Get the Galaxy S5 Launcher on any Android phone

Samsung Galaxy S series is one of the best selling Android phones every year and this year will probably be no different. Samsung Galaxy S5 with its unique software features and hardware additions like Fingerprint sensor and heart beat sensor will surely entice many people.

But some of the software features of Samsung Galaxy S5 can easily be made available on any Android phone. One of the them is the Touchwiz Home Launcher. Galaxy Launcher available on Google Play is based on the Galaxy S5 launcher and provides the same Touchwiz interface that is available on the Galaxy S5.

Galaxy S5 Launcher

The Galaxy Launcher also includes the new flat Touchwiz icons from Galaxy S5. So it brings a new look if you are using the Galaxy S4 or Note 3 which are still on the old Touchwiz look. And if you are not a fan of the Touchwiz icons, you can use any of the numerous icon packs available on Google Play.

If you want the default Samsung Galaxy S5 wallpapers (one of the them is featured in the screenshot above), then get the Galaxy S5 Wallpapers app.


Best Cases for Samsung Galaxy S5

The Galaxy S5 is the newest Android flagship from Samsung and will be one of the best selling Android devices this year. Considering the hefty amount this device costs, it is necessary to protect it from any scratches and drops by using a sturdy case.

We will be focusing on the best cases for Samsung Galaxy S5 here. If you want simply the best protection for your Galaxy S5, then this list is all you need.

1. Samsung S-View Cover

Best Cases for Samsung Galaxy S5 - S-View CoverSamsung’s own S-View Cover is the default go-to protection for many Galaxy  S5 owners. While making the device look great, the cover actually adds to the utility of the Galaxy S5. The cover enables a small utility view on the S5’s screen which shows you a display of the current time, battery status, missed calls, unread messages, pedometer etc. through the cut-out on the cover. You can also accept incoming calls without opening the flip cover.

The S-View cover also powers on the screen automatically when opened and locks it when closed.

The quality of the cover is pretty good as well as it is from Samsung. One area where the S-View covers falls short is protecting the device from drops. The S-View is more of a aesthetic cover which just protects the screen when the device is in your pocket.

Colors : Black, White, Green, Pink, Rose Gold

Best Cases for Samsung Galaxy S5 - Otterbox Defender 2. Otterbox Defender

Otterbox is one of the well-known case makers for mobile phones. If you are looking for something tough enough to protect the all-plastic build of the Galaxy S5 from accidental drops, then look no further.

Otterbox Defender cases for Galaxy S5 bring a tough professional look and protect the device from drops, bumps and shocks. All the ports of the S5 (microphone, charging point, speaker) are accessible through the case.

The case comes with a three-layer protection  and built-in screen protector ensuring all round protection. This is the most expensive case of the list but is the one that provides the best protection as well although by being more bulky.

Pros – Buyers can create their own color combinations, Excellent protection

Cons – Bulky

3. Spigen Neo Hybrid

Best Cases for Samsung Galaxy S5 - Spigen Neo HybridSpigen is also a well-known name when it comes to mobile phone cases. Similar to it’s Neo Hybrid case for Galaxy S4, Spigen has launched a case for Galaxy S5 as well.

The case is comprised of two parts – the back cover and the bumper. The back cover is made of TPU and the side frame of polycarbonate. The case fits precisely onto the Galaxy S5 and has cutouts for the camera, speakers, and other ports.

Spigen has gone for a different approach this time and has matching perforated (DOT) design for the cases as well. Although we were not a big fan of the dimpled back of the Galaxy S5, this case does look good in pictures. The back cover is only available in black while the bumper is available in six different colors.

Pros – Case shows the unique Galaxy S5 back design

Cons – Back panel only in black

 4. Urban Armor Gear (UAG)

Best Cases for Samsung Galaxy S5 - Urban Armor GearThe UAG case for the Galaxy S5 does not need an introduction. The patent-pending design of the UAG case has been wildly popular over the years for smartphones like iPhone, Galaxy S series and Galaxy Note etc.

The UAG for S5 brings the military grade tough look to the Galaxy S5  and protects it from all drops even in cases where the phone falls directly with the screen hitting first.

