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5 Android apps you shouldn't miss this week and all the latest app news

This week Google announced Gemini for Messenger alongside plenty of other news. It was a good week for Android apps.
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Published onMarch 2, 2024

Welcome to the 524th 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. Let’s jump right in and take a look at some of the biggest highlights from the last week:

  • The biggest app news this week happened at MWC, with Google announcing plenty of significant app-related features and changes. Not only is Google Messages getting Gemini access, but Android Auto will get AI text summaries. Additionally, Google Docs will soon allow you to add handwritten annotations to documents using a stylus or finger, among other updates.
  • New apps and games launch all the time but how often do they really change the game much? We can’t speak for all apps, but Whispp at least delivers something new and truly useful. The app promises to give a voice to people with speaking disabilities by either boosting a person’s current voice or by recreating your original. The app uses recordings of your own voice from the past in order to do the latter. 
  • Whatsapp is adding a new way to search with its “search by date” feature, which will let you search by date for individual and group chats. The news comes by word of Meta CEO Mark Zuckeberg, which first announced the news on the Whatsapp Channel
  • The latest Google Play Services update includes a new password-sharing function that is currently not enabled, though TheSpAndroid has managed to activate the feature with a feature flag. The feature could eventually allow accounts within a family group to share usernames and passwords easily with Password Manager.
  • It’s not just Google Play that has hints of future features, as Google contacts also contains code for a currently inaccessible feature: a new UI for the header area in the contacts screen that would let you quickly look at your most recent messages and more. 
  • Photomath is one of the most popular apps for solving math problems using AI, requiring only a simple picture to get started. Now, Google has acquired ownership of the app, officially adding it to the Google fold. Google has yet to reveal any planned changes to the app experience, but it’s clear the company is interested in the app’s technology, which could potentially aid Google in enhancing its similar features in Google Lens, Search, and other products.
  • Phone calls have certainly fallen out of popularity in recent years but for those who still prefer it over texting and other communications, Google may soon be making these calls a little more fun with audiomojis. Recently the beta version of Google Phone landed and appears to have code mentioning six audio reactions: drum roll, sad, applause, party pooper, laugh, and poop. The reactions also have reaction animations associated with them. 

Android Apps Weekly: New apps and games

Looking for some new Android apps and Android games to keep you occupied? This week saw two new apps worth highlighting, as well as three great games. 

Atelier Resleriana

  • Price: Free with in-app purchases

Ateliera is a fairly well-known JPRG series, and now the experience is coming to mobile. The new game centers on new characters and is very story-driven. Unlike many other JRPGs, the actual missions are on a smaller scale, more about accomplishing personal goals than big concepts like saving the world. As for how the game plays, I found the combat decent enough, and the graphics are second-to-none for a mobile title. Unfortunately, it’s also a pretty buggy game from my experience so far. In total, I’ve played maybe an hour, and yet it crashed twice in that period, and I ran into a few small glitches as well. As the game receives further updates, it’ll hopefully become a more polished experience, but even as it stands, it is worth giving a try.

Ragnarok Origin: ROO

  • Price: Free with in-app purchases

The sequel to Ragnarok Origin has arrived, returning to the legendary world of Midgard. This time you must protect the world from destruction at the hands of Loki’s curse. The game is a worthy enough sequel on the surface, though in-app purchases get in the way of an experience that I feel would be much better as a premium app. Unfortunately, this game, like the one on the list before it, has a lot of bugs and crashes. I tried it on three different phones and found it crashed constantly on all but my Pixel 7. Even then there were a few other glitches and bugs. As these get worked out, this could still be a pretty solid mobile experience but just be aware it currently lacks some needed polish. 

 

 

Ready Set Golf

  • Price: Free with in-app purchases

Ready Set Goal is a new mini-golfing game with a lot going for it. While there are tons of games like these out there, this one still stands out thanks to decent cartoon-style graphics, easy-to-learn controls, special moves that add to the charm of the game, and some pretty unique challenges and hazards as well. The game lets you play off against friends or can even match you with players around your level from all over the world. The downside with this title is that it has tons of micro-transactions and can be reasonably aggressive with reminding you about it. On the bright side, I didn’t run into any major bugs or playability issues. 

Eggy Party

  • Price: Free with in-app purchase

Eggy Party is a mobile party game with whimsical kid-friendly characters and charming graphics. It kind of reminds me of Nintendo Land from the Wii U in that there’s a big game park area that lets you access a bunch of different unique game experiences. There are quite a few different modes: Hide and Seek, Rope Race, Specialized Assault (a shooting game kinda like Splatoon) Crazy Brawl (fighting), Playground Construction, Baking Contest, and Who’s Rotten (where you have to vote on who is the bad guy, sort of like Among Us). The game is fun to play and easy to pick up for people of all skill levels, though some experiences are more intuitive than others in the game. 

YouTube Create

  • Price: Free with in-app purchases

YouTube Create was actually announced last year and soft launched in several markets at the time, but now it’s finally making its way to more markets, including the US. YouTube Create lets you edit Shorts and standard YouTube videos on your Android phone. You can capture videos right through the app or import existing files. There are also a bunch of handy features like transitions that automatically match background music, auto-caption, and an Audio Cleanup tool for removing background noises. You will need a phone with at least 4GB of RAM to run this, which means you’ll need a mid-range phone or better.