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04 October 2010 @ 03:12 pm
Ask lj: android apps  
I'm kind of behind the times when it comes to cell phones. I'm hoping to get a nice shiny new one in the near future, but the features I want seem to greatly limit my choices. I know that andriod is getting a lot of nice apps, but the service I use has no data. Do all andriod apps require data? or are there some cool tools that work off line? IE, is someone who has no data plan just not care about the andriod OS?
Thoughts of a rather spazzy personspazzymunky on October 4th, 2010 07:16 pm (UTC)
I feel you, the sad thing is that Android and the Iphone are now the new leading "smartphones" so blackberrys kind of get screwed when it comes to apps. I'm sure that apps that connect the the interwebz need data though.
Jeredjered on October 4th, 2010 09:15 pm (UTC)
Many apps are offline, but I believe that setting up the phone (and certainly synchronizing it) require data access. (You may be able to do these solely over Wifi at home, though.) Additionally, most carriers don't allow you to "sideload" apps from your computer -- they require you download them over the air. Finally, I don't think any of the carriers will sell you an Android phone without requiring data access.

If you're on a GSM network you could buy an unlocked phone and only use data on Wifi and make things work, but it probably wouldn't be an ideal experience.
Someone I am is waiting for my courageforgotten_aria on October 4th, 2010 09:18 pm (UTC)
I haven't bought a phone from the carrier in almost a decade. I currently have an e70 that I sometimes use with local wifi, so I'm pretty familiar with that situation. That's why I'm curious how friendly apps are about being offline.
Jeredjered on October 4th, 2010 09:25 pm (UTC)
I believe that most apps that don't require the network (e.g. web browser, weather report, etc) are good about it. What sort of apps did you have in mind?
Someone I am is waiting for my courageforgotten_aria on October 4th, 2010 09:30 pm (UTC)
Not sure. I've heard of some interesting music apps. There might be some interesting games, things like that. But since I don't have an andriod phone, I haven't really even cracked the surface of what's there.
Jeredjered on October 4th, 2010 09:33 pm (UTC)
Most games and music toys don't require online access, except for games that are explicitly online multiplayer. Keep in mind that Android also runs on "tablet" devices which may not have cellular wireless access, so most apps keep this in mind. Things like games and such you want to be able to play on an airplane as well.
Jesseobra on October 6th, 2010 04:59 am (UTC)
er. AFAIK, only ATT was so evil as to lock down some of their devices to prevent sideloading. And even that was trivial to walk around.

You most certainly do not need data service to provision an Android phone. Everything integral can be done over WiFi.
phitotient on October 4th, 2010 10:38 pm (UTC)
My favorite sudoku/etc app (mPlayer) sadly does require net to function -- it downloads each gameboard from the mothership.

There are some other apps that also gratuitously use the net (some of the GPS loggers, for instance) but for the most part non-net-using versions are available, and those will run your batteries down less even if you do have net, which makes them tend to win over net-using ones.
Jesseobra on October 6th, 2010 04:57 am (UTC)
There's just about nothing that requires data service instead of WiFi.
And there's lots of good stuff that works offline.

There are mapping apps that use openstreetmap data stored to SD. There are arcade emulators. There's...lots.