August 07, 2014, 3:16 PM — Stolen or lost phones have been a big headache for some Android users. There's almost nothing worse for some folks than realizing that their phone is no longer in their possession and that they have no idea where it went. Now Google has released an update to its Android Device Manager that may help recover lost or stolen Android phones.
According to Android Police:
In addition to creating a lockscreen password and an optional message, you'll also have the option to add a phone number where you can be reached. When somebody turns on the screen of your phone, the lockscreen will display a bright green button that can be used to automatically dial the number you've entered. This will make it a lot easier for a good Samaritan to reach you and coordinate the return of your hardware.
Image credit: Android Police
Kudos to Google for releasing this update of Android Device Manager. It might prove very useful for folks who have suffered a lost phone, and for the folks who find the phone and want to return it to its owner.
Note that there's a download link for version 1.3.8 included in the article above as well. You can also get Android Device Manager in the Google Play store, but the version currently listed there as I write this is 1.2.12. No doubt Google will be updating it very soon for Google Play customers.
Four open source productivity tools for Android
TechRepublic has a useful roundup of four open source productivity tools.
According to TechRepublic:
Although the official Android platform isn't open source (nor is the majority of the apps found on the Google Play Store), there are plenty of open-source apps available for you to install and enjoy. These apps range from silly games to everyday tools. One category that benefits from open source is productivity. You'll find apps to fit many of your productivity needs. If you don't like the way these apps look or behave (or even if you want to add new features) and you have the skills to do so, you can get their source and rework them to better fit your needs.
Let's take a look at some of the open-source productivity apps for Android and see if there aren't one or two that might take up permanent residence on your Android devices.
While this list might be useful to some Android users, you can see a huge list of productivity tools in the Google Play store. Not all of them are open source, obviously, but that doesn't mean that they aren't useful. If open source Android apps are your thing then be sure to check out the FOSS for Android subreddit on Reddit.
Top five Android antivirus apps
Business News Daily lists what it thinks are the top five Android antivirus apps.
According to Business News Daily:
Fortunately, there's are a ton of good security apps that can lock down your Android device and keep it safe from rogue applications. Whether you can get by with a free security app, or want to invest in a more robust paid antivirus suite, here are five of the best on Android.
Avast! Mobile Security & Antivirus
Lookout Mobile Security
McAfee Mobile Security
Kaspersky Internet Security
Norton Mobile Security
I think this list is a good start, but there lots more antivirus apps in the Google Play store. And many of them are free, so it's worth looking around before paying for one. You may find a free app that does everything you need.
Note that the Google Play antivirus page I linked to above defaults to All Prices. But you can click the drop down menu to toggle it to Free if you prefer to see just free antivirus apps. You can also opt to see just the paid apps if you prefer those.
What's your take on all this? Tell me in the comments below.
The opinions expressed by the author do not necessarily reflect the views of ITworld.