Wednesday, 24 August 2011

The perfect Android Apps for Students

So you've all got your A levels results (and well done to those of you who got what you needed) and now you're sat there budgeting and making plans for the upcoming year and plotting what you need to buy and what you can get at university and you've sort of forgotten something. For all the bits and bobs students in the past had to buy you've almost certainly got a number of them in your pocket with your Android phone, just think about it as you read on.

Firstly you'll likely be about to buy an alarm, forgetting you have not only the default Android Alarm but also a number of Alarm applications just incase you don't like the default option. An alarm might only cost you £5 or £6 but admit it, you'd rather save those few quid and buy an extra drink or two (or three or four) during freshers. The alarm however is only the beginning. (note a guide on setting up an alarm with the Samsung Galaxy S2 can be seen here, it's the same for most Androids)

You will also find that Android phones come with a built in Calendar that can easily be synced to your Facebook account. This means not only do you save another few quid by not needing to buy a calendar but you also save the time it would take to add everyone's birthday to a paper calendar. This is not only money saving, but time saving, and as a student, they are two things you will be wanting to save as much of as possible.

Though lets be honest these are just the most simple items, though what about some where money saving efforts can genuinely be made?

Whilst you may not be studying maths it's almost certain, at some point you'll need a calculator (trust me on this one, going around a shop with a calculator to add up what you spend can help save money). Rather than spend yet another £5 or £6 use either the in built calculator or download the excellent "Scientific Calculator" free from the market. It may seem silly to carry your phone on your trolley adding things up but when you set an exact budget you'll want to stick to it, use this help (and you'll look less silly using your phone than you would with a calculator). Also a calculator can help you when you're wondering if 24 bottles for £18 is better than 20 cans for £15.

Lectures as long things and no matter how quickly you take notes and how great your short hand is you'll always miss something. Whilst you may not wish to listen to the same lecture twice you may wish to record a lecture and listen the parts of it that you're blurry on. A dictaphone, can cost upward of £20, and that's a lot of beans on toast, pot noodles and alcohol, so download a free app such as "RecForge Free Audio Recorder" or the default Voice Recorder and save yourself the pennies. (note set Recforge to record as Wav for a much longer recording time). Though you may not want to listen to a whole lecture again it is better to be safe than sorry and you can also e-mail your self a back up and delete the original on your phone to save space.

If you've found yourself in a new part of the country (and many will) one thing you'll almost certainly do is hunt down a local shop or tourist information centre and buy a map. Trust me, every student does it, and you'll only use it a handful of times before you know the area well enough to just get around. Why spend another £5 on a map when you have a map on your phone? Use Google Maps, Google Places and Navigation and you'll not only have a full map of your new surroundings but you'll also have a list of reviews of places such as bars, clubs, restaurants and the such. Just think of it another way, that £5 could buy you a meal at Yates's, or 3 drinks in the Student Union.

You will, like every student at some point, wake up with either the electricity off or a bust light bulb, and it will almost always be at 3AM when you need the toilet and it's pitch black. It's always good to have a torch nearby but when they cost £5 and you are trying to save money you should use the "Flashlight" app. With most Androids this sees the camera flash used as a flashlight and it's incredibly bright and easy to use.
Whilst the "Flashlight" can kill the battery quickly, you shouldn't ever really need to leave it on for hours at a time anyway, so you've a good bright torch for those dark emergencies.

Away from just direct apps to replace items you would have to buy you should also start using things like "Google Shopper" and "Shop Savvy". You'll find the cheapest places for certain items and it's a nice way to save money. Although not every store will be found on Google Shopper it's a start and will help you know whether Asda or Boots is best for your tooth paste.

From just the Android app equivalent to the items you can find yourself easily saving over £40 and that's with out considering the fact you've also got yourself a phone, a Camera and an MP3 player all rolled into one. Whilst most the apps mentioned here do come free with an Android phone even the ones that need downloading that have been mentioned are free! Of course there are many more including things like "Kindle" to be able to read your texts books when your out and about. Most of all, don't forget you've got the internet on you at all times, so you can check for recipes and the such whilst your shopping, or even use memo's as shopping lists (saving on paper and ink). Be a bit creative with your phone and you will notice than you will be able to save pennies.


  1. Great Great list. most importantly the variety of apps is the best thing at android !

    Open Office

  2. Yeah the system is fantastic for students then again so are Windows and iOS. We live in a brilliant time for mobile phone. CC.