May 1, 2011 | by Andrew Kameka
How many apps have been downloaded from the Android Market? I use to ask that question until Google shed some light on the answer earlier this week – more than 3 billion. That’s a whole lot of apps to put on a whole lot of phones, and the insatiable thirst among Android users is pushing that total higher with each passing second.
Androinica.com reviews new and updated apps in the Android Market each week. This week’s edition is called Banking, Syncing, Caching, Printing. Why? Because it rhymes and I love the rhythm of saying the words aloud. That plus we take a look at apps for mobile banking, syncing files between Android and the web, using geocaching, and printing documents or photos from your phone. These are all great ways to extend the features of Android, so let’s take a closer look.
Geocaching is a game in which people leave hidden treasures that others can discover through clues and GPS coordinates. The game is becoming increasingly popular among adventure seekers – both outdoors in the wilderness and in dense cities – and there are multiple apps to help people locate the caches left behind by other players. Garmin OpenCaching takes geocaching to the phone by displaying a map with points where a cache can be discovered. Tapping on a map point will then launch a page that reveals clues, difficult, size, terrain, and “awesomeness.” Members can then see a log of activity there or add it to the Favorites. OpenCaching then provides options for browsing according to the difficulty, size, etc., so download now if you’re in the mood for hunting.
HP ePrint service
Anyone wanting to print from their phone now has multiple options. Not only has Google released its CloudPrint service, but HP has joined the fray with its HP ePrint service that can remotely start printing jobs. Users can take a picture or choose from the gallery, launch from a website or email, or even upload a document stored on the SD card. The app can print to your home or work printer or even to public areas nearby. So the next time you’re running errands and need to print, locate a nearby FedEx or hotel business that can accept your print job (you’ll also get a code to start the job if you have sensitive information).
BB&T Mobile Banking
When Android launched in 2008, Bank of America was the only bank to deliver an official app right away. Thanks to Android’s growth over the past two years, it’s hard to name a financial institution that doesn’t have an Android app. BB&T is no longer on the list of the missing. The BB&T Mobile Banking app lets account holders view their balance, pay bills, transfer money between accounts, and locate nearby ATM’s or banks. It lacks the mobile deposit feature seen by Chase, but BB&T account holders will get an otherwise complete experience using this app.
SugarSync is a Dropbox rival that allows users to upload files to the cloud and then provides access to them on a wireless device. The company updated its Android app this week, enabling an AutoSync feature that will keep your mobile phone and cloud locker automatically in-tune. Users can set the app to automatically upload new photos taken or files saved to their SugarSync account, or download change made to the SugarSync folder to their phone. And if changes are made while you’re offline, the app knows to sync once a connection is reestablished. SugarSync provides up to 5 GB of free storage and more space available on paid subscriptions. To the cloud!
App Reviews & News of the Week
- HBO GO now streaming full episodes to Android 2.1-2.3
- Sonos Music Controller for Android review: a beautiful audio set-up [Video]
- TuneIn Radio Pro records live radio stream on Android [Video App Reviews]
- Android video chat: Qik links Android and iOS, Fring adds group video calling
- Viewdle SocialCamera Android app adds auto face tag in photos for Facebook, Flickr
- Notification Toggle adds settings switch in Android notification window [App Reviews]