Pity the person who only uses their tablet for mindless games of Candy Crush or checking work emails from outside the office. Sure, there’s something to be said for taking care of the day’s to-do list with the swipe of a finger, but tablets offer so many prime opportunities to get, well, weird. Whether it’s an outside-the-box app that offers up something useful (avoiding a speeding ticket) or just an unapologetically bizarre one (chatting with a ghost), there is something for everyone — and then some.
Here are some apps that range from incredibly useful to impressively useless, with a few fun stops in the middle.
1. Ghost Radar Classic – Scared of things that go bump in the night? Just in time for Halloween, this app scans the energy fields around you, picking up the words being blurted out by your neighbors in the afterlife and speaking them to you to in a creepy effect. The Ghost Radar guys may “offer no guarantees of accuracy,” but, unlike your paranormal targets, the app’s 13,000 five-star ratings in the Android store speak for themselves.
2. Action Movie Creator FX – Real life is just so boring. Thankfully, visionary J.J. Abrams’ production company, Bad Robot, has unleashed this app that lets any user superimpose studio-style special effects on your run-of-the-mill videos. And with FX names like Photon Torpedoes, Car Smash, Robo Attack, Avalanche, Fire Fight, Chopper Down and Alien Burst, you’re about to be dropped into the middle of a Hollywood blockbuster. Hopefully it’s not “John Carter.”
3. SleepCycles – Most people blindly set an alarm only to go trudging through the rest of the day like an extra on The Walking Dead. It doesn’t have to be this way. Just leave your tablet at your bedside and this smart alarm clock will analyze your subtlest sleep movements, waking you up during the lightest sleep phase that falls within a 30-minute window of your wake-up time to leave you as refreshed as possible. The dorkiest can even analyze their sleep statistics. In 2013, counting sheep is for amateurs.
4. RunPee – You’re halfway through the 134-minute runtime of “Captain Phillips” and three quarters of the way through a 64-ounce Cherry Coke when nature begins to call. But when’s a good time to duck out? The dedicated RunPee team has watched nearly every movie imaginable to pick out those 3-5 minute spans without crucial plot twists or action scenes, ensuring you only miss the dullest moments. Cross-referenced with scores from Rotten Tomatoes and details from IMDB, this tongue-in-cheek movie app may be the most useful on the market.
5. Trapster – “The easiest way to fight a speeding ticket is…not to get one in the first place.” The folks at Trapster couldn’t be more right, and now nearly 20.5 million drivers have turned to this app to be warned of red-light cameras and known enforcement points. And all the info is coming straight from the source: ticked off, ticketed drivers who’ve been foiled by speed traps and other police tactics. They now want to save you the same hassle. Apparently, revenge is a dish best served on a tablet.
6. Easy Metal Detector – If loose nickels and dimes hiding beneath the cushions of your couch is your idea of hidden treasure, Easy Metal Detector is your ticket to a payday. It uses the admittedly not-so-strong magnetometer already built into your tablet to find ferrous metals. Priced at just 99 cents, this app will pay for itself in a matter of months. Hopefully.
These apps and others, including games like Candy Crush, are available for download through the Windows Store and Google Play — two places that can truly enhance Dell’s new line of Venue tablets, available in Windows 8.1 and Android. Visit Dell.com/tablets for details.Tags: Downtime,Gadgets & Devices