Think about all of the services you use on your phone. Email, social networking, photo sharing, news, todo lists, calendars and much more. Forget games, phone calls and text messages, and it’s likely that the vast majority of what you use your phone for involves being online. Yet the chances are that as soon as you start using a new tool you immediately seek out an app. But is this necessary?
In most cases, where there is a web-based tool that has an app, there is also a mobile website. So why do we all gravitate towards apps? It’s something I know that I am guilty of and that I don’t usually give a great deal of thought to. Apps are where it’s at for me. It’s been that way for some time, but I thought it was about time to re-evaluate the situation.
The 7 inch tablet market is probably the fastest growing in the mobile arena. While phone manufacturers are still experimenting with all manners of sizes for handset screens, there seems to be a general consensus that for a tablet, 7 inches is the sweet spot. Larger tablets are still popular, but for the most part, 7 is where it’s at.
I was recently alerted to the existence of the GOCLEVER Aries 7o. Yes, you read that correctly. That’s a fully capitalized company name followed by a mode name incorporating a sign of the zodiac, and then a number and a letter. Yep, that’s seven oh, not seven zero. But that’s by the by. Having just taken ownership of a Nexus 7, I was keen to see how it compared.
How much do you love Android? Do you love it so much that you’d like to use it all the time, even when you’re sitting at your PC? This might be taking the idea of being an Android fanboy a little too far, but there are lots of reasons why you might want to have Android running on your PC.
Just as you may emulate a second copy of Windows in a virtual environment for testing purposes, so you can do the same with Google’s mobile operating system. Not all that long ago I looked at how this can be achieved with VirtualBox and a freely downloadable ROM, but now I have another more impressive and stable option to share — Genymotion.
Coming out to either support or attack an operating system, company or piece of hardware almost inevitably leads to accusations of fanboyism. My choice of headline here may make it sound as though I’m on the attack, going out for Microsoft all gun blazing… But that’s not the case.
While this is an Android site and I spend a huge amount of my time playing with Android apps, tablets and smartphones, I actually spend the vast majority of my time using — ironically — a first generation Surface Pro… and I love it. So I’ll preface this article by saying that I love Android, and I love Windows and the Surface platform. But I’m not foolish enough to think that Surface will ever overtake Android — or even become its equal. Why? There are various reasons.
The chances are that if you’re reading this site then you are comfortable with using Android. If you’re the technically minded member of your family, it’s highly likely that you get called upon to help out with all manner of computer and mobile problems — I know this has long been the case with me!
Helping someone fix a problem can be a nightmarish task. When distance is an issue, you may decide to try resolving the problems with a phone call, but this can turn out to be an extremely frustrating experience for everyone involved: trying to explain how to navigate to different settings in an operating system can be almost impossible if the person on the other end of the phone is not familiar with what you’re telling them to do.
Wouldn’t it be easier to just take hold of their phone and do it for them? Well, of course it would… but sadly it’s no always possible. If you get a call from your mother looking for help, and she’s on the other side of the country, another solution is needed. For desktop operating systems there are numerous remote assistance tools available that make it possible to take control of the computer of the person you are trying to assist so you can make the necessary changes without having to explain it to them step by step. This is exactly what Zikk brings to Android: it is remote assistance for your phone and tablet.
Email is essential these days. Virtually anyone who owns a smartphone can be accused of being a Crackberry addict, regardless of the particular phone they own. And although it’s great to be able to get emails no matter where you may be, there’s a downside to this level of connectivity.
If you’re anything like me, you’ll receive a huge volume of email each day. If my phone was to audibly notify me of the arrival of each new message, I would go insane — so I’ve disabled sound notifications. This means that I have to keep looking at my phone to see when I have a new message. Sometimes every hour, sometimes every couple of minutes. It’s infuriating. It drives me mad … almost as mad as constant sounds would do. It’s Catch 22.
What does this have to do with Boomerang? Well, aside from the fact that this is an app that can be used to send and receive emails, not a lot! My point is that email is something we can’t do without. But for too long we have all been constrained by the way email works. Boomerang has been designed to wrestle control out of the hands of email clients and place it back under your command.
If you have spent any time online over the past few months, you can’t help but have become aware of the Nexus 7. Even if you weren’t actively seeking out information about the device, you’ve probably absorbed a great deal as if by osmosis.
The latest addition to the Google / Asus Nexus range has been eagerly anticipated for some time now. Taking a leaf out of Apple’s book, the latest version of the Nexus 7 was not given a unique name. Just as the iPad 3 was not actually called the iPad 3, rather, the ‘new iPad’, so there is nothing in the name to distinguish this Nexus from last year’s model if you just look at the name.
The idea of learning a new language may bring back horrible memories of chanting aloud amo, amas, amat, amamus, amatis, amant, and discussing whether the vocative form is indeed a case — but there is a better way to learn. If you’ve always loved the idea of picking up a second — or third, or fourth — language, your phone and tablet could help you out.
Having an Italian girlfriend spurred me into attempting to learn the lingo. I am essentially monolingual — I know enough French to get by, a smattering of German, and sufficient Latin to satisfy my love of etymology. I needed something to help me become fluent in Italian. Duolingo seemed to fit the bill.
It used to be the case that PC users had the choice of installing Windows or, if they were feeling adventurous, a version of Linux. This is still true, but it is now also possible to install OS X without owning a Mac and virtualization means that you can do all of this alongside your main operating system in a virtual computer.
This being Android.AppStorm, you may well wonder what virtualization has to do with your phone or tablet. Well, how would you feel about the chance of installing and running Android on your PC? Using a free copy of VirtualBox and the information in this guide, you can run a fully functioning – and legal – version of Jelly Bean on your computer.
Cloud storage has become so ubiquitous that the idea of storing files online is no longer anything out of the ordinary. In fact we are almost spoiled for choice with the number of services competing for our attention and our files — Dropbox, SkyDrive and Google Drive to name but three. And if you’re anything like me, you’ve probably signed up for every gigabit of free cloud storage you can lay your hands on.
All this free space sounds great, but management can become a nightmarish task as every service has its own Android application and you might well find yourself with multiple client apps installed on your device. With CloudCube, this could be a thing of the past as here, in a single app, is a tool that can be used to manage files on no less than eight online repositories. The reliance on dedicated clients had limited me to using just a couple of cloud storage services at a time, so I was keen to see how this free app could help me get past that hurdle.