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Add Flare to Your Photos w/ PicSay Pro

Posted on Apr 7, 2011 in Multimedia, Top Rated Apps | comment

PicSay Pro provides you with the tools to spice up photos on your Android device.

  • Version: 1.4.0.1
  • Size: 1.03MB (apps2SD enabled)
  • Category: Multimedia
  • Price: ~4.28 (Limited Free version)



PicSay Pro offers a huge list of effects, graphics, and transformations you can apply to any of your pictures. First, choose an image and open it using the “Get a picture” button on the homescreen on the app. Additionally, you can send a picture to this app using the Share option in many other apps (e.g. Facebook).

To add an object to your image, tap on the picture where you want the object placed and select the specific graphic you’d like. This applies to text bubbles, word-art titles, and stickers. Use the square, orange graphic to resize the object to your liking. The square, green graphic lets you independently adjust a single part of a graphic (e.g. the pointed extension of the text bubbles). If you’d like to come back and edit something (whether it’s the text, style, etc.), just double-tap it.

If you’d like to permanently save a PicSay image (which you can then edit later), add it to your favorites from within the app by choosing Menu > More > Add to favorites. If you’re satisfied with your final creation, save a .jpeg copy to your Android device’s SD card by choosing Export > Save picture to SD card. Note: exported images are not editable.

Pros:

  • Endless effects, graphics, and text options to add flare to your photos
  • User-friendly menu organization and layout speeds up editing process
  • Share photo creations via Facebook, Gmail, SMS, Twitter, etc.
  • Created documents are saved as-is for future editing possibilities



Areas for improvement:

  • Added effects/options would always be a plus



Conclusion: “Say it within a picture” by adding your own personalized touches.

[AppBrain Link]

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Top Android App: Slacker Radio

Posted on Apr 6, 2011 in Multimedia, Top Rated Apps | comment

Slacker Radio lets you listen to free, personalized radio on your Android device (similar, but arguably better than Pandora).

  • Version: 2.1.191
  • Size: 1.24 (no apps2SD)
  • Category: Multimedia
  • Price: Free (Plus version $3.99/month)



Slacker Radio is stocked with millions of songs from thousands of artists. Similar to the more well-known service and Android app, Pandora, you can customize 100+ stations from any genre. Simply search for the artist, song, or category you’d like to instantly create a new station. There are also pre-installed categories which include the likes of today’s hits, country, hip hop, and international.

As you listen to a station you can like or dislike specific songs which in turn will better customize future songs to your liking. Specifically, the dislike icon gives you the option to either ban the song or the artist as a whole. This definitely comes in handy for those songs that you’ve either grown tired of or never liked in the first place.

By long-pressing on the album artwork, you can read up on song information including lyrics, band biography, and album reviews. You can also make the station a favorite and/or cache it for offline use.

Slacker Radio Plus is the upgraded service which removes audio and banner ads, allows unlimited song skips, provides full lyrics, enables caching of stations for offline listening, and features ABC news radio. The Plus upgrade costs $3.99/month.

Pros:

  • Wide variety of songs, artists, and genres to choose from
  • Intuitive navigation and attractive UI
  • Access to song lyrics, biography, and reviews
  • Like and dislike songs to improve later radio selections



Areas for improvement:

  • Ability to purchase songs/albums directly from within the app (or at least a link to a third party like Amazon mp3).



Conclusion: Enhanced, customizable radio and an easy way to discover new songs/genres.

[AppBrain Link]

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Soundhound Answers the Question, What Song is That?

Posted on Mar 30, 2011 in Multimedia, Top Rated Apps | comment

Soundhound ∞ is the fastest way to identify an unknown song.

  • Version: 2.5.2
  • Size: 2.24MB (apps2SD enabled)
  • Category: Multimedia
  • Price: $4.99 (Free version available)



Similar in functionality to Shazam, this Android app offers streamlined instant music search and discovery. Soundhound boasts the fastest music recognition, identifying a song in as little as four seconds. Better yet, the algorithm is so advanced that it can confidently recognize a song from your own singing and/or humming. This is especially handy for those of us who always forget the lyrics!

Aside from the song recognition function of this app, the subsequent song info page is just as impressive/useful. You can quickly search YouTube for related videos or purchase the song from Amazon mp3. You can also access additional information by tapping on the artist or album name. An awesome feature is the inclusion of the song’s entire lyrics, so you can sing along the next time around.

