Best Android Apps for Families

The Good, The Bad and The Irrelevant

We see the good and the bad, and everything in-between. Sorting through the Android Marketplace of over 300,000 apps is no small task, but we’ve been steadily working towards finding the best stuff for your family, and giving you a breakdown of the cool and the drool (our version of the good & bad) on all types of apps, not just games.

All of the apps that we review have to pass a precursory inspection before we will even consider them for our review process. This means that we only review apps that have some relevance to families, aren’t malicious, and generally meet a certain level of quality.

The Best of the Best

But even though all of the apps that we review meet these initial criteria, there is still a huge difference between an acceptable app and a truly enjoyable app that surpasses our expectations.
It’s always a treat to stumble upon an app that is really well made, entertaining, engaging and has some sort of depth to the interaction that it provides. You can always tell when there has been an extra bit of effort and love built into an app, and (coming from people who use and review a bunch of different apps) it’s definitely appreciated.

These are the apps that stand apart from the others, they are some of Famigo’s favorites, and we think that your family will absolutely love them too:

Top Paid Apps

Cut the Rope – $0.99

A beautiful game with adorable characters and a gorgeous user interface. It plays off of really interesting and intricate physics puzzles. If Pixar had made a blockbuster app, this would be it. Although this app has been popular on Apple’s app store for a while, it is new to the Android Market.

Drawing Pad – $1.99

There are a lot of drawing apps out there, and a bunch that are supposedly designed especially for kids. From what we’ve seen, they’re mainly lackluster. (Meaning they look like bad rip-offs of Paint, with design queues taken from the 1980s, not that we don’t love the 80’s, but these apps aren’t even trying to be retro!) This drawing app, however, is fantastic. It’s clean, easy to use, and has a ton of choices for different colors and materials

X Construction – $1.43

We like this one so much that we keep on playing it, practically everyday, even though we’ve already reviewed it. It’s challenging, sometimes frustratingly so, but that’s what keeps us coming back to it over and over again. There’s something about being responsible for a train completing its journey that’s oddly satisfying.

Nano Panda – $0.97

There’s one word that describes this app: adorable. It’s another physics-based puzzle game, but it manages to be delightful through its game play, user interface, and excessive use of pandas. In our eyes there’s no such thing as too many pandas, so this app gets the Famigo seal of approval.

Top Free Apps

Peggle

This is a brightly colored, easy to play app that is fun for everyone. It has the capability of being multi-user, which we love. (It’s always more fun to play together!) There’s an especially nice touch built into the game, win a level and you’ll see what we’re talking about.

Angry Birds

This one really goes without saying. When an app has its own line of kid’s toys and a movie in the works, you
know there’s got to be something to it. What is that something? Probably the great graphics, cute characters, challenging game play and wide audience appeal. We’d happily pay for a version without ads, but that isn’t an option yet.

Shift Lite Puzzle Game

A really challenging puzzle game with a deceptively simple black and white look. Each level provides new (and progressively frustrating) challenges that can all be solved with four simple actions, figuring out which of the four and in what combination is the problem.


Android and Games Application

During our childhood years, we loved to play games. No matter how hot it was, or how heavily it rained for us our games (both indoor and outdoor) were more important. Seeing the interest of “everyone”, mobile service providers have incorporated the facility to play games on handset as well. These games are an integral part of the mobile application development services. Almost all the mobile phone service providers try to provide the best and latest games to the cell phone users. Some of the readers might argue and say who has the time to play games on mobile? Well many of us have. Like our yesteryears, these days also many people find it to be a good source to relax and have fun. Some like to play games during the breaks, free time, or when they are least interested in doing anything else.

Seeing the interest of everyone in games, android apps developers have developed more than ten thousand games. These exciting games are designed keeping in mind the varied interest of the people across the globe. Some of the best and popular Android games are Bonsai Blast, Robot Defense, Puzzle Blox, Gem Miner, Parallel Kingdom, Papi Jump, Papi Missile, Sketch Online, Air Ticket, Radiant, Sudoku, Project INF, Cesto, Wi-Fi Army, Brain Genius Deluxe, Nesoid, etc. Simply depending on your taste you have the option to choose the game of your choice. These games do not require any special settings and they can be easily downloaded on mobile phones. But all these games are not available for free. For some of these thrilling games you would be required to shell out some money from your pocket.

