App Roundup is our monthly feature which highlights a select number of mobile apps that we find to be not only useful, but fun and stable as tested by our techs. At the end of each month we put together a short list, give some basic feedback and details on each app and provide a stability rank. This month our selected apps include entertainment, gaming, shopping and socializing.
Stability rank based on a scale of 1-5 with 5 being most stable.
1. Handcent SMS
Handcent SMS is a text messaging replacement app. The best way to describe Handcent is that it ‘pretties up’ texting. You can customize your text boxes and fonts with colors and each contact can have their own colors if you choose. Handcent takes over notifications as well. Contacts can have unique notification icons or simply use the standard colorful Handcent notification icon. If you prefer using graphical smiley faces, then Handcent will make you :). Along with a handful of standard smileys, Handcent has an add-on app to enable emoji smileys.
Handcent offers a number of other customization options including custom LED colors for notification, vibration, privacy mode and other settings.
Stability Rank: 5
Many smartphone users are using either Pandora, Spotify or some other streaming music service to listen to their favorite tunes. iHeartRadio is similar in nature, but with one large difference. Unlike Pandora or Spotify, iHeartRadio plays music from their network of radio stations. The streams are live with a couple second delay. The upside for iHeartRadio is that it supplies music and content from radio stations you may already be a fan of so you can take the radio station with you. You can set favorites and scan for other stations as well.
This app was recently updated and with the update came a speed enhancement, making interaction quick and straightforward. Along with the speed improvement came increased stability. We have to acknowledge the iHeartRadio app had some issues with stability in the past and while we believe them to be tied to advertisement time and other radio factors, those issues seem to be a thing of the past. It’s only due to the stability issues in the past that we deducted rank points for this stability rating. If you enjoy radio, then we definitely recommend iHeartRadio.
Stability Rank: 4.5
3. Sudoku Free
If you’re a fan of Sudoku, then you likely get new puzzles wherever you can find them. Sudoku Free provides 500 puzzles spanning 5 difficulty levels. The app tracks statistics, provides hints, notes and board customization. If you haven’t tried Sudoku or are an avid fan and need more puzzles, give Sudoku Free a try.
Stability Rank: 5
4. Newegg Mobile
Newegg is one of the premier online retailers for all things tech and computer related. Newegg carries all sorts of computer hardware, complete systems, TVs, appliances, gaming products and a wide variety of other tech items. The Newegg Mobile app allows you to browse through their online catalog of goods with ease. One of the best features of Newegg is their daily deals. The mobile app makes browsing daily deal products smooth and simple.
Along with browsing their online product catalog, the mobile app offers voice search in addition to traditional searching. A big plus for Newegg Mobile is the scan feature which allows you to scan an item’s barcode and provide you with the Newegg price and product details such as free shipping or reviews. Next time you’re at a retailer just scan the barcode of a product and Newegg will give you their comparable price. You might even save some money!
Stability Rank: 5
Keep in mind although we test the apps, some react differently given the wide range of phones. Always read reviews to help with decision making and make sure you read the app descriptions and info for additional details regarding functionality.
Want more? View previous App Roundups!
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Let us know your thoughts on any of these apps in the comments. Have you used or tried any of these apps? What has been your experience? Would you like to see a specific app reviewed? Let us know!