Now that the tablets have been distributed, I thought it would be a good opportunity to look at some of the useful and interesting apps that are available via Google’s Play Store. This is just a rundown of some of the apps that I find useful, if you have any further suggestions, why not add them in the comments?
(I should also add, that you will need to have a Google account to download these apps. All the apps listed below are free and therefore you do not need to add your debit/credit card details – so skip this stage if you get asked to do so when creating your account or linking the tablet to your Google account.)
Google Keyboard – Ok, so the first app is hardly an exciting one, but it is a very useful one. Typing on smaller tablets can be pretty tricky. The ‘buttons’ are small and it can be quite time consuming. Google Keyboard helps to make typing so much quicker and easier. Once installed and made as your default keyboard (head to Settings>Language and inout>keyboards and input methods – installing the Google Keyboard will talk you through the process), you can type simply by swiping over the keys (“Gesture Typing”). Instead of tapping each individual letter, you can trace your finger between the letters without having to lift your finger off the tablet. It might take some getting used to, but once you have it makes typing much easier.
Pocket – See something online that you are interested in, but haven’t got time to read it there and then? Why not store it so you can read it later? Pocket is a really useful app that helps you to manage online content. Once installed, you can save items in the browser directly to Pocket and read them later either on the tablet or any other device (desktop, smartphone etc) simply by logging into your Pocket account. Favourite items within Pocket on your device and you can even read them offline. I use Pocket all the time to store webpages that I can then read on the train, saving me huge amounts of time at work.
Evernote – Evernote is a really great tool for creating notes and making them accessible anywhere. Simply download the app, create an account and you can create notes that are accessible from any device where you have Evernote installed (there is a desktop app that you can also download via the Evernote website). And if you create notes offline, you can sync them when they are connected to the internet and they will be uploaded to your Evernote account. Again, I find this a priceless tool for creating notes on the fly and then accessing from my desktop at a later date.
Feedly – Want to keep up to date with the latest news on your favourite websites? Feedly is an RSS reader that enables you to subscribe to websites (say, for example, Dean Burnett’s Brain Flapping blog) and have the latest posts delivered direct to your Feedly account. No more having to visit a website to see if there have been any new posts, or cluttering up your email account with email subscriptions. Just open Feedly on your device and you will find all the latest content from the websites you subscribe to.
Wunderlist – Overwhelmed with tasks that need completing? Wunderlist is a great little tool that helps you manage your workload. Simply add your tasks and tick them off when they are. You can create a variety of folders for lists so, for example, you could create separate lists for “Home” and “University” etc etc. You can also add notes to tasks and create alerts so that you are reminded of a task needing completion. Not only does it help you keep on top of your work, you also get that satisfying feeling of ticking off stuff you’ve got done!
Flipboard – This is on your device by default and is well worth having a look at. It provides users with interesting content available online. If you link it to your Twitter account, it will pull all the interesting links that appear in your home feed. There are also online magazines you can subscribe to (such as my Psychology Update and HE News and Commentary – I had to get the plug in!).
BBC iPlayer – And a ‘fun’ one to end on! Download the BBC iPlayer and you can catch up on all the BBC’s programmes. The best bit? Many programmes are available to be downloaded onto your device, where it can be kept for about a week before it is removed. Even better, the BBC has just extended its catch-up window from 7 to 30 days. Definitely a handy app to have when you want a break from all that studying!
There are also, of course, all the social media tools you might need (Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram etc) available in the Play Store. Don’t forget if you are on any of these social media platforms to follow the library (Facebook, Twitter and Instagram) and me of course (Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest)!
Can you recommend any useful apps for the Samsung Galaxy Note? Why not add them in the comments below?