App Attack: Essential Downloads For Movie Fans

This post is Part 3 of a small series of five articles covering what movie fans might or might not get out of the Asus Eee Pad Transformer. Part 1 and Part 2 can be found here.

Around the time of Windows 7's release The BBC's Rory Cellan-Jones wrote a piece (which I am now frustratingly unable to find) proclaiming the veritable death of the operating system. The future, it seemed, was 'apps'.

Increasingly, I agree with him. No matter the device nor the operating system it uses, the usefulness of any given piece of hardware appears to be defined by what applications we put on to it.

So, you're a movie fan, you've got an Android device, what now? My Transformer and I investigated the best (and worst) the Android marketplace has to offer. Pictures using the devices' wonderful screenshot mode included.


The logical place to start. The IMDb app has an attractive front screen (above) which gives you easy access to a selection of 'top' films. Highlight the required film and tap it again to play the trailer or tap the bar at the bottom to bring up the information page (below).

The information page is a cross between old IMDb and new IMDb but thankfully without all of new IMDb's inadequate structuring. It's a fast, un-flashy, easy to operate a database which, really, is all you need IMDb to be.


Like IMDb, the Flixster app is well presented and simple to use. Split into four main areas ('Box Office', 'Cinemas', 'Upcoming' and 'DVD') it fulfils much of the same purpose as the previous app with the added inclusion of Rotten Tomatoes scores which can be browsed in app or clicked through to open with a browser.

The 'Cinema' section, which historically I've found to be a nightmare on mobile devices, is pleasantly accurate with both its location finding and its showtime listings although direct links through to cinemas' booking websites are mysteriously absent.


Miso is a 'Check-in' based app in much the same vein as GoWalla or FourSquare. The difference? It's a check-in app for movies. Watch a film, search for it on Miso, check-in to earn the now customary 'badges' and share what you're watching with friends on twitter and/or facebook.

I find the service useful as an easy way of sharing what I'm currently viewing but the app has no real advantage over visiting the main website. It only works in profile mode and has little extra to offer apart from a page which shows all of the available badges and a hint on how to get each individual one. For completists only really. GetGlue, which follows a similar concept, also has an app available.


A list of 'latest' articles which only displays in mobile phone screen size (roughly one sixth of the tablet's screen) and some searching capability. Depressingly weak for a site which prides itself on being up-to-the-minute for all things 'geek'.


Much to my surprise I found reading on the tablet to be most enjoyable. The Amazon Kindle app (just updated to optimise for non-Kindle devices) is fast and within minutes I had downloaded a preview chapter of Rosemary Sutcliff's just-adapted The Eagle Of The Ninth. The screen however, remains not quite bright enough to read in direct sunlight when sitting outdoors although in the shade it operates just fine.

Comics by comiXology

A real find. This blew me away. Search a massive library of comics, build a reading list, order directly to your device or print out and take into your local store to buy hard copies. Download hundreds of free previews and issues and enjoy them all with comiXology's real genius: Guided View.

Set Guided View up properly and it works like a charm. Start off by seeing the whole page in gloriously rendered full screen (above). Tap the sides as you would when reading Kindle and the technology takes you cell-by-cell down the page so that you can see the full detail. When you reach the end it gives you one last look at the page you've just read before moving on to the next one. It's smoothly animated and reacts accordingly; notice how, below, the background has changed to red to reflect the contents of the cell from the bottom of the page above. Glorious, smooth, awesome.

And then I discovered this and life as I knew it ended...

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