Welcome to the 304th edition of Android Apps Weekly! It was a busy week this week so let’s get into those headlines:
- Samsung finally launched its Good Lock app for 2020. It includes support for Android 10 along with OneUI 2.0. Samsung didn’t include every feature from the previous Good Lock in this new iteration. However, we expect more functions over time with more updates. We took a deep dive into the 2020 edition of Good Lock with a Galaxy Note 10 Plus and you can read about it here.
- Alphabet joined the one trillion dollar club a couple of weeks ago. However, two weeks later, the company is only worth about $993 billion, removing its trillion dollar status. However, we did get a peak at YouTube earnings for the first time ever. The company makes up about 10% of all of Alphabet’s earnings with about $15.1 billion in revenue. Hit the links to learn more about each one.
- Huawei, Xiaomi, and a couple of BBK’s OEMs (Oppo and Vivo) joined forces this week to take on the Play Store. The ultimate goal is to make developers lives easier when uploading apps to the various Chinese app stores. Xiaomi released a statement saying its mostly for ease of developers rather than competition with Google. The new alliance, the GSDA, wants to not only make it easier for developers to upload to various platforms, but market apps there as well. Hit the link to learn more.
- Disney+ is having a great year so far. The company announced 26.5 subscribers and 28.6 active users since its launch in November 2019. That’s not bad for three months of existence. Additionally, Hulu, Hulu TV, and ESPN+ also saw large spikes in subscribers numbers likely due to the Hulu, ESPN+, and Disney+ bundle package. Disney+ isn’t letting up either with some new shows right around the corner.
- Google Maps had an interesting last week. It started when an artist wheeled 99 phones around in a wagon to trick Google Maps. Maps uses user data to determine traffic patterns so it though there was a huge traffic jam because 99 phones were all stuck in the same spot. Additionally, the navigation app is getting some new features for its 15th birthday. Hit the links to learn more!
Stellaris: Galaxy Command
Price: Free to play
Stellaris: Galaxy Command started life as a Steam game on PC where it had moderate success. The mobile version of the game is in early access beta right now. It features an open world, classic strategy elements, and plenty of sci-fi goodness. Players build their empire, help each other out, and conquer far away galaxies. Additionally, players upgrade their set-ups, manage resources, and all of that. It’s a fairly deep game and it seems to have a lot of content. However, it is in early access beta so, of course, there are bugs and a few other things that need work. You can give it a try now or wait until the full release.
Coronavirus is a mobile app about, well, the coronavirus. It’s a fairly basic app but it helps keep track of the current outbreak that has the world worried. It shows up-to-date stats from the World Health Organization along with a checklist of all known symptoms. There are also infographics about prevention and treatment. There isn’t a ton of analysis necessary here. The app does what it says and it works fairly well. The developers also plan to add in specific country data and some other metrics in future updates.
Price: Free to play
Pico Tanks is an online multiplayer game with tanks. The game also features MOBA and brawler mechanics. Teams face off three versus three across three game modes. It features capture the flag, a fetch style game mode, and a classic team deathmatch. The game also features various customizations, power ups, weapons, and more. The various load-outs also affect things like speed. For instance, you can equip a ton of stuff but it lowers your movement speed. The game has some bugs here and there and players complain frequently about unbalanced matchmaking as well as slow progression. It needs work but it has potential.
Nvidia GeForce NOW
Price: Free / Varies / $4.99 per month
Nvidia GeForce NOW launched officially this last week. Players can create accounts, log-in, and stream video games to their mobile devices. It obviously works with devices like the Nvidia Shield Console as well. This one is a little different, though. It works with many, many Steam games. Unlike Stadia where you buy the game specifically for the platform, GeForce NOW works with many titles in your existing PC library and you can play those games on your computer if you cancel GeForce NOW. This is easily one of the strongest competitors in the space and it seems to work pretty well. Most of the negative reviews comes from folks having networking troubles and not understanding the payment structure. Both the free and premium versions allow for 1080p/60fps gaming. The premium version gives users preferred access, enables ray-tracing, and adds a few more benefits.
Price: Free to play
Sins Raid is a new MMORPG and it wants to keep things simple. It features an open world, multiplayer raids, a single or multiplayer story campaign, and the usual fair like guilds. It also keeps things simple with the class selection, offering the basic three MMORPG classes (tank, healer, DPS). The mechanics are good, the graphics are above average, and the controls are easy to learn. The game still needs some work, though. For instance, the stamina system is quite restrictive and not in a fun way. Additionally, the game has a ton of in-app purchase opportunities and we think they’re going at it a little too hard. Otherwise, it’s a decent MMORPG.
If we missed any big Android apps or games news, tell us about it in the comments or hit me up on Twitter!