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5 Android apps you shouldn't miss this week - Android Apps Weekly
Welcome to the 482nd edition of Android Apps Weekly. Here are the big headlines from the last week:
- Google Authenticator has a new feature. It now lets you back up your two-factor authentication entries to your Google account. This is great since most of its competitors already do this, and most of the apps on our best two-factor authentication apps do. That means Google has caught up. There are some questions as to its encryption, though, so it’s something to keep an eye on.
- Qualcomm is rolling out a new upscaling technology called Snapdragon Game Super Resolution. The company says the feature can upscale games from 1080p and 30FPS to 4K and 60FPS. It’s available to some games and should roll out in a wider capacity later this year.
- Google Bard is making slow, but steady progress. It can now help you write code in 22 programming languages and also help you create Google Sheets functions. Google warns that the code may not work as intended, even if the code itself works. Google employees weren’t thrilled with Bard at launch, but it seems to be improving at a steady rate.
- Microsoft added a feature to Edge that lets you follow content creators. It’s malfunctioning, and the malfunction sends every website you visit to Bing’s API. That is, of course, a fairly heavy privacy breach. Microsoft promises to fix the issue, but it’s probably a good idea to switch browsers until they do.
- Google announced a new prompt for Android apps. The new prompt will let you know if there’s a new version of an app in the Play Store whenever an app crashes. Since updates fix crashes a vast majority of the time, Google is banking on the developer fixing the issue by the time the user gets around to seeing it. Hit the link to learn more.
The Oregon Trail: Boom Town
Price: Free to play
The Oregon Trail: Boom Town is not the kind of game you think it is. It takes away the hardcore survival elements of its 50-year-old original and replaces it with simulation and adventure elements. It plays a bit more like FarmVille with a small survival aspect. You build a farm and harvest crops. The crops go to making items or as part of requisition requests from the other villagers. There are many games on Google Play that play like this one. However, this one includes neat little historical facts along with some other stuff. It’s alright, but I wouldn’t call it great.
Galaxy Enhance-X was originally launched in 2022 but was eventually pulled and re-released in 2023. It operates as a photo enhancer for Samsung phones. It’s available for the Galaxy S23 series now, but Samsung intends to bring it to other devices in the Galaxy lineup over the course of the year. It works pretty simply. You import a photo, pick your enhancement, pick your level, and the app does its enhancements. There’s even a nifty little slider tool to show you the old photo and the new phone. Galaxy S23 owners can hit the button below and grab it from the Galaxy Store.
Subway Surfers Blast
Price: Free to play
Subway Surfers Blast is the latest game from SYBO Games, developers of, obviously, Subway Surfer. This is a match-three game, and it plays like most match-three games. You line up the shapes, remove them from the board, and clear levels as you unlock various things. There are special rewards that you earn by playing with friends and various power-ups to help you through the game. There’s also a decoration element to it as well, something we’ve seen in hundreds of other match-threes. It has offline support, which we always appreciate, but otherwise, it’s much like other games in its genre.
Find that Photo
Price: Free / $6.99
Find that Photo is an app to help you find photos in your local storage. It uses AI as most apps do these days, to try and find a photo based on a description. The app indexes your photos, and then the photos become searchable. It worked okay in our testing. There’s definitely some optimization and work to be done, but we like where the idea is going. Usually, these types of features are only available on cloud services. There’s an in-app purchase, but luckily it isn’t a subscription like most other AI-powered apps.
Honkai: Star Rail
Price: Free to play
Honkai: Star Rail promises to be one of the biggest releases of 2023. It’s by MiHoYo, the same developers of Genshin Impact. It is, however, nothing like Genshin Impact. It’s a JRPG with turn-based combat. There’s no open world, but you do get to traverse various environments, fight enemies, and play through the story. We’re only a few hours in so far, but the story seems nicely told with good voice acting. The combat is a bit simple, but it gets the job done. There are some bugs, like cutscenes coming in at lower-than-expected framerates, but the developers are responding to such issues, and planned fixes are on the way. It’s going to be one of the most popular games of the year for gacha fans.
If we missed any big Android apps or games news or releases, tell us about them in the comments.