Every Monday Android Police publishes a list of new and notable apps or games to the site. It works out to around a hundred new apps a month, and over a thousand by this time in the year. If you wanted to, you could go back and look through all of them on the roundup page... but you probably don't. And why would you, when we've already done the legwork for you?

Following in no particular order are the Android Police team's picks for our favorite new Android apps of 2015. There are some predictable Google apps in there, but most of them are either really great tools for something that's already available or innovative new takes on their respective implementations.

YouTube Music

Android Police coverage: Google Officially Releases Dedicated YouTube Music App Into The Play Store [APK Download]

YouTube music is here... finally. This app is an alternate YouTube access point that focuses on music videos. If you've subscribed to Google's YouTube Red service (stop that giggling), you get to skip ads, download songs and videos, and run audio in the background without the video portion. The interface should be familiar to anyone who's used the standard YouTube app, though the Now Playing screen is focused on music discovery.

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YouTube Music lets you watch and listen to a nearly endless catalog in an app designed for music discovery. Just tap a track you love, and see where your music takes you. With the YouTube Music app you can enjoy your favorite tracks, albums, and artists for free. Or you can use it with the new YouTube Red membership to get ad-­free videos and listen to music offline, in the background, or without loading video. When you sign in to the YouTube Music app, you’ll be automatically enrolled in a free 14-­day trial of YouTube Red.*

HomeUX (Beta)

Android Police review: HomeUX Review: A Fresh, Elegant, And Unique Take On Android Launchers

HomeUX is an alternate Android launcher - wait, stop scrolling! This one actually has some interesting new ideas. Specifically, the interface is designed to separate your many apps into folders divided along specific functions, so you should never need to scroll through a long list to find a seldom-used app. This unusual approach is also applied to widgets. Give it a try if you're looking for a new take on a well-trodden Android tool. You'll need Android 5.0 or later to use it.

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HomeUX provides a simplistic yet highly functional launcher user interface with full integration of Google's Material Design. Here is why you will love HomeUX:

  • Folder Integration - Organisation like nothing you have ever seen before
  • Organised Widgets - Not only apps, but also widgets and shortcuts can also be organized in designated folders
  • Ultra Clean Interface - From apps that always stay where you need them to be and until the Clock widget and easy settings, every element is as elegant as possible
  • Panel Design - Your homescreen will always have a fresh look as you navigate your folders with the pictures you set or the Material Design colours palette
  • Intuitive Control - Natural swipe gestures and attractive Material Design transitions are the core of HomeUX
  • Advanced Functionality - Practical simplicity would be the best way to describe HomeUX as tap-and-hold shortcuts, quick access buttons, hidden apps, and extensive options are all inclusive and expanding as more development is being held.

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Pixolor

Android Police coverage: New App: Pixolor Is The Live Eyedropper Tool I've Always Wanted For Android

If you're wondering what color is being displayed on your screen, you can take a screenshot with Android's built-in tool, track down a MicroUSB cable, transfer the screenshot to your PC, open it in an image editor, and get an RGB value. Or you could use Pixolor, an app that will give you that exact value right on your phone. The handy designer-focused UI of this app will let you get that information quickly and easily.

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Pixolor is a circle floating over your apps showing a zoomed view of the underlying pixels, including color information and coordinates of the central pixel. This app is mainly for designers to know technical pixel-level information. It is also useful for people with poor eyesight who want to effortlessly zoom in on parts of the screen (e.g. to read text more easily). Requires Android Lollipop (5.0) or higher. Note: For Xiaomi (MIUI) devices, please enable the overlay permission in the app's system settings.

YouTube Gaming

Android Police coverage: YouTube Gaming v1.0 Rolls Out With Asteroids Easter Egg And Evidence Of Upcoming Screencasting Support [APK Teardown + Download]

Google's in-house competitor to game streaming service Twitch is now up and running. YouTube Gaming offers a specialized interface for watching live-streaming games, plus other content like Let's Play videos, with a live chat system and categories broken down into genres and individual games. The app is basically just a sub-section of YouTube, but for those who like this kind of thing, it's a very cool sub-section.

