Mobile apps are huge right now, and their popularity is only going to increase over the next few years. There literally is an app for everything, but that doesn't mean that you should download every app that you run across on the Android Market - or other app marketplace, if you don't have an Android device. This is particularly true if you were issued a smartphone or tablet through work. Hopefully, your organization has a usage policy in place, which will give you some guidelines to follow. If not, use common sense, folks.
We've put together a list of some Android apps to watch out for or completely avoid altogether. There are many more examples out there, but we thought this sampling would give you a good idea of ones you should stay away from. This is not a post about moral or ethical beliefs, and we are not promoting or condoning the usage of any of the apps on our list. In fact, you can download all the apps you want on your personal phone. Our message here is simple: downloading some apps on your business phone could get you in hot water at work.
Illegal activity1. Weed Farmer
In the Android Market, the Weed Farmer is described as "much more than a virtual plant growing app." It's an online game, and you can even chat with other farmers to share harvest tips. Work might not be the best place for online gaming, and if your employer does random drug screening, this app might be the perfect catalyst. Let's hope your gaming life doesn't blur into your reality, or your career could go up in smoke.
It might be a good idea to stay away from other apps that highlight illegal drugs, like Nose Candy.
As NFL quarterback Michael Vick found out, dog fighting is illegal and punishable by law. While the KG Dogfighting description reassures consumers that this app is just a game, a petition is currently circulating to ban it from the Android Market, arguing that it promotes animal cruelty. One thing is for sure -- you might as well have ripped open your own jugular if your manager happens to be an animal rights activist.
According to the Serial Killer Quote of the Day, with this app, you can "Get in the mind of some of the world's most gruesome killers." Sure, the Showtime series Dexter has a certain appeal from a vigilante perspective, but spending too much time on various serial killer quotes may make you the next target for termination. This is especially true if you're an IT pro for the United States Postal Service.More Android apps that could get your fired.
Sonja Thompson has worked for TechRepublic since October of 1999. She is currently a Senior Editor and the host of the Smartphones and Tablets blogs.