Ubuntu 16.04 LTS “Xenial Xerus” is released. As with all LTS (long-term support) releases, this one is expected to be the most stable and reliable of them all. But we will find more about that in the review later. Let’s discuss the top apps you could install after downloading and installing the latest Ubuntu 16.04 LTS.
10 Ubuntu Apps You Must Try after installing 16.04 LTS “Xenial Xerus”
The apps you use in your desktop vary from user to user. So take this list with a pinch of salt. I have tried to make it as broad based as possible, but they are still very much based on my use-case and might be biased. Let’s take a look at the apps that I use the most, my personal favourites for Ubuntu 16.04 LTS.
My Favourite Ubuntu Apps for 16.04 LTS
Unity Tweak Tool, in my opinion, is an absolute must-have for new and experienced users alike. The new updated Unity Tweak Tool brings in a lot of new features including the ability to move the Unity launcher to the bottom. You can read more on that here. The latest version is downloadable from Ubuntu Software Center.
MPV Media Player is brilliant. Ever since I discovered MPV, I’ve completely stopped using VLC, SMPlayer and the likes for my multimedia needs. MPV keeps its light-weight profile without compromising much on functionality. Still no match for VLC in terms of features though, half of which you will never use anyway.
GPMDP for Ubuntu: Since I use Google Play Music a lot, GPMDP has become my go-to music streaming app for Ubuntu for a while now. For users looking for a more generic music streamer, try Nuvola. GPMDP can be downloaded from here. See also, our review of GPMDP with installation instructions.
Chrome/Chromium: Who wants Chrome when you have Firefox right? Wrong. I believe Chrome has its advantages too. After all, Chrome is now regarded as the most popular web browser across platforms. Firefox, in my opinion, still lags Chrome in some areas. Inbuilt language translation, for example, has proved very useful to me at least on several occasions. But of course Firefox has all the extensions you’ll would ever need. For those still interested in Chrome, the only choice you have to make is between Chromium (the one without Google branding, available in Software Center) and the official Google Chrome for Linux (64-bit only).
Steam: Do you know that the number of Steam titles for Linux is now more than 1500 and counting? The list include major titles such as Left 4 Dead 2, Half Life 1 & 2, Counter Strike, Team Fortress 2, Portal 2, Witcher 2, Football Manager, Shank 2, Dota 2, Don’t Starve, among others. The biggest complaint people had for Linux was the non-availability of good quality games. Steam’s support for Linux platform is surely helping. Download Steam.
Youtube-dl: This one is a personal favourite of mine. Youtube-dl is a small commandline based tool that lets you download your favorite videos from the web (supports YouTube and many other popular video streaming sites). If all you require is to download the best quality version of a particular video, open up the Terminal and type “youtube-dl<space><link to the video>”. The app is downloadable from Ubuntu Software Center. And if you don’t like CLI much, these 5 apps with fancier looks and features might help.
Synergy lets you share your keyboard and mouse across multiple devices and platforms. And it works like magic. More about Synergy here. Unlike earlier though, Synergy is a paid app now, costing $10 for a lifetime license. Strongly recommend Synergy for those running multiple machines simultaneously. BUY.
Synapse: Ubuntu 16.04 LTS and its default Unity launcher is impressive, but Synapse is just faster. I mostly use Synapse nowadays, but Unity launcher has improved quite a bit over the years. The difference in responsiveness is not as much pronounced as it used to be. It’s a matter of personal preference now.
sudo apt-add-repository ppa:synapse-core/testing
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install synapse
After executing the above commands in the Terminal, launch Synapse from the default Ubuntu launcher and it will reside in your system-tray afterwards. Just hit CTRL+Space to launch Synapse.
Shutter: A clever little screenshot tool that can handle some light editing as well. Has proved very useful over the years. Shutter is available within the default repositories. CLICK HERE.
Skype: Doesn’t require much introduction, one of the most popular Internet based video and voice call service provider which was acquired by Microsoft in 2011 for quite a lot of money. Even though it works okay, their support for Linux platform has remained poor ever since the acquisition. Updates are too few when compared to other supported platforms. So stay away if you have a choice. Download Skype for Linux.
For more task-specific, professional-grade apps, see our following lists: