Want the best Android apps from November, eh? You’ve come to the right place.
If the keyboard were invented today for mobile phones, would it be the same? Probably not.
That is the premise set out by 8pen, a new touchscreen keyboard app that aims to radically shift the way you type by ditching the traditional QWERTY keyboard in favour of a gesture-based interface.
On the centre of the screen, you’ll find a small circle. This is the starting and ending point for any alphanumeric character you want to type by performing gestures in the shape of an ‘8’, hence the name.
The screen is divided into four quadrants with a large cross and letters, as well as numbers and symbols placed around the edge in each quadrant. To type a letter you need to simply swipe up from the circle to the sector that contains the character you want to type. Then by swiping in a clockwise or anti-clockwise gesture over the adjacent sectors and returning back to the centre circle, you will be able to select the desired character.
It sounds a bit complicated, but it’s really intuitive once you see it in action.
It’s a free download, too, so at least give it a try.
2. Evernote 2.0
Evernote is a note-taking app for your every need, whether you’re brainstorming at a meeting or creating your shopping list.
What sets it apart from your average notes app is that it harnesses the power of the ‘Cloud’ to automatically store and sync all your notes, snapshots and recordings online, so you can access them from a computer or another device with an Evernote client.
Version 2.0 of Evernote brings a raft of new features and improvements, including a cleaner, leaner interface, simpler note creation with multiple attachments, including inline audio, and the ability to add shortcuts to favourite searches and notes. There’s also the option to create notebooks to organise notes in different categories, easier sorting of notes by tags and improved sync performance.
If you’re the creative sort, or like me, the forgetful kind, then this one is for you.
3. My Taptu
My Taptu is a clever ‘social news aggregator’ that amalgamates all your favourite news feeds and displays them in a neatly organised array of thumbnails in various pre-populated categories.
You can search and choose from up to 5,000 streams in the My Taptu StreamStore and with new ones being added each day, you’ll never run out of sources to whet your information appetite.
If that’s not enough, you can also link your Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter accounts to stay up to date with what your friends are posting. It’s easy and it’s peasy. What’s not to like?
4. Radiant HD
Radiant HD is a straight-up arcade-style space shooter that puts you in control of the gearstick of a star fighter and charges you with annihilating hordes of nasty alien invaders.
You’ll collect power-ups and special weapons, upgrade your ship to badass heights and fight unique giant bosses at the end of each of level to save your homeworld.
With positively retro-tastic visuals that hark back to classics such as Space Invaders and Asteroids, this is a gem that no geek of gaming’s bygone era should miss out on.
5. Opera Mobile Web Browser
Opera Mobile Web Browser, version 10.1, brings to Android the same great user experience that Opera fans have come to expect from desktop browser. It uses Opera’s proprietary Turbo technology, which utilises Opera’s own servers to fetch and render pages faster than your phone ever could. This means, you get a fast, smooth browsing experience that hogs less resources and data, and less power, too.
Of course, can also open and switch between multiple pages at once. Better yet, Opera Mobile automatically syncs bookmarks with your PC Opera installation, so you’re never more than a click away from your favourite sites.
6. Slice It!
Slice It! is a simple but extremely fun puzzle game that, as the name suggests, is all about slicing.
Each stage presents you with a shape that you have to slice into a specified number of pieces of the same ratio or surface area. You can undo any mistakes, but the end goal is to chop the shapes down with the fewest slices possible. Based on your performance, you’ll get a rating out of 5 stars. And with 80 different stages of rising difficulty, you’ll keep coming back more just to earn that extra star.
If you enjoyed Fruit Ninja or just need a recess from flinging rude birds at pigs, pick this up and get dicin’.
7. doubleTwist AirSync
AirSync from doubleTwist allows you to sync all your iTunes and Windows Media playlists, photos, videos with your Android phone wirelessly and effortlessly over your home Wi-Fi network and bid adieu to using a cable ever again.
To get started, all you need is the AirSync app which costs, like, a pack of peanuts and the free doubleTwist desktop application – then just pair your handset to your computer by following the easy setup process and hey presto, the world is your oyster.
8. The Impossible Game
The Impossible Game is an indie platformer that proves that you don’t need amazing graphics or complex gameplay mechanics to make a fun game. Instead, all you need is some squares and triangles and some ridiculously upbeat techno music to have a whale of a time.
You are put in charge of a tiny orange block that you must help reach the end of the level by bouncing on top of other blocks while avoiding landing on top of a triangle.
And it’s not called Impossible Game for nothin’. You will need to time your jumps to the millisecond to keep your little square alive and going, and the more you progress the faster the gameplay gets.
It’s worth playing this gem for the music alone but if you have some fun in the process, what’s the harm in that?
Tired of annoying sales calls or simply not in the mood for talking? Firewall allows you to block incoming calls using a simple set of rules, whether you’re looking to spend a quiet day with the missus or getting your Scrooge on for Christmas.
Simply create a contact or group you want to block, specify the number (or part of it) you want to bar and let Firewall take care of the rest.
You can also set a schedule for blocking calls on different days and times, so you can sleep soundly at night and work uninterrupted at the office.
10. Antivirus Free
Antivirus Free, as I’m sure you’ve deduced by now (yes, well done), is free antivirus software for Android.
With the rapid expansion of the Android platform, the risk of downloading a seemingly innocuous app that is anything but is greater than ever. Why take your chances?
Antivirus will detect and scan all your applications and cross-reference them with the developer’s regularly updated database to detect in real-time any malicious content that might put your device and sensitive information at risk.
Plus, it runs completely in the background and uses less than 0.1 per cent of your battery.