It's looking like a busy week for the app devs at Microsoft. After yesterday's announcement that Groups is being added to the Outlook mail app, today sees another interesting addition to the company's productivity suite on Android. To-Do is Microsoft's attempt at an intelligent task management app, in much the same vein as Wunderlist, which was acquired by the Redmond giant back in 2015.
There are apps for following baseball, football, and all those other "outside" sports. The collection of eSports apps is also growing, and now Blizzard has its own in the form of StarCraft WCS. It's an app for following the upcoming StarCraft II World Championship Series, which I know you were all planning to do.
Apex? Is that you? But...where have you been? That's right folks, after almost 2 years without an update the once revered Apex Launcher is finally making a comeback. The one-time fan favorite was right up there in its heyday, battling it out with Nova to be crowned launcher-king. Then it all went quiet. The updated app promises mysterious new features when it relaunches in May, so we can probably expect some Nougat inspired goodness.
I'm tired of telling you how much I don't get Snapchat, so I'll get right down to business and cut the unnecessary preamble. The service is adding new 3D World Lenses, an expansion of the existing lenses that were announced last November.
It's an interactive way to bring more fun and glam to your photos and videos, and from the couple of examples that Snapchat has demoed in its video, it looks like you'll be in for a lot of colorful sparkles. I'd call it the Spring/Summer 2017 World Lenses collection.
The new lenses should be live in the app today, so check them out when you use the back camera.
Spotify offers a great 50% off discount on its Premium plan if you're a student, making it a more attractive option for young adults who can't afford to pay the full price of a monthly subscription. However, until now, this was only available in three countries: US, UK, and Germany. Today, the offer is expanding to 33 other countries.
Spotify is using SheerID to authenticate and validate the eligibility of registered university students. And the lucky countries in question are:
If you live in any of these countries and want to get started with your Premium for Students subscription, head over to spotify.com/student and verify that you're eligible for the discount.
We've known about Instagram's plans to add offline capabilities to its app for a couple of months, and yesterday the news was made official at the Facebook Developer Conference (F8). Instagram is testing offline mode in regions with limited bandwidth to make the app more approachable and adapted to the demands of users there. According to the company, 80% of its community is outside of the US and many of these users are on lesser optimized networks, so making sure the app works when there's slow or no connectivity became a crucial feature to implement.
The way this works is when you're offline, you can still view the preloaded content and several of the app's sections (feed, explore, personal profile, previously visited profiles, etc) and you can interact with them.
Fans of Microsoft's Outlook will be pleased to hear that last year's most useful new feature is now coming to the Android app. Outlook Groups has had its own distinct app for a while, but after introducing the smart collaboration tool to the desktop email client it was just a matter of time before it was included in the Android Outlook app proper. That time is now.
No one likes spam calls, and Google knows that. You may recall that last year, Google added a warning in the Phone app for when a suspected spam caller was ringing. Now the company is bringing that same feature to Google Voice.
For viewers in the UK, the TV landscape is infinitely less cluttered compared with our American counterparts. Multiple time zones, networks, and providers in the US make things far more complex than in the UK. The strength of free-to-air TV means that a much smaller percentage of Brits actually pay for a satellite or cable service. For those who do, the dominant provider is Sky, whose Android app has just been updated. Version 6.0.9 brings with it a visual overhaul, full 7-day guide, and remote record/download.