Best daily deals

Affiliate links on Android Authority may earn us a commission. Learn more.

Android Apps Weekly: iMessage sort of comes to Android, and more

Beeper Mini finally offers a safe way to use iMessage on iPhone, and other news you need to know!
By
December 9, 2023
Photo of an Android phone with Beeper Mini app
Mishaal Rahman / Android Authority

Welcome to the 513th edition of Android Apps Weekly, where we discuss the latest in mobile news and take a closer look at some of the most interesting new apps and games. This week saw the release of another app claiming to replicate iMessage for Android users, but this time it actually seems to work. Google was also in the news for a few reasons, such as price increases for YouTube customers including those previously grandfathered into older plans. 

Let’s jump right in and take a look at some of the biggest highlights from the last week: 

Android Apps Weekly: New apps and games of the week

Looking for some new Android apps and Android games to keep you occupied? Below, we take a look at some of our favorite suggestions for the week. This time around we’re getting a lot of great premium games, many of which have been popular on PC and console. 

Death’s Door

  • Price: Free with a Netflix subscription

 

Death’s Door is a unique action-adventure game where you play as a small crow who collects soles as his profession. Previously the game was a hit on both the PC and console. The new port stays true to the original game but adds touch controllers and a few other changes to better suit it for mobile. Overall this feels like the full game but with some very big limitations including a lack of physical controller support, a lock to just 30fps, and I have to admit I ran into a few other performance glitches and hiccups with the Pixel 6 Pro I tested it on. The game is playable and completely free as long as you have a Netflix subscription, but just be aware it won’t be quite as smooth of an experience if you’ve played it elsewhere. For those with older phones it’s also important to note there’s no video quality settings, just what you get out of the box. 

Goat Simulator 3

  • Price: $12.99

Goat Simulator 3 is another console/PC port making its way to Android. The mobile version features co-op support and all the core features you’d expect. While the game is true to what you’d get on other platforms, it tends to be a lot less stable. I had to use my Google Pixel 7 to get a good experience, as my Pixel 6 Pro struggled hard. Even then, I had a few bugs, stutters, and other graphical issues. What’s made worse is that there’s no way to adjust your graphics settings in this title, which would likely go a long way in improving the experience.

Hitman: Blood Money Reprisal

  • Price: $14.99

Yet another port! This time we’re looking at a remake of the 2006 original, remastered with new quality-of-life features including touchscreen optimizations and a few other changes including an Instinct Mode, which was introduced to the series in the 2012 game Hitman: Absolution. Unlike the other games on the list so far, this one is a port that has actually zero notable performance issues. I played it on three different devices briefly and found the experience worked well even on phones that were a bit older or mid-range. 

Shapez

  • Price: Free with in-app purchases

After a bunch of hardcore games, I thought I’d bring you something slightly more casual, though it’s still a port. While the Steam version costs, this is a free game though there are in-app purchases that unlock the full experience. Shapez is a unique game where you build complex factories to automate the creation of increasingly complex shapes. It’s a good way to exercise your brain and is a lot of fun. Unfortunately, the mobile controls aren’t quite as good and there are a few bugs here and there. Here’s hoping the game gets better over time, but in its current form, it’s playable, just not quite as good as what you’d get in the non-mobile version.

Beeper Mini

  • Price: $1.99 a month
Beeper Mini Chat UI Stacked
Mishaal Rahman / Android Authority

While we mentioned Beeper Mini in the news, we figured we’d add it to our new apps spotlight as well. The new app essentially tricks Apple into letting you into their exclusive blue box club. You’ll get all the same features as iMessage users and iPhone users will see you as just another iMessage user. While it’s unclear how Apple will react to this app and if there’s even anything they can do about it, for now we highly recommend this if you’ve considered switching to an iPhone just for iMessage. Apple’s messaging app is extremely popular in the US and I’ve known more than a few people who have switched phones just for that, including my own sister. The only real downside here is you’ll have to pay $1.99 for the service. 

Pro Tip of the Week

In our Pro Tip of the Week, we share tips or suggestions that we think could benefit our readers. This could include app recommendations for obscure apps that aren’t new, how-to guides for emerging issues, or any advice we think will help you out.

Thinking about ditching X? Here’s our tips for the best alternatives to Twitter

Recently there have been several new apps attempting to draw in users that have become jaded by Musk’s version of Twitter. Which Twitter alternative is the best for you? It depends on what you’re looking for. Mastodon previously drew attention for its more open-source attention but has faded a bit from the spotlight and was probably never destined to become anything more than a niche alternative. Still, it’s a good choice if you want to kind of build your own thing.

Just looking for something that feels similar to Twitter? Meta’s Threads network is probably the most obvious choice and Threads compares mostly favorably to X. While it’s not a perfect replacement, it comes close and has the largest user base at over 100 million. While X remains the more versatile option, many have left the network just out of principle due to disagreements with how Musk is handling the company. If you’re finding your favorite Twitter users have jumped ship, you’re more likely to find them on Thread than on some of the other Twitter-like apps. 

Another solid option would be Bluesky Social. You can learn more about how it compares to Twitter in our X vs Bluesky guide. We also have an explainer that helps highlight the differences between Bluesocial vs Threads as well.