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Apps of the Week: Unify and The Room

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Mon, 08 Apr 2013 07:40:49 +0000

Darren Kemp

http://www.androidanalyse.com/?p=4588

Mike O – Unify One could easily file this app under “one of the best looking apps you’ll hardly use”, but certainly there will be an audience that relies on it religiously. Unify is simply a unit and currency converter, but what sets this apart from the slew of other apps that attempt to do…]]>

Mike O – Unify

One could easily file this app under “one of the best looking apps you’ll hardly use”, but certainly there will be an audience that relies on it religiously.

Unify is simply a unit and currency converter, but what sets this apart from the slew of other apps that attempt to do the same (usually with a some custom gaudy graphics) is the slick user interface and great usability thanks mostly to the fact the developer has chosen to follow Android Holo design guidelines.

Amazingly the app is totally free with no adverts, and worth installing for that next time you need to perform a conversion or even compare exchange rates.

Download:

Darren Kemp – The Room

I have been playing slightly obsessed with this game ever since I bought the latest Humble Mobile Bundle.

The Room is a nice little cryptic puzzle game in which you are tasked with opening a safe to unlock it’s hidden secrets. You are given a very brief tutorial at the beginning to help you with the controls and the basic game play and then you are left to your own devices to try to solve the puzzles.

Some of the puzzles are quite difficult while others are plainly obvious. This game was a lot of fun while it lasted with it’s clever puzzles and great graphics but is a little bit too short. It is possible to complete this game in as little as an hour if you are quite clever with these sorts of things – although it took me a bit longer than that.

The Room is available on the play store for AU $1.87 or you can currently get it as part of the Humble Mobile Bundle.

Download:

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Apps of the week: Datasync and Downtown

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Sun, 10 Mar 2013 23:15:54 +0000

Darren Kemp

http://www.androidanalyse.com/?p=4162

Darren Kemp – Datasync I have been looking for a way to sync my game data across both my phone and my tablet and stumbled across this great app. I must start this by saying that this app is for rooted phones only. If you do not have root access you may want to give…]]>

I have been looking for a way to sync my game data across both my phone and my tablet and stumbled across this great app. I must start this by saying that this app is for rooted phones only. If you do not have root access you may want to give Carbon backup a try instead.

This app can actually do quite a bit, including backing up your game data locally or to dropbox, but it’s main attraction to me is the way it handles two-way sync across my devices.

You simply create a list of the apps that you would like to sync, select how you would like them to sync (I chose automatic two-way sync which requires Datasync+) and then select which device you would like to sync to.

If you purchase Datasync+ you can even have the selected apps backup and restore data when you launch and close the apps. I have mine setup to sync every 6 hours if I am connected to WiFi.

Download:

(Free),

(Free),

(AU $2.59)

Though admittedly an app for a very niche audience, currently there is no better Dribbble client for Android than Downtown.

Dribbble is an invite-only service that allows designers to showcase previews of projects they’re currently working on, deliberately limited to a small 400 x 300 screenshot (think of it as Twitter for images) although you can get a pro account to show high res images.

The Downtown app is basically a read-only service pulling in information from the Dribbble website and displaying it in an easily digestible format, and it’s great for seeing what’s new in the design community.

The app is free and at the very least is a great design showcase itself, with a very polished UI and usability.

Download:

(Free)

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Apps of the week: Battery Widget Reborn and DashClock Widget

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Sun, 24 Feb 2013 11:45:33 +0000

Darren Kemp

http://www.androidanalyse.com/?p=3619

Mike O – Battery Widget Reborn Battery life is a constant concern for any smartphone user, and if one thing we all probably do the most is keep tabs on the power reserves so we can get through the day. Battery Widget Reborn is a power management app that is simple on the surface but…]]>

Battery life is a constant concern for any smartphone user, and if one thing we all probably do the most is keep tabs on the power reserves so we can get through the day.

Battery Widget Reborn is a power management app that is simple on the surface but with with a lot under the hood. It also offers an easy way to see how much power is remaining without having to unlock the phone or launch an app.

Power remaining is displayed in the notification area without having to unlock, and also as a nice customisable widget when you are unlocked. There are several power saving options (see the screenshot below) for power optimisation and even a nice chart that shows how your battery has been performing.

My only criticism is estimated time remaining sometimes doesn’t seem realistic. It sometimes say I have several hours remaining despite only having less than 10% battery life.

That aside, it’s one of the better (and prettier) power management apps I’ve used.

Download:

(AU $1.99)

I am a big fan of Android 4.2 and the new lock screen widgets. They allow me quick access to the important information that I need to know, such as the current weather forecast. The way that Google implemented these widgets was a little bit strange with only allowing one widget per page. This works great for some widgets but not so for others.

Then along came DashClock Widget. Designed by Android Engineer Roman Nurik, this lock screen widget allows you to display the time as well as other useful information such as missed calls and emails all on the one screen. The best part about DashClock Widget is that fact that it is open source and extensible.

It didn’t take long for other developers to come on board with this project and there are now DashClock extensions for some of my favourite apps like Falcon Pro and Press. The latest update also makes it easier to find more extensions to expand the usefulness of this lock screen widget.

I currently have this as my default lock screen widget as well as being the only widget on my default home screen.

