The best Android entertainment apps
Pocket Casts: best Android podcast app
If you’re into podcasts, you need a decent player – and Pocket Casts is the best around. It looks great, is strong in terms of discoverability, subscription, sync and management, and will happily notify you when new episodes of your favourites appear.
But it’s in playback that the app truly earns its way. Found a boring bit? Use the skip forwards button. Missed something important? Use the other skip button. Listening to something talky? Activate silence removal and volume boost, and up the playback speed. You’ll get a better experience and save time (which, natch, can be used to listen to more podcasts).
Instapaper: best Android read-later app
The web, increasingly, isn’t geared towards reading. It’s geared towards quickly taking in information, and seeing what else is on offer. During long-reads, you’re often bombarded by other things, trying to make you click away. Hence ‘read later’ systems, the original of which is the superb Instapaper.
You send content to Instapaper from a browser, and it arrives stripped of extraneous junk, leaving only the article’s text and imagery. Start scrolling and the app subtly shifts to full-screen, providing one of the most pleasing reading experiences on the platform - for whatever web pages you send to it.
FENIX 2: BEST ANDROID TWITTER CLIENT
If you demand your social media comes in text-message-sized chunks, Fenix 2 should be an immediate install on your Android device. This Twitter client supports multiple accounts, and makes it simple to delve into your tweets. Lists are easy to access, and direct messages are neatly presented like the output of a chat app.
One of the key aspects of the app is customisation. You can adjust colours and text size, how compact the layout is, and when a night mode is activated. Best of all, you can define and swipe between ‘columns’ of feeds – ideal if you spend most of your Twitter time buried in lists or mentions, rather than the main timeline.
Redshift: best Android educational app
There are quite a few Android astronomy apps, but Redshift excels through its no-nonsense, feature-packed approach. There’s little in the way of gloss and gimmicks; instead, this app doubles down on tools for efficiently exploring the heavens.
A virtual sky can be dragged about, or the app can use your accelerometer to detail what you’d be able to see if your device wasn’t in front of your face. If you fancy observing a specific celestial body, there’s an observatory option, or you can hurl yourself into space to peer at Saturn or hop aboard an asteroid hurtling through the void.