Welcome to the 349th edition of Android Apps Weekly. Here are the big headlines from the last week:
- Google re-branded its G Suite package to Google Workspace. It’s functionally the same stuff. Google plans to include more collaborative features in the future and that apparently warranted a name change. Additionally, Google expanded pricing for small and large firms along with a few other changes. You can find out everything you need to know about it here.
- Google is adding some clearer account alert notifications this week in several of its apps in the near future. The purpose is to better communicate to people when something is actually really wrong versus when something is just kind of wrong. The alerts are improving in a variety of Google apps. Hit the link to learn more.
- The App Store and Google Play debacle continued this week in two separate stories. The first was a House report in the US that said Facebook, Google, Apple, Amazon, and other companies have monopoly power and should be separated out a bit to prevent actual monopolies. We highly recommend hitting the above link to read more about that because there is a lot of info. Additionally, Google chose to defer its 30% mandatory commission in India for the time being due to retaliation from Indian start-ups.
- Nvidia wants to tackle some of the issues with video calling. It launched a new developer platform, Nvidia Maxine, this week to help with that. The platform helps with things like eye correction, face alignment, and other small things to make video chatting a little better. It can also upscale 360p video to 720p pretty reliably, adds in virtual backgrounds, filters out background noise, and even translate language in real time. It could be a really big deal for video chat apps and services.
- Google Assistant had some big announcements this week. The first is making Google Assistant work better with smart displays by letting people buy things straight from them and some other neat features. Additionally, Google announced deeper integration with third party apps, kicking it off with partnerships with 30 apps, including popular ones like Discord and Walmart. Hit the various links to learn more.
9th Dawn III
9th Dawn III is a new open-world RPG. It’s a fairly large game with a bunch of content, including over 1,400 items to collect, 270 unique enemies, and a ton of places to explore. For the most part, you dungeon crawl, collect gear, customize it, and go right back out to adventure again. The game adds in some stuff like fishing, cooking, gem collecting, and play Fyued (a card game) to round out the experience. The mechanics are easy enough to grasp for most people and the game has a lot more depth than it would seem from its graphics. It’s a bit expensive at $9.99, but you’ll easily get your money’s worth if you finish it.
Project Cheat Codes
Price: Free / $1.99
Project Cheat Codes is something a bit different for gamers. It aims to be a one-stop-shop for video game cheat codes. The developer has two main goals. The first is to keep the installation size as small as possible and the app omits any flashy graphics specifically for that purpose. The other is to include as many cheat codes for as many games as possible. It’s obviously a daunting effort but the app already has a decent and quickly growing collection of games. This one might be a pretty excellent gaming tool if the developer keeps at it. The premium version runs for $1.99 and we think that’s fair.
Sword Master Story
Price: Free to play
Sword Master Story came out of pre-registration this week and it already has a bunch of downloads. It’s a hack-and-slash action RPG with some gacha mechanics. Players collect characters, level them up, and use them to fight off bad guys. At its core, it’s not all that different from most other gachas. There is a set number of characters and the upgrade paths are fairly similar to most others in the genre. However, some people seem to enjoy its mechanics and story even if the translations are a little rough. The game has a few bugs here and there but it has some promise if the developers keep up with it.
InstaMocks is a neat little app for screenshot enthusiasts. It lets you take screenshots and then mock them up inside of a device. People can use it to dress up their screenshots a bit. The app is mainly for developers, themers, bloggers, and similar types to make good looking screenshots for display on social media or the Play Store. Still, anybody can use the tool. It features over 40 devices, a built-in text editor, and you can work with up to 10 screenshots at once. It’s also a free tool.
Masketeers: Idle Has Fallen
Price: Free to play
Masketeers: Idle Has Fallen is the latest idle game in a genre crowded by 2020 releases. This one seems to be pretty good. Players collect masks to give them power and defeat bad guys. As you progress, your team can kill bad guys faster and earn more stuff at a faster pace. The combat portion of it is pretty neat even if it’s surrounded by familiar idle game ideas. Still, it feels a bit better and deeper than your standard idle experience. This is another one that has a lot of potential as long as the developers keep up with it.
Thank you for reading! Try these out too:
- 15 best RPGs for Android
- 5 best no-root screenshot apps for Android
- 15 best gacha games for Android
- 15 best Android apps of all time
- 10 best idle tap games for Android
If we missed any big Android app or game releases, tell us about them in the comments.