Sunday, October 20, 2013

Google Keep is the Best but Not Perfect

I have been trying around many note taker applications for Android and finally I settle down with Google Keep.

The one that I like most before Google Keep was "FreeNote" and it is very cool for the fact that you can convert your handwriting into smaller fonts that fits into the smaller space unlike other note taker software, where the handwriting eats up most of the space. But too bad that in overall it is not user friendly enough and keep popping up message to request you go for a non-evaluation copy.

Then, I came across this Google Keep by Google of course and have started using it until today.

What I like about Google Keep?
  • It is synced with Google - you just need to go here: "" to retrieve all your notes. So technically, if you re-install or change phone, all your notes won't be lost. 
  • Very user friendly -  Easy to take note. You can also create a check list note which I find it very useful. Also, you an insert picture and add notes to it (I seldom use this anyway). The notes are also very easy to read because it will automatically re-size to bigger fonts if you have a short note. 
  • Supported widget view - You can create a widget for it so you can view all your notes without open the Google Keep application. This is extremely useful if you want to have a quick look at your notes!
  • Archive your notes - I'm using this feature to backup my notes especially for notes that are important but seldom refer to. I keep those notes into Archive. You can still view all notes in Archive when you need to, it is just that it won't be shown by default.

Why Not Perfect?
  • No search function - Sometimes when your notes grow, you need to do a search but it doesn't have this feature. So you have to manually browse the notes to find it. Quite bad sometimes especially if you have plenty of notes. If Google can implement such feature into this Google Keep, that will make this application perfect!
[10/21/2013 - Update]: Thanks for the blog comment, I didn't notice the search icon (magnifying glass) at the upper right corner. I tested it and it works perfectly. 

  • No Category or Label - To organize my notes, I need either category or label feature. No such thing can be done to organize your notes with Google Keep. Again, hopefully Google will implement it then it will make my notes much more organized.

In terms of priority, I would prefer the search function. Google, can you implement it?

[10/21/2013 - Update]: Sorry, the search function is already there. This Google Keep will be perfect if you can categorize your notes! :)

[11/15/2013 - Update]: Now I know why I said the search function is not there. I basically still can't search text within a note. I have a very lengthy note and it will be very hard for find what I look for if the search capability is not there.

You can download Google Keep here. Enjoy!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Disable Animations In Android for Better Performance

Other than bunch of useless applications that you can disable (see my previous post here), I found that you can also disable animations in your Android phone. I feel that this make your phone runs even faster!

[Update: 03 August 2014]: Apparently the latest 4.2 Android update has disabled "Developer options" but you still can enable it by going to "About device" and  click on the "Build number" multiple times. Sounds cool definitely from a developer perspective! 


  1. Go to Settings -> Developers Options
  2. Turn OFF all animations (i.e. Window animation scale, Transition animation scale and Animator duration scale).  The default is scale X1, you just need to turn it off.

Hope it helps!

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Best Free Antivirus App for Android from AVG

Antivirus application is important to your android mobile especially if you intent to install applications that from unknown source. Yes, I do sometimes. Similarly to desktop application, I have been trying it out the AVG antivirus for Android.

So far, it doesn't catch any virus at all. So I"m wondering if virus exists in Android? Maybe no? But one thing good is it manages to catch applications that have Adware which I hate most. It will be pop up the following once detected during the application install. You can either choose to Ignore or Uninstall it. 

Yes, "Friends with Benefits" has Adware. Don't simply get benefits from friends! lol. I think they just do this recently because I"m getting more this kind of warning while trying to install applications (especially games) from GooglePlay and previously I rarely get any warning.

Personally, I think it is better to have an Anti-virus app in your mobile especially on open platform like Android. Still, sensitive information should not be stored in phone in my opinion. Assume the worst case that your phone gets stolen one day, your most important data still safe.

It is called "Antivirus Security - Free", you can download it here.

