Android Stuff: 10 best new Android games of March 2016!

Android gaming is getting bigger and better every month it seems and there is always a slew of new titles coming to Google Play. Whether you’re a casual gamer or you want something with a beat more meat on its bones, there’s usually a game coming out to suit everyone’s taste. Let’s take a look at the best new Android games from the last month!

clash royale best new android gamesClash Royale

[Price: Free with in-app purchases]
The highly anticipated Clash Royale was released this last month. In fact, it was so highly anticipated that it’s already garnered over ten million downloads. This is a card collecting game that features a ton of characters, including some cameos from Supercell’s popular Clash of Clans game. It’s a lot like Hearthstone in that you collect cards and then duel them against other people over online multiplayer. You can also form clans, share cards, and more.

Get it now on Google Play!

disney magic kingdoms best new Android gamesDisney Magic Kingdoms

[Price: Free with in-app purchases]
Disney Magic Kingdoms is a collaborative effort between Gameloft and Disney. Your goal is to build a new theme park after the villains of Disney destroyed the old one. There are a metric ton of cameo appearances from Disney characters to give it that familiar feel. At its heart, the game is a builder simulation game that’s not altogether different from other Disney builder sims like Ice Age Village. It’s kid friendly and free to play.

Get it now on Google Play!

Fahrenheit Indigo Prophecy best new android gamesFahrenheit: Indigo Prophecy

[Price: $9.99]
Fahrenheit: Indigo Prophecy is a port from a cult classic PC game from 2005 of the same name. This game is an interactive narrative game where you play through the story, making decisions that ultimately affect the outcome of the game. There are four stories to play through, complete with a dark story line that is actually pretty good. The graphics are pretty decent as well and the game has received positive reviews from players so far. It’s a little expensive but there are no in-app purchases.

Get it now on Google Play!

futurama game of drones best new android gamesFuturama: Game of Drones

[Price: Free with in-app purchases]
Futurama: Game of Drones is the latest TV-based, free-to-play game that takes advantage of a fandom hungry for more Futurama. That said, it is a pretty decent time killer. It’s a match-four game similar to titles like Candy Crush where you must match four objects to remove them from the screen and score points. There are plenty of puzzles to do, obstacles to overcome, and a lot of the classic Futurama wit baked in for good measure.

Get it now on Google Play!

hex defender best new android games march 2016Hex Defender

[Price: $1.13]
Hex Defender is a new tower defense game with a twist. Literally. On top of creating a defense to keep out wave after wave of bad guys, you’ll also be able to rotate your base around so that only certain shields and weapons can attack. The idea is that you’ll have six colored turrets that are effective against bad guys of the same colors. So you twist around so the good weapons can beat the appropriately colored bad guys. It’s a fun little game and it also has no in-app purchases.

Get it now on Google Play!

Lego Bionicle best free android games with no in app purchasesSee also: 10+ best free Android games with no in app purchases19

miitomo best new android games march 2016Miitomo

[Price: Free with in-app purchases]
Nintendo’s Miitomo has finally been released for everybody. This game has been talked about ad nauseum for months and now you can finally just try it out for yourself. It’s a bit weird and I don’t know if it’s really a video game, but you’ll get to create a little Mii character and then fill it with knowledge about yourself. Your friends can then interact with your Mii character. Despite its social media style, it does have good reviews and people seem to enjoy it so far.

Get it now on Google Play!

rayman classic best new Android gamesRayman Classic

[Price: $4.99]
Rayman Classic was released to Android in March for a bit of nostalgic gaming. For those who don’t know, Rayman was a 2D platformer with a ton of obstacles and it was a ton of fun. Now you can relive the classic game in all of its glory. It has been updated to work with mobile devices, including a set of on screen controls, but the developers have left the graphics retro for a bit more of an authentic experience. It’s $4.99 but there are no in-app purchases.

Get it now on Google Play!

thumb drift best new android gamesThumb Drift

[Price: Free with in-app purchases]
Thumb Drift is a sort of racing game. The idea is to drift around corners and try to get the highest score based on how well you can drift the vehicle. It has over 60 total cars that you can unlock, one-finger controls, and leaderboards so you can challenge your friends to the highest score. The graphics look pretty good and it’s sometimes more fun to crash the car to make it go boom than it is to actually race. Nevertheless, it’s a free to play game that’s worth checking out.

Get it now on Google Play!

total war battles kingdom best new android gamesTotal War Battles: Kingdom

[Price: Free with in-app purchases]
Total War Battles: Kingdom is the latest game out of SEGA and this one is interesting. It rests somewhere between Clash of Clans and Age of Empires. It’s a strategy game with builder sim elements where you build a city, create an army, and then take on various foes. There is live PvP against online opponents which is really engaging. There is a lot of control here to shape your area the way you want it and it’s a lot of fun to play.

Get it now on Google Play!

the walking dead michonne best new android gamesThe Walking Dead: Michonne

[Price: $4.99 with in-app purchases]
Telltale Games’ latest game came out in early March and it tells the story of the Michonne character. The game follows the comic series and deals with where Michonne was and what she was doing during her absence in the comic between issues 126 and 139. It has a lot of the classic Telltale Games elements, including excellent story telling, mechanics, and graphics. As per the norm, it’s a point-and-click adventure game and you can control how the story goes. It’s $4.99 with each additional episode requiring a separate purchase.

Get it now on Google Play!

Related best app lists:

If we missed any great new Android games, tell us about them in the comments! To see our complete list of best app lists, click here.


