We all like free things. We also like getting things done without hassle (that's why smartphones are a thing in the first place, right?). When those two things come together, though, it's worth talking about. Amazon must recognize this fact, as it's offering up some fantastic productivity apps today without charge.
Among the freebies, you'll find some pretty solid names:
Being a huge fan of keyboard shortcuts (I have most of Gmail's keys memorized and use them exclusively for maximum productivity every day), I jumped at the opportunity to add similar functionality to AndroidPolice.com itself.
On various pages of the site that contain multiple posts, like the homepage, category, author, and tag pages, you can now:
press "j" to jump to the next article in the list
press "k" to jump to the previous article in the list
press "o" or "Enter" to go to the article that's closest to the top of the visible browser area
(new) press "O" to do the same as above, except in a new browser tab/window
(new) press "c" or "C" on a post page to zoom to the comments box
Furthermore, if you're at the end of a list, pressing "j" will advance to the next page.
Before I get your hopes up, no they haven't improved spreadsheets yet. However, that is on the way. What is arriving now, though, is the ability to add comments to your documents, view tables, and improved Google presentations viewing support. You'll even get speaker notes and the ability to swipe between slides.
There are more features on their way. Here at Android Police HQ, we've been eagerly awaiting proper spreadsheet editing (which is currently horrible to an unusable degree), and Google has seen fit to name check that very feature in its "More to come..." section.
OfficeSuite Pro is one of the more powerful collections of productivity software for Android (and Cameron's personal favorite). Today it's getting just a bit better by adding several new features, including the ability to print via Google Cloud Print, convert text documents to PDF files, spell-check, and compatibility with SkyDrive.
Here's a complete list of what's new:
6.5 New Features:
Print - print documents with Google Cloud Print or previously installed third party printer
Convert to PDF - convert your text documents to PDF files
Spell-check (based on Google ICS spell-check)
New supported formats - opening of XLSM, PPTM, PPSM and DOCM formats
Thumbnail preview in Slideshow mode
Animated Slideshow -support for animated slideshows
Embedded images & charts (in Excel module)
Now compatible with Microsoft SkyDrive
WiFi Direct support
Although, some of the new additions may be having some problems.
A few days ago, my colleague David Ruddock shared his feelings on Android tablets, why they "suck," and a few suggestions on how they can be improved. At the start of that editorial, he asked the question "how often do you instinctively reach for [your Android tablet], as opposed to your phone or laptop?" Today, I'm going to answer that question from my own personal standpoint, and I'm going to explain why I think Android tablets are actually underrated.
TouchType Ltd., the creators of what is arguably the best predictive keyboard available for Android, have just announced SwiftKey 3, along with a separate solution made specifically for medical professionals – SwiftKey Healthcare.
SwiftKey 3, which has – as of tonight – finally come out of beta, is on sale in celebration of its launch, available from the Play Store for just $1.99 today. SwiftKey Healthcare, for those wondering, is a new keyboard, pre-loaded with tons of medical terminology and tools to enhance medical note taking in the healthcare industry.
Motorola introduces a novel idea with its Atrix phone: a lapdock. The idea was simple. All these Android app can be extremely productive, so why limit them to a single, small screen? Plug your phone into the lapdock, use its frankly-over-powered processor to run a larger screen with a keyboard and trackpad. Well, that's exactly what the ClamBook does. Only it does it way better.
As you can see in the renders above, when most phones are plugged in, you're presented with a tablet-styled UI.
One of the nicest things about Android that gets taken for granted is the ability to customize your user interface. While most folks tend to stick to app icons for launching their apps, Tagy offers an alternative approach: a tag cloud. Tagy is actually a set of widgets that let you specify a list of apps, contacts, or bookmarks to appear in a single widget. Then, as you use the widget, the items you use more often will get bigger.
So, Google just acquired Quickoffice, one of the leading distributors of productivity and office software for Android. The company, best known for being better than Docs or Microsoft Office on Android, has now been purchased by the search giant. Google says that the company will be working to bring Quickoffice's "record of enabling seamless interoperability with popular file formats" among other "powerful technology" to its Apps product suite.
You know that guy "sources"? BGR does. The tech blog has heard from Sources that Microsoft is working on a tablet-optimized version of the Office suite, which is expected to land in November of this year. According to BGR, their source actually saw the app working on an iPad, and insisted it looked nearly identical to a leaked shot that Microsoft has since disavowed.
To be clear, Microsoft has said that the above image is fake.