Welcome to the 430th edition of Android Apps Weekly. Here are the big headlines from last week:
- A report circulating this week outlines Elon Musk’s alleged idea to increase Twitter’s revenue. Among those ideas include monetizing tweets, increasing celebrity engagement, and slashing the salaries of high-level executives. That was apparently part of his bid to buy Twitter. We don’t know how much it’s worth, but you can hit the link to learn more about it.
- Google is giving people more power to remove personally identifiable information from the web. This week, Google gave people the ability to request that their phone number, email address, and physical address be removed from Google Search results. Google processes the request within a few days and your information will be lost. We really love this move and recommend that people do it.
- Last week, we talked about the disastrous shutdown that was CNN Plus. As it turned out, it was worse than we expected because it actually closed two days early. It was set to close on April 30, but closed on April 28 instead. This is one of the worst streaming service launches of all time and it’s quite interesting to compare it to Quibi.
- Several major tech companies were tricked into providing personal data to hackers. The process is a little complicated. However, the short version is hackers pretending to be legitimate companies and submitting bogus legal requests. Big tech companies respond and provide data. Google, Apple, Twitter, Discord, and a few others are included. Hit the link to learn more.
- The Google Play Store now shows you how apps collect and share your data. App developers are 100% obligated to include this data starting July 20, 2022. This information includes data collected, how it is used, with which third parties it is shared, and some other pieces of data. You’ll see this rolling out in the coming weeks.
Phantom is a crypto wallet originally for desktop browsers. The company launched Android and iOS apps a few weeks ago. The app offers many of the same features as the wallet itself, including fast transactions, low fees, and the Solana DAPP for enhanced functionality. As an app it’s not bad but definitely still needs some optimization. It tends to load slowly and become unresponsive at times. However, a little tweaking here and there and the app can prove to be very useful. People who have used Phantom should definitely check it out.
The Seven Deadly Sins X-Tasy
Price: Free to play
Seven Mortal Sins X-Tasy is a mobile JRPG with the usual gacha elements. You play out the story while summoning and upgrading your units. Some of the game’s other features include voice actors, a story that has unique reactions based on player decisions, and hidden stories for your character to unlock and play through. The honeymoon phase is quite sociable to play with, though the grind will eventually catch up with you. This is definitely one of the better options for this genre in recent memory.
Mastodon is a decentralized social network similar to Google+ and Twitter rolled into one. The service launched its official Android app last week, no doubt in response to Musk’s purchase of Twitter. This app deserves to be very new. You can join various communities, post your thoughts, post polls, get notifications and much more. There are some growing pains. For example, it’s difficult to switch instances without multiple logins and there are several other UI/UX issues that we hope the developers address soon.
Echoes of Mana is the latest gacha RPG from Square Enix. This one revolves around the existing Mana series. It plays like a lot of Square Enix’s gacha where you can summon characters new and old from the Mana series, play through storylines, and enjoy a bit of nostalgia mixed in with a bit of novelty. This one is a little more aggressive in terms of microtransactions than most of Square Enix’s gacha and some of the gameplay stutters a little on low-end devices, but Square Enix will continue to improve in the long run, so stay tuned for this one.
Nothing, the company, launched the None Launcher as a publicity stunt to market its upcoming phone. It is this launcher that will run on the new device. The launcher is a bit bland. There are multiple widgets, unique wallpapers, and several customization options. However, it’s so bland and basic that we don’t anticipate it taking over apps like Nova Launcher anytime soon. However, we’ve seen OEMs improve and expand on their previous launchers with great success, so we won’t be counting on this one just yet.
If we missed any news or a major Android app or game release, let us know in the comments.
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