Apps of the Week

Another week, more great app picks from the AC writers

It's been a big week here at Android Central with a hotly anticipated device review to focus on, but we're not going to skip a beat on our Apps of the Week column for anything. We've still built up a post containing an app picked from each of the Android Central writers to put on display and give a few words about why it has found a place on their device.

Today you'll find a handful of tools a couple of really fun games to keep you efficient and entertained through the weekend and into the work week. Stick around after the break and see how they stack up.

Jerry Hildenbrand - ASUS AiCloud

ASUS AiCloud

I'm always looking for a better solution for my "personal" cloud. While Samba shares and headless servers in the closet are fine for me, the wife really appreciates a more elegant solution. Since I picked up an ASUS router a while back, I figured I would give their Android cloud app a try. I'm glad I did.

Using the AiCloud app, I can not only see the router and any storage I have attached to it, but I can see shared files on all the computers on my home network. Accessing them is as simple as having an account on each, getting signed in and tapping an icon. The AiCloud app lets me stream media right to my phone or tablet, and with a web link pointed at the router (an easy setup through the router's admin panel) I can access it all from the Internet as well.

Time will tell if this is my "perfect" solution, but I'm not seeing any reason not to use it so far. If you have a supported ASUS router (RT-AC66U, RT-N66U, RT-N65U or RT-N16), you should give it a try. 

Download: ASUS AiCloud (Free)

Sean Brunett - Wag.com

Wag.com

I have highlighted Wag.com’s app before, but it just received a huge update that made me want to praise it again. The developers have incorporated the now well-known side menu that is becoming such a common feature in Android apps these days. An already clean app ot much cleaner and it became that easier to purchase treats, food and toys for your favorite pet. Because of how good it looks and how easy it is to navigate, I’ve transitioned so many of my pet purchases online. With the new update, it will be much easier to track everything that I’ve bought and continue buying food for the puppy. 

Download: Wag.com (Free)

Simon Sage - A Ride into the Mountains

A Ride into the Mountains

A Ride into the Mountains is a game that involves a simple hero fighting a demonic threat that's fallen upon the land. The player controls the mounted archer by tilting to advance or slow his steed, and a drag-and-release mechanic to let loose arrows on the bizarre creatures that threaten him and his people. The low-fi graphics add a ton of charm, and actually highlight the smooth controls and animation. Levels are interspersed with cryptic bits of back story, but what's really going to keep bringing you back is the feeling of skill and marksmanship when you get after nailing randomly-moving targets. A Ride into the Mountains is a touch-friendly, simple, and beautiful game - give it a try. 

Download: A Ride into the Mountains ($0.99)

Casey Rendon - PicSay Pro

PicSay Pro

Photo editing is definitely not my strong suit, but it is something I need to do regularly. For those times that I don't have my laptop handy, PicSay Pro serves as a simple and easy to use mobile editor. There is a long list of Stickers, which includes arrows and word balloons. The Effects list is long enough that I haven't come close to touching half of them, but the ones I have used worked well to fix up the colors and brightness of my Nexus 4 shots. Also present are resize, crop, and insert image, which I couldn't get by without. Although I use it mostly for work, it is a fun tool for making interesting and funny photos. I use the Pro edition, which is $3.99 and has some extra features. To try it before you buy it, look for the Free version on Google Play.

Download: PicSay Pro ($3.99)

Chris Parsons - Astro Boy Dash

Astro Boy Dash

I've been holding off for years now to see if anyone would pick up the Astro Boy franchise after the 2009 release of the movie and although I've had to wait some time, finally someone has (Animoca) and they've finally released an Android game. Astro Boy Dash takes on the whole 'Temple Run' style only you get to run and fly through the air as Astro Boy himself. Won't lie, the controls are a bit janky and the in-app purchase nags are a bit heavy but if you can look past that it's a pretty fun game. Hopefully they update it to adjust the controls but hey, it's free.

Download: Astro Boy Dash (Free)

Andrew Martonik - Droid Zap

Droid Zap

Motorola has introduced an interesting new feature in its latest Droid lineup on Verizon called Droid Zap that lets you wirelessly share media to any device within 1000ft of you. Unfortunately, in order to receive the media you'll either have to have one of the new Droids, or install the Droid Zap app. The app itself isn't much use for anything except receiving Zaps from someone else, but as these Droids start to sell (and we bet they'll sell quite well), this is a good app to have so you're ready to receive the media when someone wants to show off their new Droid phone.

