You’ve probably heard some variation of this line before:
“Sure, Android has tablets, but most of the apps aren’t optimized to take advantage of the bigger displays and higher resolutions – unlike Apple devices.”
It’s true. Android has historically lagged behind iOS in terms of tablet apps.
The good news is this situation has begun to change in the last year or so. Many apps are introducing tablet and phone UIs. Not only are these apps often beautiful, they are extremely functional as well.
Hey Windows users! Looking for some of the best Windows programs out there? Check out our Top 10 list.
With that in mind, let’s dive in and take a look at five of the best apps available right now for your new Android tablet.
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1. KingSoft Office Suite
What’s not to like about KingSoft Office? Not only is its UI perfectly designed for tablets, it also works with any Android device running 2.1 or higher.
KingSoft’s suite has all the features you have come to expect from many of the higher-end mobile office products out there, but unlike its competition, it is absolutely free to use.
Sure, but free means it is limited and doesn’t support Excel, PowerPoint and Word formats, right? Actually, KingSoft works flawlessly with all standard Microsoft Office products, and even supports cloud storage services such as Google Drive and DropBox.
Looking for some great tunes for your Android tablet? Look no further than Pandora.
Not only are the basic features absolutely free, you can create up to 100 stations customized to your own personal tastes. Pandora works by letting users choose the bands and songs they like and then works to find other music and artists that are similar.
The UI isn’t gorgeous, but it is certainly very functional and easy to navigate. When it comes to free Internet Radio, you will have a very hard time finding anything that even comes close to the Pandora experience.
Unless you are brand new to the mobile world or truly hate news apps, you probably already know all about Flipboard.
With Flipboard, you are able to pick a few topics and instantly you can start flipping through pages of news that are relevant to you. Some of the topics include new stories, photos shared by friends and much more.
Starting in Flipboard 2.0, you can even gather up the content you love and transform it into your own magazine.
Bottom line: If you enjoy keeping up with local news, international news, tech and entertainment – you will want this app.
It’s also worth noting that Flipboard is highly optimized for the tablet, meaning you get a stunning UI that doesn’t waste much space at all.
To be fair, the app for Netflix is free, but the service will set you back $7.99. Also, Netflix works only in some regions outside of the United States. Still, there are few video apps out there that come close to Netflix.
Not only are there tons of movies and TV episodes readily available at your fingertips, but the UI is one of the best examples of an Android tablet app done right.
Once you are set up with an account, getting to your favorite shows and movies is as easy as tapping them.
As you can see in the screenshot below, the actual viewing interface is very simple, with a play/pause button and the ability to quickly fast forward and rewind.
Not a fan of Netflix? There are other solutions out there, including the well-known Hulu Plus.
5. Angry Birds Star Wars
Angry Birds Star Wars – really? Okay, so I put this one up on the list for a few reasons. First reason, I love Star Wars and Angry Birds. Second, it really is an excellent app.
Not only does this game work with a wide range of Android hardware, it scales perfectly to tablet sized displays as well.
There are many games out there in the Android world that aren’t optimized for the tablet and simply stretch themselves to cover the extra screen real estate. The end result is a blurry mess that doesn’t do the original app justice on your display.
You don’t have to worry about that with this instant Rovio classic.
While Angry Birds Star Wars is free, there are also plenty of in-app purchases that expand the content even further.
There we have it, five great Android apps out there that are optimized for your tablet.
I also want to give out a few honorable mentions: Hulu Plus,Feedly and Sports Republic. And to be honest there are tons of other optimized tablet apps out there.