Software developers are, by definition, geeks, so it should come as no surprise that many of the apps they’ve come up with are tailor-made for people who share their interests. After all, “geekiness” has become something of a badge of honour.
Smartphones and tablets offering the full Android experience stay true to their nerd roots, tempting us with a wide range of free and keenly priced apps, which afford plenty of opportunities for education and geeking out. Check out our 13 favourite Android apps for geeks, also available on Samsung Nook and reading-customized tablets too.
1. Comics (Free)
Nook-based tablets allow you to browse Barnes & Noble’s own generous comic books collection. However, ComiXology’s free Comics app gives you access to the most comprehensive collection of digital comics in the world, which you can browse by title, publisher, genre or creator.
2. Smithsonian Channel (Free)
This streaming video app, which you can download for free from Google Play, brings you a brilliant collection of HD videos and groundbreaking documentary features, on an amazing array of topics, guaranteed to appeal to documentary aficionados. Alongside its original series collection, it includes weekly updated quizzes and an on-air schedule.
3. Ancestry (Free)
This user-friendly app from Ancestry.com allows you to build your family tree and keep updating it as you come across fresh information. The tree will grow “organically”, sprouting green leaves every time Ancestry.com finds a possible match for one of your ancestors in its historical records database. You can also take pictures of family members or places relevant to your family history and upload them into the app.
4. Moon Phase Pro ($0.99)
Astronomy buffs will certainly enjoy this app, which allows you to see detailed photos of the Moon shot from your GPS coordinates. You can check out a lot of details, including the Moon’s phases and angles and predicted syzygies (an alignment of three celestial objects, namely the Sun, the Earth and the Moon or a planet in the Solar System).
5. Periodic Table of Elements ($0.99)
Chemistry nerds are also covered with this app. It features an interactive Periodic Table which gives you not only the basic information (the element’s name, chemical symbol, atomic number, group and period), but also a host of useful details (when it was discovered, density, boiling and melting point, etc.)
6. Journey to the Universe ($1.99)
This amazing video app is a delight for young learners and science nerds alike, taking you on a fantastic exploration of the planets in the Solar System and on to the limit of the known Universe.
7. British Library: Treasures ($3.99)
Yet another amazing resource, the British Library’s first app for Android allows users to explore over 100 highlights from the Library’s collections, including illuminated manuscripts and religious texts, as well as literary, historical and scientific documents. You will be able to see 2000-year-old oracle bones from China, an original Magna Carta dating from 1215, original handwritten drafts of Nicholas Nickelby and Jane Austen’s early writings, alongside manuscripts and notebooks documenting Copernicus’ and Galileo’s cosmological discoveries.
8. Dinosaur Encyclopedia: Tyrannosaurus Rex ($0.99)
Whether you’re a would-be paleontologist or simply have a soft spot for lizards, you’re going to love this interactive encyclopedia, which takes you 65 million years back, to the time when dinosaurs roamed the Earth. You get 3D interactive diagrams, a wide array of information and stunning graphics.
9. IT World News ($0.99)
If you want to keep up with the latest news in information technology, this app is just the thing for you. You’ll get fresh news from reliable international sources straight to your smartphone or tablet rather than having to trawl the Internet for scraps of information.
10. Streaming Podcasts ($0.99)
This app is custom-made for you if you keep downloading mp3 podcasts without ever getting round to listening to them. It is set to download new available episodes at midnight, so you can listen to them in the morning. Old episodes will be deleted by default to make room for fresh downloads.
11. flipThrough for Instagram ($0.99)
This app is especially designed by Barnes & Noble, for Nook-based devices, to facilitate your Instagram browsing experience. It allows you to do a number of things, such as checking out the “most popular” photos on Instagram, searching for specific tags or users and seeing your own feed.
12. Rise of the Android ($0.99)
This satirical app pokes fun at Apple and Apple-worshippers (‘iSheep’). The story is set in a dystopic society in which the world’s population has been turned into zombies and humanity’s last hope rests in
Andy the Android, a green robot left to wage the final battle for freedom.
13. George R. R. Martin’s A World of Ice and Fire – A Game of Thrones Guide ($4.99)
The first official Game of Thrones app provides a definitive guide to the series, featuring hundreds of character profiles, interactive maps and comprehensive presentations of the major houses.