Well, it's that time again. Time to talk about apps and games that happen to be cheaper than they are on "normal" days – and today's selection brings some mighty interesting options to the table. If you're into music creation, a couple of tools from developer niko twenty made the cut; there's also something for the aspiring meteorologists (or just someone who wants to know what the weather is like); as well as a pair of intriguing game titles.
Unless you've been living under a rock, you are probably aware of the recent improvements and updates to the Google+ experience, both on the web and in mobile apps. While Auto Awesome, Auto Enhance, Auto Highlight, Auto Backup, and other widely discussed features are certainly exciting, one subtle nicety managed to fly under our radar until a post by Google's +Tor Norbye pointed out just how awesome it is.
The feature I'm talking about is visual recognition in Google+ photo search.
The ruggedized Galaxy S4 Active is real. It's been spotted on camera before, not to mention in various less dramatic leaks. The folks at MobileTechReview got their hands on one, and it looks pretty close to finished, assuming that they don't already have a production model. In the video below, you can see the tougher red chassis (probably water and dust-resistant to some degree) and physical navigation buttons, as previously featured on Samsung's Rugby models.
Autodesk's AutoCAD has made the jump to the big v2.0, and it's received a makeover in the process. The app formerly known as AutoCAD WS is now AutoCAD 360. Microsoft may have run with the 360 branding for nearly a decade now, but clearly its appeal remains alive and well.
Computer-aided design software like AutoCAD enables users to make both 2D and 3D designs for real-world products and structures.
The old adage is as true today as it's ever been: good things come to those who wait. Today, Amazon.ca finally granted Canadians access to Amazon Cloud Drive. Our North American siblings can now re-upload all of the photos they've already backed up to iCloud, Dropbox, and Google Drive to Amazon's servers using Cloud Drive Photos for Android and iOS.
Armchair generals, take note: tactical games are making a comeback. This top-down micromanaging genre was once dominated by the likes of Shining Force, Tactics Ogre, and Final Fantasy Tactics (and just recently by XCOM: Enemy Unknown) but it's surprisingly perfect for touchscreen devices; see the Great Little War Game series. The ARMA series is known for painstakingly realistic shooters, but it's stepping back for Arma Tactics THD to give the player a bird's eye view of the battlefield.
Things just got a little better for any game developer who uses the Unity3D Engine – the formerly $400-a-piece mobile add-on packs for Android iOS are now free for life. This is a massive bonus for game devs, as it allows them to easily brings their games to the mobile scene with very little effort.
Of course, there are limitations within these now-free add-ons that will require the Pro version of Unity ($1500) to circumvent, but this will at the very least give you a good idea of what's in store if you wish to port a game.
If you've watched television, browsed the Internet, seen any movies, used the highway or mass transit, or generally made any attempt to leave your house in the last two weeks, you know that the Fast & Furious film series has come 'round for another entry. Naturally that means a new line of toys, games, and licensed fuzzy dice, but only the Android version of the game has garnered our attention. Fast & Furious 6 is available as a free download for devices running Gingerbread or higher.
Opera has been talking up its new browser entry into the Android world for a few months now, with a beta version hitting the scene back in March. That beta has now graduated into a final release, which just landed in the Play Store this morning. The overall appearance and functionality seems to be largely unchanged from the beta, so users who have been testing out the browser should feel right at home with the first stable offering (which is a completely new listing in the Play Store, not an update to the beta).
Field Trip is a somewhat experimental project out of Google's Niantic Labs, an internal start-up that is also responsible for the game Ingress. Field Trip is a location-aware experience just like Ingress, but its purpose is to alert you to notable stuff in your general vicinity. Showing you mildly interesting landmarks is one thing, but Field Trip can now get you free admission to 13 museums in addition to telling you where they are.