So it’s that time of the year when all of the United States is going to be glued to TV watching the Super Bowl. This year’s face off is scheduled for February 3 when the San Francisco 49ers will be taking on the Baltimore Ravens. If you are an NFL fan and do not want to miss any of this action, there are several apps for NFL lovers already available – some apps focused on NFL news, some that let you bet on super bowl, and finally some that let you discuss the game with other NFL fans and root for your team. Here are 3 Android apps that you should absolutely download now.
This is one of the most popular apps on the Android marketplace having been downloaded over 10 million times. Why is this app absolutely necessary? Because apart from the news, NFL videos and game highlights, you also get to enjoy the live video on your Android tablet if you are a Verizon FiOS customer. This app is also going to be useful post the season with access to playoff scores and schedules. The only drawback is that you cannot simply plug your tablet to a TV via an HDMI cable and enjoy live playback. Also, depending on where you live, you may also have to face NFL blackouts. Download by using the QR code below
NFL Flick Quarterback
This app is not as popular as the one from Verizon, yet this is one of the most popular NFL apps available in the market today. Having been installed on over 100,000 devices, this app is the perfect game to enthuse an NFL fan. The app features all 32 official teams and delivers stunning 3D stadium environments, 120 player animations and hi-res graphics. The app is available at a price of $1.99 and is worth every cent of it. Use the QR code below to download the app to your mobile.
NFL 2012 Season Schedule
This app may not be as useful to you coming so late in the day, but if you have not had it already, you have missed out on one of the easier ways to follow the games. The app presents the schedule in a pretty lucid and clear format leaving no room for confusion. Definitely a must have, also considering that this app is available for free and has been downloaded somewhere between 10,000 and 50,000 times already.
What are your favorite apps? Do let us know in the comments.
So you’ve got your Android device and you’ve visited the Play Store to download the Facebook, Twitter and Angry Birds apps. But what else should you download? I mean what are the coolest apps of 2012, the ones that you simply must have?
Well, luckily for you, we have our fingers on the pulse when it comes to the hottest apps and have decided to provide you with a list of the 5 coolest Android apps released in 2012. And here they are:
Yes, you’ve heard the hype from your iPhone-owner friends, telling you that Instagram is the best thing ever to happen to mobile photography and that the app is all theirs. Well, now (finally!) in 2012, Instagram has been made available on Android. In their own words, “Instagram is a fast, beautiful and fun way to share your photos with friends and family.” This app has the ability to turn amateur, and even poor, photographers into professionals. Simply take a photo of anything you like, choose a filter, and completely transform the look. You can then share said photo with the Instagram community or with friends and followers and Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr too – genius!
2) CTERA Mobile
OK, so it may not be cool in a fun kind of way but cloud and document syncing apps are all the rage at the moment and CTERA Mobile may prove to be one of the best. Recently released for Android, CTERA is unlike other similar apps in that it has been designed specifically for mobile use, as opposed to being adapted from a desktop program. Working seamlessly with CTERA Portal and CTERA Cloud, this mobile app allows secure downloading of documents for storage on your device. You can also save attachments from emails and upload them to your CTERA Cloud. Very useful, especially for big smartphones like the Samsung Galaxy Note or the new HTC One X that are usually used for business.
If you’re looking for a cool weather app (who isn’t, right?), WeatherWise is bound to satisfy. In fact it’s probably the coolest weather app there is. The app has all the features you would expect from a weather app but delivers it in an animated theme. A Zen Tree is the default theme and plenty of others are available for $0.99 – well worth a download.
4) Google Play Music
If you are into your music, Google Play Music is an app that you simply must have. In fact, stop reading for a second and download it now… OK, done? Good. Let me explain a bit about the app. This app lets you listen to your entire music collection anywhere. OK, so your standard music app allows you to do this, but I’m talking about your ENTIRE collection! You can add as many songs as you like to your computer, access them via the app and save your favorites for offline playback. No need to rush out and buy a 64GB SD Card either, all the music is stored online. Any music purchased from Google Play will automatically show up in the app and you can share a free play with friends on Google +. This is a great apps for all Android phones, especially for those that come without microSD card slots.
