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12 new and notable (and 2 WTF) Android apps from the last 2 weeks (1/31/17 - 2/13/17)

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

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

Looking for the previous roundup editions? Find them here.

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A brief history of Verizon's hatred for unlimited data

Unlimited data is back at Verizon. There's much merriment to be had throughout the land, as data-hungry power users once again return to their streaming music and video services without fear of sudden charges or slowdowns. It's been over five years since Verizon cut off access to unlimited data, and the number of customers hanging on to their grandfathered unlimited plans has dwindled down to a few grizzled veterans. It's a good day for wireless customers.

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Google Maps list sharing is official, will start rolling out today

Using Google services as a couple or a group is sometimes a little tough. Some services lend themselves well to sharing, like Keep, Drive, Photos, and Calendar, but others are often cause for frustration. What if you have a common group of contacts you want to always keep up-to-date with others? How about an easy way to get emails from common friends and events and subscriptions without opening a common inbox? The worse though is Maps: you don't have an easy option to share your trip plans or starred places or list of attractions or restaurants you want to visit. That has been a big annoyance for me as I check different honeymoon options with my fiancé.

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Verizon to offer unlimited data plans for the first time in over five years

Competition is a wonderful thing. Verizon and the other major US wireless carriers basically abandoned the idea of unlimited mobile data around the time that Android and smartphones in general started surging in the market, finding it was much easier to get money out of customers by shoveling them into tiered service. But since T-Mobile, Sprint, and even AT&T have reintroduced unlimited data in various flavors, customers have danced in their little cotton socks, happily paying a premium for the luxury of not having to think about their data allotments. It seems like someone at Verizon finally got the message: the company will start offering unlimited data plans once again starting tomorrow.

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Google has mini-game doodles for every day leading up to Valentine's Day

As you probably know by now, Google has a tradition of changing the Google logo for various events, holidays, and birthdays. This year, the logo is being changed every day leading up to Valentine's Day, with a mini-game for each one.

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YouTube v12.05 adds adjustable seek times for double tap to seek [APK Download]

Only four days ago, YouTube officially declared that the double-tap to seek gesture had become a part of the app, giving users the capability to quickly jump 10 seconds forward or backward in the timeline. Now the development team is topping their delivery with a little bit of user-configurability. The interval of the skip was originally locked to a strict 10 seconds, but you can now set your own from a handful of other durations. You'll need the latest update to the YouTube app, which began rolling out earlier this afternoon.

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What is 5G? The layman's guide

5G. You're aware of it, probably. You've at least likely whizzed past it unblinkingly in a press release or heard and ignored it in a sound byte from a CEO or analyst, as 5G is increasingly a very hot topic in the biz.

But wait, aren't we just kind of now starting to get 4G everywhere? Isn't it too early to be talking about the next generation of wireless technology? Actually: yes. It kind of is. And that's part of what this piece is about - providing a bit of a reality check on 5G, what it is, what it means for you (or doesn't), and when you can expect it.

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Cortana learns how to keep you on track, even if you forget to ask

We've all forgotten to do things that we promised to do. Luckily, we have these fancy personal assistants to help us stay on course. Cortana, Microsoft's offering (and whose name is way cooler than the actual product), is learning via machine learning to remind you of things... without you even asking.

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Two major vulnerabilities found in OnePlus 3 bootloader - OP has patched one, working on the other

OnePlus is something of a darling among Android power users, shipping phones that can be bootloader unlocked without any special permissions or codes. But security researcher Roee Hay found that the OnePlus 3 (and the revised OnePlus 3T) are rather more open than was probably intended. With two native fastboot commands, Hay found he could install unverified boot images and disable the verified boot feature, all without actually unlocking the bootloader with the familiar user-accessible command. Which is, well, bad: it basically means anyone can run malicious code on the phone without resetting the user's data.

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Super adorable and smart puzzler Splitter Critters debarks on the Play Store

I have a weakness for adorable puzzlers. Mix some colorful environments, smart gameplay mechanics, and a cute creature that makes hilarious sounds, and I'm smitten for hours. That said, it's a miracle that I was even able to put my phone down to write this post. Splitter Critters is just kryptonite for me. As Alex and Penny would say, "OMG cute, so cute, supa cute(...) Suh cyuht!"

You're in charge of those small adorable blue critters in Splitter Critters and you need to guide them back to their spaceship. They're alien critters and they seem to be lost, it's just your duty as a human to help them.

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