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10 Best Apps for Android: 2014 Edition

10 Best Apps for Android: 2014 Edition

Google finished 2014 with millions of Android applications on its Google Play store, and each app, ranging from games to productivity tools, made great additions to the Play Store. Of these apps, the year 2014 also saw a notable set of high-quality Android apps, from lifestyle and entertainment apps through to productivity tools, and these apps gained enough admiration that they may be sustained for years.

Last year, we covered Must-Have Free Apps From A–Z! This is the companion article, wrapping up the best non-game apps for Android smartphones and tablets of the year. In this article, we have listed some applications that were announced as the ‘best stuff of the year’ on Google Play for 2014 and other award winning apps from the Play Store and other Android marketplaces that are must haves for your Android Phones. As in the previous piece, each app’s title has a download link.

If you think something is missing or shouldn’t be here, or you have spotted an excellent app that should be on the list, let us know about it in the comments section! We would love to hear from you!

1. MoboMarket

MoboMarket-Screenshots

    The Google Play Store comes as the default app marketplace with each and every Android based smartphone. Many users, however, are quite unaware of the other stores that can be used as a substitute to this default store.The application MoboMarket, developed by Moborobo, is an one-stop application store for Android mobile users. It is basically a third-party Android Market Application with a lot of applications that are not available on Google Play. The newer version of the app features Geo-location and content pushing systems that help users find all the relevant apps based on their geographic location, such as events, offers, discounts, etc. MoboMarket comes with a wide range of apps and games with a nice and easy user interface.

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    2. Afterlight

    Afterlight

      Afterlight, a powerful photo editing app, and one of the most loved iOS apps, is now available on the Google Play Store as well. This application comes with dozens of powerful photo editing tools such as cropping, rotating or the addition of borders for tweaking your pictures. Afterlight features nearly five dozen filters, special effects, and lots more surfaces that can make your photos really stand out.

      3. Mailbox

      mailbox-android

        Mailbox, the most popular email application for iPhone, is now available on Google Play Store for Android lovers. This application is so popular that it was bought by the cloud storage company Dropbox few months after the launch for about $100 million. Mailbox is an alternative way to cope with spam emails. This application is compatible with Gmail and iCloud email accounts. Mailbox enables you to manage emails more effectively in a SMS-like chat system. Features like swiping, annoying senders, reminders and more put this amazing tool among 2014’s most impressive apps released so far.

        4. SwiftKey Keyboard

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        SwiftKey

          SwiftKey is a free, award-winning keyboard application for Android Phones that learns from the user and delivers the best next-word prediction autocorrect feature, over 800 emoji (emoticons) and much more! It’s the most useful smart keyboard for Android Smart Phones for fast messaging, chatting, texting and emailing, becoming the default across all your apps. The Swiftkey keyboard has perfect features including over 30 colorful themes, different layouts for different devices screens, and supports over 80 languages.

          5. Flipboard

          android-flipboard

            Flipboard is one of my favorite apps because it’s a tailored miniature magazine for internet content. Flipboard also won 2014 Tabby Awards competition in the News & Magazines Users’ Choice category.This useful app takes top stories from the web and re-formats them into an app through text and images, so you can easily read them by swiping up and down. Flipboard also lets you plug in your Twitter or Facebook profiles so that you can pull links that people talk about on social media.

            6. Google Keep

            google keep

              If you want a quick way to pen down your thoughts, Google Keep is certainly worth having. It allows you to create notes with text, by voice (automatic transcription) as a list or with photos. These notes will then appear in chronological order. The amazing thing is that these notes will be saved online automatically, so you can access them on your computer’s web browser.

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              7. Microsoft Office Mobile

              Microsoft Office

                The most useful tool for students and business people is Microsoft’s office suite. It used to cost $99 per year, but, thankfully, it’s free now. The free Microsoft productivity suite for Android users allows you to view Office documents and make edits. This app also lets you save all your documents on OneDrive cloud storage, so you can access them on your computer.

                8. Pocket

                pocket

                  Many of you like to read articles on the web. Sometimes, though, when you find an interesting article, you’re at work or too busy to read it right away. By using Pocket extension or bookmarklet in your browser, you can save the story to read it later. Pocket’s Android app lays out web pages in a simple, book-like view and stores the article off-line so you can still catch up even while in a non-coverage area. Pocket was also announced as the best news application of 2014 by Evernote Platform Awards.

                  9. DuoLingo

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                  duolingo

                    DuoLingo has been chosen as the best in the education category app of 2014 by Google. It allows you to learn numerous languages like English, Spanish, Portuguese, French, German, Italian, Irish, Dutch, and Danish. Moreover, DuoLingo is absolutely free and has no annoying advertisements.