5) Generate All The Memes
We’ve all seen those crazy weird video and picture-based memes that are all over the web. You know the ones that have a funny picture with an even funnier description? Well, if you have ever wondered how to create them, Generate All The Memes is the app you need. You can create a picture, add some funny text and share it with all of your friends. There is also over 10,000 user-made image memes to browse through, so you’re bound to find something that makes you chuckle.
That’s it, the 5 coolest Android apps of 2012 so far, all designed to change your mobile device for the better!
There has been something of an App War in the UK. The App Store versus the Android Market, Windows Phone Marketplace. Each is turning to developers to offer more choice for consumers. As smartphones get faster, allowing a quicker transfer of data, integrating Augmented Reality along with fancy graphics we have developed a habit for downloading games, information or apps just to make our lives easier or just a little bit more fun. But how much do we really love our Apps?
New research suggests while we might rush to download the latest app and play with it for a few days, in fact our love runs cold quickly. The research focussed on users in the US. It showed that 68% of smartphone users only open five or fewer apps a week. 17% don’t use any apps and under half, 42% of Americans have a device that has apps.
They are, the researchers say, merely a novelty that wears off. We delete apps we get bored with, we stop using them and if you use an operating system that shows up the apps you use most frequently, you can scroll through the screens to show the ones that have fallen out of favour. The estimate is that around 80% of apps are eventually deleted, which is why the researchers of this report say measuring downloads of apps is a bad way to measure how popular they might actually be.
The importance for apps to smartphone launches has grown as it is a good way of showcasing a devices capability. Both EA and Gameloft released new apps and games to coincide with the iPhone 4S. Siri was an app itself originally, and the developers were taken over by Apple. But while there is big demand at the launch, users tend to whittle down the apps they use regularly, until there are just a core few they use. The Nokia Lumia 800, the first to use Windows Phone 7.5 Mango, made app integration even easier by adopting social networking platform friendliness, allowing users to see Twitter and Facebook updates as though they were messages. BBM, or Blackberry Messenger is much the same, a feature that has become so integrated into device practice that it is a social networking platform in its own right.
For app developers though, it is not great news. Apps do not make firms a huge amount of money, no matter how much of a push they might get on the AppStore. One UK based developer created a wide range of apps but still saw that arm of their business operate at a loss. A good profile raiser, but not a sound business model.
But is it so bad that we use and lose apps? One of the best things about our smartphones is the ability to mould them and personalise them. Keeping it fresh with new apps makes it easier for us to explore new games and new places. We might get excited about a tourism app while in a new city, but never use it again when we get home, but instead of seeing apps as a long term download, should we just see them as a short term fancy, a fling rather than a marriage? With so many millions of apps to choose from it would be impossible for anyone who sample even half over the course of a smartphone’s lifetime. More choice makes it easier for us to pick and choose, as difficult as that may before developers who want us to keep hold of them forever.
People who have an Android phone and are suffering from some serious battery issues, here are some simple manual as well as automatic tweaks that will help you keep your phone charged for a longer time and make the best possible use of your battery life.
There are end number of things that eat up your battery power and most of the times they are things that most mobile users are not aware of at all. This article contains all the possible solutions to safeguard your battery life, so i highly recommend that you go through each of these features, settings and customizations that are mentioned ahead in this article.
List of battery power consuming features :
Your phone contains end number of features and settings that consume your battery power without you even realizing it or you were maybe aware of certain features but didn’t realize they used battery power to a great extent.
To get an idea about this navigate to Settings > About > Phone > Battery >Battery Use, which will tell you the entire story.
Settings that are most likely draining your battery power :
The Screen :
Your screen consumes the most battery life especially if its the new Super Amoled or Super LCD display. To minimise the screens battery usage, turn down the brightness. Although your phone is on “Auto” brightness mode which works in most cases, but still might be using more battery than you expect.
You can go to Settings > Display > Brightness, uncheck the “Automatic Brightness” option and manually enter approximately 10%. It may become a little harder for you to see under direct sunlight, but this wont be the case elsewhere.
Another option is to put the power control widget on your home screen which will help you toggling between low and high brightness modes in a much convenient manner. To do so, press and hold an empty section on the screen, select Widgets and select the Power Control option.
