I’ve had a Google Android phone for nearly 8 months now and have installed and deleted quite a few apps since then. I previously posted an interactive photo of my favourite apps, but there have been lots of great new apps appearing in the Market since then so I thought I’d post again.
Top 5 Apps
Here are the five apps I use the most. They may not be the most impressive in the Market, but they’re all fast, stable, and apps I could now not do without:
- Twidroid – my prefered Twitter client, it’s free and updated almost on a weekly basis. The interface is clean and easy-to-use, there are lots of features, and I particularly like its notification system (new tweets directed @ me appear in the Android notification area just like new text messages or emails).
- Shazam – This app listens to some music (from a movie, club, advert on TV, radio, wherever) they tells you what the track and artist is (including album art and links to buy the mp3). This is just the app I used to dream about when I were a lad!
- Flixster Movies – There are a few movie apps in the Market, but this Flixster one is my current favourite. It tells you what’s on at the movie theatres near you, with show times, cast lists, summary and review scores. There are links to watch the trailer as well as additional tabs to view forthcoming movies and new release on DVD.
- Record It – This is the paid-for version of free app Whats On. It provides TV listings in a list view, schedule view (grid), and Now/Next view. If you have Sky TV you can also use it to remote-record.
- Droidify – Rogue Spotify client Droidify may be buggy but it still works. Of course this will be replaced on my list here when the official Spotify client is released for Android (hopefully next week)…
There are a bunch of other apps I’d recommend you check out – my right-hand screen has the following icons:
- Last.fm, SnapTell, ShopSavvy, Places Directory, beebPlayer, TasKiller, FotMob, Useful Switchers, Layar, MySpace
Top 5 Background Apps
Here are the essential apps to install, set up once, then forget about. They run in the background but provide vital services:
- Locale – I use this to switch off the sound when I’m sleeping (so that new emails don’t wake me up) and to vibrate-only if I’m at work (which it knows the location of). You can set up all sorts of conditions and events to trigger phone setting changes.
- Scrobble Droid – Scrobbles your music to Last.fm.
- Quick Calendar – Displays appointments and calendar entries in the notification area.
Top 5 Games
There still aren’t really any games worth keeping. I’ve tried loads but they’re mostly all disappointingly basic and boring. The only two I still have installed are:
- Retro Defense – One of the many, many desktop tower defense clones on Android, they’re all pretty similar but I like the retro look and sounds in this one.
- Jewellust – Puzzle game that’s mildly distracting. I’ve not upgraded from the Lite version yet though.
Top 5 Widgets
My G1 can’t handle too many widgets: only two of three before I start to notice a performance hit. I’ve not tried out too many, but here are the widgets I use every day:
- BBC News Widget – A news widget that displays a 3-line headline on my main home screen and clicks through to a nice scrollable list of news story summaries. You can then click through again to read the full story in the Browser.
- JS Weather – One of many weather widgets, I like JS Weather the best because it has lots of configuration options, includes a 5-day forecast, has nice icons and doesn’t take up too much space. Being a widget, it updates itself every 30 mins or so.
- Voice Search – Not strictly a widget, Google’s Voice Search plugs in to the search widget and lets you speak your search text into the phone. It works amazingly well too and is definitely something to impress with.
If you have an Android phone and have a favourite app not listed here please let us know!