Tell me about Android

I’ve had three iPhones since the original came out. My contract is up with AT&T and I’m looking for a new phone. I’m a bit underwhelmed with the iPhone 5s and I really want a larger screen. I’m strongly considering a Nexus 5 phone since they come unlocked and are rated decently for what they cost.

I have a Nexus 7 tablet so I’m not completely unfamiliar with Android, but my wife uses it more than I do since I use our iPad more.

I have the following questions.

  1. Will I need an antivirus? I’ve heard reports indicating that I might.

  2. What is a good app for scanning?

  3. What is a good sudoku game?

  4. Any other apps I should look at? Other than Sudoku and Angry Birds, I don’t do much gaming on my phone or a tablet.

Other than the scanning, I can test out the apps on my Nexus 7. I recall the Facebook app being awful and not working at all. Have they fixed that?

  1. It can’t hurt.
  2. I use LookOut. To my knowledge, I have never been infected, nor has LookOut found anything.
  3. I play “Enjoy Sudoku” occasionally, but there’s a huge buttload of other Sudoko apps there.
  4. Feedly for reading RSS feeds, Digg, Reddit Sync, Netflix, Zinio for magazines, Google Keep for lists, off the top of my head.

I’m way addicted to Cross Me. I have lost entire Saturday afternoons by putting something up on netflix and then just playing Cross Me.

I’ve never gotten an Android virus (that I know of, I do scan) largely by following common sense: getting apps from trusted sources, not side-loading pirated games/apps and that sort of thing.

Not counting games, my most commonly used apps on my tablet are:
Ninesky Browser (like it better than stock, Nexus probably has Chrome)
TuneIn Radio
Comcast/Xfinity’s Player
News Republic
Comic Rocket (webcomic aggregator)

I also have Amazon’s App Store and Google Play. Amazon has a Free App of the Day which is sometimes pretty nice (and often anything I don’t care about) and Google Play has a free song of the day plus a lot of other free music opportunities. So I like to check both daily.

I’m new to Android, too, so I’ll follow this thread, but I’ll also recommend a good game that is totally worth the $1.99: SpellTower.

  1. I’ve never found the need. Use the official Android/Google “Play Store” to get apps, and you should have no problem.

  2. I use CamScanner for scanning. It seems to work well.

  3. No idea, but I’m sure there are plenty to choose from.

  4. So many, and most are the same or similar to Iphone apps. Shoot the Apple is a great free app. I worked through all the levels. Shoot the Apple 2 is good, but not as good as the first.

IMDb and the Food Network apps are good.

I have used the Amazon app store sparingly. They do not push, or even notify you about, updates to apps unless you happen to sign on the the app store.

Google Play is plenty for me.


Maybe but if you’re checking the app of the day anyway, it’s a self correcting problem.

I’m glad to know that an antivirus isn’t absolutely required. I checked and for the most part, the apps I use on my iphone are available. The main one that is missing is Amazon Instant video, but I don’t really use it on my phone that much.

Did you mean scanning the device for malware, or scanning documents into digital form?

As to malware. It’s out there, it’s a problem. There are apps that claim to protect you but the tests that have been run on them have shown them to be practically worthless.

The best strategy to to only download apps that have been popular for a long time. Not a guarantee, but it reduces the odds of bad stuff. Double check the most recent reviews of the app for anything odd that users notice.

Be aware that a lot of “regular” apps require you to let them access your contact list, location and other stuff that they clearly don’t need. Be very careful about this sort of thing. Kill the install if anything seems off.

I use OpenSudoku. Free and no ads. A lot of other Sudoku apps are just repackaged versions of this with ads. Lots of extra downloadable games.

Scanning documents into PDFs. I use Turbo Scan on my iPhone and Tiny Scan on my iPad. It comes in handy.

I use one called CamScanner. I recently jumped to Android (to a Note 3) from iPhone and used TurboScan previously, this app functions very similar.

I’ve also had no issues with viruses, but have had the occasional problem with intrusive/malicious adware. I’ve been using AppBrain Ad Detector for scanning, and it has successfully cleaned a couple of instances of sneaky adware that I couldn’t otherwise remove.

I use Sudoku Free from Genina. Haven’t tried their paid version, but the ads are not obtrusive.

The Facebook app seems to wax and wane in terms of how good it is. Every update is a crap shoot! At the moment, it’s pretty good. If you don’t like it, you can always access the Facebook mobile page through the browser; that’s pretty decent too.

Be sure you get Google Sky Map if you are at all into stargazing! The Kindle app is pretty good for reading if you can stomach the screen size.

That’s the one thing that troubles me about Android is that sometimes apps just break for what seems like no reason. My understanding is that this is because they have many different phones to work with and sometimes an app just won’t work with a specific phone. I’m hoping that since the Nexus is Google’s that I won’t have too many apps just not working.

Here’s a trick I recently learned: When you are reading reviews of apps before downloading them, you can set the Play Store settings to only show reviews from people using the same device as you are. It helps a lot in weeding out that particular issue.

Firefox has a mobile browser I’ve been using for several years. It has ad-block, which seems to me to be a necessity for mobile browsing. I stick to paid apps or very well-known free ones with no ads, and so far haven’t had any virus issues. My biggest adjustment when I switched from iPhone was the ads, but by doing the above I don’t deal with them at all and it’s nice. (Galaxy S4)

Funny enough, a few of the iPhone apps I use have ads, so that’s not going to be a dealbreaker for me. I’m looking forward to trying an Android phone especially since I will going from a 3.5 inch display to a 5 inch one.

Tim R. Mortiss, I did not know that. That makes things much easier.

Enjoy Sudoku is my favorite, already mentioned. I also have Sudoku 10,000 and Sudoku 4Ever.

A few games come to mind that really shine on a touch screen. Cut The Rope and Where’s My Water are classics. Pudding Monsters is a recent favorite.

Well, I just pulled the trigger and ordered a Nexus 5. I should arrive sometime next week. Once I get it set up, I’ll come back and post my impressions. based on this thread, and what I use on my iPhone, I plan on installing Netflix, Tapatalk, CamScanner, Facebook, Pandora, Kindle, a few of the games, Firefox, Roku, Parkmobile, and Shazam.