Check out the “History” section to refer back to previously tagged songs, or the “What’s Hot” section to view what others have been searching for.

In order to use the homescreen widget, make sure that the app has not been moved to the SD card. Because of an Android OS issue, apps that are run from the SD card cannot also have a widget. If Soundhound doesn’t appear in the widget list after moving the app to phone storage, restart your Android device (worked for my Android 2.2 Samsung Vibrant).

Pros:

  • Fastest song identifier available
  • Algorithm capable of recognizing your own singing/humming
  • Instantly tag from homescreen widget
  • Extensive post-tagging features e.g. full lyrics, purchase song, etc.



Areas for improvement:

  • Location-based geo-tagging should be off by default



Conclusion: The best song tagging Android app available, thanks in part to its advanced algorithm and post-tagging options.

[AppBrain Link]

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Lapse It: Time-Lapse Image Capture

Posted on Jan 31, 2011 in Multimedia, Top Rated Apps | 1 comment

Lapse It makes it easy to capture astonishing time-lapse videos with your Android device.

  • Version: 1.0
  • Size: 1.26MB (apps2SD enabled)
  • Category: Multimedia
  • Price: $1.99 (Free Lite version)



This Android app offers a sophisticated way to create, watch, and share time-lapse videos. Before beginning, you’ll want to adjust the settings to fit the specific time-lapse effect you’re going for. For faster moving events, you’ll want to use a short interval, like 3 or 5 seconds. For something slower, like a sunset, you might want to try 1 or 2 minutes.

Additionally, you can have the time-lapse captured on your Android device’s internal memory or SD card. For shorter time-lapses, you’ll want to use internal memory because of its faster speed/responsiveness. Lastly, you can automatically end the time-lapse by frame #, time, or by manually using the stop button.

As for the render settings, you can adjust the resolution ranging from low (240×160) to high (720×480). For general purposes, the higher the resolution the better, but for very long time-lapse times or for pure mobile playback, low resolution is a size-friendly solution.

After your time-lapse is complete, you can assign a file name to it and save it as either an image sequence (JPG) or video (FLV). You can also select and preview the playback framerate. Then, in the List Capture section you can play, upload to YouTube, or delete any of the time-lapse videos.

Note: Requires Android 2.2 and the Adobe Air Android app.

Pros:

  • Fully customizable time-lapse features
  • Save to internal memory or SD card
  • Resolution up to 720×480
  • Easy to upload directly to YouTube



Areas for improvement:

  • Videos should be added to the Android gallery
  • Option to share via text, Gmail, Twitter, etc.
  • Buttons are rather small and difficult to select accurately the first time



Conclusion: Express and share your artistic abilities with this powerful time-lapse video Android app.

[AppBrain Link]

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Top Android App: VEVO Music Videos

Posted on Jan 11, 2011 in Multimedia, Top Rated Apps | 1 comment

VEVO is the leading premium music video and entertainment service, and is now a mobile Android app!

  • Version: 1.0
  • Size: 748KB (no apps2SD)
  • Category: Multimedia
  • Price: Free



VEVO lets you discover, watch, and share the latest music videos wherever you are, whenever you want. There are currently over 25,000 videos to watch from over 7,500 different artists.

This app has one of the best interfaces you’ll find on Android. In the “Videos” tab, you can see a list of top videos, video premieres, and newly released videos. Simply click the video of your choice to watch it in its entirety. Depending on your mobile connection, loading times may vary. Luckily, VEVO thought ahead and added interesting “did you know?” facts about random music artists to help pass the time (if need be). For the best possible experience, access via 4G or WiFi.

You can also quickly find music videos by artist by either browsing the “Artists” tab or by searching VEVO (access with the Menu button). A neat feature displays the artist’s latest tweet (if they have Twitter) on their page.

Pros:

  • 25,000+ music videos to watch for free
  • High-quality interface, images, and videos
  • Easily purchase favorite music from Amazon
  • Share any video via Twitter, Facebook, and Gmail



Areas for improvement:

  • Preferences for whether or not you want videos in HQ should be saved
  • Ability to create own playlists



Conclusion: One of the largest mobile music platforms for Android offers thousands of free HQ music videos.

[AppBrain Link]

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