Here at Land of Technology we like to bring you the latest news and gossip in the fast moving technology world, and of course none more so than Apps (well for me). When you think you’ve found just the app you’ve been looking for along comes another.
Recently we introduced to you Swapps and Home Flip, both multi-tasking apps allowing users to access their apps from a sliding hidden dock, that you accessed from the left or right side of your screen. This function is extremely useful for changing apps quickly from within another without the need to press the home button and then the app drawer or swipe to another screen. Well now, Sidebar has stepped up into the ring offering the a similar experience.
There is now a steady stream of these hidden multi-tasking sidebar apps appearing on Google Play Store.
XDA Senior Member Mohammad_Adib, the developer of Floating Stickies, recently introduced his adaptation of these apps called “Sidebar” which becomes confusing when you’re talking about them in general, as they are referred to as SIDEBAR apps! The app consists of a hidden sidebar docked to the left or right of the screen, and simply displays the icons of the apps. Now you may ask, how is this any different to Swapps or Home Flip and indeed Glovebox? (Ubuntu Phone OS Experience). First of all, Sidebar’s user interface consist of the apps you put into the sidebar. Sidebar does not display all apps installed on your Android phone by default, as does Glovebox and Home Flip. Sidebar is very similar Glovebox in that you decide which apps are on the sidebar. It does display enlarged icons of apps which minimize the number of apps shown at anyone time, the ability to reduce the size would be more appealing to me.
Sidebar along with those mentioned is a well designed, polished app, with a simple, yet practical function allowing users to quickly access their favourite apps quickly and conveniently. The lite version is free of ads and is available in the Play store link below. We have also included links for the Pro version and Glovebox, although we have not reviewed it ……..yet.
- Fast, fluid, and immersive animations are integrated within Sidebar that keep it as quick as possible, yet help to add a dash of elegance to its presence.
- A simple Add button appended at the end of the sidebar summons a menu listing all the apps installed on your system. Simply pick an app, and it will be added to the sidebar for quick access.
- To dock the sidebar, simply select an app or touch outside
- To remove an app, simply swipe it out of the sidebar! Alternatively, long pressing will bring up further options such as inserting and replacing.
- Add widgets: many widgets/toggles are included (Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS, Sound, Rotation, Brightness, and Torch)
- Starting on boot
- Adjusting the width & opacity of the bar
- Adjusting the color scheme & position
- Enabling/Disabling animations
- Adjusting the swipe sensitivity
- Enabling/Disabling vibration
Sidebar Pro lifts the limitations put on the lite version and opens access to new customizability as well as functionality – elevating sidebar, to its most impeccable and pure state.
THIS APPLICATION HAS ACCESS TO THE FOLLOWING:
- HARDWARE CONTROLS
TAKE PICTURES AND VIDEOSAllows the app to take pictures and videos with the camera. This permission allows the app to use the camera at any time without your confirmation.
- SYSTEM TOOLS
DRAW OVER OTHER APPSAllows the app to draw on top of other applications or parts of the user interface. They may interfere with your use of the interface in any application, or change what you think you are seeing in other applications.CONNECT AND DISCONNECT FROM WI-FIAllows the app to connect to and disconnect from Wi-Fi access points and to make changes to device configuration for Wi-Fi networks.MODIFY SYSTEM SETTINGSAllows the app to modify the system’s settings data. Malicious apps may corrupt your system’s configuration.
- HARDWARE CONTROLS
Allows the app to control the vibrator.
- NETWORK COMMUNICATION
VIEW WI-FI CONNECTIONS
Allows the app to view information about Wi-Fi networking, such as whether Wi-Fi is enabled and name of connected Wi-Fi devices.
- SYSTEM TOOLS
RUN AT STARTUP
Allows the app to have itself started as soon as the system has finished booting. This can make it take longer to start the tablet and allow the app to slow down the overall tablet by always running. Allows the app to have itself started as soon as the system has finished booting. This can make it take longer to start the phone and allow the app to slow down the overall phone by always running.
Cost: Lite version FREE, Pro version £1.28
While Sidebar is smooth and easy to use I believe their is a growing collection of similar apps now, not unlike the plethora of launchers etc. I would like to be able to reduce the size of the icons as on my Samsung GS2, only seven icons can be seen at anyone time. Other than this I like it but not enough to buy the pro version.
The Dev also points out that for some (unknown) reason the Nexus 7 does not show Sidebar Lite or Pro in the Play Store. Hence, to remedy that, Sidebar Lite can be side-loaded and is attached here. Sidebar Lite.apk
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