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Top Android App: Ringdroid

Posted on Dec 13, 2009 in Multimedia, Top Rated Apps | comment

Ringdroid is your Android app to edit MP3, WAV, AAC, and AMR audio files into your own customized ringtones, alarms, and notifications.

Application: Ringdroid

Version: 2.10.0
Size: 625KB
Category: Multimedia
Price: Free
Overall Score: 4.8/5
User Interface: 4.5/5
Ease of Use: 5/5
Customizability: 5/5
Originality: 4.5/5
Indispensability: 5/5
When you open Ringdroid, the app shows you a list of all the audio files you have stored on your SD card that may be used to create new ringtones.  When you select a song from the list, the entire song will be loaded showing the waveform and timeline.  You have two markers surrounding the portion you want to use for your ringtone.  The left marker allows you to move the starting time of your ringtone.  The right marker sets where the ringtone ends and therefore how long the ringtone is going to be.  Click the play button to test your ringtone.  Also, you can click anywhere in the waveform to have Ringdroid start playing the song from that point to help identify what part of the song you want to select for your ringtone.
When you are done, save the file.  Once it is saved, Ringdroid will ask you if you’d like to make it your default ringtone, assign it to a particular contact, or do nothing.  Your new ringtone will show up in the list of audio files stored in your SD card so you can apply or edit them later.  Long-pressing on a song allows you the option of editing or deleting the file.
Overall, Ringdroid is one of those apps that truly lets you make your Android phone your own.  Customized ringtones and notifications ensure you’ll know who’s calling or what the notification is even before you take out your phone.  Now you won’t be confused when someone else’s phone rings with the same ringtone, it won’t happen if you use Ringdroid.
Scan the barcode with Barcode Scanner for the direct link to Ringdroid in the Android Market.
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Top Android App: Pandora Radio

Posted on Dec 12, 2009 in Multimedia, Top Rated Apps | comment

Pandora Radio allows you to create your own personalized radio stations based on your preferences.  You can then stream these stations with your selections and songs link them.  This is the best music app in the Android Market.

Application: Pandora Radio

Version: 1.1.2
Size: 629KB
Category: Multimedia
Price: Free
Overall Score: 4.9/5
User Interface: 4.5/5
Ease of Use: 5/5
Customizability: 5/5
Originality: 5/5
Indispensability: 5/5
When you open this app you are brought to your list of radio stations.  If you do not yet have any stations, click menu > create station.  In order to create a new station you must type in the name of the artist, song, or composer that you enjoy.  Pandora will then create a station based on your choice along with artists or songs like it.  If you’re wondering how Pandora does this, it uses attributes like melody, harmony, rhythm, lyrics, and much more to match songs that you are likely to enjoy.
When your station plays, it will give you the album artwork, album name, song title, and artist.  You can give a song a “thumbs up” if you like it or “thumbs down” if you don’t.  Clicking the “thumbs down” will skip the song and it’ll be less likely to play later.  You can also skip a song by hitting the forward button.  Note: if you have a free Pandora account setup you are only allowed 12 skips across all stations per day, so use them sparingly.
A really nice feature of Pandora is that there is an info button at the top right when you are listening to a song.  The button offers you information on both the artist and the song/album.  This is a great way to get a little background on an artist you really enjoy.
Also, the options in Pandora allow you to bookmark the song or artist, buy the song (using amazon mp3), or share the song.  There are also preferences for the quality of the music that is streamed (the high setting needs a strong internet connection and may not stream continuously if your connection is interrupted).
If you want to discover new music or just want your own customized radio stations, Pandora is for you.  Check it out if you haven’t already, it’s one of the best apps for Android.
Scan the barcode with Barcode Scanner for the direct link to Pandora in the Android Market.
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Top Android App: Shazam

Posted on Dec 10, 2009 in Multimedia, Top Rated Apps | comment

Shazam was one of Android’s first major apps and is one of the top apps in the Android Market.  It offers the fastest song recognition capabilities possible.

Application: Shazam

Version: 1.2
Size: 234KB
Category: Multimedia
Price: Free
Overall Score: 5/5
User Interface: 5/5
Ease of Use: 5/5
Customizability: 5/5
Originality: 5/5
Indispensability: 5/5
Ever wondered what a song you heard on the radio was called or who sang it?  Now you can easily get your answer.  Shazam identifies music tracks simply by listening to them.  There is nothing to type, no need to remember lyrics to search for when you get home, it’s really as easy as it sounds.
The process of opening Shazam and clicking Tag Now to when you get your results takes about 30 seconds.  The actual time that the app listens to the audio is between 20 and 25 seconds.  A nice feature of this app is that it has only two buttons which are very easy to access.  There isn’t any time wasted finding where to click in order to start identifying a song, so you shouldn’t have any problem whipping out your phone when that unknown song starts to play.
When the app tags your song, you will get a screen which displays the song title, artist, album, album artwork, genre, label, and the date it was tagged.  This is an incredible amount of data for a single track.  Similarly, you get the option of searching for the song with Amazon MP3 so that you can purchase it if you’d like.  You also get the option of searching for the song on YouTube so you can check for the music video and listen to it again.
What makes this app so highly rated is that it is extremely accurate.  The only time I haven’t been able to tag a song was when the song was either a) extremely new or b) an unknown artist.  Shazam offers a few troubleshooting tips in case it’s not the apps fault.
The other button on the home screen is My Tags.  This brings up a list of all the songs that you have tagged.  This is very convenient for remembering songs for later use.  When you select a song it returns the same information that was displayed when you initially tagged it.

Overall, like Google Maps before, if you haven’t already downloaded this app and use it all the time, do so now!  Here is the barcode you can scan with Barcode Scanner to find this app in the Android Market.

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Top Android App: FxCamera

Posted on Dec 7, 2009 in Multimedia, Top Rated Apps | comment

FxCamera is an app that enables you to take pictures with a selection of effects. 

Application: FxCamera

Version: 0.5.1
Size: 1.06MB
Category: Mulitmedia
Price: Free
Overall Score: 4.9/5
User Interface: 5/5
Ease of Use: 5/5
Customizability: 4.5/5
Originality: 5/5
Indispensability: 5/5
So far, there are 6 different effects that you can take advantage of to make unique photos.
·         ToyCam
·         Polandroid (Polaroid)
·         Fisheye
·         SymmetriCam
·         Warhol
·         Normal
This app is a great addition to the Android platform.  Sometimes normal pictures just don’t do a picture justice.  Now when you want to send someone a picture you can add your own touch to it.  Want a portrait like something Warhol painted?  You got it.  Want a Fisheye picture of your pet?  You got it.  This app will definitely make your gallery of pictures on your phone much more interesting and fun to look at.
One note: this app requires an SD card to be in your phone.  As long as you haven’t removed the one that came with your device (or replaced it with one with a larger capacity) you are fine.
This top rated app is extremely easy to use so jump right into it.
Scan with Barcode Scanner for direct link to FxCamera in the Android Market.
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