Phone

Part 2: Android Apps on my Samsung Galaxy S

More apps to recommend, continuing from my previous post!

Continuing my earlier story, my Motorola Milestone colleague who is using the Motorola Milestone has been lamenting about his insufficient phone memory to install Android apps (Milestone is officially only supporting Android 2.1, which does not allow apps to install on SD card). There was no such issues with the Samsung Galaxy S: for one, the 340MB RAM doesn’t seem to run out (in fact, I never use the Advanced Task Killer for auto-kill). The internal 13GB user memory and 3GB phone memory is so generous, a normal user would never run out of space. And I did not mention the external micro-SD slot that allows you to insert external memory to expand your storage size.

Anyway, back to my list:

Email app
Galaxy S has a built-in email app for you to access your POP/IMAP/Exchange email. Unfortunately, it does not support HTML email format. So a workaround is to get third party apps. I use Touchdown with Exchange ActiveSync and it offers a complete experience in synchronising Microsoft Exchange email, calendar, tasks and contacts. It’s not free, but if it’s worth the money. But if non-HTML email is ok with you, then you might want to get Corporate Addressbook app, which allows you to access your corporate email address listing.

Web Browser app
Opera Mini is supposed to load webpages faster because the pages are pre-compressed at the server before downloading to your device. However, I find some sites do not load properly, particularly those sites that has interactive content (like Facebook). The other browser app that I have installed is Dolphin Browser. It offers multi-tab browsing, supports gesture, able to synchronise Google bookmarks, supports add-ons like Firefox, and loads practically every site properly.

Photo Capture app
Here are some camera apps that I installed. They offer different shooting features and processing filters like toy camera, polaroid. Camera 360, Retro Camera, Action Snap, FxCamera. One app called CamScanner actually allows you to capture an image and convert to a scanned PDF format.

Photo Editing app
These apps allow you to edit photos in your camera. My favourite is PicSay, it allows me to insert comic-style captions to make the photos more meaningful. Other apps like Photoid, Photoshop Express, also lets you crop, rotate, resize, adjust exposure, colour casts, etc.

Voice Recording app
The built-in voice recorder records in .AMR format, which is not easily supported. Get third party apps that can record in WAV or MP3. I got this app called Hertz that allows me to choose the resolution before recording.

Media Player app
The built-in media player cannot play all the video formats. For that, I use QQPlayer, which supports resume on each file.

Social Networking app
I use TweetDeck because it supports posting and feeds from Twitter, Facebook, and Foursquare. To upload photos to Facebook, I use BFFPhoto, which also lets me browse photos from galleries of your friends and your subscribed pages.

Notes app
I use ColorNote to take notes. ColorNote supports backup and restore so that I can restore my notes when I change phones. ColorNote is primarily a note app but has basic task features like reminder and checklist, which I prefer over a task-oriented app. You may also try Catch Notes, which I find generally more powerful than ColorNote, as it allows you to attach photos, voice, location information to the notes, and sync to an online storage. But I continue to use ColorNote because it has a widget function to put your notes (with your choice of colours) on your homescreen that will indicate the number of to-do items you have.

Game app
Games are subjective, so I won’t go into details. I have Angry Birds, Fruit Ninja, Mega Jump, Jewels, but I rarely play them on my phone. They are there just in case I really needed to kill boredom.

TV-Out
Yes! Samsung Galaxy S supports TV-Out via the 3.5mm jack. If you purchase the generic Video+Audio RCA to 3.5mm cable, you might need to swap the colours in order to get the video feed, because the Galaxy S connections are not standard. The output is not HD, but it’s useful for simple presentations. I am still looking for a Powerpoint slide presentation app that can accurately run PPT/PPS files, then the Galaxy S would be the sleekest presentation device.

Managing Data Access from your Apps
Before you install any app, you will be informed of the permissions that the app will require on your phone, e.g. full Internet access. What this means is that once you install, this app will have the ability to connect to the data network at will. Sounds scary? That’s why I am wary of apps that do that without any good reason. Many free apps that are ad-supported require Internet access so that ads can be loaded on the screen when you run it. Like they say, there is no free lunch in this world. Just make sure you subscribe to a data service with free bandwidth, or if you don’t, disable data access on your device.

And there you have it! My recommendation of some apps that I use frequently on my Samsung Galaxy S. They are not necessarily the best, but they work for me. You can start trying these apps and if you have found better ones, do share with me on the comments section.

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