24 Apps every Android user must Install

A friend of mine recently purchased an Android Mobile and asked me "Now I've bought a device running the hyped Android OS, What's next ?" This post is dedicated to all the people out there who have just purchased their first Android device and aren't familiar with the apps present here.
The sheer number of Apps (4 million +) available in the Play Store is enough to freak out a first-time-Android-user's mind when he wants to find an app to carry out a basic job. I have put together all the essential apps every Android user needs to have installed on his/her device. I shall discuss about the latter part some other part. I hope this post helps you to get out of this app dilemma.
Note: The apps below are my personal favorites,based on my personal experiences over a year of extensive use of my Android mobile. If your views differ and /or you want a better app listed in the alternatives bar, you're welcomed to drop a comment at the end of the post, it might help me and others to have a better experience with our Android device. 

Go Launcher

Best Home Launcher Replacement : Go Launcher EX -APK Link
+ Point : Customise it with the in-built options provided, play around with the effects,wide range of available themes, works well with other Go apps.
Alternates Available: ADW Launcher, Launcher Pro, Apex Launcher (For ICS), ...

Best Music Player: PlayerPro -APK Link
+ Points: Editing the tags is very easy and so is enqueuing the desired tracks.
Alternates Available: PowerAmp, Google Play Music, ZPlayer, ...
K-9 Mail

Best Email Client: K-9 Mail -APK Link
+ Points: Works best if you don't use Gmail, Push notifications are just awesome
Alternates Available: Kaiten Email, Yahoo! Mail, Gmail, ...
ezPDF Reader

Best PDF Reader: EZpdf Reader -APK Link
+ Points: Loads file faster than its alternatives, easy annotation, nice flipping effects
Alternates Available: Adobe Reader, RepliGo PDF Reader, Mantano Reader, ...
Documents To Go

Best Documet Reader: Documents to go -APK Link
+ Points: Supports many formats, create excel sheets and powerpoint presentations on the go
Alternates Available: Smart Office 2, OpenOffice Document Reader, OfficeSuite Pro, ...
Messaging App

 Best Messaging App: Default App

+ Points: Kind on battery, gives enough options to a basic user, takes little memory when in background
Alternates Available: Handcent SMSGo SMS ProZlango Messaging, ...

Dolphin Browser

Best Browser: Opera Mini -APK Link + Dolphin Browser HD -APK Link
+ Points: Opera Mini is blazing fast, Dolphin HD loads javascript and flash enabled pages nicely
Alternates Available: Chrome, Maxthon Browser, Boat Browser Mini, ...

Best Maps App: Google Maps -APK Link
+ Points: Too many to include in a single line :P
Alternates Available: Don't think anyone needs to look for an alternative and there's no app I have found till now, which can stand against the flurry of features available on Google Maps.

Best On-Screen Keyboard: Swype -APK Link
+ Points: Fast and easy to adapt to the lots of shortcuts available, did I mention it's fast?
Alternates Available: SwiftKey X, SlideIt Keyboard, TouchPal, ...

Best Chatting App: eBuddy Messenger -APK Link
+ Points: Light in size, uses very little RAM in the background, a trusted name in this field
Alternates Available: Go! Chat for Facebook, Nimbuzz, IM+, ...

Best News Reading App: Pulse News -APK Link
+ Points: Stores articles for offline reading, nice GUI
Alternates Availble: Flipboard, Google Reader, Google Currents, ...

Best Dialer App: exDialer -APK Link
+ Points: Instant Suggestions as you tap the numbers, lots of themes, exdialer contacts included
Alternates Available: Dialer One, myDialer, RocketDial Pro, ...
Astro File Manager

Best File Manager: Astro File Manager -APK Link
+ Points: Free, batch operetions, customisable
Alternates Available: ES File Explorer, OI FIle Manager, Root Explorer (For root only), ...


Best Facebook App: Friendcaster Pro -APK Link
+ Points: Faster and lags lesser than official Facebook App, looks even better, push notifications work as advertised,manage your fb pages as well, customisable start page
Alternates Available: Facebook for Android, Seesmic, Friendhub, ...
Juice Defender

Best Battery Saving App: Juice Defender -APK Link
+ Points: Only such app that worked for me, Shows you how much juice you've saved
Alternates Available: Go Power Master, Easy Battery Saver, Green Power Premium, ...
MX Video Player

Best Video Player App: MX Player -APK Link
+ Points: Pinch to zoom, codecs for every phone, plays all formats (almost), subtitle support, slide up to increase brightness and volume, easy gestures
Alternates Available: VPlayer Video Player, Mobo Video Player, Easy Video Player, ...


Best Data Management App: Onavo -APK Link
+ Points: Alerts you when you reach the threashold of your data usage, cuts off data connection before the data limit is over
Alternates Available: Track Your Plan, Simple Usage Monitor, 3G Watchdog, ...

Best Blogging App: Blogger -APK Link
+ Points: official app, no signatures in the posts, add labels and pictures to your post
Alternates Available: Blogger-droid, Blogaway, Bloggeroid, ... 
PicSay Pro

Best Photo Editor: PicSay Pro -APK Link
+ Points: Lots of effects, insert pictures in pictures, almost everything you can do when you edit your photo on your PC
Alternates Available: Adobe Photoshop Express, Photo Editor-FotoIr, TouchUp Pro, ...

Best Download Manager: XWind Downloader -APK Link ( not available on the play store now)
+ Points: Download files of any format, Resume Support, integrates well with most browsers
Alternates Available: Turbo Download Manager, Easy Downloader, aDownloader, ...
Go Locker

Best Lock screen replacement App: Go Locker -APK Link ( Works only if you've got Go Launcher installed)
+ Points: Vast choice of themes, integrates well with Go Launcher EX, light in size
Alternates Available: WidgetLocker, Simply Lockscreen, Magic Locker, ...

Best Task Killer App: None,Don't use any
+ Points: Only minus points can be listed for using a task killer on an Android device

Best Tethering App: Pdanet -APK Link
+ Points: Installs required drivers automagically, option to hide tether usage from your network provider
Alternates Available: Easy Tether Result, Super Tether, Klink-Tether, ...

Best Note taking App: Evernote -APK Link
+ Points: Easy to use, syncs all your data with your PC, laptop and tablets
Alternates Available: OI Notepad,ColorNote Notepad Notes, Note Everything, ...

I have provided Market links for all apps and direct apk links to as many apps as I can. I think I have covered almost all the apps a basic user may need,, a post is on its way to cover the apps that you need to install once you have got it rooted. 
Show your love by sharing this post with your friends who've just bought an Android device. Stay connected with me for that by joining me on the social networking sites present on the right side of this post. If I missed any crucial category, leave a comment below to remind me. Hope you enjoyed the read.

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