Social Networking Apps for Android - dummies

Social Networking Apps for Android

By Daniel A. Begun

You’ll find plenty of social networking apps available for Android devices. These apps provide access to common social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. In addition, there are apps for instant messaging (IM) clients, a GPS tracker for family members, and apps that advertise your current location to your friends.

Some popular social networking apps for Android devices include the following:

  • AppAware — Find Hot Apps (free): If you want to know what apps other folks are running on their Android devices, fire up AppAware. The Live page shows a real-time feed of what apps other AppAware users are installing, updating, and uninstalling (although you have to manually refresh the screen to update). You can also see what apps the users nearby you are adding and deleting.

  • Bump (free): Bump is an ingenious way to quickly share contacts, photos, and apps with other Android users. Just launch Bump on both devices, select what you want to share, and gently bump your respective hands together, which are holding your devices. A window pops up and asks you to confirm the transfer. It’s that easy!

  • DroidIn Pro ($1.99 US): LinkedIn is a social network for professionals — it’s a great way to network and look for work. Of the few LinkedIn apps available, DroidIn Pro is the superior choice. It gives you access to all of your contacts’ information as well as your own profile. You can see your contacts’ status updates and post your own status updates. You also can search LinkedIn for people and companies.

  • eBuddy Messenger (free): Use eBuddy Messenger to connect to accounts on AIM, ICQ, Facebook, Google Talk, Hyves, MSN, MySpace, and Yahoo!. If you have multiple accounts through the same service, such as an AIM account for work and a separate AIM account for your friends, you can sign in with all your accounts simultaneously.

  • Facebook for Android (free): If you’d like to access Facebook from your Android device, Facebook has the solution with its very own Facebook for Android app. The smart design of Facebook for Android makes it easy to quickly find whatever you are looking for.


  • Family GPS Tracker (free): You can’t put a price on peace of mind when it comes to knowing that your family is safe and sound. Family GPS Tracker lets you see the real-time locations of your individual family members on a map and send and receive nearly instant check-in and help-needed request messages. Family GPS Tracker is a great way for kids to check in and let their parents know that they’re actually where they are supposed to be.

  • Foursquare (free): With Foursquare, users advertise their current location to their friends. It’s a great way to find out about cool, new places to explore as you learn about locations from your friends. Foursquare is also a kind of real-world game, where users earn “badges” for visiting certain locations (see the figure on the left). Some businesses offer discounts to users who check in to their locations through Foursquare.


  • GetGlue (free): The GetGlue app connects you to the GetGlue network, where you share your preferences for TV shows, movies, music, books, and video games with other like-minded users. You can check in, letting everybody know what you are watching, listening to, or reading. You can see a Stream of what other users are presently up to. You can also rate movies, books, and the like and see what ratings others have assigned to them.

  • StumbleUpon (free): StumbleUpon gives new meaning to surfing the Web. Just tap the Start Stumbling! button and StumbleUpon launches a random Web page for you to view. It picks pages based on your favorite topics (which you have to configure on the StumbleUpon Web site) and pages that you’ve previously rated. You can also stumble through Flickr photos, YouTube videos, news stories, and even Android apps.

  • Twidroyd Pro for Twitter ($3.99 US): When it comes to Twitter apps for Android — and there are a lot of them — none of them holds a candle to Twidroyd Pro for Twitter. Hands-down, Twidroyd has the slickest interface, the most robust features, and the greatest number of user-configurable settings. In fact, Twidroyd is even more powerful than some Twitter clients for desktop computers.