Even in its current and somewhat dated form, AirDroid is easily one of the best apps on the Google Play Store. The sheer flexibility and polish of the remote access tool has made it one of the first things I install on any new device. The original AirDroid is still great, but for the last few months the development team at Sand Studio has been beta testing AirDroid version 2, with a ton of new features added to its original toolset.
|Jeremiah Rice||Jeremiah is a US-based blogger who bought a Nexus One the day it came out and never looked back. In his spare time he watches Star Trek, cooks eggs, and completely fails to write novels.|
This is the app roundup. The game roundup from last week can be found here.
It's hard out there for a football fan. With almost five months to go and nothing but basketball, baseball, golf, tennis, NASCAR, and that game all the foreigners play with their feet to tide us over, it's going to be a long summer. If you're one of the millions who can't get enough of fantasy football, you can kill time with the official ESPN Fantasy Football app, updated for the Draft and thankfully devoid of an annual re-title.
The BBC iPlayer video application has been available to Android-totting Englishmen for some time, but the audio equivalent has sadly lagged behind. Today the app finally lands on Android, and it was worth the wait: BBC Licence Fee subscribers can listen to the various radio stations over WiFi or mobile Internet, and it even works when they travel abroad. Unfortunately, the service isn't available to international users at any price.
The interface of iPlayer Radio is an interesting mix of Holo elements and unique ideas, particularly a station selector that apes an old-school rotary phone dialer.
Time for a little history lesson. Way back in the summer of 2010, when smartphone screen sizes were still reasonable and people were still complaining about how hard it was to type on them, a little company called Swype Inc. thought it had the problem of touchscreen input licked. Android users went crazy trying to get into the beta for their gesture-based software keyboard, and tech blogs threw around words like "innovation" and "miracle" like rice at a wedding.
V-Moda has been climbing the accessory maker charts lately with stylish (if divisive) designs for headphones and phone cases. The company's first foray into Android is the METALLO case for the Galaxy S III. The all-metal design (probably high-density aluminum) is unique, changing the shape of the phone and making it dockable with an extra amplifier/battery pack accessory. It's also one of the more expensive case options out there, starting at $101 for the frame, backplate and screen protector.
If the phones that Pantech has released in America thus far have been your sole exposure to the South Korean manufacturer, you might be surprised to learn that the company has some legitimately awesome hardware in its home territory. The Pantech Perception... isn't. While it competes with the likes of the Galaxy S III on paper, at least in some respects, a combination of old software and expensive hardware makes this new Verizon phone a hard sell to anyone who wants a high-powered device.
For a lot of Android users out there, the Nook Color was their first exposure to the platform, or at least their first exposure to the magic of root and custom ROMs. The tablet's unlocked bootloader (from the days before B&N caught wise and started protecting its loss-leader business model) made it easy to convert into a "full" Android device. The CyanogenMod family of ROMs was one of the first reliable alternatives to the base software, and despite the aging hardware, the latest update is now available for the Nook Color.
I spent the better part of four years before the keyboard as a graphic designer, but when it comes to programming and development, I don't know Java from a small Indonesian island. If you're a designer who's been tasked with creating the visual elements for an Android app, you need to check out Peter Nohejl's Android cheatsheet for Graphic designers. It's got pretty much everything you'll need when preparing visual assets, plus bonus help when preparing promotional materials for the Play Store.
NASCAR, left turns, Keystone Light, yadda, yadda, yadda. Now that we've got the requisite good-natured ribbing of NASCAR fans out of the way, you've got to check out the impressive race coverage features in the latest official tie-in to America's biggest stock car racing tournament. NASCAR RaceView Mobile '13 is intended to be a "second screen" experience for watching the race on TV, providing a plethora of live information on drivers and vehicles.