Welcome to the 462nd edition of Android Apps Weekly. Here are the top headlines from last week:
- Google merged the Waze and Maps teams this week. The company did this as a cost-saving measure since both apps do the same thing. On the plus side, consolidation can help both applications. On the other hand, Waze may lose a significant part of its independence. Click the link to learn more.
- Amazon wants to give users $2 a month to spy on their phone usage. The company wants to learn more about how people use their phones and the effectiveness of their ads. It’s not open to everyone right now, and it’s certainly not a lot of money. However, it can tempt some people to do so.
- Google Chrome is becoming less energy and memory consuming. Two new savings features are rolling out as we speak and should be seen in full in the next few weeks. Memory saver puts tabs to sleep when not in use and battery saver turns on when your device’s battery is below 20%.
- Google introduced a new surround sound feature this week. It should land on Pixel 6 and Pixel 7 phones. Apps that support this feature include Google TV, HBO Max, Netflix, and YouTube. The list isn’t as long as Apple’s surround sound offerings, but it’s a start. Click the link to learn more.
- Google Photos is testing a new search feature. The feature helps you find people by their faces. Some users have noticed that the Google Lens button has also been replaced by a search function. It works by tapping on someone’s face and Google Photos will show you more photos with that face. It’s actually kind of nice.
Auto scrolling video for TikTok
Auto Scroll Video for TikTok is exactly what the name suggests. It moves TikTok automatically so you don’t have to. It works fine. You download it, give it accessibility permissions, and then configure it in the settings. From there, it automatically opens when you open TikTok and starts scrolling. It’s flexible for shorter or longer videos as you come across them. It’s definitely a first app and could use some tweaks. Still, it’s a good idea and it’s pretty clean otherwise.
Price: Free game
Airship Knights is an idle RPG. Mechanically, it is similar to many others. You get new characters, level them up and use them to progress through the game. Combat is mostly automatic. The game has a charming premise, although the voice acting is a bit amateurish. There is also a PvP mode and lots of places to unlock. As far as idle RPGs go, it’s decent, but people who don’t like idle games won’t like this one either.
ZomokMe is an expense tracker specifically for daily expenses. It allows you to enter your purchases and expenses. Additionally, you can also split checks among friends if you share one. It’s easy enough to use on a daily basis and you can definitely see your expenses on the fly. You have to create an account to use it, which isn’t ideal, but otherwise it works fine. The only real downside is that it has a social element that doesn’t really work unless your friends sign up too.
D-Day 2 Zombie Hunter
Price: Free game
Zombie Hunter D-Day 2 is the official sequel to the popular Zombie Hunter D-Day. The first game took place 80 days after the apocalypse, and the second game took place 160 days after the apocalypse. This means that the two games are definitely related. This is an FPS game where you fight zombies and monsters while trying to avoid death. The game is arcade shooter quality where you don’t actually move around much. The core of the gameplay is shooting zombies from an almost fixed position.
Some other features include offline support, weapon pairing mechanics, and tons of zombies to shoot. It’s free to play, but not terribly greedy with in-app purchases. For most, this will be a hit or miss type of game, but it’s not a bad arcade shooter.
Paint MS version
MS Paint version is a mobile port of Microsoft Paint. It includes tools that you click and use. It doesn’t feel good with your finger, but it’s nice to use with a stylus or S Pen if you have one. The app feels like an early build. There are a few bugs, especially with the menu system not working properly. We think the developer might need to test a bit more before launch. Still, when they get it set up right, it’s a fun little drawing app that feels like old Windows.
If we’ve missed any big news or releases of Android apps or games, let us know in the comments.
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