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Fresh Android Apps for Dec. 7: Google Books, Loky

by Caitlin M. Foyt

Today's Fresh Android apps features a brand new e-book service by a popular web search giant Google, and a way to ensure that your private double-life stays under wraps.

Google Books (Android) FREE

Google has just unveiled its brand new e-book platform Google eBooks, a service for buying and reading digital literature and texts. Unlike competing services like the Amazon Kindle and Barnes & Noble's Nook, Google eBooks is cloud-based, meaning you don't need a special device to gain access to your books— any browser will do the trick. And because your books are stored online, they automatically sync between all of your devices.

The Google Books app (notice that it's not called "Google eBooks," and then let's all collectively scratch our heads) gives you direct access to any of the titles that you have bought for when you're out and about. Currently, Google eBooks users have access to about 300,000 different books, coming from both large chains and indie bookstores; and these numbers are expected to grow exponentially by early 2011. Google is also working with academic presses and universities to make textbooks available via eBooks and has connections with GoodReads, a social network based around sharing information about reading books.

Loky (Android) ~$4.65

Everybody's got a dirty little secret, but some hidden truths are less forgivable than others. Do you have a girl or guy on the side? Or, perhaps a little less dramatic, are you planning a big surprise, but you have a nosy significant other? Loky is an app that creates a secure, private area on your Android phone. Set a password and you can tuck away sensitive contacts, filter their texts away from your regular SMS inbox, hide your replies, and even store sensitive media files and documents.

Possibly the feature that sets this apart from any other app like it is the "shake-to-close" feature, which closes out the app when the phone is rattled -- you know, in case someone sneaks up on you while you're doing something potentially incriminating.