The Kindle Fire combines tablet computer functionality with Amazon.com’s e-book reader, the Kindle. The Kindle Fire is a handsome and handy piece of tech, and a great alternative for anyone feels that the iPad is a bit out of their price range. Unlike the iPad, however, the Fire runs on Android, not iOS, so some users might have a little difficulty rooting out the best Kindle Fire applications.
What about you? If you own a Kindle Fire but feel like you’re not getting much use out of it, make sure you study up on what the tablet is capable of. There are hundreds of useful programs for you to pick and choose over, and they can help you organize your day, work on some documents, or just wind down after a hard day’s work.
Here are five of the best apps available for the Kindle Fire:
Quick Office Pro HD – Need to get some work done on the go? QuickOfficeProHD is a must-have for your Kindle Fire. This app lets you view and edit Microsoft Word documents, PowerPoint presentations, and Excel spreadsheets. It also lets you open and view PDF files without the need to download a separate application. Quick Office Pro HD can also connect you to popular remote office services, including Google Docs, Dropbox, Evernote, and more.
Drawing Pad – Drawing Pad is a must-have for parents who want to encourage their kids’ creativity—and let’s be honest, adults will probably love it, too. It’s a finger-powered drawing program that features a huge assortment of drawing “materials,” including pencil crayons, markers, and paint. You can also mess around with stamps, stickers, and construction paper backgrounds.
Where’s My Water? – All work and no play, right? The Kindle Fire doesn’t boast the same massive game selection as an iPad, but you can still play some tablet gaming’s best offerings. Where’s My Water? is a physics-based puzzle game that stars an adorable alligator named Swampy. Your mission is to re-direct streams of water into Swampy’s bath. It’s harder than it sounds, given that the game takes place in the sewers of New York, so all kinds of unpleasant stuff can end up in the tub instead. It’s perfect for gamers of any age. You’ll be hooked.
Netflix – The Internet’s premier movie- and- television-streaming service is available on the Kindle Fire. The Kindle Fire’s version of the application loads quickly, is easy to use, and offers welcome options like easy access to subtitles.
Audible for Android – If you own any kind of Android device, Audible for Android should be your go-to app for audio books. You can pick your favorites from a huge library of classics, or try something new. Audible for Android also has a Sleep Mode, so you can drift off without having to worry about your Kindle Fire’s battery life.
For more great Kindle Fire app picks, check out:
The Best Apps for Your Kindle Fire at Hubpages
Top 14 Kindle Fire Apps at PCWorld
Best Kindle Fire Apps at DigitalTrends
Although the line between full-fledged tablet PC and eReader is becoming more and more blurry, vacationers, business travelers and students alike continue to flock to handheld devices which primarily focus on providing vast libraries of books at the touch of a fingertip, but provide just enough individual features to justify the purchase. Here are the 5 best eReaders and eBook-playing gadgets for anyone on the go. Needless to say, all make great personal purchases or gift-giving options.
Amazon Kindle Fire
With a full-color display and Amazon’s dedicated app store offering millions of entertainment options like TV shows, music and more, the Amazon Kindle Fire is sort of a souped-up eReader or stripped-down tablet, depending on how you want to look at it. The 7” touchscreen is not only bigger than other eReaders, but also in full-color. The Kindle Fire connects easily to Wi-Fi networks to provide for web browsing via Amazon’s Silk browser, and also offers enhanced features for Amazon Prime members, offering free books and streaming capabilities from select items from Amazon’s vast catalog. Priced at just under $200, the Kindle Fire quickly became the second-most popular tablet device (after iPad) when it debuted in 2011.
Sony’s dedicated eReader, the Sony Reader, is a lightweight and elegant device, designed to maximize battery life while providing crystal clear and paper-like displays. Priced at $129, it’s less expensive than the Kindle Fire, and is a great choice for travelers who need to unplug for a bit – a single battery-charge with the wireless turned off can last up to five weeks. The Sony Reader also boasts unprecedented and simple access to borrowing eBooks from public libraries, it’s as simple as pushing the public library icon.
