What is Android, How to use it,
and what's it good for?
Or what I what I love about my smart
phones and tablets, and discovered while
playing with them.
Mark S. Zinzow
What is Android?
"Android is an operating system based on the
Linux kernel, and designed primarily for
touchscreen mobile devices such as
smartphones and tablet computers. Initially
developed by Android, Inc., which Google
backed financially and later bought in 2005" ...
What is Android?
A versatile operating environment to do
more stuff for free, or at lower cost, than
most any other computing environment
with low cost hardware.
Best Android Apps
The Guide for Discriminating
By Mike Hendrickson, Brian
What kinds of devices run Android?
Smartphones, TV Media Streamers,
Tablets, Ebook Readers, Netbooks,
Smart Watch, Car Computers,
What flavors does it come in?
Release No. - Name
Android 2.0-1 - Eclair
- Ice Cream Sandwich
Android 4.1-3 - Jelly Bean
- Key Lime Pie
*Stock vs. Custom
How do I use it? (The Basic UI)
Touch Controls - Tap, Long Press, & swipe (like single
click, double or right-click, and scroll)
Home screen(s) (like Windows Desktop)
Adding & Removing shortcuts
Common buttons: Home, Menu, Back & Search
Recent Apps button replaced Menu and Search in Android
Virtual Keyboards & Text Editing
Notification Area or Status Bar
Settings e.g. Sync & AutoSync
Tap: Used to select a button or icon, e.g. launch app,
select a menu item or paste button
Long Press, or Touch & Hold: Select object for drag
(e.g. to trash), or cut, copy, or paste
Double Tab: Used to toggle zoom in/out
Pinch: Used to zoom in or out with fine control
Swipe or Slide: Scroll through home screens, pages of
a document or web site, etc.
Two finger scroll or drag
Touch Control – Pinch Example
Example Home Screens
Notice the notification area at the top, and the standard
control buttons are the same on each of these three screens
How to customize an Android home screen, part 1: Launcher basics
Adding & Removing shortcuts
Long Press on an empty area to pop up add menu, or an icon or shortcut to
select it to drag to trash icon which will pop up after you select something.
Voice Search gives you Google searches and a lot more with out
having to type anything!
Everything You Didn't Know You Could Do with Google's Voice
How to Create a Custom Voice Command for Anything on Android
Call [name or number]
Note to Self [message to email]
Navigate to [place or address]
Go To [website]
Send Text to [name or number, message]
Email [name, message] Play [group or song title]
Android Voice Commands
Android 4.4 KitKat lets you say 'OK Google' to activate
Common Android Buttons
3.0 & Above
Menu, Home, Back & Search (in 1 & 2) vs. Back, Home, Recent Apps (in 3.x & 4.x + )
Android Fragmentation – Truth or FUD? Hardware or Software?
More Buttons & Icons
Dots = new
Android Keyboards: Hardware & Virtual
Standard default Keyboards
Hacker's Keyboard - Adds Fn/Tab/Ctrl/Esc keys, and esp. useful arrow keys!
Text Editing: Move, Copy & Paste
How to Copy and Paste on an Android
Guide: Using the OnScreen Keyboard on your Android Phone
TIP: Buy at least one extra stylus
Most fingers are larger than keyboard buttons or letters on a screen. There are
usually hundreds of auctions on eBay where you can get 8 or 10 Styli for under a
Just drop a half dozen auctions or so into Gixen, or similar snipe service, and place them in the
same group to easily get one at your target price! http://www.gixen.com/
Settings: Look Through Them!
Settings to Save Battery or $
What can I run on Android?
Software programs are called apps (short for
applications) and distributed through
Markets, Stores or web sites.
Google Play (formerly Android Market)
(Tip: Count stars, read reviews, check screen shots,
and similar apps before installing.)
Amazon Appstore for Android (Free paid app every day)
Getjar (limited app market often found on cheap tablets)
Google Play Hits One Million Android Apps - July 24, 2013
35+ Best Websites for Free Android Apps
How do I bootstrap a Market that didn't come with my device?
