sensation XE, which has the same screen size as the ThunderBolt. Sadly, though, I find typing on it (especially in portrait orientation) somewhat challenging–except when I turn on Swype. Maybe I have huge thumbs. LOL.

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