written by: Brenda Barrett•edited by: Simon Hill•updated: 5/19/2011
There are quite a few open source Android applications on the market today. Which ones are the most highly ranked and popular? We have a list of ten great options that offer everything from e-mail filtering to transforming your Android phone into a remote control. Check them out.
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When it comes to open source applications for the Android platform there are several out there that are great and others that are not so popular. We have taken the time out to focus on ten of the highest rated or best options on the market today. For each app you'll find a brief review, screenshot and a link so you can grab it for yourself.
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1. Official XBMC Remote For Android
The official XMBC remote for Android transforms your phone into a remote control with a very nice interface. It is still in beta so it may be rough around the edges but the feature list is impressive. It offers a live view of a current playlist, notification bar showing the now playing screen, large screen support, access to list items via keyboard, incoming call display on the screen of the TV (this display can run until the call is terminated) and there are several other cool features. For the music library it enables users to browse within genre, album and artist and to play and queue albums directly without turning on your TV. The movie library and the TV library also allow users to browse using various filters such as genre, actors or show. There were some recent issues fixed with this app like the sorting issues on lists and the access to RAR streaming files. On the whole a great app to use for those who are looking for a remote control app.
This app provides quick access to your Android settings and allows you to switch to important menu items and control battery consumption. Apparently with an increase in Android security by Google in the 2.3.3 version some switches stopped working, this app is the answer to those changes. There are some restrictions as stated by the designer, LED flashlight is not supported for all phones, single click GPS might stop working after upgrading to Android 2.3 and switched off 3G and 4G connections can be reopened automatically after reboot. It is now available for all Android versions and design flaws are being ironed out.
This app is very cool. It is an Android mobile client which allows the user to remotely view and control IP camera, DVR, network video recorder, CCTV and WebCam and even includes a public webcam database where users can view public webcams from around the world. It supports optical zoom, presets, relay control and digital pinch to zoom functionality. You can add your cameras to your home screen with widgets and group them by location for quick recall. You may also be interested to learn that there are apps that allow you to use your Android phone as a webcam.
This open source Android application is a real battery saver unlike some other apps in its category. It shows an icon on the status bar with the battery charge level in percentage form. It also shows the temperature, health, voltage, and plug-in and unplug times. It has an alarm feature to let you know when the phone is fully charged and to warn about the temperature or health failure of the battery. All of these features can be configured according to taste. The con for this open source app is that it is not possible to replace the built-in battery icon that appears on the status bar.
The CacheMate app is for root users. It is a great app for cleaning up your unwanted or unused files. It is used to clean up data that is seldom used or data that may not be needed at the same time. It enables users to clean a cache in one click, it allows users to select which caches to clear and it has an option to view internal storage where you can see how much space is left on your device.
This is a very interesting open source app for Android. It just had to make our list. The Bankdroid (love the name) is an open source banking application for Swedish banks. It does automatic updates of bank balances and transactions. It also notifies users whenever there are any inappropriate transactions, through its notification option, whenever the bank balance of the user changes. It comes with a widget which shows account balances on the home screen of your phone.
The most sought after open source Android application is entertainment based and this app has been making waves in this category. It is useful for anyone who would want to creates tones, alarms, and notifications from MP3, WAV, AAC/MP4, or 3GPP/AMR files. All these files can be loaded onto your phone through the SD card or even purchased through the Amazon MP3 store. The process for creating your own ringtones is easy, simply move the sliding arrows to set the start and end notes along the timeline or use Start and End to type in time stamps. All the interface options on this app respond to touch. There have been recent changes to stamp out crash bugs and a host of other features were added to the latest version. Check out some other top Android ringtone apps here.
This application lets you run utility programs on your device. It allows you to access the Linux command line utilities on your phone. According to developers it emulates a Digital Equipment Corporation VT-100 terminal. You can use this application to explore the Linux internals of the Android phone.
The K-9 mail app is an open source e-mail client. Its main use is to make it easy to sift through large volumes of mail. It is highly rated and runs very smoothly. The one fly in this app's ointment may be the fact that it is power hungry and will drain your battery, something which some app users have identified as its only problem at the moment.
This open source app is great for list makers and people who need help to manage tasks in a timely manner. That is a major draw for Android users. Other features include the ability to set reminders, tags, sync with Google tasks and producteev.com, widget, custom filters and fun reminders. Many of the ongoing errors are now fixed like the producteev related issues. If you are interested in other Android to do lists check out this article : The Best Android To Do List Apps.