My favorite free Android apps (second edition)

foursquare-checkin

Around a year ago I published a short list with my favorite free Android apps. Itśs a nice list, but a little outdated: specially in the past few months I have become a heavy user of some powerful free apps that I want to share, so here it is the updated list of my favorite free Android apps.

1- Foursquare. Since I have decided to get a cell-phone plan with lots of Internet I love this “game” even more than before. I love to check-in everywhere, I use it to tell everyone where am I when I’m traveling and I use it to find nice restaurants around my location. From the other side, I believe Foursquare is a great marketing tool, specially in terms of engagement with customers.

2- Skype. Still the best VoIP service available (and hopefully Microsoft doesn’t get on the way…). A must if you have a long distance relationship and you don’t want to waste all your time waiting in front of the computer for a call of your beloved.

3- Whatsapp. This app is probably in the top 3 apps of every single smart-phone user. It mixes the best of texting with the best of Internet chats, allowing you to talk with one person, create group conversations, share multimedia files… just the perfect communication tool, since you only pay for the Internet use and that is most probably covered with your plan already.

4- Google Reader.I only discover Google Reader’s real strength a few weeks ago (shame on me), but it’s the Android app what made me fall in love with it. It literally puts in your hand the access to all the media of the world in a fast, categorized and customized way, and from the same app you can share it however you want through the apps installed in your phone. I think this is the best example of the importance of RSS and syndicated content for any web.

5- Hootsuite. A year ago I used to use (and love) Seesmic to manage my Twitter accounts. I still think it’s a great tool, but Hootsuite allows me to add several Facebook accounts instead of just one, and I can also manage my LinkedIn account from the same app. It also works better on my Android than the Tweetdeck app, which anyways I already dislike for its interface.

6- Extensive Notes. I may regret to say this later, but I’m not a fan of Evernote. Quoting what I said a year ago, I use my notes application as a modern version of my handy old-fashioned notebook, and it really bothers me when I have to create accounts, log-in or wait until it synchronizes with the computer or “the cloud”. Extensive Notes is really powerful even in its free version, although I recognize the way it organizes folders and notes is a bit too complex.

7- Google Maps + Navigation.I don’t understand why Nokia is the only cell-phone manufacturer that offers a free and trustable off-line GPS navigator app, but at least Android users have this alternative. It doesn’t seem to use lots of Internet and it can help you to get anywhere.

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