The Kindle Fire was one of the most popular holiday gifts this year, but many users may be worried that Amazon's tablet lacks basic necessities. Where is the calculator? How do you check the weather? Can you check the strength of local wireless signals? While the Kindle Fire does not come pre-set with any of these abilities, you can easily have access to a number of essentials by downloading these top ten crucial apps for your Kindle Fire.
1. Wikidroid for Wikipedia (Free)
This free Wikipedia app means searching for information is quick, easy and always at your fingertips. The Wikidroid app pulls information from the Wikipedia site, but slightly reformats them, so the articles are easy to read on your Kindle Fire. The app also has an easy search menu, which makes finding any information you need accessible in a matter of seconds.
2. WiFi Analyzer (Free)
This useful app generates a list of all nearby WiFi signals and creates channel, time and signal graphs. The WiFi Analyzer also lets you change settings so you can use the strongest signal in your location.
3. Alarm Clock Xtreme (Free)
The Kindle Fire can be more than just a toy when you download the Alarm Clock XTreme. This App allows you to set an unlimited number of alarms. You can also change settings to specify the amount of time for each snooze as well as to set a maximum number of times you can hit that snooze button.
4. Office Calculator (Free)
This simple application is a must-have for any Kindle Fire user. While a calculator may not seem like the most interesting application, it is an essential as there will always be moments when you will be thankful to have the ability to crunch some calculations. The free Office Calculator is simple and straightforward (as calculators should be), but is colorful enough to make it the most worthwhile calculator app to download.
5. The Weather Channel (Free)
The free Weather Channel app is an incredibly useful program to have on your Kindle Fire. The app provides you with detailed information on upcoming weather and hour by hour reports. You can also set the app to look up a number of locations, so you can check different weather sites quickly. The app also comes with customizable weather and radar maps as well as detailed weather conditions and forecasts.
6. Wall Street Journal (Free App, Subscription: $17.99 per month)
The Kindle Fire offers certain newspapers and magazines in the newsstand and others are offered as apps. The Wall Street Journal app was recently released and it was one of the most impressively streamlined news apps offered on the Kindle Fire. While anyone can download the app for free and gain access to basic news articles, users need to subscribe to the Kindle Wall Street Journal edition to access full articles.
7. TweetCaster for Twitter (and Facebook) (Free)
The Kindle Fire does not come pre-set with a Twitter and Facebook program, but with the TweetCaster app you will be glad to have the option. TweetCaster is an excellent program that streamlines your Facebook and Twitter activity. It also gives you the opportunity to follow trends and to use filters to find picture, video or link specific tweets.
8. ColorNote Notepad Notes (Free)
The Kindle Fire does not come with a calendar or note taking program. The ColorNote Notepad Notes provides you with the basic ability to fulfill tasks that you need to do on a daily basis from taking notes and making to-do lists to sharing the notes and keeping track of them. ColorNote also provides you with a basic calendar program that will make planning your day on your Kindle Fire smooth and easy.
9. Angry Birds (Free)
While the Kindle Fire can be used for reading books and magazines, there are also many games offered in the Amazon App Store. The extremely popular Angry Birds game can be purchased for free in the Kindle Fire App Store. Users fling birds across the screen to try to strategically destroy structures and boundaries. This puzzle game is fun for people of all ages.
10. Hulu Plus and Netflix (Free Apps, Subscriptions for Material)
Most importantly, the Kindle offers support for streaming from Netflix and Hulu Plus, which brings substantially more content to the tablet. Amazon Prime users will also have access to the enormous Prime library of movies and television shows. Kindle Fire users get one moth free of Amazon Prime services.