Android operating system’s strong integration with existing Google products and the wide offering of devices and carriers, makes it a strong challenger for Apple’s iPhone and iPad.

With Blackberry’s market share dropping, Android has stacked up head to head with Apple’s iOS in terms of its offering of a handful of free apps.

Android is an open source that also allows the apps to change the appearance and functionality of the OS. Google’s OpenHome, which works as a replacement for the default home screen, is one of the best leading customization app available in the market. It also allows you to load customised skins, icon packs and fonts, most of which are freely available in the market.

You can also set up Google Voice and use the Android app to get missed call alerts to a Google generated number that you can check in the web, in your email or via the app. The app also lets you stream audio messages from the web, without wasting any mobile minutes. Google Voice’s deep integration with Gmail offers a great advantage compared to the voicemail alternative for iPhone.

Unlike the iPhone maps app, the free, voice-guided GPS in Android phone does not need you to read out the directions from the handset while driving. Android's built-in method allows users to jump directly into navigation from address links in other apps, whereas with the iPhone, you must manually copy and paste the address into your app of choice.

The Android app syncs directly with Google Finance, which enables streaming of live financial data right into your hands by way of quote updates, charts, and financial news.

NEsoid, Nintendo ROM emulator for Android is a software which interprets ROM files — the format of choice for hacked console games. The lite version of NESoid comes free, but prevents you from loading a “saved-state” of a game. The full version will cost you $3.49.

Winamp, the media player for android, can be wirelessly connected with your desktop and you can move iTunes library to Android, Playlist support and also SHOUT cast radio.

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