One of my greatest annoyances with Android, as a developer and an employee having to connect to my company's VPN, is the complete lack of attention to usability of VPN-related activities. Not only is it impossible to pull out a widget to connect to a VPN server, but Google apparently thought it wasn't useful (and so insecure that it shouldn't even be an option) to add the ability to save the VPN password.
Remember Trident Case, the company that produced the excellent Cyclops case for the EVO 4G? Well, it turns out that very manufacturer has a whole lot more cases in its inventory, including the following beauties:
From left to right: the Cyclops case for the Samsung Vibrant, the Kraken case for the HTC Droid Incredible, and the Kraken case for the Motorola Droid X
As good as they are, however, there will be those of you reluctant to hand over $34.95 for a case to protect your phone, which is understandable in these tough economic times.
Squishable.com was cool enough to send me one of their Squishable Androids, and I must say: this thing is pretty awesome. It's a big old pillow/friend that the whole family can enjoy. At first, I wasn't sure if my Squishable Android and I had much in common, but after spending the day with him, we are now best friends. Here are some of the things we did together:
This is my Squishable Android trying to drive my car, but he had no idea what he was doing, so I decided to teach him:
He decided he wasn't too comfortable behind the wheel, so I just let him ride shotgun:
Here he is making a withdrawal from the ATM (turns out he's loaded):
After the bank, I had to make a stop.
Ingenious apps come out very rarely, but when they do, I make sure to have them installed on all my Android phones and recommend them to everyone I know. Theft Aware is one such app, as you may have already found out if you've read my review. It hides itself in your phone so well, especially if it's rooted, that unless the thief installs a whole new ROM (a hard reset doesn't remove Theft Aware on rooted phones) or knows you are running Theft Aware for a fact, you will be able to track your device for as long as it has battery life.
Lookout Mobile Security, a free Android app that secures your device from viruses in addition to backing it up and allowing you to remotely locate it, yesterday launched a premium service that we've been expecting for a while. The Premium version is offered as an optional upgrade to a fully functional free base version for an annual fee of $29.99 or a monthly fee of $3. That's a pretty hefty price to charge, especially since regular, free accounts already have access to so many features, so let's take a look at the extras that you get:
Today’s smartphones are quickly absorbing the functions of other portable devices - PDAs, portable GPS units, and standalone MIDs are a thing of the past - and conventional MP3 players may be next on the cutting block.
In this day and age, it’s increasingly difficult NOT to become at least a little interested in the small (or maybe not so small) charges that you incur on a regular basis. With gas prices soaring, tracking your vehicles fuel economy has become a regular practice for many consumers, myself included. It can be hard, though, to maintain a database of all your mileage information and aggregate this data in a pleasing and useful way.
Ever wondered how much RAM is available on your phone? What about the internal storage space available? Or the precise signal strength? If you answered yes to any of these questions, System Info Widget may be the perfect widget for you and your inner geek.
What you're looking at above are the four widgets Jason Calhoun, the developer of the System Info Widget, gives you out of the gate.
An Issue of Volume
From the day I eagerly removed the cellophane wrapping around the artful, Google-themed box which contained my Nexus One, I have had only one real gripe with Android: volume management. For a while I just dealt with it - the only way to adjust in-call volume was during a call, and other volume settings had to be controlled via the sound settings menu, or in their proper context.
- 2x for the Droid Incredible
- 2x for the EVO 4G
- 2x for the Droid X
- 2x for the Droid 2
- 2x for the original Droid
Each Amzer case is worth about $13 on average, while the Gizmo Dorks is usually $10 but currently on sale for $3.