Android 101

Introduction

This may seem a little off-topic, but I haven’t updated here in a very long time other than the Web Browsers Downloads page which I hope some of you have found helpful.

Anyway, if you have an Android, read this.

This post is designed to help you with your Android device and includes information on how to locate and install apps using the browser on your PC.

Throughout this page, any time you see a link with asterisks (*) on both sides of the link it means the link can be clicked in your browser and on your device to jump directly to the application in Android Market.

Alternate Web Browser

Before we get started… I highly recommend installing at least one alternate web browser that you can use exclusively with the Google account (@gmail.com) that is linked to your Android device. This is important because your normal web browser in Windows (Mozilla Firefox or Internet Explorer) is probably already logged in to Google services with a different account and every time you try to switch to your new @gmail.com address you will be forced to log off and switch acounts. An alternate web browser will allow you to work exclusively with the device and it will always be dedicated to one Google account.

Here are some recommented "Chromium Based" web browsers. There are three different versions of Google Chrome listed here, only install one (I use the developer builds exclusively). Also, I use the real Chromium (listed first) for my @gmail.com Android account:

Chromium 12.0.745.0 Developer 82632, ChromePlus 1.6.1.0, Comodo Dragon 10.0.0.2, Google Chrome (12.0.742.0 Developer 82248 / 11.0.696.50 Beta 81850 / 10.0.648.205 Public 81283), SRWare Iron 10.0.650.1.

Use the Chrome Webstore to install extensions for any of these browsers.

You can even use an Android theme for Gmail under settings:

Helpful Sites

Here are some additional websites that are very helpful and wouldn’t normally be obvious to users.

Google Checkout (optional) is where you can setup your credit cards that will be used for Android Market purchases.

Google Voice (optional) can be used as your voice mail system instead of your carrier’s voice mail system. There are many benefits including the abilitiy to get a new "Google Phone Number" that you can point to any number of phones and you also have the ability to download your recordings in MP3 format. The *Google Voice* app (and widgets) for your device makes everything seamless.

Google Reader (optional) allows you setup the types of stories you want to read about in *Google Reader* app on your device.

Android Market

Here are some Android Market websites. All of these sites require a valid @gmail.com login and all of them have the ability to install apps to your device directly from the site.

Google Android Market / Chromium Extension / All applications made by Google, Inc.

Amazon AppStore for Android. After you sign in and assign an credit card you can start receiving one free app every day. You have to manually check for new apps each day.

AppBrain App Market / Chromium Extension. AppBrain App Market requires the main *AppBrain App Market* application and *Fast Web Installer*. AppBrain is the original… it was the very first app that allowed users to browse for applications on their computer and then click a button on the site to force the application to install on their device.

Recommended Apps

All apps without prices shown are free. All of these links can be clicked on your computer or on your Android.

Autodesk AutoCAD WS is a mobile CAD application that gives you the freedom and flexibility to view, edit, and share your DWG files on your Android phone or tablet. AutoCAD WS mobile app offers a simplified, intuitive set of viewing, editing, and markup tools so you can work on your designs while you are on the go. Open drawings from email attachments, sync your files from the web, or upload drawings directly from AutoCAD software. Drawings can also be saved locally so you can work in the field without an Internet connection.

Wyse PocketCloud RDP/VNC (remote control your Desktop! free version only offers one access point), PAID version, Xtralogic Remote Desktop Client PAID.

AdFree Android, Droid VNC Server+ (remote control your Android!), Evernote (a very nice cloud-based notes application, get the Windows app here), Speedtest.net Mobile, Wireless Tether+, Root Explorer (File Manager)+ $4.08, Titanium Backup+, Titanium Backup PRO Key+ $5.95, Titanium Media Sync* $2.98, ES File Explorer, File Expert+, File Expert SMB Mount, ES Task Manager, CNN, Layar (augmented reality (AR) browser), TweepsAround for Layar, Wikitude World Browser (AR browser), Flixster Movies, ShootMe (screen grabber), Facebook, Twitter, TweetDeck for Android (Twitter & Facebook), Poynt, ScanLife Barcode Reader, Bump, SMS2PC $3.26 (TXT messaging from your Desktop! Windows client here).

+ Requires Root.

More items coming soon!

Google Apps

All apps without prices shown are free. All of these links can be clicked on your computer or on your Android.

Gmail, YouTube

Google Voice Search allows you to hold in the search button (magnifying glass) to voice command your phone or to search. Example: "Navigate to Six Flags" brings up Google Navigator. "Map of Pacific, Missouri" brings up Google Maps. "Call Pizza Hut" calls the Pizza Hut closest to you based on your GPS location.

Google Voice can be used as your voice mail system and for cheap international calls and free text messages.

Chrome to Phone allows you to send links, maps, phone numbers and copied text (Windows clipboard) from your browser to your phone. Chromium Extension / Firefox Extension.

Google Goggles lets you search by taking a picture. Goggles uses image recognition technology to recognize objects and return relevant search results. Identifies products, famous landmarks, storefronts, artwork, and popular images found online. Goggles can translate words in English, French, Italian, German & Spanish. Goggles can even extract contact information from business cards.

Google Maps, Street View on Google Maps, Google Earth, Google Sky Map, Androidify

Google Translate, Google Reader, Google Search, Google Shopper, Gesture Search

All applications made by Google, Inc.

Games

All games without prices shown are free. All of these links can be clicked on your computer or on your Android.

Angry Birds, Angry Birds Seasons, Angry Birds Rio, Pool Master Pro, Glow Hockey.

More items coming soon!