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 week or so. Today I have a slick media bar app, a radio app where you can roll your own station, and a barcode app for creating, scanning, and storing barcodes. So without further ado, here are all of the new and notable Android apps released on the Play Store in the last week.
Just over a year ago, Microsoft launched the Surface Duo, its first Android phone. In some ways, the Duo was one of the most ambitious Android phones in the world with its unique dual-screen design. On the other hand, it was lacking some key features you'd expect from a $1,400 phone, like NFC, the latest ARM SoC, and a big battery. It also launched with Android 10 in the immediate aftermath of Android 11's release. Surely, that would just be a temporary issue, right? Well, here we are a year later, and the phone is still on Android 10.
Samsung's next Galaxy Unpacked event was just earlier today at 10AM ET, and although endless leaks undercut the anticipation a bit, there's still reason to be excited. We got our first official glimpse of the new Galaxy Z Fold3 and Z Flip3, with plenty of improvements over last year's models. There was some concern that OnePlus would try to one-up Samsung with its own Galaxy-themed teaser, but it turns out that wasn't a problem, the company is just back to dumb and awful marketing, and you can go back to ignoring them.
Microsoft's first-generation Surface Duo is — to be blunt — not a particularly good phone. It also, presumably, hasn't sold well in its first year on the market, dropping as low as $1,000 off its initial MSRP just a few weeks ago. And despite a promised Android 11 update that is still MIA, it seems as though Microsoft isn't ready to throw in the towel on its foldable phone series just yet.
The Surface Duo is the first phone Microsoft launched with Android, and despite loads of hype and a novel form factor, it was never much more than an interesting outlier in the phone market. But once you reduce the outrageously high asking price of $1,399, the equation might change for some who have always wanted to pick up one of these historic devices. And after a cascade of price drops, we've reached a new low: The AT&T carrier-locked Surface Duo starts at just $409.99 on Woot today.
The biggest news of last week was Microsoft's announcement of Windows 11 — and, more relevant to us, the fact that the new OS will run Android apps. However, there is one major catch: The app store Microsoft plans to use is Amazon's. While sideloading apps will apparently be possible, we don't know what sort of restrictions or difficulties that might impose. So for this week's poll, we'd like to know: Do you think Microsoft is making the right choice using Amazon's Appstore on Windows 11?
Microsoft's Surface Duo failed to ignite sales charts when it launched last fall, and it wasn't much of a splash with critics either. Since then, we've seen the Duo's price droptime andtime again. But we get it. Some of you are holding out just to see how far it can fall before picking up one of the most unique handhelds on the market today. Your patience continues to pay off — Woot has the Duo on sale today for $550.
Last year, AT&T sent out an email to its customers warning that their phones would soon lose support on its network, requiring an upgrade to a new device. Things weren't quite as drastic as the email read on paper, but it still managed to cause a sense of panic and urgency among subscribers. As we approach the halfway mark for the year, it's worth making sure your phone won't be affected by AT&T's upcoming changes to its network.
Admit it, Nintendo fans: when Microsoft revealed its first official Android-powered smartphone, all you saw was a $1400 Nintendo DS Pro. With its newfound focus on streaming games in the Xbox Game Pass, Microsoft is reevaluating how it approaches them on the Surface Duo. With the latest version of the Android app, controls on the Duo can be entirely assigned to one screen in your hand, leaving the second screen free for gameplay.