Apps of the Week

It's that time again - Android Central's editors are showing off their favorite recently discovered apps. This week we've got some social stuff, we've got some gaming, and a dash of productivity. Let's dig in. 

Boid for Twitter (free)


Chris Parsons - It's not often I suggest a beta for folks to try out, but Boid is an exception. Sure, there are a lot of Twitter clients out there, but I have trouble picking one that is minimalistic but has everything I really need. Boid offers that. It's only available on devices running ICS, but when you install it, I think you'll fall in love with what it is and what it will be once it comes out of beta.

Download: Boid for Twitter

YouMail (free)


Anndrew Vacca - I've been using YouMail since my very first Android device, the HTC Droid Incredible, and it has been a wild journey. The app has grown and matured along with Android to become a must-have for just about anyone. What started off as a bare-bones attempt to aggregate voicemail into a useful app has turned into a feature-rich, aesthetically-pleasing experience. Today's YouMail features smart greetings that adapt to your caller, call ditching which gives a "service disconnected" greeting to unwanted callers, and integration across tablets, smartphones and desktops. Plus, it's still one of the best visual voicemail systems in the business. If you haven't tried it yet, or you only know the YouMail of years prior, it's time to take it for another spin.

Download: YouMail

Dark Knight Rises Theme for Go Launcher EX (free)

DKR Theme

Sean Brunett - The Dark Knight Rises opens next week and I’m pretty excited; OK, I'm very excited. So much so that I tried out this theme for Go Launcher EX and have been very pleased with it thus far. If you’re as pumped as I am for the final film in Nolan’s Batman trilogy, you should definitely consider this theme, particularly if you’re already a user of Go Launcher EX. The theme sets the wallpaper to one of Batman in Gotham and has about 40 customized icons. Some of my favorites include the default browser icon, the phone icon and the Facebook icon. I’m a huge fan of launcher apps, but stock ICS has worked so well for me that I’ve never switched to another launcher full-time. This Dark Knight Rises theme might change that, at least until next week when the film opens!

Download: Dark Knight Rises Theme

Tasks (free / $0.99)


Jared DiPane - I have been all about trying to be more productive and remembering the small things that I need to do on a daily basis lately, so I decided I needed a nice task list. One thing I really wanted out of a task list was the ability to sync to Google Tasks since a large part of my day is spent at a computer with Gmail open. Tasks is a great application that is built around Google Tasks sync, and works amazingly. Adding tasks, marking them complete, making lists - all of it was just so easy. If you are looking for a great application to sync with Google Tasks to keep yourself a bit more organized, this is something you will definitely want to take a look at. There is a free ad-supported version as well as a paid one which only sets you back a buck.

Download: Tasks

Major Mayhem (free, IAPs)

Major Mayhem

Simon Sage - Amazing Alex was a bit of a let-down this week, and though the iPad gently called its siren song with a new version of Tiny Wings, I was really impressed with Major Mayhem that launched Friday morning. It offers fast, furious action with liquid-smooth graphics and a megaton of character. Gameplay is super simple - just tap on your targets and your gun-toting soldierman opens fire. Best of all, Major Mayhem is free with some unobtrusive in-app purchasing options if you want to get seriously decked out. 

Download: Major Mayhem

Tegra Zone (free)

Tegra Zone

Jerry Hildenbrad - A lot of you have grabbed a shiny new Nexus 7 over the past couple days, and everyone knows that the Tegra 3 chip inside it makes for the best gaming available on any mobile platform. But the best games are from developers who have worked with NVIDIA and built games that take advantage of CPU optimizations specific to the Tegra 3. Like it or hate it, it doesn't change it - they kick a whole lot of ass. But (and there's always a 'but') the limited storage on the Nexus 7 means you can't just install them all. You need a way to look through the optimized games and pick the ones that you think you'll like best. That's where the Tegra Zone app comes in. It's a showcase of every app developed for the Tegra platform, and you'll find description and video to help you pick and choose what to fill your precious few gigabytes with. It's free, and it's easy - deciding which games to get is the hard part.


Download: Tegra Zone

Songza (free)


Kevin O'Quinn - Songza is a music streaming app in the same vein as Pandora or Slacker, but with one really great twist:  it chooses music for you not based on your artist selection, but rather your mood, activity, decade, or culture.  Songza does a surprisingly good job choosing music for any chosen selection, too, and it has just about any mood you'd ever be in. You have the requisite thumbs up and thumbs down too, so you can customize audio streams to your liking.

The app is well laid out, following the Holo theme guidelines pretty well.  Another plus is that it doesn't have any audio ads, which means your mood won't be broken by a 30-second advertisement every six songs like with other streaming music apps.  All-in-all, this is a great app for anyone that has a hard time deciding what they want to listen to when they're in a particular mood.  After all, aren't you picking music based on mood?

Download: Songza

Twidere (free)


Richard Devine - "Oh no, another Twitter app," I hear you say, but don't dismiss it just yet. Twidere offers something different to users who aren't lucky enough to be on Android 4.x yet: a Holo-themed UI that is compatible right back to Android 1.6. There's plenty of good-looking new Twitter apps starting to appear, but only for ICS and Jelly Bean. Twidere brings some of those good looks to everybody else.

Looks don't get you everywhere though, certainly not with Twitter clients, but luckily Twidere is also pretty darn powerful. There's a whole bunch of features that the avid Twitter-er would expect, including a huge variety of image preview supports, including Instagram, yfrog, twitpic, weibo - the whole lot. There's also some handy filters on board for blocking unwanted tweets, multiple account sync, link expanding... the list goes on. Twidere is free, open source and supports tablets (a somewhat hidden gem as far as Android Twitter clients go). Give it a whirl, there should be great things to come from Twidere in the future.

Download: Twidere

As always, we welcome feedback on the kinds of Android apps you'd like to see in this weekly feature. Are there any big ones we didn't cover here? What would your personal picks be? Through next week, feel free to drop us a tip on the hint line if you find a particularly awesome app.