We will be discussing three different apps that will help you bridge the gap between your phone and computer.
Your phone and computer are both powerful machines, but they can get even more powerful when you connect them. I’m not talking about plugging in a USB cable; instead there are apps out there that help your desktop and Android talk to each other, helping you transfer files, view your notifications, and even send text messages without touching your smartphone.
Free, Android and iOS
Moaxis connects to your phone to show your notifications on your desktop. However, the app’s main purpose is to let you send text messages from the Moaxis Windows, Mac, and Chrome apps on your computer. You download Moaxis for your phone and set it up by adding a new computer to sync with. Once you finish the setup process, you won’t really need to open the app again. Instead, you’ll use the desktop app to send text messages and view your phone’s address book. Your existing SMS conversations appear in the app and you can pick up where you
left off. The only downside is that while you can view your address book, you can’t make any changes to it.
What’s great: You can easily start new text conversations, or just continue existing ones.
What’s not: The setup process can be a bit daunting, and you cannot edit your address book with the app.
Free, Android only
Airdroid has been around for several years and it’s still a popular way to sync your phone with your computer. The app combines many features into one, including sending files wirelessly, viewing notifications on your desktop, and sending text messages from your desktop. Airdroid focuses on helping you manage your device, from viewing call logs and your clipboard, to helping you install new apps and take a screenshot remotely. While you can send messages to your contacts, I’ve had mixed results with this feature. However, the rest of the tools work well and it’s a great way to get a deeper look into your phone and apps.
What’s great: You can access Airdroid’s desktop dashboard from your browser, so you can use it on any machine.
What’s not: You need to connect your phone with Airdroid every time you want to use it.
Free, Android and iOS
Pushbullet has grown a lot in the last year. What started out as a way to send links, notes, and files between your devices wirelessly has morphed into a powerful tool for both transferring information, and displaying your Android’s notifications on your desktop, using the app and a browser extension for Chrome or Firefox. This free app works well for sharing notes, links, checklists, files, and map locations from your computer to your phone or vice versa. You can also send those items to your friends who also use Pushbullet.
What’s great: The app requires minimal setup, and it’s dead simple to send items.
What’s not: The Pushbullet app’s design can be confusing at first.