Android Police

Apps/Games

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23 temporarily free and 50 on-sale apps and games for Wednesday

Welcome to Wednesday, everyone. After starting the week off strong, we have another solid list of sales today. In particular, Ironhide Game Studio's Kingdom Rush Origins is on sale, along with three more titles from the developer. On top of this, the music creation game Incredibox is currently available at a solid discount. And if you're looking for an enjoyable RPG, both 9th Dawn and 9th Dawn II are in today's roundup. As always, I've highlighted all of the interesting titles in bold to make discovery easier. So without further ado, here are 23 temporarily free and 50 on-sale apps and games for the beginning of the week.

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3

Google Duo has new rainbow-filled AR filters to celebrate LGBTQ pride

Pride Month is over, but the rainbow arcs over yonder. As such, Google is beginning to roll out some colorful new filters to its video calling app, Duo.

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16

Android Auto for phones gets a new Maps interface with better landscape support

Last year, Google was planning on sunsetting the on-device Android Auto experience in favor of Assistant Driving Mode, but things didn't go as planned. The replacement experience that relies on Assistant stalled and eventually Google had to give in and allow the phone Auto experience to live on either as a built-in app on many devices, or through a legacy app on others. We didn't expect to see any changes to that interface though, as development had shifted to Auto's new and standalone experience on car head units, but lo-and-behold, we just got a surprise update to the Maps interface.

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11

SINoALICE is the latest RPG from Yoko Taro, and it's available today for the first time in the West

Yoko Taro's mobile RPG SINoALICE will finally see a worldwide release after an indefinite delay last year. The game was initially published in Japan back in 2017 by Nexon, and yet it would appear that the publisher wants nothing to do with the title anymore, and so Nexon is transferring the license to the original developer Pokelabo. Interestingly Pokelabo has just announced that it's cooperating with Square Enix to bring the game to the West on July 1st, though I have to wonder if this announcement is simply a last-ditch effort to make money with an aging mobile game that even Nexon couldn't bring to fruition as a global release.

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18

WhatsApp is rolling out animated stickers in beta (APK download)

Animated stickers have been available in Telegram and Gboard for a long while, but WhatsApp has only supported static sticker images so far. Be it through the app's few included packs or downloadable third-party packs from the Play Store, you got still image stickers. That's changing now in WhatsApp beta, as the app is introducing animated sticker support.

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19

Spotify Premium Duo comes to the US and 54 more markets

For couples who live together, the Spotify Family plan has been a good way to save a few pennies on your subscription, but the Premium Duo plan announced last year offered up the chance to save even more. Until now, it's only been available in select countries, but it's just arrived in the US as well as 54 other markets across the globe.

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17

Gboard beta is getting Smart Compose for chat apps

Last year, Google rolled out Smart Compose and autocorrect to Gmail and the G Suite version of Google Docs. The feature automatically suggests words based on your writing patterns and common phrases, and it's eerily good at it. It looks like Google wants to expand Smart Compose to more apps, as 9to5Google has discovered a test that brings the feature to Gboard. As far as we can see, it works in multiple messengers like Google Messages, WhatsApp, and Telegram, but it may also be available for other apps.

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37

Chrome 86 removes the last remaining website forced dark mode flag

Google has been working on a forced dark mode for Chrome on Android, giving each and every website a black-and-gray makeover, regardless of whether it has a native dark theme or not. Over the last year, the company has poured tons of resources into making this a great experience, but it looks like the developers aren't happy with how the feature is coming together. All options to enable forced dark theme have been removed from the latest Canary build of Chrome for Android, version 86.

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10

YouTube Kids now available in 15 new countries (Update: Four more)

YouTube Kids has proven to be a popular way for parents to give their children access to a limited collection of YouTube content, even if that collection occasionally includes videos depicting suicide and cannibalism (oops!). The service has slowly been expanding its global reach, and now Google has added 11 more nations to the availability list.

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22

YouTube Music gains the ability to start playback directly from album covers on the web

YouTube Music may not have had the most auspicious beginnings, but the service is quickly adding features ahead of Google Play Music's impending shutdown. Earlier this month the Explore tab started rolling out on the web, then the Android app gained a new 'Related' tab, and just last week it added the ability to swipe between songs. Now YouTube Music on the web is gaining a small speed improvement to album playback.

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