Ever since Android saw a total revamp of its pulldown notification system, I’ve been impressed. I’d always wondered, though, how could I create my own custom notifications? After doing some research, I discovered Notif.
Notif allows you to create four different types of custom notification, and it does it all for free.
When I stumbled upon Notif, I was really just looking for the best app to help me keep a list of things I needed to do. I’d tried Astrid, given Tasks a to-do, but I was unimpressed with their widgets and didn’t want to have to open anything up to check out my list.
Upon finding Notif, however, everything changed. To start, you can create four different types of notifications (Default, Big Text, Big Picture, and List). Each one comes with different options and looks, so you can create whatever you need.
Default is the standard Android notification. Your notification is limited to a title and approximately one short line of text.
Big Text expands upon the Default idea, giving you fields to add a title, an expanded title (what the title becomes when you pinch-scroll the notification to its full size), and a content box. I added a few sentences into my content box, and when I pulled the Big Text notification to its maximum size, everything fit, like magic.
Big Picture is the same kind of notification you get if you take a picture, but you also have the ability to add lots of text, like with the Big Text option. Currently, pictures taken within Notif aren’t high-quality, so you need to take your picture first, then use the ‘Get Photo’ option to have a truly beautiful picture in your notification bar.
If you leave the notification minimized, a small thumbnail of your picture is displayed. Upon pulling it to full size, the picture grows in size and all of your words are displayed.
Finally, we get to the List option (my favorite!). List is pretty straightforward; title your list and add up to seven tasks to said list. That’s it. You can also type up a list summary, in case you want to minimize your list, but otherwise, that’s everything.
The gear icon to the right of each notification’s title (when creating a notification) allows you to choose what icon you’d like your notification to have in the pulldown menu. The free version includes 20, but if you upgrade to the Pro version, you unlock all 200 icons.
You can also make any notification an ongoing notification (meaning you can’t swipe left or right to remove it), which is great for guaranteeing you don’t accidentally remove something before you intended to. The downside is, you have to then go back into the Notif app proper and tap the double-flag icon.
Notable downsides include not being able to cross items off of lists as you go along (that’d be something Tasks or Astrid is more equipped to do), and not being able to save templates. However, for an app that’s following all of the Holo design guidelines, and at no cost, these are small downsides.
Notif is only compatible with Android devices running 4.1 and higher, and can be found in the Google Play Store completely and absolutely free.
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