For settings, I just uncheck the following settings which I believe is pretty safe:
  • Safe Web Surfing - Useless and it makes your browsing slower.
  • Deep File Scann - Perhaps just do it first time will be enough.
  • Scan Text Messages - Can SMS do anything harm? I have no idea.

I only enable the "Enable PUP Detection" which I think is useful to detect any malware or adware during application install. This Antivirus also gives warning on your android settings if it allows unknown source and USB debugging (for Android development). I need both of them, thus I just ignore those threats.

P/S: By the way, the best here is just personal preference. I assume either you can use AVG or AVAST (which I haven't tried yet) will do for FREE and BEST antivirus application in Android.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Hide Private Photos and Videos in Android - Hide IT Pro

This is a very useful application called "Hide IT Pro" and it allows you to hide your photos and videos in your   Android phone. It is free and after you install it, the application is actually named as "Audio Manager". Yeah, you know why it is renamed but it does really function like a Audio Manager as a secondary function. You can set the volume for your devices with this application and it really works.

However, the main purpose of this application is to hide your private data including your pictures, videos, music, application and SMS as well. I only tried videos and pictures. It works perfectly! For hiding application, you need to root your device which I don't intend to. If you have rooted your device, probably is a good try.  You know sometimes we don't want others to see what application we have installed! :)

This is main screen and to enter to the real function of this application, you need to click and hold the "Audio Manager". It will ask you for password for first-time setup and after that you need to enter the password to enter. It is 4-words password. :) After you enter, you will see this vault folders.

So each folder contains those files that you hide. To hide, just go inside this folder and press the "+" sign at the upper right corner and start choosing files that you want to hide. After hiding, this file can only be viewed by this application. You can create your own folders in this vault as well for better files organization.

You can also unhide these files buy clicking and holding the picture or video for example. Then choose unhide. It will ask you which destination folder you want to unhide your file to or you can choose the default one. The good thing about this application is you don't need to unhide to view your pictures or videos. You can view directly with this application without unhide it! :)

Anyway, this application is very user friendly and you shouldn't have problems to use it. Let's try it out yourself here.

P/S: I am hoping to see an application that allows you to hide apps without rooting your device. It seems like is not technical feasible at this point in time. :)

Monday, June 3, 2013

First 3D Badminton Android Game

This game is called "Badminton League 3D" and probably is the first badminton Android game that I really enjoy playing it. It is really an awesome game and like real!

BUT what I hate is the Adware that comes together with it. This Adware is annoying because of the pop-up advertisement. I seriously hope the developer should not include them.

I tried to search again in GooglePlay and it seems like is no longer there anymore. Perhaps Google has removed it?

P/S: Not really playing games lately because can't find any good one. If you have any recommendations, let me know. :) 

Friday, May 3, 2013

How to Make Android Phone Run Faster?

It is very common after using your Android phone for quite sometimes, things get very slow. This is usually due to a lot applications and services are running at background and some are not even needed.

The obvious one is to uninstall unnecessary applications especially those that run services at the background. To know what services that run in the background, go to "Settings -> Applications Manager -> Running". For those unwanted applications, you should uninstall them or else it will make your phone lag like hell!

However, not all applications can be uninstalled especially you don't root your phone. The only thing that you can do is to disable them. To disable them, go to "Settings -> Applications Manager -> All" and you can disable the applications manually by clicking on the disable button.

