by James A. Martin

Looking for Android Tablet Apps? Get Tablified

Mar 22, 20123 mins

Google’s Play Store doesn’t make it easy to browse and discover apps designed for Android tablets. Fortunately, the Tablified Market HD Pro app takes on the job—and does it well.

My new iPad has been getting all my gadget attention lately. And so, empathetic person that I am, I was feeling sorry for my Samsung Galaxy Tab 8.9 Android tablet. There it sat, tucked behind my nightstand, woefully neglected, wondering what went wrong.

So I blew off the dust, fired up the tab, and decided to see what’s new and interesting in Android tablet apps. Almost instantly, I remembered why my Android tablet has gathered more dust than Mrs. Havisham’s wedding dress.

The reason: The Google Play Store, as the Android market was recently rechristened, simply doesn’t make it easy to browse and discover tablet-optimized apps. Your best option is the ‘Staff Picks for Tablets’ section of the Play Store. Unfortunately, the section is really just a very long list of apps (I counted 246) to scroll through. The apps aren’t categorized, and it’s not clear how they’re sorted.

Instead of wasting time scrolling, I downloaded an application called Tablified Market HD Pro by Tablified Apps (current version: 2.1; $1.49). The app does what the Google Play Store should: It makes shopping for Android tablet apps easy and fun. There’s also a free version of the app, Tablified Market HD Lite, but it includes ads and lacks several features of the paid version, such as the ability to filter apps by star ratings and sort by price. For these reasons, I recommend splurging for the paid app.

Tablified Market HD Pro gives you all sorts of options for discovering apps. You can browse by top-level categories including “Featured,” “Recently Added,” and “Editors Choice.” You can investigate apps based on specific categories such as “Books and Reference,” “Business,” “Comics,” “Health and Fitness,” and more. Within these categories, you can sort by free, paid, or all apps.

When you’re ready to install something, you choose to download and install it through the Android browser or the Google Play Store.

Tablified Market Pro HD Android app

I have only one complaint: The app’s “News” section, which is supposed to deliver Android-tablet-related news, is a joke. As of March 21, the most recent news story was dated Jan. 9. The “Reviews” section was a tiny bit better, with Android software reviews as recent as March 17. But the app only displayed a total of five reviews thus far for 2012.

Overall, I find that the quality and quantity of Android apps pale in comparison to iPad apps. And just this week, we learned that a number of free, ad-supported Android apps are guzzling battery power behind our backs. For more on that topic, read Al Sacco’s “Want Better Android Battery Life? Stop Being Such a Cheapskate.”

I haven’t found anything terribly exciting on an Android tablet that you can’t get on an iPad. However, if you do own an Android tablet, blow off the dust and give Tablified Market HD Pro a try. At least you now have a way to discover some tablet apps that are worth downloading.