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21 (free) Android apps to maximize your HTC Droid Incredible

The HTC Droid Incredible is a great Android (currently 2.1) device made even better with the inclusion of the HTC Sense interface and its related apps and widgets. Nonetheless, there are plenty of apps (something like 50K are available from the Android Market right now) out there to make the iDroid more useful and fun.

Listed below are 21 solid, free Android apps* that add helpful functionality and more entertainment options to the Droid Incredible:

Google Apps:

  • Google Earth – Use Google Earth to explore the world from the palm of your hand. Fly around the planet with the swipe of a finger, as you view the same 3D imagery available in the desktop version. Search by voice for cities, places, and businesses. Browse layers of geographic information including roads, borders, places, photos and more.

  • Google Goggles – Google Goggles is a visual search app. Instead of using words, take a picture of an object with your camera phone: we attempt to recognize the object, and return relevant search results. Goggles can also recognize English, French, Italian, German and Spanish words and allow you to translate to other languages.
  • Google Sky Map – Google Sky Map turns your Android-powered mobile phone into a window on the night sky. New in: 1.5.1: Fix for Android 1.5 users 1.5: Hubble Image Gallery. Internationalization. Magnetic Correction. Find us elsewhere: http://www.google.com/sky/skymap http://twitter.com/googleskymap Keywords: planetarium, astronomy, skymap
  • Google Voice – Place calls and send SMS showing your Google number. Listen to voicemail and read transcripts. Google Voice account required, currently only available in the US. v0.3.4 fixes several bugs. See http://goo.gl/zTy7 for details. IMPORTANT: You must open Google Voice at least once after upgrading to route calls.

Productivity / Tools Apps:

  • Barcode Scanner – Scan barcodes on CDs, books, and other products, then look up prices and reviews, or search for a word in a book and find where it occurs. You can also scan QR Codes containing URLs, contact info, calendar events, etc. NEW: * RSS-14 barcodes * Disabled flash on Behold II * Send QR codes * Lots more See FAQ link below.
  • Dictionary.com – New: Bug fixes The Dictionary.com app delivers trusted reference content from Dictionary.com and Thesaurus.com. The app includes phonetic and audio pronunciations, spelling suggestions and our popular Word of the Day. 375,000 words & definitions 300,000 synonyms & antonyms Word of the Day home screen widget.
  • FxCamera – FxCamera enables you to take a picture with various effects. – ToyCam – Polandroid – Fisheye – SymmetriCam – Warhol – Normal [v0.6] – 3 new color filters (ToyCam +2, Polandroid +1) – “shortcut” to direct launch each mode (tap&hold on your home screen) – bug fix for Nexus, Cliq XT & Backflip *requires SD card
  • Layar – Layar Reality Browser, a beautiful, fun augmented reality app that shows you the things you canʼt see. It augments digital objects on top of reality, as can be seen through the mobile phoneʼs camera. When opening the app, youʼll be immediately presented with a list of spots nearby. Have a go and experience it yourself.
  • Movies – Movies by Flixster. The #1 app for movie reviews, trailers and showtimes. – Get showtimes for the top box office movies – View local theaters – Browse 65,000 DVDs – Watch 15,000 trailers – Read reviews from Rotten Tomatoes – Add and manage your Netflix queue Its all FREE! V.2.8.1: Netflix Login fix
  • My Verizon – Access your Verizon Wireless account using the My Verizon application. Find your balance, usage, payments, update Friends and Family, features and services
  • PdaNet – PdaNet allows your computer to go online through the Android phones data connection. Supports USB Tether and Bluetooth DUN. No root access needed. Works on ALL Android phones. Mac&PC. *Two apps in one! Now supports sending SMS from PC. *Bluetooth DUN requires Android 2.0
  • Skype mobile – Skype mobile brings unlimited Skype-to-Skype calls, IM and our low international rates to Verizon’s best-selling Android 3G smartphones. Skype mobile is always on, so you can answer and make Skype calls anytime, anywhere in the US. And, Skype-to-Skype calls don’t count against your Verizon Wireless mobile plan
  • Twitter for Android – Discover what’s happening right now, anywhere in the world with the official Twitter for Android app. Realtime search, trending topics and maps show whats happening now everywhere and nearby. Tweet, send DMs, share photos, videos and links to your friends and the world. Don’t have an account? Just sign up from the app!
  • WordPress for Android – WordPress for Android is an Open Source app that empowers you to write new posts, edit content, and manage comments with built-in notifications. WordPress for Android supports both WordPress.com and self-hosted WordPress (2.7 or higher) blogs. v1.2: – Video Upload – Geolocation

Games:

  • Bebbled – New in v2.14: Social Features! Use Facebook/Twitter to: – Login to Bebbled Online – Invite friends – Share scores Friends-local ranking at http://apps.facebook.com/bebbled Follow us twitter.com/bebbled Change log at bebbled.com Next: v3.0, a whole new campaign with 30 levels. v3.1: multiplayer. Stay tuned!
  • Mazeoid – Mazeoid is inspired by Pacman. The goal is to eat as many pills as possible and to avoid the ghosts. You can control the player with d-pad, touch (swiping) or trackball. New in V1.3b:Minor bugfixes (you can´t leave the maze now anymore).
  • Paper Toss – The hit mobile casual game is now available for Android! Toss a ball of paper into a trash can in six office themed levels of varying difficulty. Game includes: -6 Gorgeous Levels -Global Online Leaderboards Now with Hi-Res graphics for newer devices, and performance enhancements for all devices! Fixed ad issue.
  • Replica Island – Professor Kabochanomizu needs your help! He has created you–a small green robot with rockets for feet–to locate a mysterious artifact on a bizarre island. Fly, stomp, and roll your way through 40 challenging levels to 3 unique endings! New in 1.3: Fixes for blackouts on broken phones (Cliq, etc), better controls.

News:

  • Engadget – Engadget is the definitive source for news on gadgets and technology. The site covers the world of tech from the latest smartphone news, to reviews and hands-on looks at laptops, HDTVs, gaming, and more. With features like commenting, podcasts, and video. Requirements: Android 1.5+ & Screen resolution of 320X480 and above.
  • NPR News – Read, listen, or create a playlist of your favorite NPR stories and share with friends. Hear live streams from hundreds of NPR stations: search by location (GPS) or zip code / call letters – Listen to programs like Morning Edition, All Things Considered, Talk of the Nation, Fresh Air, and Wait, Wait…Don’t Tell Me More.
  • NYTimes – The NYTimes app for Android allows you to enjoy the award-winning journalism of The New York Times on your Android smartphone, free of charge. Specifically designed to utilize the features and navigation of the Android, this app includes: unique video display, various sharing tools, offline reading and font size adjustment.

With over 50K apps available, many of which are free, this non-exhaustive list is clearly only the tip of the iceberg. With that said, I find myself using nearly all of these apps on a regular basis, and highly recommend giving any or all of them a try. You’ve really got nothing to lose…except for your free time.

* All of the app descriptions above are taken directly from the Android Market. To get any of these apps, be sure to install Barcode Scanner and scan the relevant QR codes above. All of these apps should work on any Android device, with the exception of Google Earth, My Verizon, and Skype mobile.