Welcome to the 424th edition of Android Apps Weekly. Here are the big headlines this week:
- Telegram had a decently big update this last week. The update adds phone number links, a download manager, better media previews, and more. Word is that live streaming support is coming soon as well. Hit the link for more details.
- Gboard is getting a new feature specifically for tablets and foldable. It’s not a new features. In fact, it’s actually just a split keyboard. Competitors like SwiftKey and some OEM keyboards like Samsung already had such a feature. Now it’s coming to arguably one of the best keyboards on mobile.
- The second Android 13 developer preview came out this week. There wasn’t much to write home about, but it did include a few changes from the first developer preview. The app notification permission is now live along with downgradable permissions. Hit the link to learn more. We’ll learn more about Android 13 at Google I/O 2022 as well.
- Netflix wants to curb account sharing. The company intends to charge users an extra $2-3 to share their passwords with people outside of their household. You’ll add up to two sub-accounts for the price so people outside the house can stream.
- YouTube Vanced was shut down this week after legal threats from Google. A lot of people used it to skirt YouTube ads, see the dislike counter, and block sponsored segments in videos. It’s not great news even if it’s understandable why it happened. Most of our readers still won’t pay for YouTube Premium even with Vanced out of the picture. It is what it is.
Empire Defender TD
Price: $0.99 with in-app purchases
Empire Defender TD is a new tower defense game. It’s reminiscent of old-school mobile tower defense games like Kingdom Rush. You put up towers, upgrade them as you go, and try to finish the level. You also get a hero that you can freely move around the battlefield to help out wherever needed. In addition, the game is playable offline, includes 120 maps, 11 heroes, and more than 100 total achievements. There are microtransactions but a clever player can get around them. It’s been a while since we’ve seen a reasonably competent tower defense game.
MapGenie: Elden Ring Map
Price: Free / $6.99
Elden Ring is the latest gaming hit and this companion app can make it easier. It features a map of the game world with 1,500 locations sorted by 70 categories. You can also search for locations, track your progress for things like collectibles, and take notes. The developer is also promising underground maps in the near future. Fans of Elden Ring should definitely consider looking at this one.
MLB Tap Sports Baseball 2022
Price: Free to play
MLB Tap Sports Baseball 2022 is Glu’s annual Tap Sports Baseball release. It features upgraded rosters for the 2022 season, support for your existing TSB account, and new leaderboards from the previous year. We didn’t test it too thoroughly, but the mechanics seem to be mostly similar to the 2021 release. You can compete in club events, a gacha element where you can collect stars from the past and present, and more. The 2022 variant seems to have launched with some bugs and balance issues. Hopefully, Glu gets those ironed out sooner rather than later.
Jow is a recipes app with a grocery list element. The app has a neat premise. You tell the app what appliances you own, how many people live in your house, and what foods you want to avoid. It then helps you find recipes that you have the equipment to make. It also has vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free, and pork-free options along with other dietary restrictions. Once selected, the app keeps a grocery list so you know what to buy at the store. The app has its ups and downs, but recipe apps usually need time to fill out the selection.
Dark Nemesis: Infinite Quest
Price: Free to play
Dark Nemesis: Infinite Quest is a new MMORPG. It plays like many others. You create a character, travel the open world, defeat bosses, complete quests, and more. The game also features PvP combat, including a battle royale mode with hundreds of players. There are also companions, mounts, and other stuff for you to collect and level up. The graphics are decent and the controls aren’t terrible. Overall, it’s nothing terribly unique in the genre, but it could be much worse. There are some bugs, but that’s to be expected for such a new game.
If we missed any big Android app or game releases or news, tell us about it in the comments.
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