Blogtober Challenge 8: Battling the Modern Age with Must-Have Apps

Heyya! It appears that Blogtober is testing my limits. This time, I am going all tech with Blogtober Challenge 8 as it demands that I share my favorite apps.

I am no tech geek. I just know what I want and I do research on things that will benefit me the most.

Things that I consider when downloading an app

1. Price

The best things in life are free. Most of the apps in the Store are free. There are some that has premium versions.
When using an app, I max out the benefits of the free version before I consider paying for the premium.
For example, Evernote  is a great app but I only have the free version as I don’t even need to use some of its features.

2. Features

Some of my favorite apps are not even part of the Top 3 list of their category. Some even have average reviews. Yet, I use them because they cater to my specific needs.

3. App size

My gadgets are not top of the line. Thus, I have to struggle with low RAM & memory sizes. It’s important for me to get as much out of my device as I could. With Facebook and Twitter, I use app clients that allow me to switch from one account or from one platform to the next with just one click. Plus, the  client is less than one MB in size.

4. Performance

With my issue of little memory, I determine the performance of an app by the number of times that it crashes on my device. The lesser the crashes the better.

My Top Apps [in no particular order (except item 1 ehehehe)]

1. Smart Launcher 3 Pro
Developer: GinLemon
Android Download

image

Play Store official description

Play Store official description

I have this launcher on my tablet and phone. It is awesomely simple and intuitive. Here is what my home screen looks like.

My tablet home screen

This is my tablet home screen.

The launcher does not offer much customization compared to other launchers. Here is what I did with the custom options of this one.
– The color scheme can be customized. With my tablet, I chose a blue-ish ( Hoorah for the artist that could not properly define her chosen color.) color for the clock, the bubbles (the launcher’s name for home screen folders), and the search bar.
– If you wish to choose a color for each element, then that works too.
– The clock can be changed to a widget or you can choose from their design options. I’m using the default clock because I want to keep the minimalistic feel of the whole launcher.
-The notification indicator on the bubbles is part of the premium version. The color can be changed and also the LED notif light (depends on device compatibility).
– The bubble shape can also be changed if you do not want the circle outline design.
– The search bar message can also be customized. Mine is Sherlock Holmes saying “I must go to my mind palace.” It can search within the device or on the web. I wish that there is an option for it to be powered by Google as it is powered by Yahoo!
– Widgets are part of the premium version. They can be found once you scroll right of the home screen.
-Gestures are home screen application shortcut options. The basic version offers gestures when you swipe on each side of the screen. The premium version gives additional gestures when you double swipe each side of the screen or when you double click each bubble. This gives more shortcuts with less screen clutter.
-If anyone is asking, my wallpaper is Circular Gallifreyan for “Love perfectly imperfect creatures.”

This is my app drawer.

image

– The launcher is icon pack friendly so I downloaded a white icon pack to keep the minimal design.
– The smart thing about the launcher is that it organizes all of your apps into folders. There is also an option for manual organization.
– The  apps in the folder can be arranged according to usage frequency or alphabetical order.
– You can display the app’s name. I just made it not to.
– The upper right corner displays app search, Theme Shop, device and launcher preferences, and password-protected hidden apps.

Verdict
Pros: With less than 4 Mb, you get a simple launcher that learns your habits the more you use it.
Cons: If you really are into customization, then there are more suitable launchers out there.

2. ePSXe for Android
Developer: epsxe software s.l.
Android Download

I have always been a fan of emulation way back my school days wherein I would play GBA, PSX, PSP, PS2, and NDS on my laptop. My favorite one was ePSXe (Enhanced PSX Emulator) as it can smoothly run any PSX game.
Once I started working and got myself a tablet, I searched for the best emulator apps on Android. I was surprise that ePSXe was not on the top list.

The app has no free version so I took a leap and bought it anyway. I was not disappointed. The games still ran smoothly. Saving progress can be done in-app or in-game.  There is no need for technical knowledge as you just download the games and play.

Verdict
Pros: It is so easy that even a dummy can use it.
Cons: Ermmmm….

3. JotterPad (Writer)
Developer: 2 App Studio
Android Download
Amazon Download

This is absolutely the best writing app that I have ever used. My favorite feature is is that you can  save your work directly to Dropbox. Thus, I have a copy of my work on both my tablet and phone without using much space. I also love the extended keyboard, the custom fonts, the auto correct option, and the dictionary. The UI is clean and simple which makes me focus on my work more.

Verdict
Pros: Dropbox helps you access your work across devices.
Cons: It needs an online connection for the dictionary.

4. Instagram
Developer: Instagram
Android Download
App Store Download

I just love Instagram. It’s less talk and more visuals. It is total eye candy. I browse many things from my friends’ posts, my fandoms, my hobbies, lifestyle, and current events. I also love that they constantly add new filters (even if I do not use much of them) and that you can edit photos within the app. The best update for me so far is that you can fit your full photo within their square format without cropping.

Verdict
Pros: It is constantly updated and there is everything for everyone.
Cons: They developed their own collage-making app but its not as great as the others out there.

5. 8tracks Playlist Radio
Developer: 8tracks
Android Download
App Store Download

What separates this app from the others is that it has loads and I mean loads of market niche playlists.  I listen to beach jams, old school jazz, mellow country, theme-based playlists, audio books, instrumental compilations, and soundtracks.

Verdict
Pros: No ads. Enough said.
Cons: No playlist preview list. No shuffle mode. You can only skip songs a few times before the app forces you to skip to the next playlist altogether. Those are the prices of having no ads, I suppose.

6. Snapseed
Developer: Google Inc.
Android Download

This is the best that I have ever tried. I love how easy it is to navigate between tools and adjustments by just swiping left or right or up or down. I also like the histogram option where in you can go back and check your previous edits within the photo and adjust or delete them as you please.

Verdict
Pros: So many editing options and filters
Cons: Saving your work gets glitchy so I just share it to another app and save it from there.

These are my top apps.  I may uninstall every other app on my device except these. What are your top apps?

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19 thoughts on “Blogtober Challenge 8: Battling the Modern Age with Must-Have Apps

  1. Pingback: Blogtober Challenge 19: How To Make Scrambled Eggs | Struggling to be a Human Being

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