Another grouping of app picks that's primarily tools and productivity. We've got an EQ settings manager, file manager, remote app and a few others. There are enough dials, buttons and tabs in these apps to keep you busy for a couple weeks at least. If these aren't exactly your cup of tea, don't worry, we'll have another group of picks just 7 days from now. Either way, they're always worth a look -- you may just find something you like.
Richard Devine - Music Volume EQ
I'm not a massive user of EQ effects when listening to music on my phone. But, having previously had a Beats Audio device -- yes, i said Beats -- I've recently started to be a little more interested. The biggest problem for me, is the variety of applications I use to get my music. I'm really disorganised. Some is in Amazon Cloud Drive, some Google Music, and the majority of my music comes from Spotify. What I need, is a generic EQ app that will work across all my apps, the same way Beats does.
So, i happened upon Music Volume EQ. It's not flashy, it's not particularly advanced, but it is free. It's also non intrusive, as once you've set it up, it retreats to the notification bar out of the way. Otherwise it's a basic, yet functional EQ with presets for the usual music genres, Rock, Metal, Dance, Hip-Hop, you know the deal. Volume and bass can also be independently adjusted. As it's free, it is ad supported, but as it isn't a front facing app it doesn't really affect.
Download: Music Volume EQ (Free)
Jerry Hildenbrand - OI File Manager
The open and accessible file system is one of Android's killer features. The folks at Google have no desire to lock you out of the data on your phone, and make it pretty easy to get to it from on the device itself or while attached to a computer. The only thing they don't offer is a file explorer application. Luckily, they do offer plenty of examples and use standards so any skilled developer can make one.
If you have a OEM branded phone from a company like Samsung or Motorola, there's a good chance you have a file manager built in. But if you went for the pure Google experience, you'll need to download one. There are plenty available, but I still use OI File Manager. It's light on resources, gives me all the file operations I could ever want without all the glitz and glamor that some of the others add. It's also completely open source, and I'll always support the open source option when it's available.
To top it off, it's free, and as you can see runs on every Android device ever made -- even our old friend the T-Mobile G1.
Download: OI File Manager (Free)
Scott Young - Official XBMC Remote
Anyone into the HTPC scene knows about XBMC. XBMC is an award-winning free and open source (GPL) software media player and entertainment hub for digital media and is available for Linux, OSX, and Windows. However something that a lot of HTPC folks don't know is that there is an official Android app that gives them total control of XBMC. The app let's you que up playlists for your media, see what's currently playing on XBMC, and can even function as a remote control. It works over your cell network or WiFi connection, which means you don't need any sort of IR dongle for your phone. You can even setup the app to show your status bar notifications, incoming texts and incoming calls on your TV (and will pause your media accordingly). If you're running a HTPC and have XBMC installed, I highly recommend the (Free) XMBC app.
Download: Official XBMC Remote (Free)
Andrew Martonik - Reddit is fun
It seems as though there are two types of people on the internet -- the small group that frequent Reddit on a daily basis, and everyone else. There may be some “lurker” types that check out some of the popular AMA threads, but largely those who are into Reddit are really into Reddit. For those people, it seems like the only option is “reddit is fun”. The app works well and brings you all of the cat pictures and memes you’ve come to expect from reddit. The app is free, and for $1.99 you can get both tablet support and a widget to accompany the main app.
Simon Sage - NFC Task Launcher
I never really got into NFC stuff, but after getting a whole pack of tags from TagsForDroid, I've been having a lot of fun figuring out what I could do with them. NFC Task Launcher has been doing a great job of programming new tasks, adding vCards, or assigning website links to tags. The full suite of options are available, including rewriting tags, locking tags to later reprogramming, adding messages, or creating tasks that switch. If you're not familiar, NFC allows you to execute quick, simple actions by tapping the back of your device against one of these sensor tags. Tasks vary in type from simple connectivity and display options to social network check-ins and opening applications.
I'm still toying around with the various use cases, but the tags are cheap, and so far it's a lot of fun - especially if you're looking to rub something in the face of your buddy who just bought an iPhone 5.
Download: NFC Task Launcher (Free)
Alex Dobie - BBC Media Player
If you want to watch BBC iPlayer TV and radio content on a Jelly Bean device, you'll want to snag the BBC's new Media Player app. Replacing previously-required Adobe Flash Player, the BBC Media Player is a native Android app for viewing streaming media from the Beeb, including iPlayer content when accessed via the corporation's website. The BBC is still in the process of porting content over, and certain stuff like Sports coverage isn't included yet. However, if you plan in viewing any BBC content in the near future, or you just want another excuse to rid yourself of Adobe Flash, then this app is definitely worth keeping loaded in the background.
The BBC Media Player app is available to download now for free for Android device owners in the UK. Unlike the dedicated BBC iPlayer app, it supports the latest Android 4.1 Jelly Bean.
Download: BBC Media Player (Free)
Sean Brunett - Streetball
Do you like simple and easy sports games? The you’re definitely going to want to check out Streetball from Battery Acid Games. I love basketball games and find they’re some of the easiest to play on-the-go. Streetball is, as you’d expect, basketball on a street court rather than a gym. It features four games modes: 21, 2-on-2, H.O.R.S.E, and a practice session. The on-screen controls are simple enough. You have a joystick to move your player around, and two buttons, shoot or pass. In my opinion, the simpler you can make sports games on mobile the better since on-screen controls are somewhat limited. As for characters, you have 14 options to choose from, including believe it or not Abraham Lincoln. My one gripe with the app is that H.O.R.S.E is a little too easy (you follow a pattern to determine if your shot goes in), but that’s a minor issue. The app is $1.99 from the Google Play Store and worth every penny in my view. There is a free version, but the features are limited, such as only offering two modes instead of four.
Download: Streetball ($1.99)
Chris Parsons - Bacon Reader
Like reading Reddit? Cool, me too. Now that we have something in common, I'd like to share a secret with you. OK, it's not really a secret but some people have tried it out before and others -- not so much. It's called BaconReader.. Mmm.. bacon. But wait, it's not what you think. Bacon Reader is a really cool Reddit app built by One Louder Apps. It's available for free from the Google Play Store and with it, you can cruise Reddit in style. Post new items, read already existing ones, get PM's and more including full profile support. Give it a go over you're looking for a better Reddit client on Android.
Download: Bacon Reader (Free)