Tag: Apps

Android App of the Week: Facebook For Android

Up until yesterday Facebook’s Android app was a huge shitpile. It had so little function that the mobile website version was better.

I’m not saying they got it perfect, but it’s much improved. They added events, made it look better and all of that.

What’s missing:

  • Facebook chat
  • Te ability to view tagged photos of me or another person (this one kills me because I can only look at my or other peoples’ albums)
  • Tagging photos from the device

So check for an update in the market and see for yourself.

Android App of the Week: Gmote

Gmote for Android: A remote for your PC’s media. Via WiFi, you install a server on your PC and it syncs to it via WiFi. You can then browse your C drive for music or videos and play them on your PC or stream it to your phone. (Videos don’t really stream to the phone, depending on the codec).

Don’t expect an iTunes/Winamp/Media Player replacement over here. It plays the videos in a ghetto ass java window, and it plays music on your PC in the background (you can’t see it from your computer). Hell you can even install it on your sibling’s computer and mess with him/her. Anyway, this works well if you’re lazy like me and don’t want to get up.

This app also has a touchpad mode to control your mouse, so you can use it to advance PowerPoint presentations (seems like a waste of phone battery to me, since the screen would need to stay on).

Do I use it all the time? Nope. But it’s something cool to have that works well, especially when I get a new laptop with HDMI out and want to watch stuff on my TV.

Check out gmote.org for more info.

(No screenshot today because I’m lazy. Wanna fight about it?)

Android App of the Week: Launcher Pro (I’m actually excited)

Note: If you have the Droid X with Motoblur, or SenseUI, this probably doesn’t apply since your skin already has some of these features. But if you have an original Droid or don’t like Sense or Motoblur, read on:

Everyone needs to download this Launcher Pro immediately. This isn’t an app. It’s a complete homescreen replacement. What does it do? It pretty much gives you up to 7 homescreens, and replaces the bland app drawer slider with the bottom bar from Froyo. I know I first said that anyone who skins Android is an asshole. That’s still true, but this does not count so I’m not a hypocrite. It is based on Froyo (Android 2.2) and doesn’t redo the icons to look dumb (like HTC sense does).

Take a look at the before and after:

The bar on the bottom is called the dock. In Android 2.1 on the Moto Droid, you only get the app drawer slider. Motorola and/or Verizon stripped out the 3D app drawer and the 5 homescreens that made it in the 2.1 update for the Nexus One. In Froyo and in Android 2.2, this is standard. If Motorola/Verizon release Android 2.2 without more homescreens and with the same half assed app drawer, I will be super pissed. So along comes Launcher Pro. Take a look at my before and after screenshots above. The screenshot on the right is better because it neatly packs my phone dialer, contacts, app drawer, messaging and browser on the bottom, so I don’t have to have icons for all of those all over my homescreen. See how much more space I have? That vertical slider thing under the app drawer (the checker square thing) tells you what homescreen I’m on.

This homescreen replacement has shitloads of options and you can pretty much customize anything you want. To access options, hit your menu button from the homescreen and click Preferences, which will bring up a settings menu (left screenshot). You can enable the 3D app drawer, change the dock background, lock the background wallpaper from scrolling when you switch screens, add unread message and missed call counts, etc. It also has an expose (that OSX thing where it shows all the homescreens together(see right image). You can backup your homescreens to a settings file on the SD card and restore them on that phone or another device.

So in conclusion, this probably slows down your phone and uses more battery, but it looks mad good, gives you Froyo looking homescreen and shortcuts and if you have the original Droid, you can add up to 7 homescreens. Epic win in my book.

I will absolutely uninstall this if Verizon’s 2.2 update includes multiple homescreens, a dock and the app drawer. But until then, this made my phone so much more convenient.

To get this bad boy running is a little confusing, since it doesn’t run like an app. Once you download it, press your home button on your phone. It will ask you if you want to “complete action using” Home or Launcher Pro. Check “use by default for this action” then click launcher pro. If you don’t it will ask you if you want to use the native home app or the custom Launcher every time. To restore this and get your normal homescreen back, you can clear the default by going to Settings–>Applications–>Manage Applications and clicking on Launcher Pro, then clicking Clear defaults. When you press the home screen again, it will bring up the “complete action using” Home or Launcher Pro option. Check the box and then click Home. OR EASIER – ignore all that babble and just uninstall it.

Download it from the market below (scan it or click the barcode on your phone):

Android App Of The Week: City Caller ID

Yes, I know it’s Thursday and I should be doing this Wednesdays. I wrote this at work so I couldn’t get a screenshot off my phone, then I came home and fell asleep. Anyway…

Today’s Android app of the week: City Caller ID. An oldie, but goodie. It’s relatively simple. City Caller ID places the city and state on your incoming call screen sothat you can recognize where a call is originating from.

Not only does it look up area codes, it also looks up the next three digits to narrow it down to a town. This may not be accurate for cell phones, but you get the general idea.

So what stinks about this app? The database isn’t stored on the SD card, so it uses about 3MB even though the app is 100kb or so. I contacted the developer and he said he was going to try to implement it, but got shut down. Still worth the download and install.

This is no longer available on the Android Market because some moron with a software patent threatened legal action against the developer. But I’m awesome and have the APK file for you, so grab it here. (You’ll have to put that on your SD card, go to settings–>applications and check unknown sources, then browse to the file using something like AndroZip or APK Installer and install. Little tricky for the newbies, leave me a comment if you’re confused.

Android App of the Week: Barcode Scanner

Barcode scanner. So useful. It does what it says, very nicely. It scans QR codes and regular barcodes. It’s packed with camera autofocus, web search, and can share scanned content via email or SMS. You can also share contacts, bookmarks and apps by generating respective barcodes and scanning it with another phone.

It just needs a few more features to be perfect:

  • It needs to scan datamatrix codes
  • You should be generate text and share that via barcode (You kind of can but it has to be on your clipboard, since you can share what’s on there)

Other than that, it’s a sweet app.

The only thing it needs to do is read datamatrix. Download it from the Market below (or click the image on your android device)!