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YouTube Gaming keeps you connected to the games, players, and culture that matter to you. Featuring videos and live streams with chat — including let's plays, reviews, speedruns, trailers, and more from your favorite gamers and publishers — you can explore the games you care about more deeply than ever before. With videos covering Minecraft, Grand Theft Auto, League of Legends, Call of Duty, Garry’s Mod, and tens of thousands more, it’s all on YouTube Gaming.

SwiftKey Neural Alpha

Android Police coverage: [Hands-On] Swiftkey Neural Alpha - A Greenhouse Experiment That Works Pretty Well

This alpha app uses a new artificial intelligence system to quickly and (eventually) accurately predict your personal typing patterns, suggesting words as you go along. While most keyboards simply use an expanded dictionary, SwiftKey's "Neural" system tries to predict your words - if you write a lot about car parts, it might suggest an auto-complete for "carburetor" before you ever type it in for the first time. It takes a bit of time for the system to learn your patterns, of course.

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SwiftKey Neural Alpha is an experimental keyboard app that uses artificial neural networks to predict and correct your typing. The app leverages the power of artificial intelligence to offer you smarter and more meaningful suggestions in the context of what you’re writing. Neural networks are a subfield of artificial intelligence inspired by the structure and operation of the human brain.

• Understands word similarity
• Analyses longer sentence context
• Understands complex word relationships

AutoDash by Automatic

AutoDash is a launcher app that's designed specifically to replace your car's dusty dashboard. The idea isn't a new one: it assigns specific zones of the screen with huge finger-friendly buttons for easy selection (which I suppose is better than looking down at a phone). The app comes from Automatic, the people who make that OBD gadget, and it integrates with it if you happen to have one. It includes some interesting features, like the ability to trigger relevant IFTTT recipes.

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Your car's dashboard hasn't kept up with your digital life. AutoDash by Automatic is the solution. AutoDash gives you the freedom to create a custom control panel for your phone, with a clean, simple, car-friendly interface to access your essential apps on-the-go. By leveraging the thousands of existing Android widgets and apps, we've created a custom launcher that lets you do what you need quickly and easily, and then gets out of the way so you can focus on what's important: driving.

Robinhood

Android Police coverage: Robinhood Free Stock Market Trading App Comes To Android

Robinhood is an app and a service that allows you to make free stock trades. (That is, the process is free - you still have to pay for the actual stocks.) Surprisingly, it also has a pretty fantastic user interface. The developers have incorporated the Material Design standards to an almost slavish degree. Other tools include watch lists, a PIN for security, and SSL encryption.

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Free stock trading. Stop paying up to $10 for every trade. Robinhood for Android is a free download that allows people to buy and sell stocks for free. View market data in real-time, build a personalized watchlist, and place trades with a few taps.

  • Free trading refers to $0 commissions for Robinhood Financial self-directed individual cash or margin brokerage accounts that trade U.S. listed securities via mobile devices. SEC & FINRA regulatory fees may apply.
  • Access market data and quotes in real-time
  • Build a personalized stock watchlist with historical market data and detailed charts
  • Place market, limit, stop loss, stop limit, and good till canceled orders
  • Quickly tell when the markets are open and closed, with simple color schemes

Focus

Android Police coverage: Francisco Franco's Focus Is A Beautiful, Responsive, Tag-Friendly, And Simple Media Gallery

Focus is a pretty standard gallery app with a snazzy interface and one killer feature: it's a snap to find any photo in local storage quickly. The app achieves this with a combination of tags that keep everything tidy. Though the design is simple, it goes deep with support for GIF files and videos. In-app purchases unlock extras like a dark theme and a PIN lock system that lets you hand your phone over to someone else without them instantly swiping to see your... other photos.

