Home 2018 Mobile Apps: Cool apps for Android, iOS, and Windows

Mobile Apps: Cool apps for Android, iOS, and Windows

Free up your mobile phone’s and tablet’s storage to give space to these cool mobile games and tools.


Google PhotoScan

Platforms: iOS, Android
Price: Free

Document scanning using your mobile device isn’t anything new, with most apps allowing you to scan receipts and photos with the built-in camera. Some will also let you crop and adjust your scans to get them as paper-flat as possible, like Microsoft’s Office Lens. But when it comes to photos, Google’s PhotoScan is probably one of the rare few that scans your analog picture library with minimal fuss. Aside from automatically orienting and straightening your images, it also finds and removes any unwanted glare and can be backed up directly to Google Photos in high resolution, free of charge.

But the standout features of Google PhotoScan are its professional photo editing tools for preserving and improving your photos both old and new. The options on hand are very similar to Google’s other photo editing app, Snapseed, letting you adjust settings like saturation and brightness. However, PhotoScan goes the extra mile by generating 12 unique looks that you can apply to your photos at a tap. These looks are automatically created using machine learning to analyze everything about your photo, ensuring that only the best optimizations and enhancements are in effect.

Google PhotoScan makes a great argument against buying an expensive photo scanner and adjusting everything manually on a desktop program—and should be a great help for keeping your stacks of analog photos in pristine and timeless digital formats ready for backup and sharing.



Platform: Android
Price: Free

Dedicated 360-degree cameras may still be on the pricey side, and while Sprayscape isn’t exactly letting you snap or record in full 360-degree view, it’s pretty much the next best thing.

Sprayscape lets you take pictures on the inside of a 360-degree sphere. Just point your phone to your subject and tap the screen to “spray” onto your digital canvas. It’s a fun experiment especially with friends, and if used properly can result in some amazing pan-and-scan compositions that you can share online. And if you have the hardware, you can also view your handiwork in VR headsets like Google Cardboard to really get that sense of depth and immersion.

Whether you create stop-motion panoramas or a photo collage of stuff happening around you, Sprayscape lets you work that imagination up, down, and all around.


Cosmolander-Missions in the Solar System

Platforms: iOS, Android, Windows Phone
Price: $2.99

When you were a kid, did you ever want to be an astronaut? Or do you have any little ones who do? If yes, you’ll probably want to give educational app Cosmolander a try. While intended for children six years old and above, Cosmolander is actually a game great for all ages. You can learn facts and figures about the different planets and significant events in space exploration, and for some interactivity, go on missions like fixing the Curiosity over on Mars. During missions, multiple-choice questions and learning segments ensure that you discover something new, and the simple illustrations keep kids focused on the lessons rather than be distracted.


Platform: Android
Price: $4.99

Don’t let its name fool you; Bloxx has nothing to do with towers, bricks, or even blocks at all. In Bloxx, the objective is to guide a ball from point A to point B—simple enough. The catch, though, is that as you progress further into the game, the obstacles and puzzles in your way start getting harder and craftier.

At first you will encounter static objects like spikes or other balls that you can easily shrug off, but later on, they’ll be falling from the sky while you navigate a series of winding platforms that become narrower at every turn.

It’s intense but fun, partly thanks to some humorously written tips strewn about the levels. Nothing’s more motivating during a complex level than reading, “Just. Don’t. Fall.” coupled with a nervous-looking emoji, right?

Words Erik Paolo Escueta
First published Speed January 2017 issue
Read more: Cyberspace: Cool websites to visit



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