Download:

(Free)

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Apps of the week: Pocket Casts and Series Guide

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Sun, 17 Feb 2013 10:07:35 +0000

Darren Kemp

http://www.androidanalyse.com/?p=3499

Darren Kemp – Pocket Casts Pocket Casts is my favourite podcatcher and for a few great reasons: The app is developed in Australia by a couple of guys from Adelaide, they provide great support, their change logs are hilarious, plus the app looks great and does exactly what it should do. One of the main…]]>

Pocket Casts is my favourite podcatcher and for a few great reasons: The app is developed in Australia by a couple of guys from Adelaide, they provide great support, their change logs are hilarious, plus the app looks great and does exactly what it should do.

One of the main features of Pocket Casts is the way it updates your subscribed podcasts. Here is the quote taken directly from the :

Pocket Casts delegates intensive tasks to the cloud. This results in faster refresh times with a smaller data footprint when polling for new episodes.

I would suggest having a look at the list of features on the Play Store, because it is long! Shifty Jelly have also announced that

is on it’s way this month and will be a free upgrade for all Pocket Casts users. I have been lucky enough to be beta testing the new version and I can tell you that there are a few new features on the way like cross-device syncing so you will not be disappointed.

Download:

(AU $2.99)

This great little app is essential to keeping track of which television episodes you’ve watched and when the next ones are due to air. You start by adding all the shows you currently watch, mark the episodes you’ve already seen, and rely on the widget (or launch the app) to see what’s coming next and when it’s going to air.

It is essentially a US based customisable TV guide, but you are customising it for the stuff you like. Perfect for folk like us who don’t get out much.

Download:

(Free)

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Apps of the week: Aldiko Book Reader, Reader HD and TuneIn Radio

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Sat, 09 Feb 2013 23:39:37 +0000

Darren Kemp

http://www.androidanalyse.com/?p=3293

Rodney – Aldiko Book Reader Aldiko was one of the earlier eBook readers for Android, which is why I started using it, a long time ago. It doesn’t have the larger catalogue of Kindle or Google Books but it does have a very nice interface. Additionally, it can import all your existing books from virtually any…]]>

Aldiko was one of the earlier eBook readers for Android, which is why I started using it, a long time ago. It doesn’t have the larger catalogue of Kindle or Google Books but it does have a very nice interface. Additionally, it can import all your existing books from virtually any other reader, included .PDF, .DOC, .epub or other file extensions; meaning for people with an existing catalogue of eBooks, it’s a great option. Importing books is automatic – just have them on your phone and the book can be found by Aldiko.Books can be sorted in various views (shelf, grid, list) by type, genre, author, title, etc. and you can always have your most recent (incomplete) reads at the base of the view, so they’re instantly findable, each time you open then app.My favourite feature is that you can adjust the screen brightness simply by sliding your thumb up and down the left hand side of the screen and it goes much darker than Google Books, which is excellent for reading in the dark (say in bed). Finally, you can highlight text and store notes against it, save tag points, share it with others, look up the word meaning or just Google it.

Download:

(Free)

I have been trying to find the best way to consume news on my device for the past week. With all of the hype of Press I thought I would look into that. It looks great but there a few features that are missing (for my use). I ended up going back to a Google Reader client that I purchased a year ago simply called Reader.

Reader does everything I need in a Google Reader client, offline sync (including images), subscribe to new feeds on the go, notifications, you can choose how you would like to mobilize your articles, and the list goes on. There are several different themes and you can choose from the classic list layout or a magazine style layout similar to Google Currents.

If you consume a lot of news on the go, this may well be the app for you.

Download:

($1.99 / )

One of the original radio streaming apps since way back on Android, TuneIn Radio is still my preferred music streaming app of choice. You can choose stream quality, record streams (even set how long they record for), and even switch to the car interface for easier interaction when you’re on the road.

One of my favourite things to do is to record several hours of audio overnight and play it back during the day at work.

Download:

or  ($AU4.76), no subscription required.

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Apps of the week: Draw a Stickman, Equalizer

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Sun, 03 Feb 2013 10:41:05 +0000

Darren Kemp

http://www.androidanalyse.com/?p=3146

Darren Kemp – Draw a Stickman: EPIC This is a little game I have recently downloaded to keep the kids occupied for the lat week of the holidays but I have found myself playing it just as much as the kids. Draw a stickman and a friend and then go on an adventure to save…]]>

This is a little game I have recently downloaded to keep the kids occupied for the lat week of the holidays but I have found myself playing it just as much as the kids.

Draw a stickman and a friend and then go on an adventure to save your friend after they were eaten by a book. What makes this game so interesting is you get to draw the items that you use during the game. If you need a key, grab the key pencil and draw one. Need to light a fuse? No worries, draw some fire with the fire pencil and your ready to explode some dynamite. You could probably race through the game just to get to the end, but there are a few additional task to complete that will keep you trying levels again and again.

Download:

($1.99 / )

Flat audio levels are boring. Equalizer will replace your stock Android sound engine (if you permit it) and allow total control over your sound output. You can chose from one of the many existing presets (but let’s face it, you wont) or set up a custom audio configuration. It’s free, skin-able, easy to use, but you’ll have to pay a couple of bucks if you want the ability to save your own presets. Well worth the money.

Download:

(Free)

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