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Parallels Access for Android 2.1

Access your PC or Mac’s programs from your mobile

by Nick Peers

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License: Trial Software
Operating Systems: Android
Requirements:

Android 4.0.3 or later

Languages: English
Software Cost: Free
Date Updated: 06 August 2014
Watchlist: Add download to my watchlist
Downloads To Date: 202
Developer: Parallels
RSS News Feed:
Twitter Feed: https://twitter.com/ParallelsAccess
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ParallelsAccess
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Parallels Access for Android 2.1
Switching apps is simple using Parallels Access 2.0

Controlling your PC or Mac remotely is nothing new, and the ability to control your computer using a phone or tablet is hardly ground-breaking, either, but Parallels Access comes with a clever twist. Rather than give the user access to their entire desktop, it’s designed to let you run any program or app full-screen on your device.

Setup is convoluted, but simple: first, sign up for an account at access.parallels.com – signup is free, and pricing plans start from $19.99 for a year’s unlimited access to all your personal computers.

You’ll then need to download the Parallels Access agent for your Windows PC or Mac – the download links are hidden away inside your account, but once installed you’ll find your account is already set up and ready to go. A simple window reveals your account status, plus whether or not Parallels Access is available, complete with button for switching access off and on.

Now turn to your mobile, install the app and sign in. You should see your computer appear, so tap it and a connection is made. Your main screen will resize to accommodate your mobile display, and a list of apps will appear allowing you to quickly switch to an app full-screen (not all your apps are displayed, but you can edit this list easily).

Controlling apps is relatively straightforward – the intro video explains everything succinctly – and intuitive. You can switch between running apps easily using the app switcher button, plus return to the home screen to open other apps too.

The whole experience is slick, straightforward and a great way to access your desktop apps while on the move. However, the Android version currently lacks a few of the notable features from its iOS brethren, most notably a built-in file manager for accessing your desktop or laptop's files from the app. There is a shortcut to the native file explorer, but it's not as neat.

What's new in 2.1?

• Ability to register and log in using your Google+ account
• Enhancements to the Lock'N'Go Magnifying Glass for even faster drag-and-drop actions
• Ability to rename or delete computers directly from your tablet or phone
• Improvements for screen content zooming
• Ability to use your mobile device’s microphone with remote apps
• Bug fixes and stability improvements

Verdict:

A slick and simple way to access and use your Windows and Mac apps on your mobile, although it does fall a little short of the iOS version currently.

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Spotlight: Free Full Software

WhatsApp Messenger 2.12.5

Free Full Commercial Software

WhatsApp Messenger is the world's most popular instant messaging app for smartphones.

You can use it to send and receive text and voice messages, photos, videos, even call your friends in other countries, and because it uses your phone's internet connection it might not cost you anything at all (depending on whether you'll pay data charges).

It's easy to set up and use. There's no need to create and remember new account names or pins because it works with your phone number, and uses your regular address book to find and connect you with friends who use WhatsApp already.

You can talk one-to-one or in group chats, and because you're always logged in there's no way to miss messages. Even if your phone is turned off, WhatsApp will save your messages and display them as soon as you're back online.

There's plenty more (location sharing, contact exchange, message broadcasting) and the app is free for a year, currently $0.99/ year afterwards.

Version 2.12.5 brings:

• Per chat custom notification settings and mute
• You can now include videos in your chat backups in Settings > Chats and Calls > Chat Backup
• Mark chats as unread or read with a swipe to the right
• Better support for VoiceOver
• Directly share contacts from the Contacts app and locations from Apple Maps to WhatsApp
• Lower the data usage used during WhatsApp calls in Settings > Chats and Calls 
• Earlier messages now load automatically as you scroll chats
• Improved design for cropping photos and videos
• Location messages now use a large map thumbnail

[...]
Value:
Free
Rating: