I’ve been using Freshbooks (disclaimer: I get a commission if you sign up with them) since 2007 as my online accounting and invoicing service and in that time I’ve seen them change from a very basic online invoicing service to a full-service, cloud-based accounting system that includes projects, time tracking, estimates, reporting and an API that you can use to program your own customer support system. I’ve used Freshbooks to create estimates for website work, manage time in projects and invoice for completed work, hosting expenses and even billing for monthly rent on rental properties. It is efficient, simple and easy to use for customers receiving estimates and invoices.
I was glad to see that my Chromecast device arrived today. After waiting a few weeks for them to be in stock, mine has finally arrived. I’ll go into the details of what’s included in the package and how to set it up in another post, but first I want to share some information that it took me a while to figure out to get it up and running. After I had set up my device and the app on my phone, I wanted to set it up in Chrome so that I could cast from my computer, as well. I went to the Chrome Web Store to look for the Chromecast app, but when I typed Chromecast in the search bar, there were no results found. I searched through Google help and kept getting sent to the setup page, which I didn’t need because I had already set up the device with my phone.
Via an Androinica article, I just found out that Instagram is finally available for the Android OS. So now, finally, all of us Android users can find out what you iPhone users have been raving about for years. I guess because of the history of Instagram-like apps in the Google Play store, the actual Instagram app doesn’t show up in the first two app results when you do a search for Instagram. I gave up browsing through the 494 app results and went back to the original article, which conveniently had a link to download Instagram for Android from the Google Play store.
Having not used Instagram before, I found the installation and setup simple and following iPhone users I know who have Instagram accounts to be an easy process. Having used a couple of Instagram-like apps for Android, my favorites being Camera ZOOM FX and Pixlr-o-matic, I have a suspicion (based on what I’ve read so far) that the camera and filter features aren’t necessarily better than other camera apps, but the Instagram community is what makes the app so successful.
I have had service with many different wireless providers over the years. My first cell phone was an early Nokia model offered by what was then Southwestern Bell Wireless, which then became SBC Wireless, which became Cingular, which then became AT&T Wireless. I used them for a couple of contract cycles and upgraded to a Nokia 6150 during that time period. I really liked the service and the coverage, but as a working college student, I was always looking for a better deal.
My next cell phone service provider was VoiceStream Wireless, which later became T-Mobile, because they offered very affordable service plans. By this time I had gotten married and paying for two cell phones was a challenge on a couple of teachers’ salaries. What we found with T-Mobile, however, was that the service wasn’t available anywhere except for large metropolitan areas and along Interstate highways. Because my wife is from rural East Texas, it was hard to have a cell phone that wouldn’t work when we would visit my in-laws.
It has been a fun 10-day span of exploring and downloading Android Market apps. Some I had wanted to try and others I had never heard of before. One thing I learned during this week and a half was that I can actually try out apps any time, because the Android Market allows you to get a refund for apps within 15 minutes of ordering them. That’s really handy if you’re wanting to try an app and have the time to try it out.
In this post, I’ll list the apps that are available today and next week I’ll do a recap of the apps that were available during the 10 billion downloads sale and start reviewing the apps I’m using. Today’s apps are as follows:
Today is Day 4 of the 10 cent app celebration by the Android Market, celebration 10 billion downloads. The only problem is that the Android Market is experiencing a payment processing issue and if you try to by one of the apps, you get the following error: “An error occurred while processing your purchase. Please try again later.”
You can still buy most of the 10 cent apps today, if you use the Amazon App store. The following are the 10 cent apps available in the Amazon App store today:
- Shazam Encore by Shazam Entertainment Ltd.
- Sentinel 3: Homeworld by Origin8 Technologies Ltd.
- Baseball Superstars 2011 by GAMEVIL, Inc
- Paper Camera by JFDP Labs LTD
- Farm Frenzy by HeroCraft Ltd
- TETRIS ® by ELECTRONIC ARTS INC (I know I already mentioned it, that’s why it’s at the top of the list.) This version of Tetris has great touch controls, allowing you to intuitively interact with the pieces.
- Blue Skies Donation Wallpaper by KITTEHFACE SOFTWARE
- Homerun Battle 3D by COM2US
- Reckless Getaway by POLARBIT
- Talking Tom Cat 2 by OUTFIT7
- Kids Learn to Read (Preschool) by INTELLIJOY
- ADWLauncher EX by ANDERWEB (I’ve been wanting this one for a while to control processes on my older phone, but this is a much better time to get it!)
- Space Physics by CAMEL GAMES
- Toki Tori by POLARBIT
- Can Knockdown 2 by INFINITE DREAMS
I’ll be reviewing the different apps I get this week over the next couple of months and let you know which of these apps I start using permanently. Hopefully, I’ll get a tablet some time soon and be able to check out the HD apps, as well.
The Android Market has surpassed 10 billion downloads and to celebrate, they are offering some great premium apps for 10 cents each, but only for 24 hours.
I just downloaded Endomondo Pro and Soundhound Pro for $.10 each. The 10 cent Android apps available as of this writing are the following:
- Minecraft – Pocket Edition
- SwiftKey X Keyboard
- Endomondo Sports Tracker PRO
- Great Little War Game
- SketchBook Mobile
- Fieldrunners HD
- Color & Draw for kids: phone edition
- Paper Camera
- 10 Billion Android Market Downloads and Counting (android-developers.blogspot.com)