Android Apps

Review: StarXscape Lite

Gaming is starting to come to the Android platform in earnest as representative of the amount of downloads of the recently released Angry Birds.  Games are really starting to hit Android en-mass.  Just before Angry Birds came out, MHill System let us know about an interesting game for Android called StarXscape. Your mission in StarXscape , if you choose to accept it, is to free the stars that are held captive…


Is THIS The Droid App You Are Looking For? Verizon Brings Empire Strikes Back to Android!

Of course, not the whole movie … nor the classic arcade game … but some ‘other stuff’ for a questionable value of $2.99. But for the Star Wars fan with an Android device from Verizon, this might just fit your needs for more cool TESB stuff during the 30th anniversary year. Here are some details from TheForce.net: Looks like the rumor was correct, but with a slight delay. Originally slated…


Android on a Palm Tungsten C!

(image courtesy Dmitry Grinberg) Yes, Android has been ported to iPhones, but what about older devices? If you’ve got a Tungsten C, you can (theoretically) run Android 2.1 on it! Yes, a Tungsten C can run a higher version of Android than some official Android phones! This upgrade (if you can call it that) was done by Dmitri Grinberg, possibly the last major hacker/developer of the Palm OS platform. He’s…


Android App Review: Instant Heart Rate

You can use your smartphone in many ways to track your health; to keep an eye on what you eat, how far you run, how often you work out, etc. And now, you can also use your phone camera to track your heart rate! I don’t know much about medicine, but according to the app, it works “similar way [sic] as a medical pulse oximeter but without a dedicated light…


Handy Runner GPS Fitness Tracker Android App Review

I’ve searched long and hard for a decent GPS tracking app when I run. Every app I liked had inconsistencies; Cardio Trainer offered great feedback but seemed to stop tracking roughly a mile into every run, RunKeeper overshot all my runs so 1.5 miles became 7.5, and BuddyRunner undercut all my runs by almost a 1/2 mile. However, I kept hunting, and I recently stumbled upon an app that interfaces…


Android Mobile Phone Review: Motorola Droid 2

Just a short time ago Motorola appeared to be on the ropes. That all changed when Motorola found Android.  Less than a year ago Motorola released and sold millions of their first Android device, the Droid on the Verizon network.  Since then, they have brought out the Cliq, Cliq XT, The Flip and the Droid X.  Today I am reviewing the sequel to the Droid, the Droid 2. Hardware The…


An Open Letter to Dell Regarding Their Undercooked Streak

Dear Dell, Can I ask you a question? Seriously, I promise it’ll just be between you and me. Here’s what I want to know and, please be honest with me… What were you thinking? Seriously Dell, what were you thinking releasing your reentry into the smartphone/tablet market with Android 1.6? How can you take high-end hardware, put old firmware on it and expect people to actually like this device? I…


I Love Froyo Except for a Few Bugs!

I’ve had the Froyo update for my Motorola Droid for a few days now, and overall I’m impressed. There have been some minor UI tweaks, and the speed seems slightly improved, though I think some of this might be in my head. Still, I think it brings the Android experience up to a slightly more refined level, and that’s definitely a good thing. However, there are a few bugs and…


Google Voice Actions Adds Yet Another Competitor to the Rapidly Emerging Field of Voice as Interface

Last week Microsoft made a huge deal about the voice control that will be part of WindowsPhone 7. I watched the demo video and wasn’t impressed at all. As I posted last weekend, I am still perplexed as to why Microsoft wouldn’t just turn to Nuance and license their time-proven and excellent technology in order to ensure a level of voice control, and voice-to-text transcription that will work perfectly from…


eWallet for Mac OS X Now Available

I am a huge fan of Ilium software’s eWallet for the iPhone and iPad. It is a great way to keep information on my handheld devices in a manner that is safe and secure but also quickly accessible. The only problem I have had with it is that the desktop version of eWallet was only in Beta and the sync functionality was highly limited. Since I use multiple devices that…


Graffiti for Android Gets Updated but Has a Bug

I sang the praises of Graffiti for Android when it first came out. It was solid and easy for quick text entry. Now Access has released an updated with the following improvements: Autocorrect Auto-capitalization Word prediction Input word learning Japanese input Effectively it goes from being a simple text entry system to a very full-featured one. It works great…except for one bug. Most text entry programs recognize if your device…


Are You A Droid User Feeling Stung By No WiFi Tether Coming With Froyo (2.2)? Easy Root Has You Covered!