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Focus is an incredible new kind of gallery, perfectly tuned for speed, efficiency, and ease of use. Tag your photos to keep them organized like never before using a first-of-its-kind tagging feature - choose from eleven preset tags, or create your own. Access any image, gif, or video on your device’s storage directly from the main screen, or dive deeper into your collections to quickly find photos by date.

Native Clipboard

Android Police coverage: Native Clipboard Is A Clipboard Manager With A Floating Window UI And Extra Functionality For Xposed Users

Managing copied and pasted text on a touchscreen is kind of a pain. Native Clipboard attempts to make it less so: double-tap on any text field and you'll see a floating window appear with all the text that you've copied recently available to insert. Important text can be "pinned" so it doesn't go away, and if you're rooted, the optional Xposed module lets you directly edit copied text and blacklist apps from the functionality.

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Native clip board provides easy and seamless access to anything you copied by simply double clicking the desired text field.Then choosing a clip will automatically paste it. The clipboard can be moved to show the keyboard, for example adding a space or a new line. The clipboard can be moved to show the keyboard, for example adding a space or a new line. The clips can be :
• Swiped away to delete them.
• Long clicked to view the whole text.
• Pinned to prevent deleting (Using the 3-dot menu).

Hooks - Alerts for Everything

Android Police coverage: Hooks Is A Cross Between Pushbullet Channels And IFTTT, Now Available On Android

Hooks is a series of pre-configured notifications for... well for everything. Want to get alerted when your team scores a goal? How about half an hour before the next episode of that show starts? Or when the Alexa rank of your website changes? All of those and many, many more can be configured in Hooks. It's kind of like Google Now, except that all of the stuff that you can follow is selected manually.

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Hooks will send you custom alerts for everything you care about. Search over 1M+ alerts or create you custom alerts by choosing one of our 100+ channels. Discover our 100+ channels, create custom alerts and start receiving notifications that matter to you:

  • Sports: score alerts, live results and schedules from your favourite team of MLB, NFL, NBA, NHL games, etc.
  • European Leagues: LFP, Premiership, Calcio, ABC games, etc.
  • Music Concerts: get notified of new concerts, festivals and new albums of your favorite band
  • Videogames releases, Twitch streams
  • Weather: weather change notifications for rain, ice, snow, temperature drop, etc.
  • TV shows: when will be the next episode, schedules of your favorite tv show, etc.
  • Lottery results
  • Pollen and allergy notification alerts

We include new channels every week. Download Hooks now and never miss a thing again. Have an idea? Something not working? We just released, so please send us your feedback.

Solid Explorer File Manager

Android Police coverage: Solid Explorer 2.0 Is Finally Out After A Lengthy Beta Test, New Paid Plugins Available Too

Solid Explorer is back, and more solid than ever. The popular file explorer has been given a complete relaunch for version 2.0, focusing primarily on a Material Design user interface refresh. All of the advanced features from the previous versions are intact (some of which require inexpensive upgrades in the form of paid plugins), and the visuals can be further tweaked with custom icon sets. The app is free for two weeks, after which you need to spring for the $2 pro version.

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Looking for a good file explorer with a sleek, modern look and many features? Good to see you here. Solid Explorer is the best looking file and cloud manager with two independent panels, which brings to you a new file browsing experience. This is the only fully featured file manager with Material Design you can find in the Play Store. It's better, faster and solid when compared to the competition.

Inputting+:Universal undo redo

Android Police coverage: [Hands-On] Inputting+ Brings Undo, Redo, And Find And Replace To Touchscreen Typing On Android

Typing on a touchscreen still sucks, even after years of it being a near-universal activity. Inputting+ hopes to make it suck less. This app runs in the background and "watches" everything you type (don't worry, it has no internet permissions and doesn't save passwords by default). You can re-enter text at any time, so you'll never lose five minutes of input to a random app crash again. A few extra tools like universal find and replace are also included.

