Look, it’s hard for anyone to get excited about a flashlight app. It’s an app. It turns on the LED flash on your phone. You see in the dark. That’s all there is to it, right? Think again. Power Torch managed to make me pay $1.36 in a heartbeat, because it is awesome.
My dilemma with every single flashlight app on Android is that the fastest way to get the LED to light up is to turn on my phone and have a shortcut pinned to the lockscreen that I then click to launch the app which, if set correctly, then turns on the flashlight.
You’d think I am complaining about a couple of clicks, a typical case of #firstworldproblems, except that I live in a developing country where electricity blackouts are a daily — sometimes hourly — occurrence which makes quick access to a flashlight a necessity, not a commodity. To explain how important it is, you should know that I used to pick my Android phone’s custom ROMs based on whether or not they had a flashlight shortcut in their notification drop-down.
However, I have been using an un-rooted LG G2, which means that I’ve had to make do with whatever decent torch app I found on the Play Store. Then I came across Power Torch through a post by +Ardhya Bhatt and my reaction went from “really?” to “I doubt it works” to “OMG it works!” followed by an instant purchase of the full version.
Now that I’ve written over 250 words to set up the app’s big reveal for you, here’s how Power Torch works: it uses the Power button — in hindsight, that was obvious from the name, wasn’t it? Turn on your phone and long press the Power button from the lockscreen, the LED starts. Long press again, it shuts off. No launching an app. No fiddling with touchscreens and shortcuts. No doing anything else.
The best part and my personal tip? Since you unlock the phone with the Power button too, you can simply click and hold the Power button on your phone when the screen is off: that shows the lockscreen then turns on the flashlight in one motion, just like the good’ol Nokia C7/E6 days!
You can download the demo version of Power Torch to make sure it works on your device, but that gets you a nagging reminder on the lockscreen to buy the full version. As stated in the title of this article, the full Power Torch is $1.36 and worth every cent.