One selling point for the UAG is that along with offering a really unique design and comprehensive protection, the cut-outs for mic, phone charger are over-sized. So you can use third party earphones and chargers with your phone. Also, the case meets military drop-test standards. So you can it’s pretty tough protection for the Galaxy S5.

Tip – Look for the Maverick version of the case

5. Spigen Slim Armor

Spigen Slim Armor Galaxy S5Apart from the Spigen Neo Hybrid that we mentioned above, Slim Armor is another case from Spigen that is quite good.

Spigen Slim Armor is a double layered case with a TPU case and a polycarbonate hard case which provides additional protection. The polycarbonate midsection has a metallic matte finish to it and can be separated from the inner TPU case.

Pros – Two layer case with an interchangeable polycarbonate mid-section which can be switched for different colors


Best Weather Apps / Widgets for Android

The ability to have homescreen widgets are one of the biggest strong points for the Android platform from the customization perspective. One of the first widgets that people install on their Android phones are custom weather widgets. Yes, most of the smartphones now come with built in weather widgets but their appearance is not customizable nor can they be used if you are using a custom launcher.

So which are the best weather apps / widgets available for Android?

1. Beautiful Widgets Pro

Beautiful WidgetsBeautiful Widgets is one of the most popular weather apps available on Google Play. The app has different layouts for it’s weather widgets and also offers battery, clock, date and system toggle widgets which can be used to customize the home screens.

Beautiful Widgets also has it’s own skin market which lets you download various skins and themes for it’s widgets. And all the themes are free as well, so endless customization options for making the widget look the way you want.

Pros :

  • Multiple widget sizes and widget formats
  • Huge skin gallery with fresh skins available almost everyday

2. Yahoo Weather

Yahoo WeatherYahoo Weather for Android has been around for a long time but it’s recent update has made it popular among Android users.

Yahoo’s weather app has an unique feature of pulling in a city’s weather information along with matching photos of the location and it’s weather condition from Flickr. For example, if you are in New York and it is raining there, Yahoo Weather will show you a picture of New York when it was raining. The pictures are pulled in from a Flickr group where people submit the pictures themselves.


  • Pretty awesome weather pictures if you live in some of the big cities

3. EZ Weather

EZ Weather Android AppEZ Weather is probably the simplest weather app in the list here. A sleek, minimalist weather app which follows the Holo guidelines to a large extent, EZ Weather widgets go along really well with the stock Google Experience Launcher.

It comes with three themes that you can use in your home screen. There are two widget sizes : 4 X 1 and 4 X2.

As with most weather apps, the location is auto detected by the app. You can add multiple locations for which you want to check the weather.

Pros :

  • Free and minimalist weather widget which gives a concise view of the current weather condition

4. Google Now Weather

Google Now Weather CardNot exactly a separate app but if you use Google Now for your phone (many reasons why you should be) then Google Now doubles up as a weather app/widget for you as well. The widget is a simple 4 X 1 and is displayed along with the remaining Google Now cards on the home screen.

One of the coolest features of Google Now is it automatically displays weather information about your home city and your current city when you are on a trip or vacation.


  • One less app to install
  • Simple and Elegant

5. 1Weather

Last on the list but definitely the most popular and comprehensive weather app is 1Weather. 1Weather has all the weather information you will ever need for your location and packs it into an elegant UI which gives all the required information at a glance including weather forecasts.

1Weather App for Android

It is one of the most comprehensive weather apps available for Android and also makes an excellent tablet version as well. The free app displays ads but there is an in-app purchase to get rid of them.


Best Android Icon Packs / Themes

Over a period of time, almost everyone gets bored with the icon theme that comes with their Android phone. That’s why Android icon packs / themes are great – they let you cover up the icons that your phone comes without the need to root it. You can easily spice up your phone’s appearance by applying any of the hundreds of icon packs available on Google Play.

If searching on Google Play is getting tedious and you have not yet found that perfect icon pack, here are some themes to help you get started. We have got round icons, square icons, 3D icons and a lot more!

P.S. – These icon themes work with most of the popular home launchers for Android like Nova Launcher, Apex Launcher,  Atom Launcher etc. You should be using one of these to apply any of the icon packs below.

