Top 10 Free Android Apps for the Year 2010

Although the Apple iPhone and its much-loaded iOS platform have changed the face of mobile phones and its uses, Google Android’s open-source platform is quickly catching up and gaining its own loyal followers. With the huge number of applications (or apps) available for download in the android app store, a lot of android phone users can now make the most out of their mobile devices-be it for business, fun, recreation or games. But, while there are hundreds and hundreds of free android apps available, keep in mind that there can be a lot of apps that aren’t so great. We’ll help you find the best ones from the android app store by giving you ten of the top free android apps this year.

1. Free Android Advanced Task Killer Application. This free android app can help you maximize the speed and efficiency of your android phone. Remember, although android phones can multitask (something that pre-iPhone 4 users can’t enjoy), this can hog up valuable memory and drain your battery. Use the Advanced Task Killer to quit tasks and apps that can slow down your phone.

2. Astrid. Science and research states that we can only store about 4 to 7 things in our short-term memory. It’s a good thing you’ve got Astrid and your android phone to the rescue! This nifty free android app can lets you track reminders, tasks and errands and even group them according to priority or due date. A tiny and cute cartoon octopus (“Astrid”) even acts as your own personal assistant and reminds you of upcoming events.

3. Dolphin Browser. iPhones may have the proprietary Safari but androids have Dolphin Browser. This free android app makes mobile browsing easier and much more fun, with pinch-zoom, gesture commands, tabbed browsing, bookmarks sorting and more.

4. Foursquare. Instead of just letting your friends know where you went for dinner, show them exactly where you’ve been with Foursquare. Using Google Maps, friends can check where you are and you can also see where they’ve been. You can even explore restaurants, cafes and stores nearby through your phone. Remember to include Foursquare when you download android apps!

5. Google Sky Map. Have the heavens in your hands-literally by downloading this from android app stores. Google Sky Map lets you to see the constellations and the planets and even helps you put names on stars. GPS navigation also allows you to see the exact position of stars and planets according to your location.

6. Mint. This app, which is available in android app stores, can help you keep track of your personal finances on the go. Input your daily expenses and transactions so that you know where your money’s going. You can even keep a monthly budget and inspect your overall cash flow with this free android application.

7. Replica Island. Relive the fun days of Mari Brothers and MegaMan on your android phone with this exciting and cute game. Replica Island lets you navigate a cute, green robot through 40 different levels, each with varying degrees of difficulty.

8. Talk to Me. Communicate with people from all over the world, no matter what race or nationality with this handy and free android app. Simply type in any text and Talk to Me will translate it into any of the 40 different languages available. You can also talk to it, and the app will talk back to you in Chinese, German, Spanish, French… the list goes on and on!

9. Bubble Beats. Have you ever wondered how it would be like to see music? Well, Bubble Beats provides the answer to that question with its unique and innovative interface. Free from android app stores, Bubble Beat is a jukebox of sorts that lets you assign colored bubbles or dots to certain tracks. You can then create playlists by grouping bubbles together. Never has listening to music been this fun!

10. Ringdroid. Are you tired of the same old boring ringtones and message alerts? Then download this free android app. Ringdroid allows you to record and edit sounds, as well as create ringtones. It’s like your own little music studio inside your mobile phone!

Make the most out of Google’s open-source platform and your nifty android phone! The handy, fun and innovative free android apps listed above prove that often, the best things in life are the ones that you don’t have to pay for. So, head on to your favorite android app store and start downloading these apps now!

How To Develop Android Apps: Getting Started

In this article, I will give an introduction on how to develop Android apps. I will not get into many technical details but rather give an overview of the approaches you should consider before you get started.

Smartphones are taking the World by storm. In may 2012 a news item appeared which stated that in Europe, more than 50% of all new mobile phones sold were smartphones. In 2011 the worldwide sales figures of Android phones exceeded those of the iPhone, the phone that started the “smartphone revolution”.

With the growing number of Android phones, the number of available apps (small programs designed to work on these devices) has also grown explosively. In addition to mobile phones, other devices such as tablet computers that run on the Android operating system are also gaining popularity. The consequence of all this is that there is a growing need for Android apps.

The Google Play Store (formerly Android Market) is growing at an enormous rate: there are now over 500,000 apps available. These are very diverse: utility apps such as text messengers, task managers and email clients but also a host of games. The most popular apps are being downloaded millions of times. Other interesting categories are apps that enhance businesses. Examples of these are apps that enable customers to purchase products right from their mobile phone or apps that provide the location of a company branch in the vicinity of the user.

The increasing popularity of mobile apps gives rise to many interesting business opportunities. This trend is unlikely to change any time soon and established business around the world are acknowledging this fact. Not only have many businesses produced mobile apps to grow their revenue or enhance their image. The rise of mobile apps appears to be changing the way businesses and consumers think about software. A telling example comes from Microsoft: the new Windows 8 operating system has a “mobile look and feel” and the software programs in the system are now referred to as “apps”.

