Droid Apps for Lawyers
An online reader asked me to write an article about apps for lawyers who use Android phones. I thought it was a great idea, especially since I’ve been predicting for the last few months that Android-based phones will eventually outsell iPhones—perhaps within the next year.
Many of the more popular iPhone apps that I’ve discussed in past articles are cross-platform apps and are also available on Droids, so I’ll focus on Droid-specific apps in this article. Since I don’t own a Droid, I relied on online resources and recommendations from my online network in curating this list.
Rather than listing in this article the lengthy URLs where apps can be purchased at the online Android Market, I created, for your reference, a list that includes links to these apps, which can be found here.
First up, DroidLaw is a free app that includes the full texts of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, Evidence, Appellate Procedure, Criminal Procedure, and Bankruptcy Procedure. Each set of rules is provided in a format that permits searching, bookmarking, copying, sharing and note taking.
Next up, Time Tracker ($3.99), an app that facilitates hourly billing. Using the app you can enter and track your time, edit the time reports, and export the data into a custom CSV report.
Another useful app is the Law Guide, a free app provided by Law.com that offers a number of features including a legal dictionary and access to legal forms.
Also worth considering is the Lawyer’s Calendar Buddy Pro ($2.69), which offers a number of useful features, including the ability to calculate a target date from a given start date, store key case events, and list events between two dates after excluding holidays.
In addition to the legal specific apps, there are a few general purpose apps worth mentioning that lawyers will likely find useful.
First, there’s the free Voice Recorder app for Android, which allows you to record, save and email audio files.
File manager apps are always useful on smart phones since they permit the organization of all of your files in once place on your phone, and the free Droid app aptly named “File Manager” allows you to do just that.
As lawyers, we spend a lot of time revising and editing documents, so apps that allow the viewing and annotation of PDFs are very useful tools. RepliGo reader is a great app for this purpose and costs just $4.99.
Next up, an app that was just released last week, Google Apps for Android. It’s a free native application that offers the useful feature of allowing photos of documents to be converted into fully editable documents.
Documents to Go 3.0 is another app to consider. There is a free version of this app available that facilitates the opening and editing of most file formats, including Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint files.
Another useful app is PdaNet, a free app that allows you to tether your Android device to your laptop.
Finally if you’re looking for a great resource for lawyers who use Droids, look no further than the very useful blog “The Droid Lawyer” (http://thedroidlawyer.com/). I became aware of this blog after its author, attorney Jeffrey Taylor, was kind enough to respond to a request I made of my online followers for recommendations for Droid apps for lawyers.
Nicole Black is of counsel to Fiandach & Fiandach in Rochester. She co-authors the ABA book Social Media for Lawyers: the Next Frontier, co-authors Criminal Law in New York, a West-Thomson treatise, and is currently writing a book about cloud computing for lawyers that will be published by the ABA in early 2011. She is the founder of lawtechTalk.com and speaks regularly at conferences regarding the intersection of law and technology. She publishes four legal blogs and can be reached at [email protected].