Switching devices isn’t nearly as much of a hassle as it used to be, with Google automating backup and restore by default in Marshmallow, but there are still those apps that we simply must have right away – Day One; those essential apps that separate us from “them” – that make us, us.

What follows below are mine.

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[df-caption title=”Dat two-day shipping though.” url=”https://www.androidguys.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/1457599111684.jpg”]


Confession; I am an Amazon addict. I buy everything from Amazon, unless I need it right now. As such, the Amazon app is consistently among the very first apps I install when buying a new phone. The Amazon app that’s in the Google Play Store is updated regularly and is perfectly adequate in every way. That being said, if you want the full Amazon experience – especially if you have Prime – you need the Amazon Underground app straight from the company. You’ll get access to a ton of 100% free apps from Amazon, as well as access to the Amazon Video app, letting you watch Prime Videos on your phone.

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[df-caption title=”Confidence in security trumps convenience.” url=”https://www.androidguys.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/1457599324464.jpg”]


In an era where cyber-terrorism and online identity theft are running rampant across the globe, it is growing increasingly more crucial to safeguard your online identity – and if you’re a Google Freak like me (since you’re on an Android site, I would hope you are), much of your online identity is stored in Mountain View. Two-factor authentication is one way to ensure that your identity stays in your hands, even if someone manages to get ahold of your password. Here’s how it works; whenever you (or anyone) attempts to log in to your account, you (or they) must enter a code generated by Google and either displayed on a phone screen via this app or texted to the phone via SMS. In short, you should use this.

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[df-caption title=”The only landscape of the bunch.” url=”https://www.androidguys.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/1457600453571.jpg”]

Barcode Scanner

This is probably the least exciting item on my list; a simple barcode scanner. The Authenticator app mentioned above uses it to sign in to your Google Account, and QR codes and barcodes are on everything these days. Far from the most compelling apps you’ll ever see, but one of my Day 1 Apps, nonetheless.

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[df-caption title=”Splash Screen – because showing you my finanicals is frowned upon.” url=”https://www.androidguys.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/1457599835113.jpg”]


I do almost all my banking with Chase, so this one is a no-brainer. Deposit checks, check balances with a swipe, make payments, transfer money – anything you’d need to do in a banking app, Chase has. It’s easily among my favorite of the major banks’ applications, having used Citi, Bank of America, and Wells Fargo apps in the past for various reasons. Chase’s app is quick, snappy, easy to use, and has some great features – perhaps my favorite of which is the ability to check your balances without logging into the app (an opt-in feature, for those worried about security).

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As a full-time student also trying to juggle full-time work and a social life, I find this particular app to be invaluable; with the ability to participate in discussions, read my textbooks, check my grades, even pay my tuition, DeVry University has really outdone themselves here (I’d hope so, with how much I shell out for tuition). Obviously this app doesn’t have much utility for anyone not currently going to DeVry, but it’s definitely pretty high on my list of apps to install right away – and if you’re a student, so should the app of your respective university, if it has one.

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[df-caption title=”So. Many. Tweaks.” url=”https://www.androidguys.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/1457600353537.jpg”]

Xposed + GravityBox

This one is a little unorthodox, and if you’re not a Root User/ROM Addict like myself, you might not be familiar with it. Xposed Framework is a hack that uses SuperUser permissions in order to make changes – some drastic, others subtle – that you wouldn’t normally be able to make to your phone. GravityBox is a module (think of it as a kind of sub-app that Xposed uses to make these changes) for Xposed that allows a plethora of tweaks, ranging from status bar to navigation bar to custom notifications for every single app on your phone. It’s awesome. You’ll need to have an unlocked bootloader and a rooted phone to even begin to start this, and there’s a few other steps to take, but here is the link on XDA to get you started.

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[df-caption title=”Grouped Inbox Categories are a time saver.” url=”https://www.androidguys.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/1457600612130.jpg”]


Google’s newest and greatest email app. I’m not sure how I’d get by without its custom email label grouping, to be honest. This is my go-to app for all emails, including my personal, AndroidGuys, and school accounts. Trust me; if you’re still using the GMail app, you’re living in the past.

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[df-caption title=”Turns out Dono Jeska is a major cinephile.” url=”https://www.androidguys.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/1457600716614.jpg”]


Okay, okay; in addition to being an Amazon addict, and a ROM addict, I’m also a major cinephile. Movies – and movie trivia – are my thing. If I see an actor in a movie that looks familiar, I have to know who it is and where I’ve seen him/her. So I consult IMDb, the Internet Move Database. This app (and website) has cast/crew listings for nearly every single movie, TV show, and video game in existence. It also provides reviews, ratings, trailers, and release dates of upcoming movies. Essential for any movie/TV show fan.

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[df-caption title=”I never miss a game. Never.” url=”https://www.androidguys.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/1457600800188.jpg”]

Live Extra

…I am finding many things out about myself in this piece. In addition to being an Amazon Addict, a ROM Freak and a Cinephile, I’m also a die-hard Sacramento Kings fan. NBC’s Sports Live Extra lets me watch their games on my phone (if you’re a T-Mobile Customer it falls under the Binge On program, for an added bonus) anywhere I have a data connection. A subscription to a supported cable service is necessary, but I find it to be a necessary evil.

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[df-caption title=”Have some free publicity, Jill.” url=”https://www.androidguys.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/1457600948251.jpg”]


Twitter is my social media of choice. I never got into SnapChat, Instagram or Facebook – found them all too…well, too Social. Twitter ensures that whatever needs to be said can be said in 140 characters or less. I’ve used countless Twitter apps – the Official, Plume, Falcon, Talon…none of them really did it for me, for one reason or another. I’m picky. This one pushes all the right buttons for me, and lets me do one of my favorite Twitter things; complaining about how awful the Kings are this year. (I’m @Magnego, by the way.)

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XBox Smartglass

Another passtime of mine; video games. One of the niftier features of the XBox One is the ability to control it using your smartphone; you can launch apps, input text, control the cursor on the screen, even purchase and install games using the app. There’s an app for the XBox 360 as well, but I’m a (an) One guy.

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I know there’s tons of other apps that people install before the ones I’ve listed here, but these are my personal “essentials” – the apps that I feel make me, me.

Tell me yours.

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    • I can’t remember what it was about Fenix that I disliked – the price, perhaps – but I prefer Tweetings. Downloading Authy now to check it out. Thanks for reading!

    • Authenticator, as the author mentioned is for Google services only. From the look of Authy, it seems to be for much more. Thanks for the tip!

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