APK Downloader Chrome Browser Extension – Downloads apps to your PC
Sideload. (Side-load). To move files / content from one local device (such as a computer) to
another local device (such as a phone.) http://www.phonescoop.com/glossary/term.php?gid=485
TIP: Keep your .apk (Application PacKage File) install files with version numbers, so
you can revert to an old version, uninstall apps that run in the background when not
using them, or reinstall a hung app even when offline (much faster than rebooting on
How to Sideload Android Apps
Websites for APK archives
or direct downloads
Warning: There is greater risk of getting APS containing malware
when bypassing an approved market such as Google Play.
AndroidDrawer.com – simple download of new and
older versions of Android Apps. Don't like the latest app
release? Go back to a perfectly working previous one!
(Updated) How to Download Android Apps APK to PC from Google Play
Android FileHost is
(“Real APK Leecher” exe - May be worth knowing about
a free file hosting
should APK Downloader stop working.
http://www.apkfiles.com/ Neat Android themed web list.
http://www.tucows.com/mobile/android Well established
Nice search and rank
http://www.freewarelovers.com/android User submitted...
I'm not sure I'd trust these:
http://www.apkarchive.com/ Annoying pop-up windows.
http://www.apkdownloads.com/ Same as above.
Android Vending - Download
android apps without access to Google
This App needs Root, what's Root?
Basically a way to take full control over your device.
Downside: apps that require DRM like Netflix
may refuse to run, or worse...
Hack your Android like a pro: Rooting and ROMs explained
1,040,000,000 results - over a Billion!
Angry Birds, Arcade Classics like Bejeweled, ...,
too many to review, this could be a presentation in itself.
TIP: Find a game partner online anytime night or day for
Scrabble, Chess, Bridge, etc.
Search Google play for "online game"
? Audience Favorites ?
Some Useful Apps
There will be a lot more that I will have time to highlight, or even
know about myself! e.g. Shush! When you turn your ringer off
for a meeting or movie, this app turns it back on afterwards.
Puffin, Dolphin, Firefox,
Chrome, Opera, Maxthon,
Baidu, Boat, Orweb...
Browser Wars: the best 10 Android browsers go toe-to-toe
Mobile vs. Desktop Web Pages
See also an early attempt to
get around Gasbuddy map
navigation limits on Android
Browser User Agent Setting
Gecko user agent string reference
Custom User-Agent String
– Android Firefox Add-ON
8 Reasons Android Owners
Should Try Dolphin Browser
Puffin Web Browser Free –
Settings, Mobile browser mode
Puffin Virtual Track Pad Two Finger Drag
QR Code Reader
Use your camera to read and load a URL, add a contact entry
to your address book, add an event to your calendar, or login
to a WiFi AP, purchase something in a printed ad, etc.
See also: http://www.qrstuff.com/
for one of the best QR Code generators.
Super aTool Box-cache battery
TIP: Move as many apps as
possible to your SD or
X-plore File Manager
ES File Explorer File
AirDroid TIP: Point camera at
display before tapping the scan button.
Stitcher Radio - News & Talk
Public Radio & Podcast
VLC for Android Beta
HBO Go, TWC TV, Xfinity player, YouTube,
Hulu Plus, Netflix, TuneIn Radio, etc.
eBook & PDF viewers
EBookDroid - PDF & DJVU Reader
Kindle, B&N Nook, etc.
See also for your desktop:
Apprentice Alf's Blog:
Free ebooks - Project Gutenberg
Baen Ebooks - Free Library
(Voice over Internet Protocol) Free calls & Free Video Chat
GrooVe IP - Free Calls + Text
Skype, Google Hangouts, &
type of app
Health & Fitness apps
Sleep as Android,
many Pedometer apps,
and many others
A $10 million
competition to bring
healthcare to the palm
of your hand.
GPS, Maps & Navigation
Candle, language translators and tutors,
flashlights, musical instruments,
recorder, text to speech, DLNA Server,
Remote control and Remote Desktop,
Hacker's Keyboard, Google Currents
Duolingo Gives A Fillip To Free
Language Learning With Crowdsourced
Any easy way to make my own App?
