There’s a huge ocean of Android apps on the Google Play market, and it can be extremely difficult to browse, especially if you’re new to Android in general. Free apps are great and all, and there are plenty of them, but what about the paid ones? Are they worth the money? Which apps should you even pay attention to?
I’ve always found it odd that we pay $5 for a cup of Starbucks without giving it a second thought, yet think about the value of a $0.99 app. I do that all the time! And the strange thing is that the app almost always offers more bang for its buck than coffee. But read on as I tell you about six paid Android apps.
Disclaimer: I understand that there are a great many paid apps that are worth buying. Due to the limited space in this article, I’m going to cover the most general apps that almost everyone can benefit from. Therefore, I have left out many apps that have a more specific purpose.
SwiftKey (4 USD)
What it does: Basically, SwiftKey replaces the touch keyboard on your Android device, but it’s much more. This app can analyze your typing patterns and learn from them, giving you the most accurate predictive text. Multiple languages can be processed simultaneously. With the latest SwiftKey Flow feature, you can type instead of typing to be even more comfortable.
Free and Professional Versions: SwiftKey does not have a free version itself. It does offer a 30-day free trial where you can use SwiftKey with all the features unlocked. However, once the trial expires, you will have to purchase the app. SwiftKey is the very first app I ever spent money on, and I still don’t regret it. My friend, who had never thought of paying for mobile apps, ended up buying SwiftKey. It’s That Good.
Nova Launcher Prime Nova Launcher – Even better than the default Android 4.0 launcher Nova Launcher – Even better than the default Android 4.0 launcher After Ice Cream Sandwich (Android 4.0) launched, Android’s user interface felt a little less polished than iOS’. However, with Android 4.0, Google made a clean break with the previous visual style for Android and introduced Holo. Read More ($4 USD)
What it does: Nova Launcher is a prime example of Android launcher screens 5 More Free Launcher Apps You May Not Have Heard About [Android] 5 More Free Launcher Apps You May Not Have Heard About [Android] One of the great things about the Android community is that changes and tweaks are always being made. Android technology is constantly changing, and so there are always new ways – and many more… Continue Reading. It has many of the usual launcher features, such as a scrollable dock, custom app drawers, infinite page switching, and little features that make the whole experience even smoother. Runs fast, but requires at least Android 4.0.
Free vs Pro: When you buy Prime – Nova’s Pro version – you also get: drawer groups (organize apps into folders in the app drawer), action gestures (launch specific apps with pinch / swipe / etc), app hiding (reduce app drawer clutter), docking swipe (a gesture on a dock icon performs another action), unread counters (for email, SMS, etc) and more. Basically, Nova Launcher Prime is one of the most powerful home screens you will ever find.
Tasker Tasker for Android: A mobile app that meets all your needs Tasker for Android: A mobile app that meets all your needs When it comes to device automation, there’s only one 900-pound gorilla in the Android space, and that’s Tasker. True, Llama is a great free automation app, but it doesn’t aspire to the full power of Tasker.
What it does: Tasker is a device automation app that does exactly what it sounds like: It customizes your device to behave in different ways depending on the tasks you specify. These tasks can be event-based (e.g., “when the device is covered”) or time-based (e.g., “at 8 a.m.”) or whatever, and they can perform various actions (e.g., mute your device, launch an app, switch wifi, reboot, etc.).
Free vs. Pro: Tasker doesn’t actually come in a free version, which sucks for anyone who wants to test it out before committing to the price. Know that there are dozens of triggers, hundreds of actions, and plenty of advanced features (like loops, variables, and conditions) to get the most out of automating your devices. For more information, see the official Tasker user guide.
WeatherBug WeatherBug – even better than the Weather Channel [Android] WeatherBug – even better than the Weather Channel [Android] Until about a week ago, I only knew of two legitimate weather sources: the Weather Channel and AccuWeather. Both services have apps for Android that provide information about the weather. Imagine my. Continue Reading ($2 USD)
What it does: WeatherBug is one of the best apps for dealing with weather issues. It comes with a handy little widget that keeps you updated on the latest weather conditions and notifies you when there is a weather warning. It’s fairly accurate, even for 5 and 10 day forecasts, and there are options to keep the battery from draining too quickly.
Free vs. Pro: The only difference between WeatherBug Free and WeatherBug Elite (Pro version) is the removal of ads.Is that worth the price? I think it is. The ads are not intrusive by any means, but there is a lot more room for weather information. Plus, $2 costs half a coffee and WeatherBug will be one of the apps you use every day.
Titanium Backup Pro How to perform a full backup of your Android phone [1.6+] How to perform a full backup of your Android phone [1.6+] I’ve been using Titanium Backup since I got my first Android device. I love backup apps (for PC and otherwise) and Titanium is as good as it gets. In this brief introduction, I’d like to.
What it does: Titanium Backup is the most popular backup tool for Android devices. It has an outdated interface and the basic features are nothing to get excited about – until you unlock the Pro version. Many Android users still swear by Titanium Backup as their preferred backup method, and it’s no wonder it’s been one of the best for years. Titanium Backup requires a rooted device.
Free vs. Pro: The free version is very limited (only for basic apps). However, the Pro version includes many features: Multiple backups per app, so you can choose which one to restore. An app freezer disables and hides an app without having to uninstall it backups, send backups to a cloud service like Dropbox, encrypted backups for added security, and more. With Pro, Titanium Backup goes from a crippled free trial to a comprehensive full backup solution.
The apps on this list were consistently ranked among the best apps for Android. These apps range from writing to weather to backup to automation to set you up for a long time. If you buy everything, that’s still less than $20, and if you forgo the backup solution, it drops even lower to $13. I’m not one to like spending money on apps, but this is worth the purchase.