Welcome to the 201st edition of Android Apps Weekly! Here are your headlines from the last week:
Google Duo passed the 100 million downloads mark this week. Google announced that the app has doubled its user base as well. We know it’s not the most popular video chat app. However, the consistent influx of new users may just add up over time. This whole Duo and Allo thing is far from over. For now, it’s a bump in the right direction. Let’s see if it lasts.
YouTube TV added ten more cities to its list this week. Some of the cities include Washington D.C., Detroit, Houston, Dallas, Atlanta, and Charlotte. This brings the total number of cities up to 15. It’s still not overly impressive. However, it is a start. It’s good to see YouTube TV finally expanding. We’ll see where it opens up next.
Amazon is reportedly working on a new chat app. It goes by the name Anytime by Amazon. On the surface, it looks like a good, basic messenger. It’ll have group chats, individual chats, video calling, and more. You’ll also be able to order food, listen to music, and share your location. It looks like it could be competitive if they do it up right.
Google’s Play Protect service is officially rolling out. It’ll be available on all Android devices with Google Play Services 11 or better. That should be most phones. This is a unification of many of Android’s and Google Play’s security systems, including Verify Apps and other security features. It should be rolling out right now.
RuneScape is apparently coming to Android! The original RuneScape as well as the Old School RuneScape will be available on mobile. The developers also announced that the PC version and mobile versions will be compatible. That means you can play either one with the other one. You can expect the game’s release to be sometime in 2018.
Star Vikings Forever is a new puzzle RPG. It has a lot going for it. There is an eight hour story line. Puzzles randomly generate to give you a lot of variation between playthroughs. Additionally, it is one of the more offensive games in terms of humor and dialog. It's nice to see some studios back away from being kid friendly sometimes. It's a fun little game. You can pick it up for $2.99 with no in-app purchases or advertisements.
Motion Stills is a new app from Google. It allows you to record short clips. Those clips are then shareable on social media as videos or as GIFs. There are two modes. The first is a standard three second clip. These are great for reaction GIFs and the like. The other one is called Fast Forward Mode. It allows you to record up to a minute of footage. It then speeds it up a whole bunch. There are a few settings, but no major customizations available. It's really fun for what it is. It's also free with no ads or in-app purchases.
Crusaders of Light is an MMORPG. It plays a lot like other mobile MMORPGs. You get a character. Then you can do things like go on quests, raids, and the like. The raids feature up to 40 players on a single team. There is also online PvP with one vs one, three vs three, and five vs five modes. It also includes an in-game text chat. It ticks all the boxes you'd want an MMORPG to tick. However, at its core, its mechanics aren't overly exciting or new. Its reception is initially positive, though. Thus, it may be worth a download if you're into this sort of thing.
Gratus is an app that wants to remind you that life doesn't always suck. Here's how it works. You fill the app up with things that you love and appreciate. The app then periodically reminds you about them. It doesn't actually do anything productive. However, when it comes to mental health, it doesn't always have to be. Sometimes it's nice to get reminded that things are pretty good times. The base app lets you create all the cards you want (with photos). You can pay the $2.99 to unlock most of the customization features.
Minecraft: Story Mode Season Two is the latest in the series by Telltale Games. This one picks up right where the first one left off. You'll have a familiar cast of characters and elements to play with. It's the same old point-and-click adventure game that Telltale does so well. You'll have to make decisions that branch the story line. The game features fun mechanics, top notch voice acting, and more. It's a five episode game like its predecessor. You can pick up the first one now for $4.99. Or you can wait for all of them to come out. Your call.