We all love apps, but who has the time to look at all the new ones to find what's good? Well, we do, actually. Check out this month's essential downloads!
We all love apps. Which is just as well, since there’s about a gazillion out there for you to download and try out between Apple’s App Store, Google Play and the Windows Marketplace. But who has the time for that?
Instead, how about we bring you a monthly round-up of the best new apps for your iPhone, Android phone or Windows Phone? Sounds much better, right? Here’s our pick of the best new apps for March 2016.
Photo filters are nothing new, but infltr does something a little bit different. Instead of letting you edit your existing snaps with a million different shades of sepia, the app actually lets you overlay live filters before you even take your picture. Just tap the screen and infltr will give you a new filter, so you can keep tweaking your shot before you take it. It’s also the only app on iOS that can process a filter over your panoramic shots too! A must-have for social snappers.
Download infltr for iOS
If you’re a musician looking for a quick, easy way to record ideas as soon as they come to you, this app – made in-house at Apple – will be your new best friend. Just open up Music Memos and hit record, and the app will save all your musical musings in crisp, high-quality, uncompressed audio, letting you tag them as you want, and rearrange them later on in GarageBand. It’ll even auto-detect the rhythm and feel of your track, simulating realistic drum and bass tracks around it to give you an idea of how your masterpiece could sound.
Download Music Memos for iOS
The popular Mac mail client has finally made its way to iOS, complete with all the powerful features you’d expect. Because it’s been designed specifically for the iPhone 6S, Airmail works beautifully with 3D Touch for email and document previewing. And it runs like a dream on iOS 9, supporting Apple Watch notifications as well as iCloud sync between your phone and your Mac. That’s not all: Airmail is Gmail, Exchange, IMAP and POP3-compatible too, and is loaded with options from email labelling to customisable swipes for different actions. It’s the email client that does it all.
Download Airmail for iOS
Following in the footsteps of Threes and Dots, twofold inc. is the latest puzzle craze waiting to sweep the nation. It may look simple on the surface, but twofold’s charm is in its polish, with beautiful animations and cutesy sound effects accompanying every move as you scroll and swipe away tiles like a digital Rubik’s Cube. Accessible but deeply challenging later on, it’s the perfect puzzler to while away your long journeys and commutes.
Download twofold inc. for iOS and Android
Guides by Lonely Planet
Lonely Planet’s city guides are some of the best around, and now many of them are available for free on your smartphone! Over 30 cities across Europe, Asia and the Americas are already on the app (with more to follow according to Lonely Planet), and they include tips on travelling safely and stylishly, as well as a huge catalogue of things to do, places to eat and to stay. And perhaps best of all: offline maps, so you’ll never lose your way.
Download Guides by Lonely Planet for iOS and Android
The Westport Independent
Mobile gaming is rapidly becoming a hotbed for indie titles that eschew the usual platform jumping for more thoughtful gameplay mechanics. The Westport Independent follows firmly in the footsteps of ‘Paper’s, Please’ – one of last year’s most acclaimed mobile games – by delving into the murky world of censorship and corruption. You are the editor of one of the last independent newspapers in a post-war country, but with a strong rebel presence still in the area, and a new government keen to impose their will, what stories will you print?
Download The Westport Independent for iOS and Android
Unbelievable as it seems, Kickstarter has only just launched its own official app. If you love exploring the realms of crowdfunding in the hope of finding the next big product of the future, this app will be right up your street. It’s an incredibly smooth way of sifting through all the latest projects, and the app will notify you with any updates on Kickstarter projects you’ve backed, as well as letting you know what your friends are backing on the platform, too.
Download Kickstarter for iOS and Android
Another month, another new dating app. Once is a little bit different though. For a start, all your matches are hand-picked by Once’s staff, so you’re not just being matched up by a computer algorithm. Every 24 hours you’ll be paired up with one person exclusively, so rather than juggling a list of dubious potentials, you get a whole day to speak to each other and see if want to meet up. It’s a far more intimate approach to online dating than most other apps, and it even works with your Apple Watch!
Download Once for iOS and Android
Alto’s Adventure was incredibly popular when it popped up on iOS last year, and finally the award-winning game has arrived on Android. You’ll embark on your endless snowboarding odyssey down the world’s biggest mountain, perform flips to pick up pace and escape would-be pursuers, all while rescuing your llama flock and collecting coins to upgrade your gear in the store. The gameplay is a joy, but it’s the environments and art style that make Alto’s Adventure a thing of beauty – it throws dynamic lighting and weather effects at you on your journey, all set to a calming, almost hypnotic soundtrack.
Download Alto’s Adventure for iOS and Android
Simple but effective, Launchify gives you quick and easy access to your most essential apps from both your lockscreen and homescreen, via a widget that you can place wherever you choose. Here’s the coolest bit: Launchify will automatically provide you with the apps it thinks you need. If you’re driving, it’ll monitor what sort of apps you use – maybe Spotify for in-car tunes, or Google Maps for navigation – and put those apps front and centre when you’re on the move. Clever, eh?
Download Launchify for Android
Rebuilt from the ground up for Windows 10, GroupMe is an excellent answer to the likes of Whatsapp and Viber. You can add anyone to your GroupMe chats just by adding their email address or phone number, and even if they don’t have the app they’ll still be able to take part in the conversation via SMS. Throw in a bunch of exclusive emojis, a web-platform you can access on your desktop at groupme.com and nice, minimal design aesthetic, and GroupMe shapes up to be one of the best chat apps on Windows Phone.
Download GroupMe for Windows 10
Fhotoroom has been around for a while now, but it’s recently received a nice Windows 10 update, complete with a total redesign. In the same vein as VSCO on Android and iOS, Fhotoroom is a picture sharing network as well as a fully-featured picture-editing app, and it’s the latter that really helps Fhotoroom shine. With Windows 10 apps now running across mobile and desktop, Fhotoroom is more powerful than ever – certainly one of the best editing suites we’ve seen on mobile, and capable of supporting 41-Megapixel HD images in over 650 RAW file formats. Impressive stuff.
Download Fhotoroom for Windows 10
An Apple App Store Hall of Fame inductee, Figure is a long-standing favourite of music-makers on iOS, but it’s only recently come to Windows Phone and, like many others, it’s just had a nice update for Windows 10 mobile. With no previous experience needed, you can lay down some banging electronic music in Figure, simply by swiping your finger around on the play pad, creating chunky bass lines, drum tracks and synths. You can share all your music via Propellerhead, too, so others can listen and even make their own remixes.
Download Figure for Windows 10
Ever wonder what your cat gets up to when he or she is out? Or do you have an escape-artist dog? Tractive GPS works in conjunction with Tractive’s range of GPS trackers to help you keep an eye on the whereabouts of your pet. Not only can you track them in real-time on your phone, but the app will show you a history of where they’ve been in the past, their regular stomping grounds, and even lets you set up a ‘virtual fence’ so the app can alert you whenever your pet moves outside the safe zone!
Download Tractive GPS for Windows 10
App mashups: Check out nine of the most ingenious category-twisting app mashups for iOS and Android – click here!