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3

Socratic, the homework-helper app picked up by Google, gets an AI-enhanced Android release

Back in 2017, Socratic was launched on Android, offering students assistance with their homework. The app was pretty interesting, and managed to catch Google's eye, leading to an acquisition.  Last year we got word that an updated version of the app was about to debut, with a heavy emphasis on tapping into Google's AI algorithms to improve performance. Now that new Android edition is finally available to download.

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12

Microsoft's new all-in-one Office app is now available for all, but tablets aren't supported

Once upon a time, you could view and edit Google Docs files from a single Drive app, but Google later split them up into multiple editing applications. Microsoft is now doing the reverse: it's combining the Android versions of Word, Excel, and PowerPoint into one app to rule them all.

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4

30 temporarily free and 47 on-sale apps and games for Monday

Welcome to Monday, everyone. I absolutely love it whenever I can start the week off with a bang, and today is one such day. Not only are all of the Goat Simulator titles on sale, Baldur's Gate II makes an appearance for half-off, and Orange Pixel's Meganoid is more than half-off, and it's easily one of the better randomly-generated platformers on the Play Store. As always, I've highlighted the more interesting titles in bold to make discory easier. So without further ado, here are 30 temporarily free and 47 on-sale apps and games for the beginning of the week.

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31

Excellent writing app JotterPad switches to subscriptions for cloud sync, ignores users who paid for one-time unlock

I love writing anything and everything, and since I get tons of ideas when I only have my phone with me, I need an excellent writing app on my phone. For more than 6 years, I've used JotterPad, Android's best writing app, to do so. I've sung the app's praises in 2014, was still enamored with it in 2018, and still can't find a decent replacement to it in 2020. So yes, this article is personal, and I'm fuming because JotterPad switched to a subscription model for cloud sync without a single warning or any clear communication to its existing users who paid for a one-time unlock.

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49

Privacy-focused messenger Signal is ready to go mainstream and take on WhatsApp

Signal is universally praised as one of the most simple-to-use secure messaging apps and is endorsed by security experts around the world. However, the service's user numbers pale against popular alternatives such as Facebook's WhatsApp or Messenger — even Telegram has a bigger following according to Play Store download numbers. Wired reports that Signal is working hard to change that, as the foundation could raise its number of employees from 3 to 20 following a $50 million infusion from WhatsApp co-founder Brian Acton in 2018.

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16

The Google app's dark mode should now be available to all beta users

The dark mode rollout was a pretty smooth experience for some of Google's apps, which received a single update with a new toggle for dark/light/automatic theme and that was the end of it. For other apps, it's been a rollercoaster of updates, rollbacks, server-side switches, and inconsistent experiences across Android versions and phone brands. Google's search app is one of the latter, but the company now claims dark theme is available to everyone on the app's beta channel.

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59

The best free and open-source alternatives to Google Keep on Android

While it might be difficult to switch away from feature-packed products like Gmail and Google Maps, there are thankfully plenty of competitors to Google Keep. After all, you don't need millions of data points and industry-leading artificial intelligence to make a note-taking app. In this post, we'll be checking out some free and open-source alternatives to Google Keep, some of which even have cloud sync.

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8

HQ Trivia gameshow app is shutting down after two years of operation

Every once in a while, a new mobile app becomes popular seemingly overnight, akin to the rise of Flappy Bird or Trivia Crack. HQ Trivia quickly rose to prominence after it was released on iOS in 2017, and only became more popular after its Android debut in late 2017. Sadly, the app is no more, as the company behind it is shutting its doors.

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17

Tasker briefly disappears from the Play Store due to automated removal

Tasker is one of the most popular power-user tools for Android, giving people the ability to automate many functions. As great as the app is, Tasker hasn't been exempt from Play Store approval issues, and was even briefly removed from the store back in 2015. Tasker was one again pulled from the Play Store yesterday, but has thankfully already returned.

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