This page includes apps that ‘plug’ into my HTC Hero phone. I have been using android for over a year now and think these apps represent some of the best on the Android market.

LIFESTYLE/INFORMATION

NewsRoom – RSS News ($4.99)
It may seem pricey for a RSS News reader but the UI more than makes up for the price. The only downside is that it doesn’t sync with Google Reader. Another good choice is FeedR.

gReader (Unofficial Google Reader) – FREE
If Google Reader integration is essential then this is the app for you. An ad-free pro version is also available.

Thompson Reuters News Pro – FREE
Forget Sky News (which uses A LOT of data by the way) and install this brilliant news application. The UI is also excellent and provides a clean interface for reading the news.

eBooks by Kobo – FREE
I enjoy using eBook readers on my HTC Hero. I simply use Kobo because it was the first eBook store on Android and has a good selection of titles in the UK eBook store.

Amazon Kindle – FREE
Another, and arguably better, eBook reader and store from Amazon – now with UK support!

Movies by Flixster – FREE
I’m a huge movies fan so I really enjoy using this app to read reviews about the latest releases and check cinema show-times. It also links with my Flixster account and allows me to rate movies on the go.

MULTIMEDIA

mVideoPlayer – FREE (Ad-Free version available)
I was very disappointed with the video functionality and user interface on Android and felt it really fell short of the iPhone. However, I have recently discovered mVideoPlayer which offers outstanding playback features and extra goodies such as ‘Movie Poster’ mode for videos and IMDb search from within the app. I am no longer disappointed!

PRODUCTIVITY

Locale – $9.99
Bear with me and try to look past the high price of this app. Locale dynamically manages phone settings based on conditions, such as location and time. Plug-ins can also be installed to extend functionality. For example my HTC Hero automatically detects when I am at work and switches off the ringer between 9am and 3pm. When I’m at home Locale detects that and switches off the lock pattern on my phone – as soon as I go out it switches the security back on. All sounds are also switched off between 12.30am and 5.30am so my phone doesn’t wake me up. It’s one of the apps that makes life much easier and works quietly in the background.

Astrid – FREE
Astrid is an very simple yet very effective task list manager. It syncs with Remember the Milk so you don’t have to pay $24 for their premium service.

Pure Calendar Widget (Agenda) – 1.49 EURO
This is probably the most useful widget that I use on a day-to-day basis. This widget pulls all of the events from your Google Calendars and task list manager (such as Astrid or GTasks) and displays them in a handy widget. The settings are highly customisable and there are also a range of downloadable skins to choose from.

SEARCH

National Rail – £4.99
Expensive but worth it if you do a lot of travelling. The live travel information has been a live-saver for me when I’ve been travelling by train.

Google Goggles – FREE
The visual search app that amazed everybody at Google Teacher Academy UK is available on the Android Market!

SOCIAL MEDIA

Twidroyd Pro (Formally Twidroid Pro) – $3.99 (FREE version also available)
I have tried most of the android Twitter clients over the course of the past year and have always gone back to Twidroyd Pro. It is extremely feature rich, customisable and effective. I prefer it over the limited official Twitter app and the stock HTC Peep app.

Notifications can be set up with multi-tasking to ensure that you will always be up to date with any replies or direct messages that you may receive. There is also multiple account support.

TOOLS

Barcode Scanner – FREE
This is a very versatile apps which allows you to scan QR codes and locate information on the web.

BetterCut – $1.99
As I mentioned at the start of this post I really like to customise my phones so this app has been really useful to me. BetterCut allows you to create custom icons for apps and processes on your android device. It also allows you to use icon packs (downloadble from the Market) to further customise your handset.

Apps Organizer – FREE
Like the folders option in iOs4? Android has had that functionality for AGES!

WaveSecure – ($19.90 per year)
I managed to get a free license for this while it was in BETA but would still recommend purchasing it. WaveSecure locates your phone from a web interface and allows you to lock and wipe your phone should it be lost or stolen.

This list will constantly change as I discover and replace apps. If you can think of any apps to add to this list then do let me know!