Garanimals Blog

Archive for the ‘smartphone apps’ tag

September 13th, 2011 at 5:00 am

5 Terrific Android Smartphone Apps

I use my phone for so many things and I love that it’s so powerful and versatile. I always feel like I’ve got a lifeline to information and I can tackle anything when I’ve got my fully charged Android with me.  Here are five apps that I use regularly that take my phone to the next level of power and convenience.

CardStar – consolidate all of your shopping reward card information into this handy free app. With it, I never have to fumble around for the actual card or miss out on rewards opportunities because I’ve given the card to my husband or child to use. Just bring up the bar code when you’re at the checkout and let the cashier scan it. Also available for iphone and Blackberry.

CamScanner - with this app, I can take a photo of a document and have CamScanner turn it into a pdf that can be uploaded to the cloud or emailed as an attachment. This is a great way to digitize business receipts and save them as files for reconciling expense reports. There’s a free version as well as a licensed versions for $4.99.  Also available for iphone.

Swype – I am terrible at touch typing on my phone. I watch others and it looks so easy, but I just never got the hang of it. My solution is the free Swype app which allows me to just move my finger over the keys I want, hesitating every so slightly on each and Swype puts the words together for me. It takes a little getting used to, but once you do, it’s fast and really convenient to enter text.  For Android and Nokia devices only.

Google Docs – I just love that I an access any of my cloud documents on my phone. This app allows me to quickly view docs that I own or that have been shared with me wherever I am. Yes it’s a little bit harder to create or work on docs on your phone, but for viewing purposes, this is a real convenience. There’s no native iphone or Blackberry app, but you can access Google Docs at from any phone browser.

250+ Solitaires – I’m not ALL business. I do like to play solitaire. Forty Thieves to be specific. I can get lost for hours playing this game and I just love having it at hand anytime I have time to spare. My husband will attest to this as any car trip is a great opportunity for me to get lost in my games. Beats staring out the window.  It’s free and also available for iphone.

There are so many apps available and there are many other good ones.  Evernote is way at the top of the list, but since I already wrote about that app, I thought I’d share these.

You can also find Paula on LinkedInFacebook and Twitter @techsmart319. Feel free to reach out if you have questions.


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May 10th, 2011 at 5:00 am

Name That Tune

You know how when you’re driving along in the car listening to the radio and a really great song comes on that you’ve never heard? You wait for the dj to come back on an announce the name of the song and the artist, and very often, you either miss it or you’re out of the car when they actually do. Don’t you hate that?

Well, I’ve found a really nifty new smartphone app that solves this problem  nicely. It’s called Shazam and to use it all you have to do is initiate the app, hold your phone up near the speaker and let Shazam search the database to match the song. The result is the title, artist, album name, genre and record label. It even gives you the option to download the song from Amazon or share it on a social networking site. I just love that.

The app is free and you can get it for most phones and the ipad. Download it here.

On car drives, our family likes to play “Name that Tune” and see who can come up with the right answer fastest. A lot of times we’re stumped by either the song title or the artist. My husband and I tested it out last week on a funky oldie that came on. The song was immediately recognizable as “Palisades Park” but neither of us had any idea who the artist was. With a little help from Shazam, we quickly found out that it was Freddy “Boom Boom” Cannon. What a hoot!

Unfortunately it won’t recognize your rendition of the song. I tried singing into my phone but no luck.

Don’t you just love having information at your fingertips? Our family is going to have a lot of fun with this one.

You can also find Paula on LinkedInFacebook and Twitter @techsmart319. Feel free to reach out if you have questions.


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