Price: Free ($1.30 donation app)
Platform: Android 2.1+
Avg. Score: 9/10
Let's admit it, we're all a little lazy. I mean, how awesome would it be if your phone would turn the WiFi on for you when you get home? Or if it could turn the notifications off at night and back on in the morning? And what if it could do all that for free? Good news! It can! Sure you could buy Tasker, if you feel like paying $6.49... Granted it may have a few more features (I've never used it, just going by the market description) and looks pretty, but Llama should have more than enough features for most people.
I have to warn you guys that this is probably the most complex app that I use so those of you who are less tech savvy may have a hard time following me, not to mention using it. However if you can figure it out, the benefits are amazing. To give you an idea of how much Llama can save you from having to do manually, Llama processed around 10,000 actions in the first 50 days after I got my Droid Razr . But enough bragging on how amazing Llama is, lets get down to the review!
Llama has four main screens: Areas, Events, Profiles and Recent. The left most screen is Areas. Areas are defined by either cell towers or GPS locations (requires map addon). I highly suggest not using GPS though as it is going to cause Llama to use a large amount of battery. If you need it to be more accurate than using cell towers then you might try basing it off available WiFi networks. If that won't work you can use an event to change the GPS polling interval (how often the GPS will search for your location) based on how likely you are to enter or leave the area in question. I stopped using it because I didn't need that much precision and it was a real battery hog, however I just set it up to automatically turn my wifi on when I get to the office, hopefully it works!
This is where you manage which Triggers cause what Actions. A Trigger is something like turning the screen on, connecting or disconnecting from a WiFi network, entering or leaving an Area (defined above) or even a defined time frame (as seen in the image at left). One feature that I don't believe has made it out of beta yet (which can be seen in the Camera event in the image) is the ability to do things based on the Active Application. I have it set to change the screen brightness to automatic (which will make almost always make it brighter) whenever I load the camera app. This allows me to be more accurate in my brightness settings when taking pictures since I generally run my screen brightness really low.
Llama allows you to put your actions into groups to make them easier to manage. As you can see in the image, all of the events that you can see are in my "Backlight" events group. Also you can see that event "Day - RIL" is disabled. You can also disable an event if you don't want it to trigger but don't want to delete it just yet.
On the screen in the image you see a list of your volume profiles. A volume profile is a preset of volumes for Alarm, In-call, Media, Notifications, Ringer and System. You can also assign an icon to each profile. I use 3 profiles: Loud, Quiet and Silent, and I use Llama's icon dots (which can be changed separate from the icon color). This allows me to see which profile is loaded without ever opening the app.
The list of your most recently "visited" cell towers and GPS locations. I use this screen from time to time because I have an event set up to notify me every time I connect to a new tower that way I can assign it to an area. You do this by tapping on a tower in the list and choosing Add to Area, Remove from Area or Ignore cell. As you see in the image above you can assign a tower to more than one area. Other than that there isn't a whole lot to do on this screen, unless you want to spy on yourself and track where you've been, but it doesn't keep a very long list so this is probably not the best way to do that. There is a beta feature to create a list of all the towers you've ever connected to, but even in beta you can't even view the list yet.
- Appearance: 7/10. It's complex, but clean. The only bad part is that like most Android apps, Llama is rather boring looking (though he has been adding color coding to some things lately).
- Execution: 9/10. Does an amazing job of automating just about any task you can think of, and possibly some you never though of. I thought up a few things that I never would have except that I was trying to test out new features.
- Features: 10/10. Has a crazy long list of capabilities and anything you want that's not there will probably be added if you send him an email asking for it.
- Reliability: 10/10. I don't recall ever having Llama crash or bug on me at all. Not unless I was working with him on a beta feature, but he worked with me to get them fixed, usually within 24 hours.
- Usability: 7/10. Like most apps of this kind, Llama is fairly technical, but if you are shopping around for an app like this Llama shouldn't be too horribly complicated.