Android: auto brightness and mute your phone

I have two great (and free) Android apps for you today:

Yet Another Auto Brightness is a useful app that will reduce the brightness of your phone display. Here’s the XDA thead about it.

Easy Mute will pause or mute music and podcasts on your phone just by placing your hand over the device. It uses the proximity sensor and you can tell it to only activate if the phone is lying flat.

It works great and it remembers it’s state when the phone is moved. This confused me at first but to replicate, cover the front of the camera to pause and then lift the phone. It will still be paused when you lift your hand off the front. After putting the phone down wave your hand over the front again and it will resume (or just unlock and hit play, the old fashioned way). (via)


My Favourite Android timer app: Chef’s Kitchen Timer

Timing things is something you might not think much about but when you have to make the dinner and various dishes take different times to cook then juggling the time in your head can be a pain.

That’s where a smartphone timer app comes in handy.

For the longest time my wife and I used Kitchen Timer and it works great but it has one drawback. The screen has to be unlocked to reset the alarm. There’s nothing more annoying than a loud beeping noise and you’re waiting for the screen to unlock and hit the off button.

I’ve looked for alternatives in the past but couldn’t find any until last week when I found Chef’s Kitchen Timer. It’s an app that does much the same but also shows the timer controls on the lockscreen. The UI is radically different and I never bother changing the timer names but it works a treat.