XDA Picks: Best Apps of the Week (Aug 1 – Aug 8)
Apps are at the front and center of any smartphone experience, and with over a million apps on the Google Play Store and new apps being submitted to our forums every day, staying up to date on the latest apps and games can be a hassle. At XDA we don’t discriminate apps – if it’s interesting, innovative, original or useful, we mention them. The XDA Portal Team loves apps too, and here are our top picks for this week.
Drizzle SMS – Get Paid To Text [FREE]
There are many apps with useless, annoying ads out there. Furthermore, there are many messaging apps with ads on the Play Store. Drizzle SMS is unlike those because, while it has ads, you get money from them as well. That’s right: Drizzle is user-friendly, and wallet friendly too. The banner ads displayed generate ad revenue for you, and you can also take short surveys as well. But either way, you get money from simply using your phone like you would every day. So if you don’t care about ads and text a lot, this could be a good option. Here is a link to the developers’ AMA if you want to learn more.
Microsoft just keeps releasing more and more Android apps, and it seems like they put out a new one every week. Some are good and some are underwhelming, but this translator application is more useful than many other Microsoft apps. It features a clean and simple UI and an Andoid Wear app that is very straight-forward. The translator also features everything you’d expect: it can read the output out loud and you can input phrases through voice and text. You can pin frequently used phrases and these get synchronized with Wear as well. Microsoft claims this is powered by cutting-edge technology, so you be the judge!
Genius – Song Lyrics & More [FREE]
Genius is an app that reliably gives you the lyrics to over 1.7 million songs, with crowdsourced annotations from millions of obsessed fans as well. So you will not only find music hosted on soundcloud and lyrics, but also get to know the inspiration behind each verse and the meaning behind each metaphor… with varying degrees of accuracy, as with everything that’s crowdsourced. Either way, this app is great for learning the lyrics to a new song and figuring out what they mean. The interface looks good, it functions smoothly and you will most likely have a big chunk of your music library covered.
Youtube Gaming will go head-to-head with Twitch.tv to claim dominance in the video-game streaming market. Google’s expertise in video streaming will be carried from Youtube to this new app geared towards gamers, and you will be able to find your content in a beautiful Material Design application the kind of which Google itself rarely delivers. You can easily follow your favorite streamers, find popular video streams and Let’s Plays, and more. If you want to get a preview of what’s to come, be sure to explore this new service. Watch out gamers, Google might finally make its way to yet another aspect of your lives.
Countdown to Hero [FREE]
Countdown to Hero is a nice little game by XDA member 1a11ous that has you combine numbers to reach a desired goal. If you have ever watched Countdown, you’ll feel right at home: simply build equations and reach the final number. What makes this such a relaxing experience, however, is the app’s design: it features tranquil music and a clean Material-inspired interface with interactive elements and smooth transitions (and clouds too). Those of you looking for a time-killer to carry you through a boring waiting room will find their nerves slightly eased and their brain quickly stimulated.
- ES File Explorer 4.0.0 Beta brings some Material Design with flat colors and a small Floating Action Button.
- Google Keep has been updated and now allows you to easily copy your Keep Notes to Google Drive
- Google Chrome Beta for Android has been updated and now includes custom tabs, an updated bookmarks UI and media playback controls.
- Google Messenger has been updated to 1.4.048. There aren’t many details as of yet, but be sure to update in case it contains security improvements.
- The Moto App has been updated to v3.0 and now supports location triggers for Moto Assist
- Plex For Android v4.8 has added 4K HEVC Playback, support for MKV files (much appreciated) and AC3 Passthrough for Android TV.
That is it for this week. We hope that you might have found some of these apps as interesting, useful or entertaining as we did. Whether you are a student, a developer, a designer or a gamer, Android has you covered. We will try to reflect that each week with a variety of picks to spark your interest, and if you see (or publish!) any new apps that you think are worthy of a feature, be sure to send us a tip and we’ll give it a look. Until next time!