So, if you want to learn how to develop Android apps where should you start? It depends on your previous experience (if any) and the amount of time and money you are willing to spend.

The most obvious route is doing all the programming yourself. To do this you need knowledge of the Java programming language and the Android Software Development Kit. If you have never programmed before, you will have to learn a lot about subjects such as object oriented programming and working with the necessary developer tools. This is the long, hard road to becoming an app developer… however, if you succeed at making your first few apps, it can be extremely satisfying and you will have gained a lot of useful knowledge!

If you do not know how to program and don’t want to learn how to write Android apps then, fortunately, there are other options. Several software products exist which make the app for you. Most of these are online applications that use “wizards” and templates. A limitation of this approach is that you will not have as much control over the result as you would when doing all the programming yourself. Some of these app makers are free, others offer a subscription service or a one time payment.

If app creation software doesn’t suit your needs, a third way is to hire a freelancer or a company to do the developing. If you are an individual hobbyist or running a small business, this may seem intimidating and expensive. However, using a resource such as oDesk we now have access to many cheap freelancers living outside of North America and Europe. Many are very capable at their job, so developing your app this way does not have to cost much at all.

Personally, I started out trying to do all the programming myself. I couldn’t find an online app maker that suited my needs and I did not want to spend a lot of money. However, although I had a little coding experience, I am not a software developer by profession. So when a relatively simple programming problem reared its head, I got stuck.

After some hesitation, I decided to let a freelancer solve the problem and this sped up the development of my app enormously! It did not cost me a lot of money (around $100) and I was able to get the app to the market much faster than if I had done everything myself. This allowed me to start testing the responses of customers sooner to see if it was a viable business idea.

This “hybrid” approach worked for me but you will have to find out for yourself what works best for you. Which method you choose doesn’t matter as long as you reach your goal: making the idea you have right now for your app a reality. Something that people can use and enjoy, and perhaps will make you some money or help your existing business!

In conclusion, there are several ways to get started developing Android apps. With so much information and services at your disposal, you have the opportunity to make your “dream app” a reality!

An Overview of the Android App Market and Its Demarcating Features

The use of Android based smartphones has increased reasonably well with time and now boasts of an incredible number of apps. The market is growing at the rate of 32 per cent every month and there is no end to the number of smartphones which are coming in the market related to every price range which gives the users a huge number of options. The rise in interest is mostly attributed to the great sale of Samsung S II and due to the advent of Samsung S3 which has got released recently. There are certain HTC models along with Sony Ericsson who have been impressive with the slew of smartphones that they have released in recent months. Android is open source and hence there are many Android developers who are interested in creating innovative apps.

Android also presents an open market place for developers who create third party apps and they are allowed to publish and rate too. Android app development can be done using any platform: Linux, Windows, and Mac OS X.

Here are some of the best-known apps which have a large fan following:

  • Google Voice
  • Advanced Task Killer
  • Evernote
  • Documents To Go
  • Amazon Kindle
  • Astro File Manager
  • Pandora
  • Shazam
  • Dial Zero
  • Google Goggles
  • Google Sky Map
  • Tricorder
  • Bump

Cloud based service integration and its related apps have companies that control IT to expand their operations. Mobile apps have extended the overall reach and location based apps can easily find out the location of the mobile as well as the customer via GPS. These apps give out detailed information related to different places, things and facts. It is said that in the future the Android-based phones will be used as smart cards to swipe and withdraw money. E-commerce companies are looking to leverage this feature on smartphones and so that they can easily attract people for easy sales. It would also make shopping easy and fun for all.

Android is always in demand and the field of mobile application development space comprises of many other players. But Android is very popular because of its easy-to-use software development kit, Android Media APIs, Location-based feature and Wi-Fi feature.

There are various mobile application development services provided by Android developers:

  • Web-based app development
  • Custom Android apps and domain-based apps
  • Java app development
  • Android games development
  • Mobile business app development
  • Multimedia-based app development
  • Enterprise Security mobile app solutions
  • Feature-based app development like GPS-based and Wi-fi based apps
  • Communication app development
  • Utility app design and development
  • QA services for Android projects

Here are some of the salient features of Android OS

  • Android can Run Multiple Apps at any given point of time. Android users benefit greatly from this feature and hence one can listen to music or even record GPS data simultaneously.
  • Information is kept visible on the Home Screen. Android has a customizable home screen with active widgets without any application launch necessary.
  • Android has reached a whopping figure of apps in the Android Marketplace which gives immense potential for the user to leverage a smartphone’s features. The market is completely open for budding developers to introduce innovative apps.
  • Android helps you choose your carrier as well as a smartphone on a budget.