UK Birds An Android-sized almanac for twitchers Summer is here, so what better time than those three glorious days of sunshine we get every year to strap on your binoculars, dig out your most countryside-looking hat and head out to the great outdoors to try to spot some birds. This comprehensive app is a list of every species of avian in the United Kingdom, from the smallest wren to largest eagle, and even features some birds that haven t been seen on these shores since before the Fifties. Each bird is accompanied by a picture, a huge amount of interesting information, and a button that lets you mark it as seen’. You can break down the huge list into different types of bird, as well as arranging it into birds that have been artificially introduced into the UK, birds awaiting acceptance, and species seen before and after the Fifties. Tapping on a bird takes you to a reasonable-sized picture of it, and around three to four paragraphs of pertinent information about its habits, habitat, and a brief history of its time on the British Isles. UK Birds provides an excellent repository of knowledge, but for bird watchers on their first jaunt, or anyone who just wants to find out what that thing flapping in their garden is, it raises a few problems. For starters, it assumes a level of understanding about bird species and types that most of us just don’t have, meaning you often find yourself lost as to how to find the bird you just seen.
Perhaps worst of all, though, are the photos of the birds. They take up a small space in the list view, and mean that if you trying to identify an avian visitor by sight alone, you going to be in a lot of trouble. UK Birds isn’t bad app, but it does need a lot more work before it useful to those outside of the twitcher community. There is a lot to learn here, but finding a bird you just spotted feels a little like a chore, rather than a difficult task made easier with the application of technology.With a few tweaks, like the inclusion of a search function, a stronger focus on the visual aspects of the birds, and a more beginner-friendly way of organising the flying creatures, this could be an app everyone should download, but as it is, it more suited to die-hard birdwatchers who want to leave the heavy books behind.
Reddit Sync Pro
Reddit Sync Pro Arrange your feeds to access your favourite topics easily There are plenty of Internet aggregators out there, sites and apps that find the best of the internet and share it with the world. Right now, Reddit is probably the most popular, with its mix of social networking and information sharing making it many people s go to site for their daily dose of internet news and nonsense. Reddit Sync Pro lets you take the Reddit experience out and about with you, tailoring the information you receive using your own Reddit account and a flexible set of tools that allows you to make sure that the most pertinent and entertaining content is only ever a few taps away. The interface is incredibly easy to use, and moving your sub reddits around is as simple as a long-press and a swipe. To interact with posts-up and down voting, saving to read offline, sharing with a variety of other apps, or opening them up to view in your phone browser-simply long-press on them. You can view photos and videos without having to open the posts by tapping an icon at the side, which brings images up in-app, and opens YouTube for the videos, and add any subreddits from the front page as long as you know their name. Settings let you change the font size, and tailor your experience to use less bandwidth if you re away from a Wi-Fi network. The app is smooth, intuitive and makes reading Reddit a doddle, and that before you get to syncing your online account with the app, giving you all the settings and subreddits yougot stored on your Reddit account. This is an impressive app that anyone with a Reddit account, or even anyone curious about the service should get right away. Quadrant Advanced Edition Simple bench marking software for your Android One of the best things about Android devices is the freedom they give you to have a play around with their workings.
There are plenty of apps and tricks out there that let you try to get the highest levels of performance possible out of your phone or tablet, but how do you know whether your tinkering has worked or not? That where Quadrant comes in. This handy little app runs a benchmark test on your device, and gives it scores for a variety of disciplines. You can then compare your score against other popular devices to see how well you doing, or against the original scores of your own device to see if your tweakings have had the desired effect. It remarkably simple to use, and gives you a decent idea of the power of your phone within a couple of minutes. Quadrant isn’t for everyone, but anyone interested in the inner workings of their phone, should get the app installed pronto. Instapaper Save web pages for reading offline later Instapaper is a smart little app that lets you save long web posts for offline reading. Saving a page is as simple as selecting the share option on your browser. Once the page or post is saved, you can peruse it at your leisure in the appno-nonsense, stripped-out style. You can move saved stories into different folders, arranging your library of stories however you see fit, and signing up for an lnstapaper.com account means that any stories you save will be backed up online. The only problem with the app is that it might be a little bit expensive for what it does, but the extra features it offers do make it a pretty enticing proposition. Great if you a big reader of online content on your Android and want to save your data.
PayPal in Store Pay for goods in store with your PayPal Near-field communications (NFC) has offered a new way of paying for goods and services with your mobile, and now PayPal has tried to get in on the action. Rather than using exciting new technology, they re using tried-and-tested barcode scanners in order to let you buy items from a select few shops. It s easy to set up and link the app to your PayPal account, and every time you want to make a payment, you bring up the app, type in a few details, and are given a unique barcode. Itinteresting to see PayPal taking a simpler direction than other mobile payment firms, and the app also offers discounts to users and alerts when the discounts become available. Right now, it s more of an experiment than a fully featured payment method, but it a step in the right direction.
ESPN soccernet Keep up to date with the latest news and views in the football world There are a couple of ESPN sports apps already available on the Play Store, and they re impressive pjeces 0f kit, keeping you in touch with the cricket and FI worlds with a few taps. Now itthe turn of football to get a comprehensive news, scores and opinion app. Presented in the same easy style, ESPN soccemet, while being the bearer of an unwieldy title, does pretty much everything you d want a football app to do. It customisable, easy on the eye, and features enough information to keep even the most egregious statto entertained for a long while. There s some nice Facebook integration too that lets you share stories with friends, and post comments about breaking news. Throw in a range of interesting and well-informed regular columns, and an easy way to stay on top of the results and tables of your favourite competitions, and you left with an almost indispensable guide to the most popular sport in the world.
Evernote Hello Never forget a name or face again We ve all been there before, struggling to put a name to a face or a face to a name, but, thankfully, with Evernote Hello, those awkward situations should become a thing of the past. With a quick photo and a bit of information, you can make sure you keep on top of all the people you met, how you know them and when you first met them. The app links to an Evernote account and your phone s calendar, meaning you always have a decent record of the people you add.There are different ways to add all the info, but it s probably a good bet to let people know what you doing before you start taking photos. As you expect from an Evernote j product, the UI is smooth and easy to use, and inputting contact details is simple enough that if you choose to pass your phone over and let someone do it for you, you re not going to have to explain it. Evernote Hello is a well presented, handy little tool and, while you might not be using it to catalogue your friends, it could well become a go-to app for business meetings the world over. Open Garden Quick and straightforward no-tap tethering Open Garden is a simple solution to the problems inherent in trying to tether your PC, Mac or tablet to your smartphone. By installing the app on your phone, and downloading a small piece of software on to your computer, you can set up automatic, intelligent network sharing that as simple as making sure the devices are close to each other. At least that the theory. In practice it s a little more complex to set up, and while things don’t get fiddly or too technical, it not always a case of switching to a different network without any hassle. If you already got tethering set up and all working fine, then there not much point downloading Open Garden, but if you something of a beginner when comes to or having double with setting up your Wi Fi hotspots, then it could well prove to be a useful tool.
Toastr Pro There are plenty of apps that can set reminders in your notifications bar, or set off alarms to prevent you from forgetting something important like an appointment or must-buy item, but few of them are as persistent as toastr Pro. It allows you to set up a popup , which appears on screen for a few seconds every time that you unlock your phone. You can customize the colour and position of your alert, but the options are a little limited. That s not the point though, because toastr Pro isn’t about looking good, or fitting in with the design scheme of the rest of your Android experience-it about making sure you remember to buy some more milk, or when your next meeting with the bank is. There are some limitations to the app. Ita shame it can only remind you about one thing at once.