Courtesy of AndroLib
ADW.Launcher replaces the existing Android drawer. The drawer is the icon at the bottom of the screen you click to see all your apps. ADW.Launcher is a great piece of software. There are tons of options and rarely a bug. It’s wildly popular in the Android community, especially among developers.
It allows you to have up to 9 home pages, 4 shortcuts on the drawer (a ‘secret’ dock-bar can hold even more shortcuts). With version 1.0, there are even some great looking themes, some of which cost a $1 (ADW.Launcher is free). Well worth it. Highly recommended.
Some manufacturers already customize the drawer heavily so this application may not make sense in those scenarios.
Courtesy of AndroLib
Facebook’s Android app does exactly what you expect. You can browser your Facebook friend feed and also post your status as well as check email. The app’s biggest asset isn’t even the actual app, it’s the Android integration that comes along with it. For example, after taking a picture, you can ‘share’ it right to Facebook. It also provides synchronization between your Android contacts and those in Facebook. For example, when calling my mom, whom I don’t have a picture for, I see your facebook photo pop up instead. It’s also helped me find phone numbers (only when the Facebook user has shared their phone number).
Some Android manufacturers offer their own Facebook integration, so this app may not benefit you.
Another ‘must have’ app.
Courtesy of http://socialnmobile.blogspot.com
ColorNote stands above over note taking applications due to it’s checklist functionality and ease of use. For example, in doing some heavy house renovations, I created several notes and placed them on a separate home screen. This gave me easy access to the lists from the home page. At the beginning of each day I would view my tasks to be done and at the end of the day I would update a list of supplies that I would need to buy. It kept my chaos remarkably organized. Highly recommended.
Don’t worry if pink isn’t your color. As the name suggests, you can customize the color of each note. The default is yellow.
courtesy of AndroLib
is another app that should be included with Android. Dialer One replaces the simple phone dialer that ships with Android with one that can perform T9 searches on your phonebook. Even many basic non-smartphones provide this functionality, so I’m not sure why Google omitted it. Many phone manufacturers (HTC, Samsung and I think Sony) include their own dialer, so in those cases, this app would be redundant.
Download Dialer One
Dialer One is a ‘must have’ application, but has problems. Contact pictures sometimes do not display, due to restricted access to Facebook profile pictures. It’s also slow on my HTC Magic running Android 2.1. On faster phones and Android 2.2, I would expect it to run without sluggishness.
courtesy of AndroLib
Quick Settings put all the mostly used settings in one place for easy access instead of having to dig through the settings menu. I use it almost everyday, especially to adjust the screen brightness or turn on WiFi. It even has a flashlight app, which I have yet to use. It is highly customizable, allowing you to hide or replace settings you might or might not use. Place it on the desktop or dock bar or any place you can access it easily. A ‘must have’ app.
The developer doesn’t have a dedicated home page, but does have an active twitter feed.
Barcode Scanner should ship with Android. It allows your device to scan most barcodes. Many applications actually rely on this software, for example, Key Ring. Barcodes? Who cares? I thought that at first too. What makes Barcode Scanner so useful is the proliferation of QR Codes, which are fancy square barcodes that allow encoding of many different type of data. For example, I have included a QR Codes in all my reviews. The QR Code contains an address to the Android Market allowing you to download the app within seconds. Just scan the code in (right from your monitor) and you will be prompted to download the app. No searching, no typing.
Download Barcode Scanner
QR Codes also allow encoding of contact information, latitude and longitude, plain text, etc. My next set of business cards will have a QR Code containing my contact information allowing people to add me to their address books with the scan of a code. I also plan on using them in my geocaching activities.
Want to generate your own QR Code? Have at it.