Fast, smooth data download speed is kind of important to mobile video, especially now that even mid-range Android phones are rocking 1080p screens. That's part of the reason that Netflix created FAST.com, its own branded alternative to web speed tests like Ookla's SpeedTest.net, back in May. The idea is to make sure you're getting an accurate test across multiple services (there's even a SpeedTest.net link right on the page) and your internet service provider isn't throttling your connection.

The web version of FAST.com works just fine on Android, thanks in part to a super-minimal interface - there's just a download bandwidth meter and nothing else. But if for some reason you'd like a dedicated Android app with the same interface, it's up on the Play Store now. The app is free and works with Android 4.0 or higher, and you don't need to be a Netflix subscriber to use the service.

On the one hand, it's always good to have alternatives - ISPs and carriers have been caught optimizing connections specifically for sites and apps like SpeedTest. On the other hand, the app looks like it's just a web wrapper for FAST.com. Bring the site up in Chrome and it looks more or less identical to the Android app. (Also, there's a distinct lack of demon cats.) So why not just toss the tool into the Netflix app itself in the next update? I suppose Netflix has faint hopes that FAST.com can become the new standard.

FAST Speed Test
FAST Speed Test
Developer: Netflix, Inc.
Price: Free