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It's 2015. Can you believe there is still no undo(ctrl+z), redo(ctrl+y), find & replace(ctrl+f) when inputting on a touchscreen? Fortunately, Inputting+ can handle this. With Inputting+, a smart floating bubble will automatically pop up when you are typing. It can help you undo, redo, find & replace text, and even quick insert clipboard history. Have you ever got a moment that you lost something very important in case of the app crash or network connection failure? Inputting Timeline can automatically collect all texts you typed in other apps to a simple timeline.

Cosmic-Watch

Android Police coverage: Cosmic Watch Is A Beautiful Model Of The Universe For Your Phone Or Tablet

Cosmic Watch is... well, it's a watch, I suppose. But it's so much more than that: on top of being a 3D orrery and world clock, it's also an eclipse timer, a star map for constellations, and an astral chart. The app is expensive for what's basically a scientific and visual novelty (and I wish it came with a battery-destroying live wallpaper), but it's one of the most unique things on the Play Store at the moment, and definitely worth checking out.

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Discover the fascinating relation between time and the cosmos. Enjoy this interactive learning tool and understand the concept of the celestial sphere and the apparent movement of the sky. COSMIC WATCH is the worlds first and most advanced interactive 3D astronomical time device in the digital age.

  • Realtime world clock: Know the local time anywhere on Earth with just one touch.
  • Time travel: Explore any planetary positions in the past, present and future. Determine the exact time of sunrise or sunset with the horizon.
  • Navigation: Align the Cosmic Watch with the cardinal points and experience your realtime position in the cosmos. Find the planets in the sky.
  • Orientation: With the equatorial coordinates you can adjust your telescope.
  • Digital orrery: Discover the solar system from a geocentric point of view.
  • Interactive astral chart: To find out your ascendant and planets in retrograde has never been easier and more beautiful.
  • Solar eclipse detector: Be aware when this epic moments will happen.

AppChat (Alpha)

Android Police coverage: AppChat Is An Alpha App That Connects You To Live Chat Rooms For All Your Installed Apps [Update: Live On Play Store]

Do you like to talk with strangers about the apps that you're using? Then AppChat is for you. It's basically a series of chat rooms customized for each app on your phone. It makes sense if you're looking for an easy way to find support, though I can't imagine there's a whole lot that you can say about Crossy Road. The interface is interesting: swipe up from any screen to reach the room for that particular app.

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AppChat automatically puts you in a chat room for every app you have installed on your phone. It lets you chat in real time with everyone else who has the same app. NOTE. This is an early alpha we hacked together over a few days that we're releasing early to get feedback. Try it out, but please go easy on the low ratings while we figure this thing out.

  • We automatically detect which app a screenshot is for and offer to upload it to that chat.
  • Swipe in from the bottom right of your screen when in any app and you can jump straight to the chat for that app.
  • All the usual chat stuff: you can like messages, mention users, etc.

Emergency - American Red Cross

Android Police coverage: American Red Cross Releases Emergency App To Track Weather Alerts For Multiple Locations In One Place

The American Red Cross has been making some great preparation and relief apps for various disasters for years. This one is specifically for monitoring people and places: add Akron, Ohio because your parents live there, and you'll get an alert every time there's a danger of a tornado or flood. There's also a contact book for quickly sharing emergency details and basic tools like a strobe light and location alarm.

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Help keep your family safe in severe weather, man made/natural hazards with Emergency by the American Red Cross. Monitor conditions in your area or area of loved ones, prepare your family and your home, check to see if loved ones are safe and let them know you’re safe. A must have for anyone who live in areas prone to severe weather or have loved ones that do.

Swipes - To do & Task manager

Android Police coverage: Productivity App Swipes Comes To Android With Material Design And Evernote Integration

Swipes takes an interesting approach to the old-fashioned to-do list: it uses a series of swipe actions to organize things in the manner of Inbox or Mailbox. Surprisingly, Swipes is an established iOS app... that has come to Android with a Material Design from the get-go. The app uses dark and light themes for you fickle types, and integrates with Evernote for backups.

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Swipes is the task list for high achievers. It lets you plan and schedule your day in just a few swipes. It is crafted to empower people to Focus, Take Action and Achieve their Goals.

