This is probably what Hero users might just be waiting for with bated breath! Android 2.1 was spotted to be running on HTC Hero, from what was originally thought to be the popular Motorola Droid. It’s good news, at least Hero users know that an update is in the works, only doubt left would be if Hero is to receive a 2.0 or 2.1 Android update.
Just a note, HTC mentioned that they are working on an update for Eclair aka 2.0 but let’s not forget that carriers play a part in distributing the updates.
After getting my phone back and setting it up, I noticed that both Straits Times and Channel News Asia respectively have apps for news on the go. I’m only beginning to try The Straits Times as I read in the comments that Channel News Asia’s app doesn’t seem to be working at this moment.
So if you’re keen in local news apps, just these a try.
If you tweet and want to use something else apart from HTC’s Peep or the well established Twidroid, good news! Seesmic is now available for Android! I’m still setting it up and I will post some user feedback soon.
To find out more from the official Seesmic site, simply click here.
Seesmic is not working well for me. It does not respond when I try to start it, I’ve only managed to get it working when I just downloaded it. All I can say now is, works like your usual Twitter client. If you’re on Twidroid, I suggest you stick to it.
I’m a fan on the GTD system and will try things that makes my life easier. So here’s a list of what I personally use to get things done easily and usually quicker. I can say that this list is 90% powered by free apps so rest assured that it will not dent your pocket.
Gmail, Gcal, Google Maps – Default in phone
I pretty much live in the Google cloud using these apps. I’ll fire up Gmail on my laptop to type quick thoughts into drafts or any interesting links I come across. Why don’t I use something like Delicious you ask? That’s because I can access it anywhere in the world when I have access to any computer that’s connected online. And this same reason applies for Gcal. Not to mention that collaborating between 2 individuals using Gcal makes things breezy by sharing cal
For Gmaps, it’s simply for navigation purposes. I don’t drive yet, I read maps the way 90% of the girls read it which is really looking and taking a bit of time understanding. But all this should get better once the 2.0 update is upon us. Dealing a stong blow to many GPS companies, Google is getting Maps to give directions on a turn by turn basis. All without the hassle of setting up your Tom tom, Garmin, etc. If I can use it and get to where I want (time taken is not counted!), I believe you can do it, and get there faster.
Gdocs – Free on Market
This is the app that syncs with your Google Docs. For now, it’s limited to being able to download .doc for editing purposes. Clicking on other file extensions merely brings you to the mobile page of Google Docs. But this helps me to note things down for reviewing on a laptop later, and yes, it goes safely into the great Google cloud. Till the MS Office apps start to allow creating and editing, I will definitely be using this to fill the gap.
Locale – Free on Market
I use this to set situations and how my phone responds under those situations. For example, I get off work at 6pm. I decide that 9pm is my daily research time on Android so that I can generate content for my site, I create a situation in Locale that makes the phone silent from 9pm to 10pm. This way I get 1 hour of time dedicated to what I want to do without having to manually set my phone on silent each time. Locale is really flexible but to a certain extend since there’s just so much settings/situations to customize, with little plugins from 3rd party apps. But given normal situations, I’m sure Locale will serve you well.
Remember the Milk – 15 day free trial on Market
Yes I have an account with RTM for my to do lists. Why not Gtasks? I find that Gtasks is really a basic, no-frills to do list app and I need a little bit more under the hood. Hence RTM comes into the picture and the recently released app on Android makes users of RTM a happier bunch of people. Check out more on the app on their site. Only downside is you have to pay for the Pro account so that might turn some people off.
AK Notepad – Default on HTC Hero, Free on Market
Comes installed by default on my HTC Hero so I thought, why not just use it? It’s pretty spiffy, giving you options such as colour themes, auto link that makes email addresses, web urls etc. clickable, export/import notes to/from your SD card, that sort of thing.
EasyMoney – USD $5.95 (Special introductory offer)
This is a finance/expense tracking app. I’m using the trial version available on the Singapore Android market right now but unfortunately it has expired since it’s a 30 day trial. I’ve tried a few, but nothing fits me better than this. But again, I am comparing it against free apps so it is a flawed comparison in a way. It allows me to backup my data, set reminders for bill payments, track expenses in a well organized manner and it’s easy to use straight out of the app. So for those who are looking for a solid app for money management, give the trial a go and if you like it, all you need to do is to buy it off their site thru paypal.
Astrid - Free on Market
Who can forget Astrid? Backed by google and integrates with RTM, this is one much-loved to do list app within the Android community. Astrid boasts a to do list with a tags function, widget for your homescreen, easy to use interface and a really cute icon! (5/5 people have always been intrigued by that cute octopus whenever they see my phone)
Sticky Notes (by Bratag) – Free on market
A small note that resembles a post it note that resides on your homescreen. Pressing on the note brings up a full screen post it with your quick notes up for viewing. I use it for handy little reminders and have a few littering my screen. I recommend this for ease of use and of course, aesthetics!
SG Buses – Free on market
This is limited to the Singapore users since it tracks the bus system locally, giving you pretty accurate time of arrivals for buses, from both SBS and SMRT. The ability to bookmark your favourite bus services for quick access to check on arrival times is a strong plus point. It also integrates with Iris but I have not used that since timings provided are 99% accurate so far. The remaining 1% is in line with the adage, nothing is perfect.
I must say that most of these apps work with a data connection. And if you don’t have a data plan on your Androids, you are not getting the full user experience that Android (and my HTC Hero) provides.
P.S: I do not get any referral fee from EasyMoney, in case you were wondering.
Land of fakes has done it again! This time it’s a fake Hero with the guts of an iPhone. And how they manage to squeeze in things like dual sim, built in TV-tuner never fails to surprise me. Or knock my socks off, assuming I am wearing them.
Read more at Engadget.
Here’s a couple of new and interesting apps out on the market lately, have a look.
It’s an app for those who wants to know more about their 3G speeds by the popular site Speedtest. They have 1 for the iPhone, and now they are spreading their love to Android.
Photoshop by Adobe
The industry standard app for photo editing comes to your android phone! This app really needs no introduction and all you need can be found right here.
P.s: I am unable to access the Photoshop app, for some reason it does not appear in the Market. Can you guys share your experiences with me to see if you can access it? Thanks!
Edit: Apparently it is only available in the US market. Assuming it’s a free app I suppose you can get your hands on the apk file and have a go at it.
Sorry for the sore lack of updates! I am experiencing some personal change which sees me leaving my previous job last week, going away for a quick get away and starting my new job just this Thursday. Please bear with me. I will have something fresh for you come next week.