There are some hot dogs that are good but packaged in a bad wrapper. The vendor down the street needs to find new packaging. While the hot dog is great, it’s a hard sell. He needs to make the hot dog look better so it will sell.
ANDY Assistant is one such hotdog. There is the right amount of mustard, the optimal softness of buns, and it tastes great but boy oh boy does the packaging stink.
I can make the “1990’s called, and they want their interface back” joke, but I would spare you the outdated humor. ANDY Assistant apparently didn’t get the memo to employ a current interface.
The virtual assistant for Android does everything other apps in this category do, but the presentation is downright awful. The app only made it to the best SIRI like apps for Android list thanks to its fast processing, and this is the only redeeming feature of the app.
The app works really fast. There is a solid reason behind its speed. ANDY Assistant uses Google Text-to-speech engine that is generally quite fast.
The app can do numerous tasks for you like sending SMS and even initiating phone calls. The app also likes to display Wikipedia articles for questions you ask.
This Android Virtual Assistant can be a valuable asset for students who like to copy, I mean get inspired by Wikipedia articles.
The interface should be completely overhauled. Usually, developers are coders who think they can design the interface. Unfortunately, they are not capable of delivering a consistent interface. ANDY Assistant is a prime example of why everyone should hire a professional UI designer for the job.
The poor implementation is more jarringly visible on tablets. The persistent ugly ads on the free version of the app are a bit turn off. The color scheme is also somewhat sneering to the eyes.
The Bottom Line
If you need fast results and can’t be bothered to search on Google, ANDY will come in real handy. However, if you are looking for a great looking experience, you should keep looking.
There are a lot of virtual assistant apps on Android that provide a much better experience. Some of the basic features are locked behind a paywall in this app but are free elsewhere. In my opinion, you can do much better than this app as your daily driver.
Getting the app on your Android smartphone or tablet is very easy. Head to the Google Play Store page and tap on install. The app will start downloading in a few moments. Because ANDY Assistant uses Google services to provide the text to speech feature, the app itself is of very small size.
After the app is installed, you can launch it from the notification bar. The app will ask you what text-to-speech service you would like to use. Because I was testing the app on a Samsung Galaxy Note III smartphone, I had the option of selecting Google or Samsung engines.
There are no welcome screens on this app. I would have liked to see some features explained, but there was no option for that.
I can’t imagine using this app daily. The interface is odd to say the least. The app also has the tendency to produce walls of text for some reason.
Right on top of the screen you will see the app asking you to purchase the full version. Unless the full version is drastically different than the free version, it will be pointless to spend $4. (Aaaand…..the paid version is the same, unfortunately).
Then there is a text/search bar for when you need to type in your questions. There is also a settings gear located right next to the text bar. A lot of empty space is given for the answers that are a good touch. The push-to-talk button is located on the bottom side of the screen. There is also a volume slider on the main interface; this is the first time I have seen anything like this.
At the bottom of the screen are the ads. So counting the top ad bar for the pro version and the bottom bar for some other app, there are two advert bars right on the main interface. The sad thing is, they never ever go away, and some of them even animate to grab your attention.
The virtual assistant comes with standard features that we have become accustomed. You can ask ANDY questions and it will answer them in great detail.
You will also be able to make calls just by talking. Sending text messages and even reading them is quite easy with this app.
The app claims that you can browse the internet using voice, but I wouldn’t recommend it.
Using your calendar, and even the calculator is great, though. The app is also able to take down notes or even play music on your Android device.
One interesting thing about the app is the ability to translate English into many other languages. Sure the experience is not as amazing as dedicated translation apps for Android but the option is good to have.
Using the app is great if you just don’t look at the screen. It’s a good thing you can use the app mostly without even actively seeing the screen. The voice recognition worked well even in crowded areas, but that credit goes to Google.
The commands were understood and executed with great efficiency. ANDY had no trouble understanding my thick accent and translated my orders well.
If you are looking for a reliable assistant that can accurately know what you want, then ANDY assistant will do a remarkable job.
The app needs a lot of permissions to work properly. This is natural for an assistant, though. You cannot ask the office assistant to make you coffee without giving the access to the coffee machine.
This assistant also needs access to core features of your smartphone/tablet to do its job. Contacts, phone numbers, email IDs and permission to open apps is all game. At the end of the day, every permission is justified, so it is all good.
ANDY Assistant is a virtual assistant. It is nothing remarkable or extraordinary. It is simply, just a virtual assistant for Android that works.
If you are looking for an amazing assistant, this is not the app for you. If you love a wall of text automatically displayed, so you don’t have to type in every term from your physics course book, this app is the best. I wouldn’t recommend this app to everyone, but it can be valuable to students.
Improve the interface and change that god awful color scheme and maybe I can see through the ugliness and appreciate the app more.
What do you think about this app?
Let us know in the comments below.