It is obvious that today’s smartphones, which have very high computing performance, memory and a good display, can perform a variety of tasks thanks to the applications installed on them. At the same time, many people still buy their first smartphone and do not really understand what can be installed on it. It is possible to advise something in this area only subjectively, but even such an opinion will help you navigate the thousands of applications that exist now. We will divide applications by functionality and give examples of them.
Navigation and references
Any smartphone has a location function that works with the help of a GPS and GLONASS chip, as well as, directly, a cellular network. That is, a smartphone at almost any point (except underground) will “know” where it is. In addition, modern smartphones have enough memory for maps of almost any complexity.
Initially, maps for mobile operating systems were designed mainly for car navigation. In those distant times, there were many software developers who exist to this day.
A paid program that allows you not only to drive a car along a route.
Here, as in any modern car navigation application, there is information about traffic jams (and routing taking into account their detour). But this is only the basic functionality, in addition to it, Navitel includes the following:
- A service that allows you to track the location of friends and get directions with them.
- Information about events and points of interest.
- Embedded SMS.
- Weather service.
- On-board computer (more than 100 different sensors are declared).
- Information about cameras, radars and speed bumps.
Navitel presents not only maps of Russia, there is Europe and other countries of the world.
This application can also be used as a navigator, but here, rather, the target audience is not motorists, but pedestrians. It is easy to get directions on public transport. In addition, it is of interest in that it is a guide to organizations and various places. You can see everything here, right down to the work schedule, the location of the entrance and the contacts of a particular organization. In addition, unlike Navitel, it is free.
2GIS is also good because, unlike other free analogues, it works offline: for this, it is enough to download maps of the desired region. True, the reverse side of the coin here is that he lays the route within the given region (in the version of the mobile application).
In addition, 2GIS works as an Internet service through a regular browser.
Anti-virus protection for mobile phones is especially important, since in app stores you have to enter credit card details, and even regular purchases can be made using banking apps.
Most of the developers here started with desktop antivirus.
kaspersky mobile antivirus
Interestingly, modern mobile antivirus programs include, in fact, the same functionality as their desktop versions. We list them using the example of Kaspersky Anti-Virus:
- Scanning check. This is a forced check of the mobile device for malicious applications and their actions.
- Filter unwanted calls and SMS.
- Anti-thief. Allows you to find a stolen device.
The following features work only in the paid version of the device:
- Antivirus protection. In case of suspicious actions, blocks the activity of programs.
- App lock. Allows you to set a secret code to access personal correspondence, photos and files.
- Anti-phishing. Protects banking applications and online purchases.
- Web filter. Blocking unwanted links on the Internet.
- Personal contacts. Hides phone numbers, calls and correspondence.
As we can see, Kaspersky Mobile Antivirus not only fights viruses, but also protects in many unpleasant situations specific to the phone.
Dr.Web Security Space
This is a mobile version of Dr.Web antivirus. It has similar functionality to the previous program, plus it contains two more useful functions:
- Firewall. This is a kind of “wall” that blocks access to the Internet for all activities, except for those that are included in the user’s trust list.
- Unlocking a device blocked by ransomware trojans.
This is a completely free antivirus, with full functionality. Here, in addition to anti-virus capabilities, there is also protection against theft and blocking calls. For the convenience and speed of the device as a whole, Avast can also:
- Clear the RAM and permanent memory of the mobile device.
- Scan and test Wi-Fi speed.
Naturally, the developer wants to make money, and therefore the program also has premium functionality: anti-theft and application blocking. Everything else works in the free version.
These programs, like antiviruses, are relevant for Android, as it is an operating system with a rather confusing file structure. During operation, many service and temporary files are created, which are quite difficult to find even for an advanced user who does not have programming skills. To solve this problem, special cleaning programs have been developed that “know” what and where to look for. They are able:
- Delete unnecessary cache items, messages, logs, calls and so on.
- Manage applications, monitor which ones clog your phone, delete them.
- Perform automatic scheduled cleaning.
Here are some examples of programs in this category:
- Clean Master — also performs the functions of an antivirus.
- AVG Junk Cleaner — can also remove low-quality photos, keep track of rarely used applications.
Health & Fitness
Any smartphone has a built-in accelerometer, that is, an acceleration sensor. Therefore, being a wearable device, it is convenient for recording physical activity, counting calories and working on a daily routine. There are various programs, paid and free, that allow you to do this. You can divide them into several categories:
- Sports programs. “Virtual trainers”, according to which you can do certain exercises, with the number of approaches and repetitions. This can also include bike computers and similar programs.
- Calorie counters. Designed to monitor weight, improve diet.
- Pedometers. For those who are just walking.
- Wellness programs for working with sleep patterns, water intake and the like.
One application may combine two or more of these functions.
There are also applications that serve to work with various fitness bracelets and sports watches.
Among other things, a smartphone can be used as an interactive textbook or reference book, of course, it will not replace full-fledged courses or an educational institution, but it can reduce the time to search for information, or help to work on certain skills. Of course, there are many things you can learn, we will give examples of only a few programs from this category.
A program that can improve English language skills in a playful way: reading, writing, speaking and listening. It’s the most popular learning app on Android and it’s completely free.
Star Walk 2
Paid program, which is a map of the starry sky with a built-in guide to celestial objects.
Displays a map of the starry sky and shows the area where you point your smartphone. All this in real time, as well as the “transfer to the future” function, which is called the “time machine” here.
Allows you to easily find any object in the starry sky.
It uses augmented reality technology, 3D graphics to create constellation models, and can even show objects that are visible only in gamma, infrared and x‑ray spectra.
This is a whole series of applications that are reference guides for various types of plants and animals. For example, the EcoGuide: Birds of Russia program includes 206 species of birds, with their photographs, images of nests and voice recordings, a systematic tree and identification by 13 features.
Entertainment and players
Carried in a pocket or bag, a smartphone replaces many devices that were popular in the past — an MP3 player, a portable media player, a game console, as it performs their functions. To watch videos and listen, you can use the programs installed on your smartphone initially, but they may not recognize certain files. Therefore, the easiest way is to install two or three players on your phone and use those who “know” the format of the desired file.
As for games, here the choice is subjective, there are various puzzles or, on the contrary, action games, paid and free. A characteristic feature of all mobile games is that they are designed to be played for a short time, they are not suitable for hardcore gamers.
Many people now do not part with a smartphone, they even talk about a new kind of addiction. However, this device, being a full-fledged computer, is just a tool that anyone can use as they want. We think that in our article we managed to show the whole variety of programs, each of which is easy to find and download, since they all have free and demo versions.