  • Plan your day on a timeline
  • Easily snooze tasks for later
  • Schedule things ahead
  • Check a history of your accomplishments
  • Set priorities
  • Get reminded with notifications
  • Enjoy Dark and Light theme
  • Use tags and work in context
  • Assign reminders and notes
  • Your data is safe and backed-up to the cloud
  • Powerful integration with Evernote

AmpliTube UA

This app is an effects processor for Android and the popular iRig digital guitar accessory. I'm going to be perfectly honest, I have no idea how all this musical stuff works. I'll assume that it's complicated and expensive (the in-app purchases, presumably for digital versions of "branded" equipment, certainly are), though you can download and try it for free.

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Your guitar tone on your Android phone - A complete professional guitar & bass multi-effects processor for all Android smartphone and tablet devices. AmpliTube UA is the revolutionary free companion app to iRig UA. It lets you turn any Android device* into the ultimate mobile guitar and bass multi-effects processor. With it, you can enjoy the high-quality sonic sculpting flexibility that’s made AmpliTube the go-to app for mobile musicians.

Google Photos

Android Police coverage: A Deep Dive Into Google Photos: Not Your Grandma's Photo Album

Google makes a lot of apps, some of them better than others (lookin' at you, Play Music). The new Photos is one of the better ones, with an insane amount of features, free storage on the web, visual search tools, and an impressive interface. It also includes robust sharing tools, some light editing, and full support for Chromecast. Google is adding new stuff all the time on top of everything else.

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Google Photos is the home for all your photos and videos. Automatically organized and searchable, you can find photos fast and bring them to life. It’s the photo gallery that thinks like you do. Your photos are now searchable by the places and things that appear in them. Looking for that fish taco you ate in Hawaii? Just search “food in Hawaii” to find it – no tagging required. Automatically backup all your photos and videos. Access them on any device or on the web at photos.google.com. Your photos are safe, secure, and private to you.

KISS Launcher

If you're looking for something a little simpler in your search for Android launchers, KISS is about as simple as it gets. The entire app is under 150 kilobytes, and it's just a list of apps and contacts. Assuming you use more than a dozen apps, the built-in search function allows you to quickly find entries. It's light, fast, and doesn't mess with anything you don't need... unless you need widgets.

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KISS Launcher allows Android users to simplify the home of their interface, to purify their screens and access the functions they need as quickly and as simply as possible. KISS Technology has been developed to allow users to save time and battery power. KISS Android Launcher helps users find the most used features of their phones to offer an adaptable reception service continuously depending on use patterns.

Chainfire Systemless Root

Android Police coverage: Chainfire Experiment Achieves Android Root Without Touching The /System Partition

This isn't technically an app, but it is really cool. SuperSU developer and general cool guy Chainfire has devised a way to root recent Android devices without modifying the /system partition. It uses a modified boot image to bypass the usual method, which means that you should be able to flash a new updated system image to a Nexus device without having to re-root it. It's a real boon to anyone who runs root, and while it's not perfect, it's definitely one of the coolest developments of the year.

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To have root on modern Android versions, we need our files to be executable and our daemon to be started on boot. We normally do this by making modifications to /system, tapping into binaries and scripts executed by init. If we're also modifying the boot image, then we should be able to do all this without modifying system at all. A benefit of this is that it makes OTAs easier - reflashing the boot image is less hassle than reflashing system.
As the binaries should still be updatable, and we don't know the space we have available in the boot image itself, we're mounting a (writable) ext4 image with /su asmount point from /data, and modifying PATH accordingly. Interestingly, for reasons yet unknown to me, if the image is mounted r/o by init, later remounting it r/w causes a bunch of issues. So we're keeping it r/w (for root) for now.
An overlayfs/unionfs solution would be even more ideal, transparently placing files in /system without modifying the actual partition, but I have not been able to find one that is (a) compatible with all Android architectures and (b) not kernel dependent and (c) not GPL - or even just one of those requirements, really. It's technically all possible, it just needs to be done.

XDA-Developers