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Utilities

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.

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It has been a while since we looked at apps that can be used to automate tasks on your Android phone or tablet so I thought it was time to rectify the situation. In a never-ending quest to make my life as easy as possible, I’ve tried everything from Tasker to AutomateIt.

I love to automate things. Love it. I use filters in Gmail to organize my inbox and IFTTT is a service I just can’t recommend highly enough. I use it to manage emails, news feeds, cloud storage backups and much more – all without having to lift a finger. Profile Flow brings the same idea to Android.

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Android and Macs don’t always play nice with each other, especially when it comes to transferring files from your device to your computer. Even when using a cable, OS X needs an extra utility to recognize an Android device, which isn’t very stable…

But why bother using cables and additional utilities when your Mac and your Android device can communicate wirelessly and seamlessly with each other? Thanks to DroidNAS, your Mac will automatically recognize any Android device running the application as a network drive and display it in the Finder.
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Despite the amount of power packed inside modern smartphones, one of the most annoying and time-consuming hindrance to my productivity always seems to be the task of switching apps. On my Galaxy S3, I have to click and hold on the main button to get the multitasking tray, then scroll through the list to find the app I want. And then sometimes I get frustrated when I notice that the app wasn’t open before, which means that I have to exit to my main homescreen, open the app drawer, and then find what I’m looking for.

I’ve tried dozens of quick app launchers/switchers before, from Wave Launcher to SwipePad, and eventually gave up on them because they were either too intruding, too slow, or they felt like they were designed for Froyo. Then I came across Swapps! and although I approached it with skepticism at first, I’m glad to say I found the perfect solution for fast app switching. Let me show you why.

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There comes a time in any Android user’s life where the need to try new things is stronger than the need to stick with the old and familiar. Sometimes it’s a great move, and other times we realize we knew better than to fix what’s not broken.

For the longest time, I’ve stuck with Go Launcher Ex for all my home screen customization needs, with the occasional flings with other newer, less robust launchers. But along came Atom Launcher. I was drawn to its fresh set of themes, among other things. Here’s why this little launcher got me completely enamored.

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If a survey was conducted across all Android owners regarding the one feature that they would like a significant improvement on, better battery would, quite possibly, be a runaway winner. The advent of smartphones with huge screen sizes and an ever-increasing dependency on them for various activities has led to an intense amount of load on batteries and everyone is on the lookout for ways to preserve them just that extra bit.

While there is an obvious correlation between battery backup and the amount of apps installed on your phone and their usage, there are quite a few errant apps that tend to keep running in the background even after you exit them. These apps not only put a huge burden on the battery life but also tend to hog your device’s precious resources, thereby slowing it down considerably and causing numerous problems.  A new app, Greenify aims to solve this problem in a unique and efficient way.

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On our Android devices we use our keyboards an awful lot. Whether it be to send an email or comment on a forum, we resort to the same keyboard to type everything out — this makes it quite an important part of the device. Developers have realised this and developed applications that give you a different form to type on. However, the developers of Ginger have taken this an extra step further.

In their keyboard design resides a built-in grammar checker that makes sure that all typos and mistakes are picked up before you finish typing. The app saves time by giving you the ability to quickly proof-read text without the need to do too much. For users who are constantly sending messages and emailing, Ginger avoids embarrassing mistakes. Read on to find out how it works.

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It’s Customization Month on Android.Appstorm! Throughout March, we plan to share with you all our tips, tricks, apps and resources to help you improve your phone or tablet experience and make them suit your style.

In Android 4.2 there were many new updates such as gesture typing and multiple users. These were the features which took the headlines as they were the most beneficial to Android users. However, one feature which was probably overlooked by the majority of us, including me at first, was Daydream.

Daydream is one additional aspect that users can customise in their Android device and there are apps which enhance it even more. Read on to find out what Daydream actually is and the best ways to use it!

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Just like most PCs, Android devices tend to become sluggish with use and need a little maintenance to keep them running like new. I’ve thought about getting my hands dirty and trashing all the junk hiding in my beloved gadgets, but never found a simple way to go about it without potentially ruining them or just losing interest halfway through. That’s why I was glad to hear about Advanced Mobile Care.

A veritable Swiss Army knife of Android tuning tools, Advanced Mobile Care can clean out unwanted files, kill unwanted tasks, sniff out viruses and apps with ads, save battery life, back-up contacts and even password-protect your sensitive files! I’ve been using it for the past couple of weeks and am pleased to report that it is well worth everyone’s time.

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It’s Customization Month on Android.Appstorm! Throughout March, we plan to share with you all our tips, tricks, apps and resources to help you improve your phone or tablet experience and make them suit your style.

Keeping yourself updated and notified is an essential part of maintaining a balanced workflow when working with your smartphone. The majority of smartphone users who like exploring unique applications undoubtedly rely on their smartphone for productivity. Missed It! will make this easier as it gives you control over notifications so you can tailor them to your specific preference. This aspect is crucial because customization is perhaps one of the most important features of Android and a main reason why some people choose this operating system over competitors.

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