The best new mobile apps for July 2015

The best new mobile apps for July 2015Once you’ve got all the big apps installed — Facebook, Twitter, Dropbox, Outlook — you might think you can sit back and take it easy as far as app discovery goes.

That would be a mistake though, as there are dozens of interesting new apps released every week on the respective app stores. Here are our picks over the last month.

EscapeThe best new mobile apps for July 2015

Making a great game doesn’t necessarily have to be complicated: you just need a decent gameplay mechanic, some attractive graphics, and enough variety to keep everything interesting. Escape delivers on all three counts, a sideways scroller that tasks you with rescuing stranded space travellers as a strange alien world collapses around you. You can expect around 10 hours of gameplay though new mini-challenges are added on a daily basis. [Freemium on Android and iOS]

Hooks

The best new mobile apps for July 2015

Put simply, Hooks lets you get notifications on just about anything — there are more than 100 ‘channels’ on offer, including sports scores, music concerts, weather updates, video game releases, earthquake warnings, website rankings, alerts from social media and many more. Despite all of this functionality, Hooks remains simple to use, and you can set up new notifications with a few taps. The iOS app has been out for a while, but the Android one is new. [Freemium on Android, Free on iOS]

Streaks

The best new mobile apps for July 2015

Streaks is designed to help you track your habits, and it’s pretty open in terms of layout and structure so you can use it to record anything you want: TV watching, jogs, meals, calling friends, walking the dog, and so on. You can set up daily reminders if you want and there’s a log of your ‘streaks’ — the number of consecutive days that you’ve done what you set out to do. [Freemium on Android, £2.99 on iOS]

Star Wars

With six months to go before Episode VII hits cinemas, Disney has decided to release an official app to help you get in the mood for the next instalment in the series — it’s only available in the US for now but we’d expect it to roll out further soon. You can find all kinds of Star Wars material here: quotes, sounds, pictures, even weather forecasts and a Star Wars selfie option. [Free on Android and iOS]

 Apple Music

Everyone who upgraded to iOS 8.4 got Apple Music into the bargain, and you can sign up for a three-month free trial if you want to (there’s no free tier as there is with Spotify). It adds millions of on-demand streaming tracks to your existing iTunes library, and there are smart recommendations and the Beats 1 radio station to enjoy as well. An Android app is apparently on the way. [Free on iOS]

Crossroad

Crossroad tries to solve that thorny problem of selective picture-sharing, where you want to show photos to a specific group of people rather than the whole world. Choose the images, choose the friends, and the app takes care of the rest — they can either view your newly created album through the smartphone app or via a link to private webpage. [Free on Android and iOS]

Retype

Retype is a clean and tidy photo editor with an emphasis on typography rather than imagery. It comes with a bunch of tools to help you create arty-looking messages on top of your pictures: fonts, colours, shade, 3D effects and more can all be customised to get your images looking just right, and then of course it’s simple to share your creations on your social network of choice. [£2.29 on iOS]

Nine

If you’re in the market for a to do list app for your smartphone then there are plenty to pick from, but Nine takes an unusual approach — it’s based around the idea of images as memory prompts, and as the name suggests there are nine tags to pick from: do, go, buy, listen, watch, read, note, love and make. You can add locations to your listed items as well, and the app is intuitive throughout. [£0.79 for iOS]

Tossup

Tossup is a Microsoft side project (US-only for now) that wants to help you “make plans with friends the hassle-free way” — specifically, by asking who’s up for a particular event and then letting attendees vote on times, location and so on. There are chat and calendar options built in and it looks like the app has some potential, provided you can get all of your friends to install it. [Free on Android and iOS]

Eggheads

If you’re a fan of the BBC quiz show then you’re probably going to want to splash out on the official apps, though by the same token you’re not likely to think these apps are value for money if you’re not already invested in the television series. In terms of content there no big surprises, with the same personalities from the small screen and the same structure. [£1.49 on Android, iOS and Windows Phone]

FailPop

FailPop promises “essential travel tips” and these tips cover most of the situations you’re likely to find yourself in while abroad… and there are GIFs too. Choose your country and you’re good to go — you’ll find advice on etiquette for how to eat, what to wear, meeting people and more, and if you want the most comprehensive package then a Pro version is on the way soon. [Free on iOS]

Wildcard

Wildcard takes the well-worn Tinder swiping mechanic and applies it to meeting people and making friends rather than arranging romantic hook-ups — it’s the sort of app you’d use if you were on your own in a new place. Your bio information is initially pulled from Twitter and it’s possible to narrow down your connections to a specific location (such as a festival or conference). [Free on Android and iOS]

YoVivo

YoVivo tasks itself with helping you to find your digital photos no matter where you might have put them. It covers Flickr, Google Photos, Dropbox, Instagram, Facebook, OneDrive, Twitter, YouTube, Tumblr and several other services, so you can pipe in your pictures from wherever you like and get them in one place. You can also create slideshows from within the app. [Free on iOS]

BitTorrent Shoot

BitTorrent is a name that’s usually associated with filesharing of questionable legality, but the parent company has a new app that lets you send a lot of photos or a large video file to your friends’ devices quickly and easily. Nothing goes through the cloud and sharing is handled through a private QR code, though you only get three shares for free before you have to pay. [Freemium on Android, iOS and Windows Phone]

RapMic

Record a rap, send it to friends — what could be simpler? There are three backing tracks to choose from, and when you’ve found a beat you like you simply tap on the red record button to start committing your rap to the local storage on your iPhone or iPad. When you’re happy, you can email it to someone. Very limited in terms of features but it’s a lot of fun nevertheless. [Free on iOS]

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