Welcome to the 472nd edition of Android Apps Weekly. Here are the big headlines from the last week:
- Samsung’s Camera Assist got an update this week. It’s also available for more Samsung devices. Camera Assist is a Good Lock feature, and it gives you more options for photo post-processing than its predecessor. One such feature is the option to change how softening works. The update is available now for select Samsung phones.
- Microsoft announced official Xbox support on Google Home. The support lets you control the console from the Google Home app and even gives you touch controls for navigation and media controls. Those with the February update on their Xbox consoles can use the feature now.
- Google Photos had a bit of an issue this week. It entirely broke on iOS devices. The issue caused crashes on version 16.3.1. Google rushed another update that fixed the issue, so it’s all good for now. It wasn’t the biggest deal and only lasted for a day or two, but it was big news this week.
- We asked our readers if they would consider switching to Bing. As it turns out, plenty of our readers said they would switch to Bing under certain conditions. Roughly one-third of our audience says they would switch to try out the ChatGPT integration, and another 23% said they would anyway. That’s over 50% of our readership, which is higher than we expected. Hit the link to see the full data.
- Word around the water cooler is that Google employees are unhappy with Bard and Sundar Pichai. The reasoning is that Bard was rushed to market, and that’s why it didn’t perform very well. They also blame Pichai for the rush, which caused all kinds of negative press. It’s the latest rub in the Google Bard controversy, and we suspect there will be more.
White Out Survival
Price: Free to play
White Out Survival is a survival-strategy game where you must rebuild after a world apocalypse. Unlike most, this one has a glacial apocalypse theme. Players build their town around a furnace that provides the entire town with enough heat to survive. You assign jobs to the various workers to keep the furnace and the town up and running. The strategy part of the game has you training troops and seizing resources. It’s not a bad time waster and a slightly different take on the kingdom builder genre.
Price: Free / $0.99 per month / $6.79 per year
Crypto Analogy is a cryptocurrency research app. It lets you compare any two cryptocurrencies to see what the exchange rate would be. The app also includes a crypto price tracker, a glossary to learn more, and more coin stats. It definitely feels beginner-friendly, but there are other apps on the Play Store that provide similar information. We like that this one is clean and that the information looks accurate to us. There is a subscription that unlocks all of the features. However, the free version is still plenty usable, and it gives you a chance to really try things out before committing to any payment.
Final Fantasy XV: War for Eos
Price: Free to play
Final Fantasy XV: War for Eos is one of two Square Enix releases this week. This one is a kingdom-builder where you, well, build up a kingdom. In terms of mechanics, it’s nothing you haven’t seen before. Everything just has a nice Final Fantasy XV skin laid over top. That said, in a genre that is full of reasonably good options, this one could do better. We also think the microtransactions are a little aggressive for our tastes. It has the potential to be pretty good, but Square Enix definitely needs another few coats of polish on this one.
Noterly is a minimal-style note-taking app. The UI is very simple but effectively shows you your various notes. You can do the usual stuff like list notes for the purposes of a to-do list or a grocery store list. You can also add things like reminders with a repeat function if needed. This one encourages the user to interact mostly through notifications so you spend as little time in the app as needed. It’s a nice blend of note-taking and to-do lists, and we think this could fit in either genre.
Tomb Raider Reloaded
Price: Free to play
Tomb Raider Reloaded is the second Square Enix property with a launch this week. This one is developed by CDE Entertainment. It’s a top-down action game where you roam around ruins with Lara Croft. The game has some roguelite mechanics, and you’ll earn new abilities and gold as you play. Movement is one-handed, and Lara fires on her own, so it’s a fairly light gaming experience. It’s not bad, but it could definitely be a little better. Plus, late game progression is a bit slow, so that’s something to keep in mind as well.
If we missed any big Android apps or games releases, tell us about it in the comments.
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