We do a monthly ‘top apps’ blog post here on The Shack Blog, but I wanted to go a bit more personal and share a list of the apps that I personally can’t live without on my Android-powered smartphone. I’ve been using Android for a few years now, on several different handsets, and these are among the first apps that I download and setup.
1. Facebook - this is a no-brainer, especially for a Social Media Community Manager, but I thought I would list it anyways. The latest update is even better for me, as it allows me to manage the RadioShack Facebook page right from my phone, no matter where I am. Android Market Link
2. Tweetdeck – for obvious reasons, I use two different apps for my personal Twitter feed and the official RadioShack twitter accounts. While I use the official Twitter app for RadioShack accounts, I use Tweetdeck for my personal account mainly because it allows me to update Twitter and Facebook with one update, but lets me choose when to do this. I also love that it notifies me of new info on both Twitter and Facebook in one place. Android Market Link
3. Locale – this was one of the first apps that I paid for on Android, and I’ve loved it ever since. Locale lets you assign certain actions to various triggers, so that your phone automatically does things for you. For instance, when I get to work, my phone automatically turns WiFi on, turns the ringer down to an acceptable volume, and launches Foursquare so I remember to check in. If there’s a meeting on my calendar, it automatically turns the ringer off so I don’t rudely interrupt a meeting with my phone. The Motorola DROID RAZR from Verizon includes a similar app – Motorola Smart Actions – right out of the box. You can see some examples of my Locale settings on my personal blog. Android Market Link
4. LauncherPro – I like to customize my phone quite a bit, and that includes the homescreens and application shortcuts. LauncherPro replaces the default homescreen on your Android phone and gives you more options than you can shake a stick at! Here’s a quick video showing how LauncherPro lets me access TEN different apps without having a single shortcut on my homescreen. Android Market Link
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5. GroceryIQ – I only recently discovered this one, but I love it. GroceryIQ lets you make grocery lists right on your phone. Sure, you can manually type in the things that you need, but you can also use your phone’s built-in camera to ‘scan’ the barcode to add a product to your shopping list. This is so easy – as I’m using the last of the ketchup, for instance, I can just scan the barcode and I’m done. Better yet, you can share those grocery lists with anyone, so when I scan the ketchup, it shows up on my wife’s phone, too, so neither of us forgets to get it. Android Market Link
6. Google+ – The newest social network from everyone’s favorite search engine. The real treasure here, though, is the app’s option to automatically upload your photos and videos to a private album on your Picasa account. Within seconds of snapping a pic, it’s uploaded and available for easy sharing. Don’t forget to add RadioShack to your circles on Google+. Android Market Link
7. Beautiful Widgets – while I don’t use many widgets on my homescreens, this is one that I definitely use. At a glance, I can easily see what time it is, what the date is, and the current weather conditions. The various parts of the widget are clickable, too, for quick access. So I can tap the clock to get to my alarm clock, the weather to get a full forecast, or the date to get to my calendar. Plus, there are hundreds of skins that I can download to fully customize how the widget looks. Android Market Link
8. Agenda Widget for Android – I have several calendars synced to my phone – work, personal, etc. Being able to get an idea of my upcoming appointments at a glance is key for me, so I use Android Agenda Widget. I get a list view of my upcoming appointments, color-coded by calendar. It’s an awesome solution for someone who is on-the-go and has lots of meetings to keep track of. Best of all, it’s free. Android Market Link
10. IMDb – I have an unhealthy obsession with looking up trivia and goofs for movies as soon as the credits start rolling. Having the app on my phone just makes these details that much closer to my fingertips. Android Market Link
Obviously I have tons of other apps installed – you can check out the full list of apps installed on my phone at http://bit.ly/RickysAppBrain. What apps have YOU discovered that you just can’t live without?