Want access to the world's most popular encyclopedia -- wherever you are? Then get Wikidroid (free), which does an excellent job of putting the power of Wikipedia on your Android phone. You'll get full Wikipedia content, including live links and graphics, so you won't be giving up anything when you access it this way.
The Wikidroid app is essentially a front end to Wikipedia on the Web. Do a search, and the app grabs the relevant information from Wikipedia, formats it so it displays nicely on your Android phone, and then delivers it to you. You get all of Wikipedia's content, including graphics and live links.
When you do searches, Wikidroid suggests potential matches, shortening your searching time. You can even do voice searches. When you tap the search option, a small button of a microphone appears next to the search box, in the same way it does when you search Google on your Android phone. Tap the button, speak your search, and it goes about its work. The voice search uses the same engine and technology as the rest of Android voice-searching, so it works the same.
There's more. You can create bookmarks and share them with others, and also ask to see a random page. In addition, the app includes many of the Android tools available when you browse to Web pages, so you can select text and copy it to the Android clipboard, or share the page with others via e-mail, SMS text messaging, Bluetooth, and social networking apps such as Facebook. You can also change what language to use with Wikipedia. And you can zoom in and out with the same tools as you can on other Android apps.
If you want to be able to save pages to your Android phone so you can view them offline, you'll need to buy the $1.99 Wikidroid Plus version.
If you regularly use Wikipedia, you'll want the Wikidroid app, because it's the best way for Android phone owners to get access to the online encyclopedia.
You might also want to check out the similar app Wapedia: 4 Wikipedia & more!
See other recent articles by Preston Gralla.