Wednesday, October 12, 2011

A big THANKS (and clocks!)

Hi all! My first blog post, my intro, I did on 23 July, just a few days after I got my Samsung Galaxy S2. Since then, I've done just under 40 blog posts about apps and widgets and games and everything in between about my phone!

I've had great feedback so far, and I keep getting more and more visitors every week, so thanks to all for visiting! Since July I've had more than 10000 page views on this blog, and without my loyal readers and followers that wouldn't have happened!

Anyway, I'll try my best to keep the good posts coming, I still have lots to cover about my phone, and now that I've used an Android based device, I'll never go back! Don't get me wrong, my wife has the iPhone 4, and it's also a great device, and lots of my friends are very loyal to their Blackberries!

Well, thanks again for the great feedback and support so far!

Just for fun, here is my 6th home screen on my phone, it has all the analogue clocks that comes standard with the Galaxy S2:

And, as always, till next time!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Cool free live wallpapers

One of the very sweet features of the Galaxy S2, and Android phones in general, is there ability to display live wallpapers - if you don't know what this means, it's basically an animated wallpaper, but not just simple animations like GIF files for example - these can be interactive and feature some very cool effects and so on.

I did a quick search, and found a few very cool ones, and best of all, they're all free!

EDIT: I've just done a post with some more awesome, FREE live wallpapers :)

First one is a very nice Koi pond, with live (digital though :) fish that you can feed, and when you touch the screen you see the ripples in the water, which is quite nice. Here are some screen shots (but these don't really do it justice, best would be to just download it and check it out yourself in real time!):

In the last one I tried showing the ripples in the water, but it didn't work that well.

Get it here

The next one I have is 3D FireFlies - this one also looks great. Here are some screen shots:

Get it here

After that one I have Inferno Galaxy, which looks like a space scene that's on fire. Very cool! Here are some shots:

Get it here

My second last option is Snowfall live wallpaper:

Very pretty (a bit girly though, I like the much more manly Inferno Galaxy YEAH!! :)

Anyway, get it here

And the last one I checked out is some nice clouds with LIGHTNING - who doesn't like lightning hehe:

I took about 20 shots just to get a decent lightning flash, these were pretty much the best ones I could get.

Get it here

There you have it, 5 really nice Live Wallpapers for your Galaxy S2/Android phone. Now, I can imagine some of these can be quite a battery hog, but I don't have any stats on those. I do charge my phone every day, as the battery doesn't last, so for now I'll leave one of them on and will let you know if it makes that big a difference.

If you have some Live Wallpapers you'd like to recommend, feel free to leave a comment!

Cheers, and as always, till next time!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

How to turn off the "fully charged" sound

If you also have a Samsung Galaxy S2, by now you would have noticed that the phone gives you a nice and loud ding when it's fully charged, which is perfect if you want to be awoken in the middle of the night!

Unfortunately, there isn't a way to turn of this bloody annoying sound with the normal settings - you can root your device, but most users don't know how (or don't want to) do that - me included. Luckily, someone has created a nice little app especially for the Galaxy S2, that mutes your phone just before it gets fully charged. It even has some settings, like when you want the app to be "active" and so on.

Aside from that, it doesn't do anything else, but it's a great app if you charge the phone overnight in your room when you sleep.

Get it here

Till next time!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Some nice Widgets

One of the many many ways to customize your Galaxy S2, is by adding custom widgets to your home screen. These come in all shapes and sizes, and most of them give you several options on how the widgets looks and works, etc.

Here is one of my screens filled with some widgets I like:

1. The first one I have on there is the APN on/off widget - what that basically does is it turns off cellular data (very handy if you live in South Africa, and cannot afford the ludicrously expensive data packages available) - get it here

2. The second one might puzzle you a bit, it's my Blizzard Mobile Authenticator - if you play any of Blizzard's games on your PC (Like World of Warcraft or Star Craft 2), then this is just a little extra security. When logging in on your account, it will also ask for the code this widget generates. It keeps on generating new ones, so if you're also worried about account theft, then you got to get this on your Android phone - get it here

3. Next to that I have a flash light widget, which instantly turns on the LED on the back of my phone, turning it into a handy flash light :) - get it here

4. The first icon in my second row is a link to one of my Google Reader feeds (to this blog actually) - for that I have the 3rd party Google Reader app gReader - I find it works a bit better than Google's own version. Get it here

5. Then I have a data counter widget, showing me the amount of incoming and outgoing data for the month, both for Wi-fi and 3G - once again a handy little app if you have to pay extra for cellular data - get it here

6. Next to that is a battery widget, the normal battery icon doesn't give you an exact estimate of how much battery life you have remaining, this one gives you a nice percentage value - get it here

7. This is the stock standard Google Search Widget that comes with the phone, here you can type anything in, and search either the web, your apps, your contacts or all of the above. You can tap the Mic icon to say what it is you are looking for :)

8. The last widget I have on here is Evernote - this is a notes taking app, and allows you to quickly take a written note, a note with a photo or video, or recording something. It works well, and is a nice and quick way of making a note. The only thing I didn't like about this one is that you must register for a free account to be able to use it on your phone - I have registered on close to a billion sites already (or so it feels). Anyway,  get it here

There are lots more cool widgets out there of course. Feel free to leave a comment and suggest some of your favourite widgets, I'll have a look, and if they're as cool as you say, I'll do a little review of them!

As always, till next time!