August is almost here, and that means the mobile industry is going to get really busy as September inches closer — that’s thanks to IFA, Apple’s iPhone 7 launch, Google’s Android Nougat, Nexus, and Daydream rollout, and more. First up is Samsung’s Note 7 unveiling on August 2 — you’ll need some great apps to play around with these devices.
Take a look at five of the best apps we’ve picked for the week.
Lego Star Wars
You’re may be acquainted with games made from Lego — they’re usually modeled off popular films like The Hobbit, Harry Potter, and more. The company has finally brought its Lego Star Wars: The Force Awakens game to Android. The game, which has been available on iOS, consoles, and PC since June, has the same gameplay as all other Lego games — collect coins and follows the storyline to advance. You’ll a fair bit of slapstick humor thrown in, but what’s neat is that you can play as all the characters in the movie, including BB-8. While the game is free to install, you’ll only be able to play the first level before you have to cough up some dough to unlock levels two through nine.
You may have heard of Prisma by now — it’s an app that uses neural nets and artificial intelligence to convert your photos into works of art — more specifically, it changes the look of your photo into the style of a specific artist like Pablo Picasso or Roy Lichtenstein. The app has been around on iOS since June, but it’s finally out on Android. All you have to do is snap a photo in the app or upload one you’ve already taken, and tap on an art style to apply it like a filter. Filters can take a few seconds or minutes to apply, so you’ll have to be patient.
PokeFit for Pokémon Go
Everyone’s trying to cash in on the Pokémon Go craze — if you’re tired of seeing it, here’s a Chrome extension to block it from the internet. Still, if you’re an burgeoning trainer, you may have noticed that trying to hatch all those eggs and catch ’em all is making you walk a lot more. PokeFit is an app that can help you see your exercise data in real-time — but the best part is that you don’t have to switch between apps. PokeFit shows up as an overlay in Pokémon Go. You can track your distance, calories, step count, data usage, battery drain, and more with the overlay. The app also automatically starts up when you launch Pokémon Go, so you don’t have to keep launching PokeFit separately. Healthy hunting!
Microsoft is continuing its trend of releasing apps for iOS with Pix, an artificially intelligent camera app that uses algorithms to help you take better photos without any effort. It’s a lot more barebones than the default iOS camera — all you’ll see is a shutter button, and once you snap a picture the AI will optimize the lighting, detect whether the subject is smiling, if their eyes are closed, and more. The app takes 10 frames in half a second — before and after you snap a shot, and then it selects three of the best and most unique photos. It can even identify interesting movements in a video to create live photos.
Democratic Presidential Candidate Hillary Clinton launched an app this week to help drive the youth vote to her campaign. It’s a bit of an odd one as you’re able to complete daily challenges like a “Trump or False” quiz, or quiz yourself on some hot campaign topics — doing so nets you coins as a reward. You can decorate your own campaign headquarters with these coins, and of course you can share campaign news and even “do some good old-fashioned organizing.” There’s not much else to the app, but if you’re an avid Clinton supporter you should check it out.
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