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31 Best New Android Games From The Last 2 Weeks (8/17/12 - 9/4/12)

Welcome to the roundup of the best new Android applications, games, and live wallpapers that went live in the Play Store or were spotted by us in the previous 2 weeks or so.

This edition focuses only on new games. The app roundup is coming up soon.

Please wait for this page to load in full in order to see the AppBrain widgets, which include ratings and pricing info.

Looking for the previous roundup editions? Find them here.

Featured Game

The Enchanted Kingdom Free

Today's game roundup is sponsored by Herocraft's Enchanted Kingdom. RPGs would seem to be a natural fit for a touch-based medium, but I've found that all too many on Android try to become action games or used outmoded styles of battle and control.

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CyanogenMod Introduces Quick Message Pop-Ups, Notification Shade 'Quick Reply' Action On The Way

A couple of days ago, the CyanogenMod team announced via Google+ a new feature merged to CM's Jelly Bean code branch – Quick Message. In case you missed it, Quick Message is a feature (built by David van Tonder) that displays a pop-up notification upon receipt of a new SMS message, offering the ability to reply from within the pop-up, view the message in Android's Messaging app, swipe to another new message, or close the notification.

Today, van Tonder (along with CyanogenMod) announced even further enhancements to the feature, primarily influenced by user feedback, adding a "Quick reply" option to SMS messages' actionable notifications.

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Rumor: 3G-Connected Nexus 7 May Be On The Horizon, Ready 'In Around Six Weeks'

Just days after we learned of an expanded international availability, another interesting bit of news may be on the way for the Nexus 7.

According to Paul O'Brien of MoDaCo, a "very well placed insider" has indicated that a 3G-connected variant of the device is on the horizon, expected to be ready for shipping "in around six weeks."

9-1-2012 1-34-53 AM

If you've been holding out on buying the Nexus 7 due to its WiFi-only capability, this may be the news you've been waiting for. MoDaCo's source didn't divulge any pricing, availability, or carrier-related details, though the source did indicate that 3G connectivity would constitute the only hardware change to the device.

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[IFA 2012] Huawei Shows Off 4 New Phones, 2 Tablets All Headed For Availability By End Of Year

Huawei's list of announcements for this year's IFA conference is busting at the seams with a whopping four phones and two tablets, all with different screen sizes, specs, and prices, all slated for a 2012 introduction to the German market, with launch in other markets to follow, though we aren't privy to specific dates for other regions.

Phones

Ascend D1 Quad XL

The lovingly named Ascend D1 Quad XL is by all accounts the leader of Huawei's new smartphone pack, packing a 4.5" with an extremely impressive 330ppi density (and unknown resolution), a 1.2GHz K3V2 ARM quad-core processor built by Huawei, a 2600mAh battery, 8MP camera with 1.3MP front shooter, and a microSD slot for an extra boost of internal memory.

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Amazon Announces Best-Selling Kindle Fire 'Sold Out' Ahead Of September 6th Press Conference

Amazon, in a press release posted this morning, announced that its "#1 best-selling product," the Kindle Fire, is now sold out. The release boasts the Fire's millions of sales, noting that it managed to eat up an impressive 22% of tablet sales in the US, and added to the overall success of Amazon's digital product sales.

What makes this announcement interesting is that Amazon has a press conference scheduled for September 6th, meaning we're likely to see the latest member of the Kindle family unveiled very soon. Jeff Bezos, Founder and CEO of Amazon, didn't comment directly on this possibility, but he did note "Kindle Fire is sold out, but we have an exciting roadmap ahead – we will continue to offer our customers the best hardware, the best prices, the best customer service, the best cross-platform interoperability, and the best content ecosystem."

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The possibility of seeing a new Kindle device this September isn't so surprising considering this is around the same time we saw the original Kindle Fire announced, but it's always exciting to see a new product – particularly in such a successful line – make its debut.

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PayPal Updated With UI Overhaul, 'Features That Matter To You Most'

PayPal's official Android app received a big update recently, bringing it up to version 4.0.0.1. The update carries a much-needed interface redesign, bringing the web payment solution's mobile client more into line with Android's design language. Using a warm, espresso-and-orange color scheme with a few well-placed textures and conservative gradients, the app's new interface looks infinitely better than its previous iteration.

The update isn't just about looks though – it also carries some functional improvements. While PayPal is a bit vague on just what is new, it assures users that the update brings them "the features that matter to you most," including new functionality surrounding account management as well as sending and requesting money.

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Official Lyft App Now Available For Android, Brings 'On-Demand Ridesharing' To San Francisco (For Now)

It's not often that I hear of a startup and think "I would love to have that in my town!," yet that's exactly  what I thought when I heard about Lyft. For the unaware, Lyft is a new service in San Francisco that helps people find a ride at around 20% the cost of a taxi. In fact, payment is actually optional (though not paying at all isn't recommended - more on that in a few).

Here's how it works: you need a ride, so you fire up the Lyft app and find a nearby driver. Not a taxi driver - just a regular driver who has been checked, doubled checked, and re-checked for safety and all that other good stuff by Lyft.

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Sprint Continues To Build LTE Network, Lights Up 4G In Four New Cities

The Now Network continues to march forward in its 4G LTE Network Vision build-out, today announcing four markets in which the LTE switch is being flipped. You may remember Sprint's July statement that it would be bringing LTE to four new cities by September 3rd, and it looks like the carrier has already made good on that promise, with one exception – the list has dropped Sherman-Denison, TX in favor of Sedalia MO. Here's the full lineup of newly christened LTE cities:

  • Baltimore, MD
  • Gainesville, GA
  • Manhattan/Junction City, KS
  • Sedalia, MO

While Sprint is more than a little late to the LTE party and still a bit slow on the pick-up, it's always good to see a fresh batch of areas getting access to the burgeoning network.

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HTC EVO 4G LTE Receives Software Update To Android 4.0.4, Sense 4.1 (Build 2.13.651.1)

Owners of Sprint's One X-inspired EVO 4G LTE may be interested to know that they can expect a minor software update to begin rolling out over the air today. The update, which carries software build 2.13.651.1, brings the device up to Android 4.0.4 with Sense 4.1 on top, meaning the menu bar fix the HTC One X got a few weeks ago has arrived, among other things.

The update's other offerings include a fix for random browser closes, a minor Bluetooth fix, an updated version of both Google Wallet and Sprint's Visual Voicemail, and an LTE scanning improvement that should help users better find Sprint's burgeoning 4G network.

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ARCHOS Looks To 'Revolutionize' Android Gaming With The GamePad – A 7" Tablet With Built-In Controls

ARCHOS, in an announcement that ambitiously looks to "revolutionize" Android gaming, has just unveiled the GamePad – a 7-inch, dual-core gaming tablet with built in controls (including buttons, a d-pad, triggers, and analog sticks) that remind us a little bit of Sony's PSP.

The interesting bit about this tablet is that it includes "automatic game recognition and mapping tools" which ARCHOS promises will "ensure control compatibility with every advanced Android game."

Of course, one of the most important things about a mobile device meant to center around gaming is its spec sheet. We aren't privy to the entire list of specs just yet, but here's what we do know: the GamePad will pack a yet unspecified dual-core processor at 1.5GHz with a Mali 400 quad-core GPU.

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