Alternatively, you could also lower down the screen timeout from 1 minute to around 15 - 30 seconds by going to Settings > Display. This will aid you in saving battery life as well.
Cellular and Data Connection :
It doesnt matter whether your using a high end 4G phone or a regular 3G device, your cellular and battery connections will eat up your battery big time even if your phone is in a dormant state.
Your data connection can be turned on and off by making use of APNDroid 2.0 or by making use of these Quick Settings. If you just intend to talk, text and send mails then EDGE or 1x is more than required. Data can be turned back on when you are browsing and require extra speed.
When there are Wi-Fi networks in your surroundings, use them. It will automatically turn off your data connection and use Wi-Fi instead which will be a battery life saviour.
However, when you don’t have any Wi-Fi networks in your area, your battery will be drained by constantly making search for available networks to connect to, so its better to turn Wi-Fi off from your Power Control widget when your not in such locations.
Keeping bluetooth on when not required again consumes a lot of battery like Wi-Fi does, so just turn off bluetooth entirely when your not using any bluetooth headset or transferring any files to and fro from your computer. You can do this from the Power Control widget.
GPS again drains a lot of battery when your using it for Google maps or turn-by-turn navigation and if you make use of location services provided by Twitter, Facebook or other social applications then GPS will be used on a more regular basis. GPS controls can also be toggled through the Power Control widget.
Automation of these Settings :
All the above mentioned settings can be toggled through the Power Control widget as per the requirements but that would be too irritating and difficult at times.
Fortunately, all these settings can be automated through an application called the Tasker. With this application you can automate pretty much everything that you desire like GPS, Bluetooth and Data settings.
Use of Juice Defender to scale back data usage :
Juice Defender again automates all the work for you, although you can change some of its settings if you wish to do so. It manages your data connection in a very smart way by turning it off and reconnecting it after every 15 – 30 minutes to check if there are any new mails, Twitter notifications and other alerts to download.
Other Alternatives :
Tweak and Uninstall Data intensive applications :
If you have any applications that you are not making use of, then please uninstall them as there are many applications that try to connect to the internet without even you realizing it and so its best to remove them completely. Also get rid of widgets that grab data constantly like the Facebook widgets or the weather widgets to name a few or change their settings so that they update their data every half an hour or on an hourly basis.
Turn Off the Eye Candy :
Eye candy features like screen animations and live wallpapers can be pretty CPU intensive. If you look forward to save your battery then turning them off is a wise choice although you may loose the flashy and animated look but this solution is ideal if nothing works for you even after performing other tweaks.
Save the phone from getting heated up :
Extreme heat will always kill your battery so don’t leave it in a hot place, get it out of your pocket whenever you can and keep it as cool as possible during the summer.
Stop using a Task Killer :
Task killers are more harmful then helpful and affect you battery to a great extent. You don’t need task killers if you have uninstalled your applications correctly or are not using them when not required. So my advise will be not to use a task killer as its not required at all.
Underclock / Undervolt your device :
You don’t really need all the CPU power always, you can reduce the clock speed or even create custom profiles using the SetCPU application that will turn it away when your phone is sleeping. You can create profiles that underclock your phone as and when the battery keeps going down.
You can also make use of the Kernel Manager application that will help in reducing the voltage thus giving you a better battery life.
Getting a Secondary Battery :
The last option is to get another battery for your phone. Most high end phones now a days have a pretty much useless battery life so you can just get yourself a second battery and keep it safe in any place till your current battery gets exhausted.
Having an extended battery is another option which is heavier then the standard battery but will guarantee you a better battery life. Lastly, make sure that you are buying original OEM battery as the cheap ones will cause a lot of problems, so make sure that you buy a high quality battery for your phone.
Have you ever felt the need to ask for directions in a foreign country where nobody speaks in your tongue? Google has just introduced an interesting new ‘Conversation Mode‘ on their Translate app for Android that will make such conversations simple.
Using the conversation mode, users can speak in their native tongue that will then be translated and read out aloud in the chosen language. The app will further take voice inputs from the person you are speaking with and translate it back in your native tongue.
The feature is still in the alpha mode and only available with English-Spanish mode for the moment. However, expect all the bugs and the number of supported languages to increase soon enough.
