I decided to follow Todd’s post and develop one of my own, except I’m going to emphasize obscurity over everyday practicality. Now, I’ve developed several of these types of lists (I should probably make a category), so this concept isn’t anything new. You’ll probably recognize some of the apps from other lists or discussions, but I’m still convinced these are more obscure than mainstream, at least until today.
I’m actually surprised at the number of Android-using attorneys who don’t take advantage of this app. CallTrack (free) is an app that helps you track phone calls, numbers and length of time, then uploads the information to your Google Calendar.
I use CallTrack to keep tabs on my phone calls to clients and link the calls to my billing software. Since my Google Apps account allows me to share my calendar with my staff, my assistant can bill the client’s account for the phone call.
When you’re tired of not being able to view Microsoft Word documents like “real life,” try CloudOn (free). This is as close to Office on Android as you’ll get. The app features a near-desktop-like layout that allows you to view, edit, and save MS Office files on your tablet or phone – the app looks best on a tablet.
CloudOn requires an internet connection to work, so it’s not helpful if you’re sans internet, working in offline mode.
I have a confession: I like weather disasters. I mean big weather disasters. The scarier, hairier, and “disasterier,” the better. In Oklahoma, whenever there’s an inkling of severe weather, we get “weather TV.” Weather television is every news station’s attempt, from 1, 2, 3, or 4 p.m. until “severe weather passes,” to predict, scoop, and track weather events. I’m glued. Of course, with any disaster, I like seeing earth’s carnage, but never human carnage.
PYKL3 Radar ($9.99) is one of those weather apps. It’s the app that weather geeks use to geek out as they track storms. There are probably other, “better,” weather tracking apps in Google Play, but for 10 bucks, you’re getting more maps, stats, and color-coded pages than you’ll know what to do with. My mouth waters when I’m watching storms on this app.
Cloud Print or PrinterShare
These two apps are a toss-up, mainly because I use both pretty regularly, and I purchased the pricier, PrinterShare ($12.95) app. Cloud Print (free) and Printer Share give you the ability to print from your Android device through Google Cloud Print to a local printer. A brilliant necessity if you’re fond of working remotely from your mobile device.
Okay, you probably already knew about this app, but it’s definitely a keeper. SwiftKey ($3.99) replaces the good but not great, native Android keyboard, with a really great one. The SwiftKey app makes typing especially easy for those of us with “carnie hands.”
SwiftKey has a predictive keyboard that learns your typing habits and gives you a correct word, almost every time. The latest release also incorporates a slide-to-type feature, or Flow, which allows you to drag your finger to spell words. This isn’t one of my gigantic loves since I find the QWERTY keyboard layout much easier to use. If you’re interested, check out the world according to SwiftKey.