If you already have an Android with you, then you might be having these games and would be looking forward for something new. You can either download it from Android market or even contact and Android app developer, or a mobile app developer. These people have hands on experience to access open source development and are experienced to develop apps for android (including games). They have the necessary tools like supportive material and most important Android application framework. All this assists them to provide enhanced graphics and better supportive media required for developing 2D and 3D games.

To get a game developed for Android, call us today.


How To Develop Android Apps: Getting Started

In this article, I will give an introduction on how to develop Android apps. I will not get into many technical details but rather give an overview of the approaches you should consider before you get started.

Smartphones are taking the World by storm. In may 2012 a news item appeared which stated that in Europe, more than 50% of all new mobile phones sold were smartphones. In 2011 the worldwide sales figures of Android phones exceeded those of the iPhone, the phone that started the “smartphone revolution”.

With the growing number of Android phones, the number of available apps (small programs designed to work on these devices) has also grown explosively. In addition to mobile phones, other devices such as tablet computers that run on the Android operating system are also gaining popularity. The consequence of all this is that there is a growing need for Android apps.

The Google Play Store (formerly Android Market) is growing at an enormous rate: there are now over 500,000 apps available. These are very diverse: utility apps such as text messengers, task managers and email clients but also a host of games. The most popular apps are being downloaded millions of times. Other interesting categories are apps that enhance businesses. Examples of these are apps that enable customers to purchase products right from their mobile phone or apps that provide the location of a company branch in the vicinity of the user.

The increasing popularity of mobile apps gives rise to many interesting business opportunities. This trend is unlikely to change any time soon and established business around the world are acknowledging this fact. Not only have many businesses produced mobile apps to grow their revenue or enhance their image. The rise of mobile apps appears to be changing the way businesses and consumers think about software. A telling example comes from Microsoft: the new Windows 8 operating system has a “mobile look and feel” and the software programs in the system are now referred to as “apps”.

So, if you want to learn how to develop Android apps where should you start? It depends on your previous experience (if any) and the amount of time and money you are willing to spend.

The most obvious route is doing all the programming yourself. To do this you need knowledge of the Java programming language and the Android Software Development Kit. If you have never programmed before, you will have to learn a lot about subjects such as object oriented programming and working with the necessary developer tools. This is the long, hard road to becoming an app developer… however, if you succeed at making your first few apps, it can be extremely satisfying and you will have gained a lot of useful knowledge!

If you do not know how to program and don’t want to learn how to write Android apps then, fortunately, there are other options. Several software products exist which make the app for you. Most of these are online applications that use “wizards” and templates. A limitation of this approach is that you will not have as much control over the result as you would when doing all the programming yourself. Some of these app makers are free, others offer a subscription service or a one time payment.

If app creation software doesn’t suit your needs, a third way is to hire a freelancer or a company to do the developing. If you are an individual hobbyist or running a small business, this may seem intimidating and expensive. However, using a resource such as oDesk we now have access to many cheap freelancers living outside of North America and Europe. Many are very capable at their job, so developing your app this way does not have to cost much at all.

Personally, I started out trying to do all the programming myself. I couldn’t find an online app maker that suited my needs and I did not want to spend a lot of money. However, although I had a little coding experience, I am not a software developer by profession. So when a relatively simple programming problem reared its head, I got stuck.

After some hesitation, I decided to let a freelancer solve the problem and this sped up the development of my app enormously! It did not cost me a lot of money (around $100) and I was able to get the app to the market much faster than if I had done everything myself. This allowed me to start testing the responses of customers sooner to see if it was a viable business idea.

This “hybrid” approach worked for me but you will have to find out for yourself what works best for you. Which method you choose doesn’t matter as long as you reach your goal: making the idea you have right now for your app a reality. Something that people can use and enjoy, and perhaps will make you some money or help your existing business!

In conclusion, there are several ways to get started developing Android apps. With so much information and services at your disposal, you have the opportunity to make your “dream app” a reality!