Apart from being used as an ‘interpreter‘, this feature also has several other use-cases. Writes one commenter on the Google blog,
“This could be an awesome tool for deaf people. As someone who is deaf and speaks/lipreads, I’ve long dreamed of having a handheld device that would convert all spoken conversations around me into text.
I just tried this in English to English mode with one person, and it worked! The only issue is that it’s not continuous; you have to keep hitting the “reply” button to keep the conversation going.”
Users looking to root their Android phones will frequently encounter instructions to backup and restore their phone contents. While these steps are not too difficult at the outset, it can be scary particularly if you are not a geek. A recently launched Android application makes this process easy.
MyBackUp is a free to download app that comes with a 30-day trial period. Using the application, the user may backup content from applications, contacts, bookmarks, SMS messages, music playlists and a host of other content from their phone to their SD card or to the company’s online servers. Data stored on the company server can also be accessed by logging online to the developers’ website.
Once the trial period is over, users will need to purchase a full version of the app at a price of $4.99. If you have a rooted phone, you can check out the app by using the QR code below.
A new application on the Android market makes it pretty simple to search and stream video content from across the web from one place. Called DroidStreamer, the application gathers content from a number of legitimate sources including YouTube and presents them from one place so that users need not scour the internet to catch their favorite videos.
Do note that the content aggregation does not seem to be automatic and the developers are expected to manually update new content. This can cause delay as the application gathers more content. Anyway, for now the Droid Streamer Pro app is still in beta and hence you can excuse the bugs.
TV Shows currently accessible over Droid Streamer include The Simpsons, Family Guy, South Park and Scrubs while movies in the collection include Avatar, Terminator 1,2,3 and Iron Man 1,2.
You can download the app by searching for ‘Droid Streamer‘ on the Android market or use the QR code below. Do note that this is a free to download app.
The VLC media player has, for a long time, been one of the most popular applications for viewing media files. This is given the fact that it supports almost every media format. Now, it is being learnt that a VLC media player app for Android could be rolling out soon.
According to Jean-Baptiste Kempf, a VLC developer, it is just a matter of weeks before the application is released on the Android platform. The development work is noted to have been in progress for a long time. Although initial work was hampered due to software limitations on the Android front, work seems to have picked up pace once an updated version of the Android NDK was released earlier this month.
Kempft has indicated that most of the VLC libraries have already been ported to Android and that specific device issues could be the only reason that could delay the launch further. Let’s hope a public release happens very soon.
Sony has announced that an official PlayStation app will soon make its way to the iOS and Android platforms. Writing about this on the PlayStation blog, Emmanuel Orssaud, Portal Manager at Sony, has said that the first iteration of the application will only be available in UK, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, and The Netherlands. A second version that will support the rest of Europe is also noted to be on its way.
The PlayStation app will let users check on their friends’ activities, read and discover the latest games, news and hardware and keep a tab on their PSN trophies. The application shall be free to download.
While this application is sure to let gamers keep a tab on theirs and their friends’ activities, it will not be a useful gaming device. That gap, it has been speculated, will be fulfilled by a PlayStation phone. Reports have suggested that this new Android based smartphone – complete with gaming controls – shall be announced sometime in the first quarter of next year. If you are a hardcore PS gamer, keep your fingers crossed until then.
This is something that is likely to tick you off if you are an Android user. Google has announced a few significant changes to their Android marketplace. While most of the changes – like an increase in the size-cap of .APK files and the launch of a carousel on the market place home are positive changes, a new policy to restrict the refund window on paid apps is likely to irk many.
According to the latest update, Android users will now only get 15 minutes from the time of purchase to try an app before deciding to ask for a refund. This is drastically lower than the 24 hour window that existed until now. Why’s that? Eric Chu from the Android Developer Ecosystem explains,
“Since most users who request a refund do so within minutes of purchase, we will reduce the refund window on Market to 15 minutes. This change will be largely transparent to buyers, but will help developers manage their businesses more effectively.”
While a 24 hour window is agreeably too large for trying an app out, a 15 minute window does not help either. It makes sense to give the users at least an hour or two before shutting the refund window. What do you think?