Whether looking to shake things up a bit, or help file your taxes there are plenty of application options available in the Android market. Lucky for you we take the time to check them out and see what's best, so let's hit the break and check out some of our favorites.
Anndrew Vacca - TurboTax SnapTax (Free)
I hate going to a brick-and-mortar to prepare my taxes-- I find the whole process to be pretty stressful. I also hate filing my taxes online, as it always proves to be both tedious and time consuming. What is a person like me to do? Thanks to TurboTax, I can file my taxes straight from my phone, no appointment required. No, I'm not TurboTax's latest paid representative-- I actually really love this app.
Snap a picture of your W2s, answer a few questions, and file both federal and state taxes for a reasonable $19.99. Simple as that. You'll need to have fairly simple finances: all income must be from a W2, interest, or unemployment, you can't have dependents, and you can't own your own home or property. If your taxes are any more complicated than that, you'll probably want to use a full-featured preparation service. If you're a young professional, however, and you just want to get your taxes out of the way quickly, this is the way to go. [Market Link]
Richard Devine - Cloud Print (Free)
I know it's either hard or incredibly sad to get excited about a printer. But having finally joined the modern age and invested in a wifi printer that is compatible with Google Cloud Print, this app is pretty handy.
The biggest feature is that it adds a print option into the share menu within your apps. So documents, pictures, emails etc can all be sent to print as easily as they can be shared to Facebook. As with Cloud Print itself Google Docs compatibility is built in to the app. The app can also be used to manage which account you use, and basic printer settings like print quality and whether you need it in color.
Another nice little feature is on the fly conversion of your print items to pdfs. One of these will print your work in a magazine style, set out in columns, and is surprisingly good. It leaves some nasty logos at the bottom though so not so good if you're printing something important.
In the modern age where more and more is done on our smartphones and tablets something like this is a definite production boost. I edit documents on the go frequently on my phone and being able to send them to print without having to move from the sofa or wait until I get home is the most pleasant printing experience I could hope for. It's free but it works so well it's definitely worth paying the price for ad free. [Market Link]
Chris Parsons - Wallbase HD Wallpapers (Free)
I love changing wallpapers on my device, probably more so then I should really. I've tried a lot of wallpaper apps from the Android Market but having recently found Wallbase for Android it's pretty much my go-to app now for wallpaper selection. They have some of the highest quality wallpapers available for download all right within the app of course, and it's just beautifully designed app. If I were to make a wallpaper app, it would be based on the looks of this one, hands down. [Market Link]
Alex Dobie - Rebirth (Free)
If you owned a Sony PSP back when it was popular, you'll no doubt remember Lumines, the highly addictive music/puzzle fusion title from Q Entertainment. Lumines gave a new twist to the Tetris-like block puzzler by introducing trippy graphics and a unique eletronic soundtrack that reacted to how you played.
Rebirth isn't quite Lumines, but it's the best you're going to get on Android outside of Japan -- a shameless rip-off of the game that gets just about every detail right. All the basic core gameplay is there, complete with delicious multicolored blocks and techno soundtrack. Gameplay options include challenge mode, in which players have to survive as long as possible against increasingly speedy waves of blocks, and puzzle mode, where a particular pattern must be recreated.
Rebirth is available for free on the Android Market for devices running Android 1.5 and above. We noticed a few stability issues on the Galaxy Nexus, however, so you may want to wait for an update before picking it up on that device. [Market Link]
Simon Sage - Shake Weight (Free)
If you haven't seen Kevin's impressive display of brute strength and determination, it is truly a sight to behold. Amidst all of the blinding, raw power you might have noticed he was using a Shake Weight. As the source of a well-respected and world-class fitness regimen, it's no surprise to see Kevin throwing in his lot with Shake Weight. Perhaps his demonstration has inspired you to invest in one, as it did me. "But Simon, I can't afford two easy payments of $19.99 plus $9.99 shipping and handling! That's, like, fifty apps!", you might say. First off, you are weak and lack discipline. Secondly, there's a free app available in the Android Market!
Shake Weight for Android simulates the renown workout companion using your smartphone's accelerometer. A counter keeps track of how many reps you've made. Though the app continuously bounces even when idle, this is purely replicating the precision frictionless bearing built into the real thing. Unfortunately, your smartphone likely lacks the mass of dual cast iron weights (and if it doesn't, I salute you). The only way to remedy this is to double the prescribed reps in any of the official Shake Weight instructional DVDs. Many of the high-intensity exercises require two hands to properly tone bicep, tricep, shoulder, and chest muscles, but that might be impractical with any device smaller than 4 inches. Luckily, I've found using two phones works great. If you don't have a second, I would suggest finding a workout buddy rocking an Android device and trading off. To take your Shake Weight workout to the next level, try installing the app on an Android tablet.
Though you might not be able to match Kevin's nigh-religious degree of fanaticism, with Shake Weight for Android, you may at least be able to walk ever-so-humbly in his footsteps. [Market Link]
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