When it comes to smart phones, there’s always a new app that promises usefulness or entertainment. New apps come out every day. After a while, you sort of get used to the tide of apps. It’s not very often that an app comes along and shocks consumers out of a stupor with its abilities.
It is with great pleasure that we bring you one of those very apps. Meet Super Manager, an app that lives up to the “super” part in every way imaginable. Super Manager is one of overachievers that isn’t satisfied with being a simple file manager. It prefers to do just about everything. We walked away from our time with Super Manager very, very impressed. This is one app that every Android power user absolutely must have. Oh, and did we mention it’s free?
Super Manager Excels At:
The first feature to greet you upon starting up Super Manager is the Task Manager. Like any other TM, it kills apps to free RAM (and hopefully speed your phone). What sets Super Manager apart is that it also comes with a handy Services Manager for stopping background processes.
Fair warning- certain people believe that using a task killer is bad for your phone. Also, be sure to kill only the processes that are nonessential. It would be an extremely bad idea to shut down the part of Android that handles, say, calling people. With the Task Manager and especially the Service Manager, be sure you know what you’re doing.
If you do end up using the two killers, we recommend doing so with a white list for protection. Any app or background process on the white list is protected from SM’s task managing. We recommend putting essential apps on this list so nothing goes wrong.
Also included is a “kill all” button that ends everything to free up RAM. Again, use this button with caution. The white list is your friend. Also friendly is Auto Memory Cleanup. This closes down processes whenever the screen turns off in the vein of Tasker. This is useful, although we recommend caution before prolonged use.
Killing Low Memory
All of these features are useful, but they are by far outshined by the Low Memory Killer. Some time ago we wrote about the V6 SuperCharger, a clever script which changed how Android handles multitasking. We loved the results, but installing and using it always felt awkward and user-unfriendly.
Super Manager’s Low Memory Killer solves that problem. It does the same thing as the SuperCharger, but in a much more user-friendly way. We highly recommend using this.
If you missed our section on the SuperCharger, it (and the Low Memory Killer) works like this. Android can run up to six apps at once. However, if the amount of free RAM falls beneath a certain level, the oldest apps get killed.
The LMK provides you with six sliders for easy adjustment of the exact level. The top sliders are for recent apps, bottom for old. Move the sliders farther right and the app is more likely to be killed. This limits your phone’s ability to multitask, but it also greatly speeds it up. Our Evo 4G experienced a massive boost in performance (while underclocked!) when we used the LMK.
Not satisfied with having the features of the V6 Supercharger, Super Manager also tries its hand at being Titanium Backup. The APK Manager section comes with a whole host of features for backing up and migrating apps. App backup is incredibly useful, especially when flashing a new ROM.
The Manager lists all installed apps. Included are options to uninstall, lock, add to white list, and hide. There is a separate menu that can “freeze” apps. This and moving apps between internal and SD memory are restricted to the donate version of SM. Hey, we said it was like Titanium Backup.
APK Manager combs through the SD card and has an easy option to install any .apk files saved to memory. If nothing else, it’s easier than digging through a file explorer, looking for where you saved that .apk.
Where Super Manager diverges from Titanium Backup is with an especially interesting feature, the Startup Manager. As Android becomes more like a PC, it also gains some of the annoyances of a PC. That includes startup processes that slow down the phone or are unnecessary.
We found Startup Manager to be quite helpful. Several apps start in the background, unknown to us. They are now blocked. Startup Manager, aside from informative purposes, exists only to block and unblock processes from running at boot.
The last app-related feature is App Protector. This bit of Android anti-virus prevents rogue apps from gaining too much control. It comes with password options and a black list of targeted apps. It’s nowhere near as comprehensive as Avast! Mobile Security, but it is useful.
Considering everything else Super Manager does, its file-managing capabilities almost seem insignificant. However, SM excels even in the boring class of file managers through one simple feature- /system.
Super Manager is a root explorer. If you so choose, the app can mount /system as read-write. For non-programmers, that means you can edit the really important part of the Android operating system.
Making changes to /system is not recommended. Changing stuff there can really, really mess up your phone. /system should only be edited if you know what you’re doing (and have a Nandroid backup).
For wireless usage, SM also includes a FTP and SMB client. Like the ability to edit /system, these are minor features that are still useful. To an extent.
The fifth page of Super Manager contains all the other useful additions which the developers couldn’t fit anywhere else. These include a volume manager, screenshot application, power use logger, and a proximity sensor wakeup we couldn’t really get working.
The screenshot manager is particularly well-made considering that it is free. Push the button or shake the phone and a preset timer counts down to the screen capture. After the capture, the app shows a preview and asks whether you’d like to keep that shot. Overall, it’s very nicely designed.
The miscellaneous addition which impressed us the most was the Super Launcher. It’s not actually a launcher like SwipePad, but rather a dropdown menu of quick toggles and stats. RAM usage, battery, and internal storage in use are all displayed.
The toggles include wi-fi, Bluetooth, 3G, volume, airplane mode, brightness and so on. There are also rows of shortcuts to essentials like the dialer and a set of virtual lock/home/back/search buttons. For the hell of it the developers also threw in the recent apps list.
The Super Launcher is accessed through a persistent notification. The notification displays charging status and battery percentage, two supremely useful tweaks.
It’s not often that one app impresses us this much. Super Manager isn’t just any app, though. This is one of the most comprehensive, useful applications in all of Android. The sheer amount of features is ludicrous.
Any Android power user would do well with the advanced features here. For that matter, any Android user would greatly benefit from the Low Memory Killer. If you have an Android device, there is absolutely no reason not to download Super Manager. We recommend plenty of apps, but this one stands apart.