Welcome to the 181st edition of Android Apps Weekly! Here are the biggest headlines from the last week:
- One of the bigger announcements at MWC 2017 was the Nokia 3310. Yes, the remake of the famous phone with all those memes. It also comes with a revamped version of the popular Snake game. As it turns out, you can play it without buying the 3310. Facebook Messenger has the game built into the app and you can play it whenever you want. Simply launch the app, tap the controller icon, find it, and play. That’s kind of cool.
- Google announced that Google Assistant will be coming to all devices running Marshmallow and Nougat. The good news is that you won’t have to wait long. The update will be coming through Google Play Services and it should be rolling out right now. The first stage of rollouts are going to the United States, Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom, and Germany. Other countries and languages will have to wait for rollouts later this year.
- Researchers found 132 Android apps that are carrying Windows malware. What makes that interesting is that Windows malware can’t do jack or squat on the Android platform. It gets weirder. The developers had no idea that the malware was there. The malware finds HTML pages and injects the malware into them automatically, even if they’re in an Android app. That means the malware was already on their computer. The apps are no longer available for download.
- Niantic announced that they would be bringing more large updates to Pokemon Go in 2017. The future updates will include more Pokemon, new game play features, and more. The game play features that have been confirmed include trading Pokemon, PvP combat, a new gym battle system, and some smaller stuff. The updates should roll out over the course of the year. They also announced a revamp for Ingress at MCW 2017. That should be fun!
- Google officially announced YouTube TV this week. It’s a lot like Sling TV, PlayStation Vue, or DirecTV Now. It’ll include dozens of cable channels, local sports networks, and other stuff. It’ll even include a cloud-based DVR with unlimited storage. Of course, you’ll have access to YouTube Red Original content as well from the app. Also, the company announced that people check out over one billion hours of videos per day. That’s impressive.
For even more Android apps and games news, releases, updates, and more, check out this week’s newsletter by clicking here! There you can find a bunch of stuff that we didn’t have space for here such as Mozilla buying Pocket, the end of Google Spaces, and more! You can sign up using the form below if you’d like to get the newsletter straight to your inbox every Sunday. Also, don’t forget to check out the Android Authority app for even faster updates!
Unhappy Ever After RPG was originally a Kickstarter project. Obviously, it got funded because it’s now out on Android. It’s a retro-style RPG with a decent story. You’ll have a partially open world to explore, adult themes, dungeons, and a whole lot more. Overall, the developers boast over 20 hours of content to play through. There is even a night and day system that affects things. Do beware, though, because this game isn’t great for kids. You can pick up a demo version for free. The full version costs a scant $2.49.
Pixbar is a fun little customization app. The basic premise is that it helps your navigation keys look like the ones on the Google Pixel. You open the app, position the graphics accordingly, and then hit apply. The result should be filled in buttons like on the Pixel. It works without root. It’s also intended for phones running stock Android. The app is compatible with Lollipop and forward. The developer has also stated that some OEM skins will be supported in future updates. It’ll run you $0.99 to check it out.
The Frostrune is a first person adventure game that also features point-and-click mechanics. The game’s storyline follows Viking mythology with some Norse culture sprinkled in. You’ll find hand-painted artwork, various puzzles, bizarre concepts, and a lot more. Each puzzle that you solve will help you get one step closer to the end of the game. It focuses a lot more on storytelling than most games. That makes it a good option for those who like following narratives. It’s $4.99 with no in-app purchases.
Energy Bar is another Android customization app. This one puts a battery meter above your status bar. The bar gets shorter as your battery drains so you can see how much you have left. The pro version of the app lets you completely replace your status bar with the battery meter if you want to. On top of that, you’ll be able to customize the colors, the bar thickness, and how the color is shown. It even has a selection of animations for when you’re charging. You can check out the free version to see what it’s like, but you’ll need to pay $1.99 to get all of the features.
The Escapists was originally released on PC. This week it was officially ported to Android. The game follows your main character who has been thrown in prison. Your job is to figure out a way to break out. The game features a variety of ways to do so. You’ll also have to do things like show up for roll call, hide your contraband, and avoid being suspicious. Pair that with the retro graphics and what you have is an instant classic. It’s definitely one of the more unique sandbox games that we’ve seen. It’s $3.99 with no in-app purchases.
If we missed any big Android apps or games news, tell us about them in the comments! To see our complete list of best app lists, click here.