I have had the original Motorola Droid since last November just after it launched, and I have been extremely happy with the device and the Android operating system. Aside from the mediocre keyboard (which I’ve gotten used to over time) I have had an absolutely fantastic experience with the Droid – it is my constant companion, and I greatly appreciate how it has improved in many ways during the time…


Just In Case You Missed It: Sprint & HTC Bring Froyo to the EVO 4G

If you’ve got a Sprint HTC EVO 4G, then today you have yet another reason to feel vastly superior to all other Android Device users … Today HTC marked yet another “first” in its long history of bringing innovation to the mobile arena. Ahead of the pack, Sprint has started to make available the latest version of the Android platform, version 2.2, otherwise known as Froyo, for HTC EVO 4G….


Android App Review: B&N’s nook

Amazon, Kobo, and Borders have all weighed in with their ebook apps for Android, and now it’s B&N’s turn. They’ve rebranded all their reader apps to “nook”, and finally they’ve released the nook app for Android. Right from the start, the nook app and I didn’t get off on the right foot. It almost froze the marketplace trying to download! As it turns out, it’s because the file is a…


Droid X Gets the Lockdown: Does it Matter?

There’s been a bunch of stuff going around the web about the Droid X and the fact that it likely will not be able to run custom ROMS and may even be hard to root. I’ll try to describe, in layman’s terms, what this may mean to a prospective Droid X buyer. What is this root and custom rom thing? First, having root is like having the Administrator user password…


Graffiti One Comes to Android!

If you were a Palm OS fan, you were probably a whiz with Graffiti, the shorthand text input system. In college, I took all my notes on my Palm M100, and I used Graffiti so much my pen and paper notes were in an unholy mix of print scrawl and Graffiti. So when I saw this morning that Access had released Graffiti (the famous, original, pre-lawsuit with Xerox version) for…


So Here’s What’s New At Evernote…

As I have noted time and again here on Gear Diary, I am a huge fan of Evernote and rely on it for everything from clipping web pages, to saving important emails to putting some of my rabbinic resource material where I know I can quickly access them no matter where I am, no matter what I am doing. Well I haven’t been all that happy with Evernote lately. No,…



Suffering ‘Product Recall Overload’? There’s An App For That!

The other day we were watching the news and there were three product recalls in a row and my wife mentioned hearing on the radio a report about ‘recall overload’, how so much stuff is being recalled so frequently that we become numb to it all. In fact, this week there are reports on various news sources about the issue. Well, apparently the government agencies issuing these recalls are aware…


Skyfire Web Browser Gets an Update!

I love the Skyfire browser. If you aren’t fortunate enough to be running Android 2.2 (aka Froyo), Skyfire is your best bet for web video on the go and your only option for flash video. It’s also a very handy browser to have around in general, with the ability to swap between mobile, desktop and iPhone browsing. Best of all, it’s remarkably flexible and runs equally well on my Droid…


Does Android Need Custom Skins?

News has been leaking out over the last few days about the new Motorola Droid phones. They sound amazing, with high-end specs like a 4.3-inch screen, 8-megapixel camera, even HDMI out. Unfortunately, it looks like Moto is also going to be slapping MotoBlur on these phones, and that’s a huge disappointment for me. It’s not that I think stock Android is the greatest thing since sliced bread. To be honest,…