1. Stark Android Icon Pack

Designed by kovdev, the Stark Icon theme is my favourite Android icon pack so far. The Stark Icon theme features flat Square icons which are colourful and are perfect for minimalists. The icon set does not sacrifice on the use of colour which results in distinct recognizable icons for each application, while being easy on the eye. Till date, the icon packs includes 1300+ icons, so you have a consistent look across your app drawer.

Stark Android Icon Theme

2. Click UI Android Icon Pack

Developed by kxnt, the unique point of the Click UI icon theme are it’s round icons. Click UI is of course not the only round icon theme available for Android but what makes it unique are it’s icon designs. Designing round icons for every apps can be a difficult task but Click UI accomplishes that easily. If you want something unique for your Android, then Click UI just might be it. At present it features 765+ icons with more added every release.

Click UI Android Icon Theme

3. MIUI 5 Android Icon Pack

Designed by Tung91, the MIUI 5 Icon theme as the name implies is based off the hugely popular MIUI ROM for Android. At present it features more than 1900+ icons.

MIUI Android Icon  Theme

 4. Minimal UI Android Icon Pack

Designed by kxnt, Minimal UI icon theme for Android features square icons. This theme is quite similar to Stark icon theme in terms of design guidelines but it features brighter colors in its icons which make it look good on AMOLED screens used in Samsung Galaxy S4 or Note 3.

Minimal UI Android Icon Theme

 5. Cyrcle Android Icon Pack

Another round icon theme but it is very different from Click UI which we covered above. Cyrcle is not a simplistic round icon theme like Click UI but it uses a lot of colors along with layered icons for an impressive look.

Cyrcle Android Icon Theme

6. Tersus Android Icon Pack

Tersus is another icon theme from kxnt, which features square icons which are slightly rounded at the edges. Unlike Minimal UI, the icons are not flat.

Tersus Android Icon Theme

7. Up Android Icon Pack

Up Icon Theme is very different from the remaining themes here. Up icon theme uses shadows in it’s icons and results in quite an unique theme which is very different from all the round, square icons that we have. Nor does it try to mimic another OS like iOS or Windows.

Up icon theme is free and is one of our favorites.

Up Android Icon Theme

Google Nexus 5 specifications and hands on video

The Nexus series has always been the thing to look forward to for an Android enthusiast for two reasons. First, a new Nexus device always gets unveiled with a new version of Android and secondly includes cutting edge hardware running vanilla Android which gets updates as soon as they are released by Google.

It is October 2013 and time for the next in the series. Towards the end of October we will be seeing the unveiling of Android 4.4 KitKat and Nexus 5 which is being made by LG again.

Nexus 5 – Specs

LG Nexus 5 RenderThe Nexus 5 is rumoured to be based on the new LG G2. Below are some of the key specifications of the the new Google Nexus 5 :

  • 4.95-inch 1080p IPS LCD display
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 quad-core processor clocked @ 2.3GHz
  • 2GB of RAM
  • OIS enabled 8-megapixel rear camera and a 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera
  • Expected to be LTE enabled which will be a key selling point for LTE markets.

Nexus 5 – Styling and Colors

The styling of the new Nexus 5 will be along the lines of the Nexus 4 but it is expected to be much more refined. The device will also likely sport a larger camera lens and also have the ‘NEXUS’ engraving vertically on it.

Google will also release a white version of the Nexus 4 but it will have only the back panel white just like the Nexus 4.

Nexus 5 – Hands On Video

A hands on video of the Nexus 5 has emerged which shows an early prototype of the device running Android 4.4.

Change Microsoft Office 2013 theme / color scheme

Microsoft Office 2013, the latest iteration of the popular office software from Microsoft comes with its own set of improvements and the much touted  ‘Metro’  Modern UI. Some like it, some don’t. The reason is simple, the look (especially the default white one) simply does not fit in when you are using Office 2013 on the classic Windows desktop.

Microsoft has provided three colour themes for Office 2013 – White, Light Gray and Dark Gray.

Microsoft Office 2013 Color Themes

For changing the color scheme, open any of the Office applications and go to File –> Account –> Office Theme. Simply select the option you want and the changes are applied immediately across all Office apps.