Welcome to the 350th edition of Android Apps Weekly. Here are the big headlines from the past week:
- OnePlus has decided not to include Facebook in its phones, starting with the OnePlus 8T. The company came under fire for taking it in from the start, which it hadn’t done before. The step generated was praised by virtually everyone for obvious reasons. It was a short experiment and we’re glad it’s over.
- Disney + has over 50 new shows and movies to offer in the near future. The list includes scripted and non-scripted TV shows, original movies, and some other content. The content has a number of family-friendly stuff, including several reboots of old classics like Chip ‘n Dale. Click the link for the full list.
- Google is currently testing a shopping function on YouTube. The app allows developers to label products in a specific way so that users can search for them. For example, a creator could mark their Philips Hue light strip in the background and you could buy it right from the video. Google would obviously earn a commission for it. It’s in the works, but we don’t know when or if it will ever be released.
- Google’s Live Transcribe just keeps getting better. A new feature, Sound Notifications, notifies the hard of hearing when the phone hears potentially alarming noises. Some examples are running water, a dog barking, or a door knock. The phone would blink so the person could see something was happening. Click the link to learn more.
- Zoom is finally getting end-to-end encryption for all accounts. The feature was rolled out to all users of the platform this week. It is especially important now that schools use the platform for every child every day. However, there are some problems. You must tick a box to sign up for E2EE prior to each meeting or it will not be encrypted. It’s annoying, but not terrible. We’re just glad that it has this feature for both free and premium users.
Collection of the strikers 1945
Price: Play for free
Strikers 1945 Collection is an idle game with a top-down shooter theme. Players unlock and drop different planes to destroy things in different levels. The game offers 40 characters, various special abilities and current levels to play through. However, all you can do is move the ships and they’ll fire on their own. It’s a decent game for the right type of player, but fans of bullet hell and top-down shooters may not like the game as much as idle fans. Still, it’s a fun mashup of the two genres for people who like both.
FitGrid is a fitness social network. It offers a variety of fitness classes as well as a social media element. The general requirement is that your friends train with you by being friends on duty. You can also use the network to talk to teachers, add injuries to your profile, and other customization and communication elements that you wouldn’t normally find in other fitness apps. There are also live streams, different types of exercises, and much more. It’s brand new so there aren’t a lot of people in there but it’s free and there is some potential.
Price: Play for free
Final Order is an MMO strategy game with city builders and Kaiju elements. The players expand their bases and defend them against each other with the help of huge monsters. It’s a pretty standard mobile strategy game otherwise. There are different structures to build that offer different upgrades and the usual stuff. The big difference is in using kaiju to defeat enemies. It’s a free game, so at some point it will get lost in everyday life, but the beginning is pretty fun for fans of the genre.
Roku Channel is basically a Roku device in app form. The app offers a ton of content including over 1,000 TV shows and movies. Some of it is even free, but you can pay to see premium content as well. It basically works like any other streaming app. They search for your content and stream it. The app does not have its own premium version. However, you can add premium subscriptions from other providers like HBO, STARZ, and others to round out your streaming experience. The app is experiencing errors on some devices and for confusing reasons, Chromecast is not supported. We hope this will be fixed sooner rather than later.
Price: Play for free
Infinity Mechs is an idle game mixed with a gacha-style role-playing game. You summon different mechs to slay the bad guys and upgrade them as you go. However, the idle part of the game does most of the battle for you. You just tap a few times to clear dungeons and get rewards. The fun part is mixing and matching mechs with their different skills to do it as quickly as possible. We know there has been an abundance of idle games this year, but this one is actually pretty decent and even the gacha elements are pretty F2P friendly. There’s a story that needs to be played through along with a few other modes to keep things relatively fresh.
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If we’ve missed a great Android app, games, or news, let us know in the comments.
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