So these are the list of applications that I disable and are tested safe to be removed. A lot of them are came with Samsung which I don't need them at all:
  • AllShare Play - I don't use this. Seems cool but not applicable to me.
  • Bubbles/Luminous Dots/Phase Beam/Photo Wall/Deep Sea - Either wallpaper live or screen saver which is not needed
  • ChatON - Useless chat program by Samsung where everyone now uses WhatsApp
  • ChocoEUKor/RoseEUKor/Helv Neue S - Special font and is not needed if you don't use it
  • Clock (digital/funky/modern) - There are many clock applications, I just choose the one that use to enabl and the rest just disable it
  • Dropbox - Somehow comes with Samsung and cannot be uninstalled
  • Dual clock(analog/digital) - Useless to me because world clock comes with the default clock program
  • Face Unlock - Cool but useless feature. I don't lock my phone with password also because I find it very troublesome and slow.
  • Favorite Apps/Contacts - Application widget which I don't use, running widget makes your phone by the way
  • Game Hub - GooglePlay serves the purpose
  • Google Search - This is widget which I don't use it because it wastes my home screen space. 
  • Google Tex-to-Speech English - Rarely used, type is faster
  • Google+ - I use Facebook. :)
  • Group Cast - Another useless app by Samsung
  • Help/User Menu - I guess this is Samsung phone user guide
  • News Daemon(EUR)/Yahoo! Finance/News - Yahoo news widget. All end with EUR are from Yahoo which I rarely use
  • Personalize call sound - I don't need this, personal preference I guess
  • Picassa Uploaded - Not used in phone
  • S Memo - At first, I like it but it has text length limitation which is very annoying. Now I use Google Keep which I think is a lot more better.
  • S Suggest - All suggested applications somehow are not meaningful to me
  • S Voice - Cool and useless feature again because it lags.
  • Samsung Apps - Any useful Samsung Apps out there?
  • Samsung Backup/Backup Provider/Browser SynchAdapter/Calender SynchAdapter/Cloud Data Relay/Contact SynchAdapter/SMemo SynchAdapter - I backup everything with my Google account which makes this no longer is necessary. 
  • Samsung Push Service - Used by Samsung chat program, ChatON which is not needed unless you use it
  • Samsung TTS - Text to speech recognition, useless to me again. I hate showing off program especially you can do it faster way.
  • Talk - Google talk ...
  • Talkback - Used by Google to send feedback which will slow down your phone
  • Weather Daemon/Widget/Widget Main/ Windy weather - Not really useful to me. If you rarely used like me, just disable it

After disable all these applications, I can feel that my phone are now run a lot faster. I can't tolerate lagging especially open a SMS for example. I always want to make my phone GUI's respond super fast!!!

Another thing that I did is to group all those applications Icons using folder. It not only help me organize things but improve on phone performance. You can give it a try too. I only have one single page for all my applications. I don't like the idea or having multiple pages of icons.

[Updated: July 10, 2013]: You may want to check this out: Disable Animations In Android for Better Performance

P/S: Hope this helps, share with me if you have other tips on improving Android's phone performance especially on GUI respond rate!

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Try AirPush Detector but No Effect

As many of new users of Android phone, I downloaded tons of application and game but unfortunately not all these applications are friendly. What I hate the most are those pop-up advertisements. They are not just very irritating but also slow down your entire system. Some pop-up ads are not children friendly too! lol!

So I found this application AirPush Detector with good ratings and reviews in Google Play but the bad news is it doesn't seem working after using it fow few months. It supposes to tell you what applications that has pop-up advertisement but it has not effect at all. This guy basically can't detect anything. Too bad... :(

So I decided to uninstall this AirPush Detector because it is kind of useless. So how can we prevent the pop-up ads then? There is no automated way unless you have a better application to recommend me?

The only thing that I do is I have to manually uninstall every single application that I have installed, then I will know which application actually causes it. Another smarter way you can do is "Force Close" the application and you still get the pop-up ads, it is most likely the application is running services at the background. You can disable the services and see whether there is still or getting less pop-up ads. If yes, then it is high possibility that the pop-up ads is came from this application.

Easier said then done especially you have few applications (not just one) that cause the pop-up ads and please also note that those pop-up ads do not occur immediately. You usually get pop-up in few days. So you may face some challenges to identify them. Perhaps the best way is prevention, try not to install too many unreliable applications at the same time. So it is easier for you to detect it. Good luck!

P/S: If you don't trust my review, you can try it here or search AirPush detector in GooglePlay. Please do let me know if this app can detect anything or not. :)

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