Android Central app picks

If you're anything like we are here at Android Central, you love suggestions about must-have apps. Nothing brightens our day more than finding that new essential app that makes you wonder what life was like before it. Here are some of our favorites from the past week for your downloading pleasure.

Chris Parsons- Quickpic


QuickpicLet's face it, the gallery application on Android is really not the best. Depending on which device you're using, you may have issues with images not loading right away, being scattered to different areas on your storage and overall wonkiness. A lot of folks are always asking for an alternative to the built in gallery ad today, I'll share what I prefer. Quickpic - it's a fast-loading, better-working gallery replacement that has all the features of the built in application, and then some. You can hide images, exclude folders from scanning and with the scanning service that runs in the background, you're never stuck waiting for your gallery to update so that you may view that awesome shot of the crazy cat lady next door that you took. Hit up the Android Market and grab it, you'll love it if the built in gallery is an issue for you. Best of all, it's free. [Market Link]

Joshua Muñoz- Tuner-gStrings

Android Central

Tuner-gStringFor musicians, being in tune is where it's at. A good portable, dedicated tuner can cost as much as $60 or more from a music store, or you can spend ~$1.47 in the Market and get one that's just good or better. gStrings comes with a pretty full feature set, from sounding a pitch, auto-finding your pitch, or tuning only a pitch you choose. You can also optimize the pitch range it's looking for in the settings menu (violin, viola, guitar, ukulele, etc.) which is really what helps make it so deadly accurate. There's also a free version for those a little strapped on cash, but for anyone who plans on making sweet, sweet music sometime, this is one app I wouldn't go without. [Market Link]

Anndrew Vacca - SchedNYC


Fellow New Yorkers, rejoice! No more wondering how long you’ll have to wait for an uptown A train at rush hour. SchedNYC provides you with full schedules of all 26 NYC subway lines, along with the Staten Island Ferry and the Staten Island Railroad. SimSchedNYCply click on the line you’re riding and the app will show you the train’s full daily schedule. The app also provides a station list and further breaks down the schedule based on the station you choose. The interface is clean and toggling between train lines is a breeze.
The best part about SchedNYC is that it does not require a data connection, allowing you to study the schedules on the fly while underground. The schedules are not real-time and do not account for significant delays, so there’s always the possibility of a train arriving a few minutes off. But if you need a general overview of when and where to catch a train, SchedNYC does the job. (And for free!) [Market Link]

Menno - SemiSilent


One of the greatest things about smartphones is that they connect you to everything.  One of the worst things about smartphones is that they connect you to everything.  Fortunately, you can  set your phone to silent and "unplug" for a while.  ButSemiSilent what if you're waiting for an important phone call? That's where an app like SemiSilent can come in handy.  It allows you to whitelist contacts, so that your phone will ring when they call you, even if your phone is set to silent.  If you're going into the movies or somewhere you don't want any phone calls, you can toggle the whitelist on and off right from the main screen.  It's a simple application, but it does what I want it to.  Best of all?  It's free. [Market Link]


Reader comments

Android Central Editors' app picks for April 30, 2011


Unfortunately, Quickpic is just as BROKEN as the stock Gallery apps!

I don't WANT to see every damn sub directory at the same time. Isn't there ANY photo viewing app that understands what directories and sub-directories are and treats them as such???? I really need one!

Other than that major flaw, Quickpic does look interesting. Perhaps I will contact the author to find out if he is willing to fix it....

Excluding directories manually, one by one, is not what I want.

It doesn't have an option to separate sub-directories properly. I have hundreds of nested sub-directories of photos and I don't want to have every sub directory appear on the main screen.

For example- I would like to see a main screen with just the top level directories (and photos there if there are any) like this:

Camera (linked)
Videos (linked)

If I want to see my cats, I click on it and get:


If I want to see pictures of Imma, I click on it and get:


I did contact the author, and he does want to add the feature, but said he has to wait until he has some time. I am crossing my fingers. I wish Google would add this, but I don't know where to suggest it.

"To each his own" And to me, this is my preferred picture app. I'd rather exclude the unused folders manually than waiting ~1 minute for the pictures to load every single time I want to see them on the stock Android gallery app! Also, I hate that 3D effect, seems so unnecessary.

The only thing I think is missing is Picasa support. I have a lot of wallpapers on the web albums...

>"To each his own"

Indeed. Which is why I am looking for the feature as an option, not an "always".

BTW- the reason you have to wait ~1 minutes for pictures to load on the stock app is EXACTLY why it makes no sense to try and display dozens or hundreds of subdirectories all on the screen at the same time. So it sounds like you, too, would appreciate the feature I propose. ;)

Do you really have six sub folders just for your cats? And six sub folders for each cat? That's a lot of pictures dedicated to cats. :-)

>Do you really have six sub folders just for your cats?

Actually, I have more. But it is a small fraction of the total number of pictures I have- 18,842. Remember, the above is just an example. I have 288 directories and subdirectories. All properly organized and easy to find. I do not want to wade through 288 icons on the home screen. It is just stupid. Especially when I might have 10 directories named "2010"!

But do you really have such an elaboate file structure on your smartphone? I understand your logic on the desktop - I do something similar - but prefer just to use Picasa (and the wonderful JustPictures) as my mobile viewer.

Solution: use Astro to browse your pictures. It's a directory utility, which is what you really want.

Sure- I like having all my pictures with me. I used scripts to scale down all the 7 to 14 Megapixel images to something phone/tablet reasonable (usually 1280 or 1600 wide). My 16GB card easily holds all my photos, a few dozen hours of video, and tons of space left over.

I do not want to store my pictures on some server that I don't have control over, is slow to load, and uses and requires a radio connection. Local is just fine with me.

You are right that I want something more like Astro- but Astro doesn't handle pictures "elegantly" like a real gallery app does.

interesting list, a little too eclectic for my needs, but the NYC subway schedule app looked cool. I know it might not always be possible, but can you guys try and do app pick posts with themes? Like, "this week is picture and video apps," or "this week we're bringing you FPS games."

I think it would make the posts more relevant so people who don't care about games can skip them for instance, or when going back to old posts to look for a specific app they are easier to dig through and more organized.

They already do themed versions of this some weeks. Honestly, I think I prefer the eclecticism. I think it usually leads to stronger apps getting recommended, as a post about 5 of any one type of app typically leads to one or two being weaker recommendations, unless the topic is really broad like "games" or "live wallpapers".

Makes sense. Just was a little underwhelmed this week. Figured if the picks were themed, at least there would be some quality mixed in with 1 or 2 lesser quality apps. Eclectic is nice, but when its mixed with apps that are uninteresting, it's a pretty lethal combination.

Either way, thanks for the post AC, we appreciate the hard work!

Quickpic looks really good, but unfortunately (or fortunately) I've got Gingerbread, which allows you to view your Picasa web albums from the Gallery and it doesn't appear that Quickpic accesses these. Maybe they'll have an update in the future that will do this.

I'm a BIG fan of JustPictures. Does everything I need it to do and it's free, too. I rarely keep any pics on my phone now because JP will tap into any online photo app, including FB, that I want.

One more vote for JustPictures. When I first got it, I loved it but inquired about the live wallpaper feature not having longer times between swapping pictures. The app author upped the times on my request the very next update. There are apps and then there are great apps with great developers. JustPictures is the latter.