Best Android apps June 2014

APC has collated the best Android apps June 2014 on the Google Play Store. This month, we’re enjoying the wonders of IFTTT productivity, remote desktop control and a beautiful carousel of photos.

IFTTT

ifttt1By: IFTTT
Price: Free
Download from: Google Play

When revolutionary productivity service IFTTT made the jump from the web to mobile nearly a year ago, a few eyebrows were raised. Not that IFTTT was now available for smartphones – in fact, it’s a perfect fit for the mobile platform – but rather that it was an iOS exclusive, snubbing the far more versatile (and potentially IFTTT-friendly) Android operating system.

In any case, IFTTT is here now, and if you’re an Android user it’s worth your attention. IFTTT stands for “If This, Then That”: it’s a task automation service that executes a particular function if a particular condition is satisfied. That description sounds a little dry until you consider the 98 popular channels that IFTTT has going for it, just begging you to include them in a roll-your-own ‘recipe’: services like Dropbox, Facebook, Gmail, Instagram, Twitter, WordPress and stacks more.

IFTTT recipes, once set up, are totally automated for you, and can be things like “Save my Facebook photos to Dropbox”, “Email me if new LinkedIn jobs appear”, “Always set my latest Instagram as my Android wallpaper” and so on. Spend a little time dabbling with IFTTT and it’s quite amazing how useful the service can become, and the new Android version, like its iPhone counterpart, unlocks six new exclusive mobile channels. On Android these are: device, location, notifications, phone call, photos and SMS. Egads, the possibilities!


Chrome Remote Desktop

chrome remote1By: Google
Price: Free
Download from: Google Play

There’s almost no end of PC and Mac remote control/desktop solutions for mobile devices, but the majority of them will charge you a fee for the convenience. Not so Google, which recently released Chrome Remote Desktop for Android.

Setup’s as simple as you could hope for: you’ll require Chrome on your desktop (obviously), but all you need then is to download the host add-on from the Chrome Web Store, set up a PIN for security and you’re away.

We tested this on a smartphone and it was more than adequate, although we imagine the remote control experience would feel more comfortable on the larger display of a tablet. But in either case, Chrome Remote Desktop could be a life-saver if you’re in a pinch at work and you need a file from your home PC (or vice versa).


Carousel

carousel1By: Dropbox
Price: Free
Download from: Google Play

There’s an episode of Mad Men where Don Draper brainstorms a marketing strategy for a slide projector, which he whimsically dubs ‘the Carousel’: a time machine that lets us revisit moments from the past with our loved ones.

With its new Carousel app, Dropbox hasn’t really changed all that much from Draper’s emotional vision (they’ve even kept the name). Carousel is essentially a gallery app for all the photos in your device and Dropbox folder, with easy share functions.

Carousel’s killer feature is it automatically uploads all your images as you take them to Dropbox; this is great for users who aren’t careful with backing up their photography data, but less so for people who don’t want to put too much strain on their Dropbox quota…