Archive for January, 2012

Six (Plus One) Android Apps that Make my Life Suck a bit Less

Tuesday, January 31st, 2012

I planned to write an introductory paragrah about how everyone and their grandma now uses mobile apps, but everyone (and their grandma) already knows that. So let me jump straight to the point — here’s a list of the apps that I found essential since I got myself an Android phone about one and a half year back.

1. K-9 Mail

A powerful e-mail client. Actually, it’s the e-mail client for your Android phone. Comes with a rich feature set that could put many desktop e-mail clients to shame. Has good support for multiple e-mail accounts, IMAP, signatures, PGP, searching — you name it. Highly recommended for everyone who wants to do some serious business with e-mail on their phone.

2. BeyondPod

A podcatcher/player. I’ve tried quite a few, and this one is by far the best. It’s loaded with useful features, but is still maintaining a clean user interface. This app is the top reason why I’ve become a regular listener of a number of podcasts, listening every day while driving, exercising, or doing mundane house chores.

3. OurGroceries

Dead simple app that aids you in putting together shopping lists. I was originally using the traditional paper and pen approach and thought that was all I’d ever need, but then I tried this app and it proved to be more effective. And, it adds that flavor of geekiness to the boring act of grocery shopping.

4. Twitter

The official Twitter client for Android. People used to criticize it and say that the unofficial apps are way better, but I’ve tried all of the popular ones and none of them offered anything particularly interesting to me. The official app is simple, has a clean interface, and does its job quite well.

5. c:geo

A great geocaching app with lots of useful features and a nice user interface. If you want to try geocaching with your Android phone and are looking for an app, look no further and get c:geo.

6. APNdroid

A tiny app with a very specific purpose. All it does is it lets you add a button to your home screen to toggle mobile data connection on and off, making a commonly used feature accessible immediately, instead of forcing you to find it buried somewhere in the settings menu.

Honorable mention: Shuffle

A simple but effective Getting Things Done app. I started implementing GTD a while ago when a guy I worked with told me about it, and he also recommended this app. I didn’t place it on the list, because the current version has a significant flaw — it fails to properly synchronize with Tracks, a GTD web application that I use on the desktop machine, and I can’t really use it until that bug gets fixed (hopefully, soon).