Droid Zap will be a cool thing to have when you're in a group of people that all want access to the same media at once, but if you're just sharing between two devices, give Android Beam over NFC a try instead.

Download: Droid Zap (Free)


Happen to miss previous editions of our weekly app picks? You can check them out right here. Our continuing weekly app coverage can also be seen right here as well.

 

Reader comments

Apps of the Week: ASUS AiCloud, Wag.com, A Ride into the Mountains and more!

26 Comments

So Droid Zap works with any phone? Like, I I could use zap on my N4 to send something to someone using an S4? Or is it just Droid to Droid?

EDIT: Figured it out. Any android phone can use it as long as you have the app installed. Sweet. Maybe not as quick as air drop based on videos but still nice.

Posted via Android Central App

I don't have an Asus router. Sean cheerleads it but doesn't bother to explain what Wag.com is. And Droid Zap is a niche install if at all. You've been lazy, you're being lazy, and please spend a little time and find things that we (or at least the larger percentage of followers) care about. I'm right here, using my Android phone 12-14 hours a day - and with an AC tab open all day. Talk to me.

Seems like you're just a little grumpy today. It is not AC's fault at all if these apps don't apply to you. It seems like you complain just to complain. Sean said he highlighted the Wag app before, and that's why he didn't explain what it was. He provided a link to the app. If you wanted to know more about the app, why not click on the link? I think you're the one who is lazy.

Even for the people who don't have an Asus router, your app pick could lead people to similar solutions for network sharing and help improve the way they move data.

Posted via Android Central App

I see where you're going with this. 1 million apps in the play store. 52 weeks in the year. 6 reviewers. Each reviewer should do 3300 apps a week. That way they're sure to cover them all and make you happy. Nice plan, slick.

Would need a whole new website for that AndroidCentralApps.com, CentralApps.com, or LLyodsApps.com, possibilities endless in Names. But a website that just reviews apps from the Play store, iStore, windows store , Samsung store and amazon store is not a bad idea, would be nice to have honest reviews of apps since most of the reviews in the play store don't always relate to the app itself.

You seem to be the lazy one

Clearly Sean says:

An already clean app ot much cleaner and it became that easier to purchase treats, food and toys for your favorite pet

Apart from the spelling error, it pretty much clearly states what the app is for. They review what? 20 apps a month maybe I only will try 5, but I surely do not complain about the other 15.

I agree with you on some points. At first I thought wag.com was supposed to be a game of some sort. A good writers job is to answer the who, what, where, when why and how, no matter how redundant.if a reader comes away with questions then the writer isn't doing his/her job. And as for zap app I don't wanna come to app of the week to find out what not to use. That being said I can empathize because I myself can hardley find a good app once a month let alone once a week. But ac does far, far, far, much more good for the community than the occasional hiccup. So, bad with the good my friend.

Oddly, I wasn't feeling grumpy (although it's been a tough week). My point was that they didn't do what a news site should - present news for the reader. If Asus iCloud is great, but I can't do that, tell me how to get the same thing (as VoraciousGhost suggested). I'm sorry I didn't see Sean's earlier highlight of Wag.com - but when you set an article, shouldn't it stand alone? Old guy talking, but present, don't be lazy (which was my point originally).

Flame on, kids.

This ain't a news site. This is just blog posts about android, Google, mobile, among other stuff. Now that you know what it is you can start making legitimate complaints.

As much as I look forward to Apps of the Week, I gotta go with alacrify on this one. Even before reading the comment, I was thinking that a themed TRun copy with janky controls and annoying IAPs hardly seems like "App of the Week" material.

Doesn't change my appreciation for the work of the AC team, though, it just seems like this week's selections fell flat.

And, I wish I had one of those Asus routers. :-)

Posted via Android Central App

Yeah, but there's been worst apps of the week picks in the past. I think overall these were average if not even slightly above average. How are writers gonna know when they do ok if ppl bring them down when they do descent.
Most of the ones this week are at least somewhat original and I personally would have never known about otherwise. Not saying I'll use them, but is good to know what's out there. That's mainly why I say this week they did above average.

New game released for Android and iOS: "What's the Lyric."

From the app description:

What's the Lyric is unlike other '4 Pics' or 'What's the' games. This one has been lovingly hand-crafted to give you a fun, challenging, and often hilarious game of word puzzles. Test your musical forte against comical drawings, each one representing a song title you have to guess!

http://www.whatsthelyric.com