                    10. Ultimate Study Timer

                    ultimate

                      Ultimate Study Timer is a dark themed, sleek pomodoro technique study timer. Like most pomodoro timers, it’s designed for students and book lovers to keep track of study periods and short breaks. The customizability and its alarm method make Ultimate Study Timer special. The app lets you hand-select the duration of each study and break period individually. The app reminds you through unique vibration patterns when it’s time to study or break. The icon in the notification bar also indicates the running time. It’s simply the most effective and useful pomodoro timer application yet.

                      Featured photo credit: close up of woman hands using smart phone at the bar via shutterstock.com

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                      Last Updated on February 15, 2019

                      7 Tools to Help Keep Track of Goals and Habits Effectively

                      7 Tools to Help Keep Track of Goals and Habits Effectively

                      Now that 2011 is well underway and most people have fallen off the bandwagon when it comes to their New Year’s resolutions (myself included), it’s a good time to step back and take an honest look at our habits and the goals that we want to achieve.

                      Something that I have learned over the past few years is that if you track something, be it your eating habits, exercise, writing time, work time, etc. you become aware of the reality of the situation. This is why most diet gurus tell you to track what you eat for a week so you have an awareness of the of how you really eat before you start your diet and exercise regimen.

                      Tracking daily habits and progress towards goals is another way to see reality and create a way for you clearly review what you have accomplished over a set period of time. Tracking helps motivate you too; if I can make a change in my life and do it once a day for a period of time it makes me more apt to keep doing it.

                      So, if you have some goals and habits in mind that need tracked, all you need is a tracking tool. Today we’ll look at 7 different tools to help you keep track of your habits and goals.

                      Joe’s Goals

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                        Joe’s Goals is a web-based tool that allows users to track their habits and goals in an easy to use interface. Users can add as many goals/habits as they want and also check multiple times per day for those “extra productive days”. Something that is unique about Joe’s Goals is the way that you can keep track of negative habits such as eating out, smoking, etc. This can help you visualize the good things that you are doing as well as the negative things that you are doing in your life.

                        Joe’s Goals is free with a subscription version giving you no ads and the “latest version” for $12 a year.

                        Daytum

                          Daytum

                          is an in depth way of counting things that you do during the day and then presenting them to you in many different reports and groups. With Daytum you can add several different items to different custom categories such as work, school, home, etc. to keep track of your habits in each focus area of your life.

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                          Daytum is extremely in depth and there are a ton of settings for users to tweak. There is a free version that is pretty standard, but if you want more features and unlimited items and categories you’ll need Daytum Plus which is $4 a month.

                          Excel or Numbers

                            If you are the spreadsheet number cruncher type and the thought of using someone else’s idea of how you should track your habits turns you off, then creating your own Excel/Numbers/Google spreadsheet is the way to go. Not only do you have pretty much limitless ways to view, enter, and manipulate your goal and habit data, but you have complete control over your stuff and can make it private.

                            What’s nice about spreadsheets is you can create reports and can customize your views in any way you see fit. Also, by using Dropbox, you can keep your tracker sheets anywhere you have a connection.

                            Evernote

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                              I must admit, I am an Evernote junky, mostly because this tool is so ubiquitous. There are several ways you can implement habit/goal tracking with Evernote. You won’t be able to get nifty reports and graphs and such, but you will be able to access your goal tracking anywhere your are, be it iPhone, Android, Mac, PC, or web. With Evernote you pretty much have no excuse for not entering your daily habit and goal information as it is available anywhere.

                              Evernote is free with a premium version available.

                              Access or Bento

                                If you like the idea of creating your own tracker via Excel or Numbers, you may be compelled to get even more creative with database tools like Access for Windows or Bento for Mac. These tools allow you to set up relational databases and even give you the option of setting up custom interfaces to interact with your data. Access is pretty powerful for personal database applications, and using it with other MS products, you can come up with some pretty awesome, in depth analysis and tracking of your habits and goals.

                                Bento is extremely powerful and user friendly. Also with Bento you can get the iPhone and iPad app to keep your data anywhere you go.

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                                You can check out Access and the Office Suite here and Bento here.

                                Analog Bonus: Pen and Paper

                                All these digital tools are pretty nifty and have all sorts of bells and whistles, but there are some people out there that still swear by a notebook and pen. Just like using spreadsheets or personal databases, pen and paper gives you ultimate freedom and control when it comes to your set up. It also doesn’t lock you into anyone else’s idea of just how you should track your habits.

                                Conclusion

                                I can’t necessarily recommend which tool is the best for tracking your personal habits and goals, as all of them have their quirks. What I can do however (yes, it’s a bit of a cop-out) is tell you that the tool to use is whatever works best for you. I personally keep track of my daily habits and personal goals with a combo Evernote for input and then a Google spreadsheet for long-term tracking.

                                What this all comes down to is not how or what tool you use, but finding what you are comfortable with and then getting busy with creating lasting habits and accomplishing short- and long-term goals.

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