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Bring the Share Menu up to Scratch - AppChooser Pro

Kris Carlon (translation)
0

To share content on your Android devices we have the Share Menu - which is a practical thing. No laborious caching in the file system in order to find the file in the second app: all apps can simply "hang" on the list to receive shared content. But that's what makes this menu awkward - especially if one has installed many apps that have sharing capabilities. The entry that you need most is usually at the end of the list, or can only be found with difficulty.

I have therefore taken a closer look at AppChooser Pro. Whether this app provides a remedy to a cluttered Share Menu and if so, how well it achieves this, you can find out below.

appchooser teaser
© [url=http://www.flickr.com/photos/ashkyd/]ashkyd[/url]
4 ★★★★

Rating

Good👍
  • Runs smoothly
  • Intuitive
  • Easy to configure
  • Does not require any permissions (not even in the free version)
Bad👎
  • Limited language support (Japanese and English only)
Tested on Android Version Root Modifications Tested version Latest version
LG Optimus 4X HD 4.0.3 Yes 2.0.0 2.0.0

Features & Use

App requires at least: Android 2.2

Permissions: Nope, none!

The built-in Android Share Menu is rigid and unchangeable (unless you get into the code). Wouldn't it be nice if you could edit the order of the entries! Or at least sort the list alphabetically? Ideally, it would be nice to be able to delete or hide the entries you don't ever really use. A grid representation would also be practical, so that more entries would fit on the screen. Plus, it'd be great to have themes to be able to align the whole thing visually to your own taste... If only you could have just a few of these points!

But why compromise? Why not have them all together? Well, AppChooser Pro provides exactly that!

After installation

Install the app like any other, and while its benefits may not seem initially apparent, as soon as one wants to share content, the question arises: what happens now? Up until now, the build in Android Share Menu was indeed "home alone", but now it has company. Now when you want to share content, Android responds with a query: which Share Menu will it be? You can now courageously set the rule "use by default for this action" (which, in an emergency can be undone simply in the system settings under Manage → Apps → AppChooser Pro by pressing the button again to reset default settings).

Has this now done something? By default, the appearance does not vary greatly from that of the standard menu. But if you look closely, you'll discover two things: firstly, at the bottom there's now three additional buttons - and on the top right an arrow. With the buttons at the bottom you can change the appearance: "A>Z" sorts the entries alphabetically, the button in the middle changes the layout to grid view, and "ALL" allows you to see all apps. To hide unwanted apps just press a little longer, and you will then be asked if you want to hide them.

appchooser34
What would you like: list or grid view?/ © Izzy

And what's with the arrow in the upper right? This comes into play when you want to share something to multiple applications at the same time. A double arrow appears at this point, meaning the Share Menu will remain open until you explicitly close it again with the back button. Once the share task is completed with the first app you can now simply select the next app to share with and so on. So, for example, a photo can first be Tweeted and then sent to an e-mail or posted to Facebook, all without having to re-enter the Share Menu.

Next practical point: the last selected action moves to the top of the list (so you can see that I last Tweeted something with Plume for example). On the first usage, the list is sorted alphabetically, but over time, the most active apps will accumulate on top of the list.

Adaptable to your needs

Settings can be found in the app drawer under a separate entry named "AppChooser Settings".

appchooser57
Settings options and the ''light theme''./ © Izzy

You can now define these fields:

Theme: Dark or Light (Black or White) – handy for AMOLED vs LCD screens.

Item visibility: If all entries are displayed by default - or only those that you have not hidden.

One action dialog item: When a "Share-action" only has a single app candidate available, you can set AppChooser Pro to share without querying.

Shortcut folders: Summarize the same app links in folders?

Share/Send: (Send To) Share Menu enabled?

Choosing contents: Should AppChooser ask, for example, when sending a music file, with which media player you want to play the file?

Camera / Video: Ditto for the appropriate actions for camera/video content.

Shortcut: Ditto for shortcuts (what is hidden behind this action, I couldn't figure out though).

Screen & Controls

AppChooser Pro is intuitive. During "operation" there is nothing to remember, installation provides the only necessary setup, then the rest takes care of itself. After a while you won't even notice the app working, except that all your sharing choices will be much more convenient, more comfortable and adapted to your habits. In short: much better than before. I am sure that once you have worked with AppChooser Pro for a while (or even the free version of AppChooser) and then had to use another device, when the "regular Share Menu" gets presented, your first thought will be: ''what the heck is that?"

Speed & Stability

In terms of performance and stability I couldn't detect any difference to the "built-in" Share Menu. Everything responded promptly and as expected. With this in mind, AppChooser Pro is a good choice.

Price/Performance Ratio

AppChooser Pro is available for the price of a "Snickers XL" in the Play Store. I had no problems so I can't comment on the level of support you'll receive if you do. There's also a free version of AppChooser in the Play Store.

Final Verdict

From my perspective, the investment of a buck and change in AppChooser Pro was a good decision: finally the Share Menu works the way it should by default. The sharing of content is for me now considerably less problematic. There's no more dealing with the Eternal Scroller, and visually it fits in wonderfully. A definite recommendation! If you think you can live without the grid view and shortcut options, then I'd recommend the free version of the app instead.

(originally by Izzy)

Comparable Apps

Developer

noxi

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