In a modern society of constant communication, it is imperative that we have reliable tools. The Android platform offers a massive array of possibilities for all. Of these tools a few stand out as invaluable and necessary to the individual who desires uninterrupted connection to the rest of the world. Let’s examine a short list of these apps.
Google Email: Gmail
The Gmail app from Google’s Android suite is a default application included in all authorized devices. It is one of the core features of an Android device and gives access to the email that your account is tied to. Although not all people will utilize email as the primary communication method, email is well known to continue to hold sway in business. Gmail has long had the capacity to group similar emails into common threads, keeping the conversation relevant over long periods of time. Google includes access to multiple Gmail accounts, fully functional search through all emails (per account), email grouping or labels, and a slew of additional features for how email is managed both before and after it is sent or received. All of these features are wrapped into a well-trimmed and convenient package in the Gmail app,
Although there have been various versions of internet mapping software available for many years, the Google Maps app is by far the most comprehensive. Beyond the obvious navigation or directions features, the ability to divulge traffic, terrain, transit, satellite imagery, and personal location information only begin to round out the app. Google has included features such as local offers and notable locations that you can pin to the map. The feature called Latitude offers the ability for you to track your location history across the entire globe or offer your current location to friends. Additionally, when near a registered place of business or local map object (like a park or monument), Google Maps app allows you to “check-in” and / or post this status publicly to Google’s social site, Google Plus. No small amount of shoehorning, it would seem, was used in fitting the copious number of features of Google Maps into this app.
Google Drive (formerly Google Docs)
As is its tendency, Google set yet another precedence with its introduction of Google Docs, in January of 2010. This app was not available to the Android platform in the earliest days, but was eventually released to the platform 15 months later in April of 2011. Google Drive incorporates both the immense functionality of a comprehensive online storage space with the office documentation function of Google Docs. The app is quite similar to the browser-based suite, but lacks only the full toolbar for document manipulation. As with the full Google Drive suite, the app can share, view, create, search, and modify all Google Docs types as well as allow storage of any other file type. Whether in business or personal activities, Google Drive qualifies as no less valuable than Maps or Gmail, and should be considered a mainstay for all who use Android devices.
The browser is a vital part of most computer operating systems and Google Chrome browser is no exception. Although it is not available for all Android devices (version 4.0+), the Chrome app is the miniaturized version of the full browser for desktop and laptop systems. Chrome has long held the title of world’s fastest browser and is no less fast on an Android device. You can expect Chrome for Android to open in less than a second, just like the desktop version. Many modern browsers use tabs rather than opening separate windows. Google Chrome for Android changes between tabs seamlessly well, if not better than most other browsers. Additionally, it offers an uncommon function that on a selection of a link, if that selection is not perfectly clear, it will open a magnified bubble to allow you to click definitively the desired link. Other features include scrolling, zooming, swiping to change modes, and the very valuable, anonymous Incognito Mode, all of which are so smooth you may come to take ease-of-use for granted. And finally, if you are logged into the Chrome Browser for the Desktop and Chrome Browser for Android, the bookmarks, history, and passwords saved in the full browser can be synchronized for your convenience.
There are many hundreds of thousands of apps available for the Android platform, many that are fun and many that are useful, but there are only a few that are truly invaluable. I encourage you to take a look at these apps if you have not already and consider how often you use them and the value they add to your life.