“If you’ve never tried programming before then
LiveCode is the perfect tool to get you started. Unlike
traditional coding languages it uses simple English
language that is intuitive and easy to learn.”
Create an iPad app in 3 minutes with LiveCode (18:46)
How Does LiveCode Work? (0:45)
More Programming Tools
AIDE - Android IDE - Java, C++
Pépé le compiler
Build a Simple Android App Java language, Eclipse, & basic
*IDE = Integrated development environment
100 Tools to Develop the Next Killer iOS or Android App
What happens when you go App happy?
Or too much of good things...
ERROR: Low on space - Internal phone storage is getting low
Clear Storage Space on Your Phone Without Rooting
How To Free Storage Space On Your Android Device (suggests DiskUsage app - VERY GOOD!)
How to increase internal memory of android phones (suggests History Eraser app among others)
Consider carefully how you want to manage your apps given the space on your device!
SD Maid - System
Virtual Android for Windows
5 Best FREE Android Emulators For Windows 8,7,XP
Android SDK mobile device emulator — a virtual mobile device that runs on your computer
Windroy: A Better Android Emulator for Windows
Install Jelly Bean Android 4.3 on Windows 8 With VirtualBox
Genymotion Finally Gives us a Good Jelly Bean Desktop Emulator
How to Install Android in VirtualBox
Windows, Linux, U
Run Android 4 ICS (Ice Cream Sandwich) on a Mac or PC with VirtualBox
How to install and run Android VM on VMware Player
Q & A, Demos, More?
Thank you for your attention. I hope this inspires fun.
Questions? Demonstration Requests?
Encore apps/slides? ? Audience Favorite Apps ?
My presentation slides are available online at:
Sketch Guru – Transform pictures to black-white/color sketch
with 13 effects including: Gouache, PencilSketch, ColorPencil,
WaterColor, HalfTone, SimpleSketch, ComicB&W, BlackBoard,
BlackBoardColor, Print, B&W, PencilSketch2 and No sketch
Plasma Sound – fully-featured,
100% free music instrument inspired by
the Theremin, Continuum, Keyboard and
Gmote – Remote control for your
computer, allowing you to start and
control movies and music at a distance,
Control PowerPoint, WiFi
touchpad/keyboard. (One of the first.)
– OBD fault
Security Tool: KeePassDroid password database with sync to PC.
FormFiller is a useful tool that helps you
to save time on filling web data (such as
names, cell number, and mailing address).
Sound Recorder& Voice Recorder –
Sound Recorder is a high quality (voice)
recorder/player,it designed for simplicity and
able to record voice notes/voice memos/audio
Digital Inspiration - Protect your Android Phone with these Security Apps
Google Android Device Manager
Prey Anti Theft
Lookout Security & Antivirus
The Android Device Manager
shows a list of all Android
phones and tablets that are
connected to your Google
Account and helps you locate
them on a Google Map. You can
ring your phone (in case it is
hiding beneath the pillow) from
the browser, lock the device
with a custom PIN or perform a
factory reset which permanently
deletes all the data on your
See More in the DI article!
Wheres My Droid
Apps that require Root
Greenify *ROOT: Renew my Phone - Helps you identify
& hibernate misbehaving apps when not in use to stop
them from lagging your device and leeching the battery.
[root] Ntfs Mounter - “Automatically mount and
dismount NTFS/FAT/EXT2/EXT3/EXT4 formatted
USB Sticks, USB HDD, SD Cards”
Paragon exFAT, NTFS & HFS+ - Mount Windows NTFS or Mac OS X HFS+
Hide my Root - On some roms (usually rooted stock
roms), Hide my Root will allow you to use Google
Videos and similar apps on a rooted phone. On custom
roms such as CyanogenMod, it will not allow you to use
Google Videos and similar apps on a rooted phone.
Wifi Password Recovery [ROOT]
After android Root?
Safe Backup Root
- Complete data
ZDbox ( Root Task Killer ) system optimize toolbox