Nook with GlowLight
Barnes & Noble’s Nook with GlowLight focuses on getting the light just right, no matter what the light situation. The soft, glowing light is optimized for low-light situations and designed so that it’s just bright enough for the reader to see, but not so bright as to distract others. Switching brightness is as simple as adjusting an onscreen slider and fonts can easily be made bigger and smaller, depending on your preference. The Nook also comes with built-in social features that allow you to easily connect with other Nook-using friends over Facebook to compare and recommend books you’ve read. The Nook retails for $139 and boasts a comfortable exterior and a battery that can last up to a month on a single charge.
Kobo eReader Touch
The Kobo eReader Touch is designed to provide an eReader that is simple and comfortable to use. Taking a cue from Apple’s iPad, the eReader Touch has one physical “home” button and uses the touchscreen for all other user input. You can spot a Kobo eReader Touch by its distinctive soft-quilted back, which makes it comfortable to hold with one hand or set in your lap. For non-English speakers, the Kobo is a great choice as the first eReader device to be available in multiple languages. It’s a great value too, with a $99.99 price tag that makes it the most cost-effective choice on the market. And if that’s not inexpensive enough, you can buy a Kobo eReader Touch for $79.99 that pushes ads or offers to you in exchange for the lower price.
Although the iPad is much more than just an eReader, its overwhelming popularity, sleek design and high-resolution Retina display make it great for taking books on the go. Sure, it’s got a high-resolution camera, hundreds of thousands of apps, and even the ability to take HD-quality videos, but as an eReader you can download apps from all the other competitive eReaders and enjoy access to their library books straight from you iPad. If cost is no object and you have an iPad anyway, you’ll probably want to consider using it to access the eReader libraries of all the other products we mentioned, whether by an official app or through other apps that let you access your libraries for devices like the Sony Reader via the iPad.
If it seems like everybody’s ten-year-old kid is making their own app these days—well, you’re right. From games to practical programs for that assist us in work and life, apps are fast becoming our primary problem-solvers. Apps can help us find directions, locate the closest retail outlet for our immediate needs, and calculate columns of numbers for those of us who are untalented in mathematics. There’s a reason why one of the iPhone’s taglines is “There’s an App for That.” But did you know that you can make your own app? It’s sinfully easy with the help of any of several programs that are designed for the task. There’s no need to understand and play with code.
Here are five ways you can make your own app:
App Inventor – Formerly known as Google’s App Inventor, you can make apps for Android by dragging-and-dropping content via a graphical interface with this program. There’s no need to understand any programming languages. As of August 2011, Google discontinued its support of App Inventor, and the open-source code is now part of the MIT Center for Mobile Learning. It’s free to use, and the source code can be distributed freely.
Appifier – Appifier lets you turn your WordPress site into an app for free. You simply sign in with your name and a password, personalize your app as you see fit, and then publish it to the App Store via one of Appifier’s publishing packages. Appifier also offers suggestions on how you can monetize your app.
Mobile Roadie – Mobile Roadie lets you build apps across a variety of platforms, including iOS, Android, and mobile web. There are various packages available across a wide range of pricing plans, and you can add and subtract features to customize your app (not to mention the final price tag) as necessary. It’s definitely a good choice for a business owner who needs a professional-looking option, power personal communicator or erstwhile social media celebrity.
Conduit Mobile – Conduit Mobile emphasizes ease-of-use for iOS, Android, and Windows Phone app development. The app platform lets developers analyze, deploy, and maintain their app for free via one control panel. The Conduit Mobile website also features a line of in-depth tutorial videos.
GameSalad – All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. GameSalad lets you develop sophisticated iOS, Android, mobile, and tablet games with drag-and-drop technology—no coding required. GameSalad’s in-app preview player lets you bug-test your games thoroughly, and you can publish your work to mobile game stores, and/or GameSalad’s arcade.
For more information on how to make your own apps, visit:
How to Make Your Own App at Popular Mechanics
Do It Yourself: Create Your Own Apps at PCMag.com