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February 13, 2021
Top headlines this week:
AAW Niagara Launcher screenshot

Welcome to the 367th edition of Android Apps Weekly. Here are the big headlines from the last week:

  • Google Fit is adding new tools to measure heart rate and respiratory rate. Both new features use the cameras on your device to measure it so it’s not 100% accurate. However, it’s not too far off and it’s certainly better than nothing. The new tools roll out to the app next month for Pixel users first. Hit the link to see how the respiratory rate part works.
  • DC Universe officially shut down all movie and TV streaming support this week. We knew it was coming from last autumn so there is no surprise here. It also completed its re-branding effort. The app still works but now only sources its large collection of comic books.
  • Google Play Music is deleting user data starting on February 24th. Previous users have until then to download their data or they lose it forever. The app warned users already but here is another warning in case you didn’t see it before. This should complete the shut down of Google Play Music and complete the transition to YouTube Music for better or worse.
  • Walmart officially launched its Walmart Plus plan this week. The plan competes with Amazon Prime in the online digital retailer space. Some of the benefits include free same-day grocery delivery, free same-day delivery of other goods (where available), access to Scan & Go functionality, and fuel discounts at affiliated gas stations. Hit the link or go here to learn more.
  • Google is mulling over an Apple-like app transparency feature. The feature would boost privacy by limiting the amount of data Android apps collect and share. It won’t be as hardcore as Apple’s so it won’t be quite as private. However, it would go a long way to improving user privacy if they did.
New apps and games this week:

Kitty Letter

Price: Free / $0.99-$2.99 Kitty Letter is a word game where players unscramble words. It plays a lot like similar games in the genre but this one feels a lot more polished and a lot less free-to-play than they do. The game makes you swipe between letters to unscramble a word. Unscrambling words sends an army of letters at your opponent who must respond in kind or they lose. You can play one versus one games with friends or strangers. Some other features include a single player campaign as well as unlockable cosmetics. The game is entirely free to play. The in-app purchases are only for cosmetic items.

Daylight Clock

Price: Free Daylight Clock is a free tool that lets you see sunrise and sunset times in your area. It changes daily with the new sunrise and sunset times. You can also compare your area to other areas and there is a widget for quick reference. The app also has support for civil twilight, nautical twilight, and astronomical twilight. There are a variety of uses for such an app, mostly for photographers and people who want to make sure to get stuff done before it gets dark outside. It’s also entirely free with no in-app purchases or ads.

Daylight Clock screenshot
Joe Hindy / Android Authority

Titan Quest: Legendary Edition

Price: $19.99 Titan Quest: Legendary Edition is a re-release of the poplar RPG. It originally launched in 2006 but a mobile port launched some years ago. This version includes all of the DLCs and technical updates. You literally get the full game experience for one price. For the unfamiliar, the game is an action RPG game similar in style to games like Diablo II or Baldur’s Gate. The campaign and DLCS represent a ton of content so you should be playing this one for a good, long time. Some players reported some minor issues with the touch controls and a bug where the game makes you start from a save if you minimize it and come back. It’s a bit pricey but you do get a lot of game for the price.

Niagara Launcher

Price: Free / $0.99-$14.99 Niagara Launcher actually launched last April. However, it finally left beta this last week and the full, stable release is out. The launcher aims for a more minimal style than most launchers. Your app drawer is shown as a list while your home screen is just a list of shortcuts for apps your consistently use. There are some design flourishes here and there to make things look good, but generally speaking there aren’t a ton of customization options. The official launch added support for things like icon packs as well, something the beta didn’t have for a long time. In any case, it’s available now on Google Play.

Niagara Launcher screenshot 2020 2

Slay the Spire

Price: $9.99 Slaly the Spire is the latest game published by Humble Bundle. It’s a hybrid between a roguelike game and a card game. Players craft a deck of cards, encounter bad guys, and attempt to climb the spire. Each attempt nets you new cards and hopefully you get a little closer each time. The spire itself randomly generates for each run so you get a new experience every time. The game originally launched on Steam in 2019 but the mobile port only launched here recently. There are a few bugs here and there according to other players, but it’s otherwise quite good.

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