Most people with smartphones are familiar with notifications.  Whether you have an Android, iphone or Windows you’ll be getting notifications.  Most of them can be categorised as general/custom/nuisance.  The general category includes emails, texts, missed calls etc. Nuisances are mostly advertising/adware/malware, they’re all big business and the companies that invade your privacy can be extremely annoying.  There are, of course, means of blocking them but they’re not the topic of this blog entry.  While it’s important to acknowledge them, it’s custom notifications I’m writing about.

Pushover and AutoRemote are two of the more popular apps.  Each can be configured to push notifications of your choice to your phone or tablet.

Pushover is useful, I have it linked to a home server via an independent bit of software called MyPush.exe .  Feel free to Google it or you can download it from here.  You’ll need the Pushover app, an account and optionally MyPush.exe .  One of the most trivial uses is to notify me that the dishwasher’s finished so I can open the door to let the dishes dry.  For this I’ve utilised Homeseer, some X10 modules, and the above.  You can email notifications of your choice via your own personal Pushover email address or link sites like IFTTT to get more functionality and diversity.

AutoRemote does the same as Pushover, and more, but in a completely different way.  It offers much more functionality at both the send and receive stage.  Depending on which options have been selected the notification can change the sound, vibration pattern, URL (web address) to be opened if you tap the notification, icon URL, LED colour and blink frequency, and whether or not the notification can be shared using the ‘share via’ menu, amongst others.
When AutoRemote is used in conjunction with other apps by the same developer, or especially with Tasker, AutoRemote becomes far more enhanced.   By linking Tasker (a comprehensive automation app) with AutoRemote I’ve linked my phone to my tablet.  It’s useful if the phone’s on charge as texts, missed calls etc. can be pushed to the tablet.  It’s not an easy task with a SIM-free tablet but AutoRemote makes short work of it.
With a Linux/Windows version and EventGhost it’s possible to have both notifications of activities on your PC and control of the PC.  Ideal if your kids are at an age where they want unsupervised access to the computer.

I acknowledge that these apps aren’t free but they’re definitely value for money.  Remember, this isn’t about inundating you with information overload.  This is about providing you with information you control to one device when it happens instead of you having to look it up.  How you use it is up to you.

Comment (1)

  1. […] to my Google account for me, so I can keep track of who I called, who called me, and when.  I love smart notifications, apps you can configure to link obscure items to your phone or tablet.  Don’t get me wrong, […]

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