Android Stuff: IF and DO Button by IFTTT on Android Wear – Android customization

IF DO IFTTT Android Wear

I hope you had the chance to check out our Android customization primer on IF by IFTTT for your Android Wear device last week. The project was simple enough, providing a little pop up notification whenever there is a new post on Android Authority. With the concept of pushing info to your Android Wear device out of the way, let’s now look at using your smartwatch as the button to run actions on your phone.

Luckily, the folks at IFTTT have two tools for this project, The original IF can be used, or the newer DO Button, which, for our sake here today, is really just a streamlined version of IF.

Before we begin

You will require a fairly modern Android device to get started here today, you’ll also need an Android Wear device and to install both, or either, IF by IFTTT and DO Button by IFTTT. Both apps are free in the Google Play Store.
DO Button – Google Play StoreIF – Google Play Store

Thank you oelmekki for making sure we talk about DO Button here today, as it is the tool designed specifically for this sort of task. IF triggers still work fine, but DO is just faster and maybe even easier.

Use your Android Wear device to trigger actions on your Android phone or tablet

IF DO IFTTT Android Wear

Ooops, a little delay getting this article published, not my fault, I promise!

We’ve been vague so far, let’s outline a simple project to get you started. Let’s say that you want to tap a button on your Android Wear smartwatch that makes your phone fire up navigation to your home. Sure, there are many ways to do this, including Maps’ built-in ability to put a ‘navigate home’ button on your Homescreen, but we wanted something simple to get started.

Fire up DO Button on your phone or visit the IFTTT website to get started.

Click the buttons to add a new recipe.

Select Android device.

Select Create New Recipe.

IF DO IFTTT Android Wear 3

Tap on Launch Google Maps Navigation.

Provide a title to this button, I’ll call mine “Navigate Home.”

Provide the Navigation type, I’ll be driving.

Enter the address of the location you would like to travel to. In our example, Google Maps has the ability to translate ‘Home’ into your actual home address, if you’ve enabled this, simply enter “Home.”

Save the recipe.

Believe it or not, that’s all there really is to it. Go ahead and fire up DO Button on your Android Wear device and hit that button, your phone will start up the navigation and off you go.

How is IF different?

IF DO IFTTT Android Wear

If you are having a hard time deciding which tool to use, consider that the DO Button is easier to set up and is designed to run faster than IF. There is not much of a difference most times, perhaps 10 seconds on average, but if you are performing a more time sensitive action, like taking a photo or screenshot, that could make the difference.

To do the same project in IF, enter the app and begin a new Recipe.

For your This action, choose Android Wear and select Tap button.

For your That action, choose Android Device, then Launch Google Maps Navigation.

As before, enter the address you are traveling to, or enter Home, if that is set up.

Save the Recipe.

And we’re done again. Fire up IF on your Android Wear device, tap that button and wait for your phone to take you home.

IF DO IFTTT Android Wear

What’s next?

We have been focusing on using your Android Wear device to perform actions on your Android phone or tablet, please keep in mind that there is so much more you can do when you explore the available channels in the IFTTT network.

I have a few other Recipes set to run from my Android Wear device, one sends a random Giphy animation to my wife via email. Sorry. One sends her my location via SMS, a little more practical. The last simply plays music on my phone.

Remember that most all IFTTT Recipes and actions will work in both the IF app and the DO Button app, so you can choose which better suits your needs. Theory is, DO Button is better on your phone’s battery, but I’ve not seen evidence to that fact.

IF Android Wear 8

Next week

We are huge fans of using our Android Wear device as a trigger to perform actions on the phone. Next week on our Android customization series, let’s look at another app that makes your smartwatch a remote for your phone, it serves a single purpose, but do so with style. No hints.

Do you care for IF or DO Button by IFTTT on your Android Wear device, or are these gimmicks not worth their time?

More Android customization projects:


Android Stuff: Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel arrives for the SHIELD Android TV

When the SHIELD Android TV first arrived, one of the big selling points was that the device would be able to run full-version PC games ported over to the Android operating system thanks to the SHIELD’s Tegra X1 hardware. Unfortunately, game devs haven’t really jumped on the Android train as much as NVIDIA really hoped they would, as most of them would rather develop for a wider audience on the mobile platform rather than just the high end. However, we have seen a few gorgeous games enter the market, and the latest of these is Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel.

NVIDIA Shield Android TV-2See also: NVIDIA Shield Android TV review30

For fans of the franchise, this game takes place between the first and second games, but it was the most recently released, making it both a prequel and a sequel depending on your perspective. The game’s title is also indicative of the game’s tongue-in-cheek irreverence and absurd sense of humor, a trait that makes it practically unique in an era of gritty shooters and brooding protagonists.

NVIDIA Shield Android TV-2

Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel was something of a letdown when it hit the PC, with audiences complaining that it was just more of the same. By that they mean, lots of crazy weapons, random loot discovery, and grind-happy upgrade systems paired with crisp first-person shooting and up to four-player career co-op. But what’s more of the same on the PC is without competition in the Google Play Store, and this is the full version of the game priced at less than half of what you can expect to pay for its PC brother. The only real catch is that some of the textures appear to have been diluted in terms of resolution, but the polygons, gameplay, and multiplayer are all still there.

What do you think of this high-budget arrival to the Google Play Store? Click the button below to scoop it up yourself, then let us know about your experience in the comments below. As always, stay tuned to Android Authority to stay abreast of everything happening in the mobile gaming world and beyond!

Get it in the Play Store!
operation-flashpoint-shield-soldierNext: Operation Flashpoint: Dragon Rising comes to NVIDIA Shield4


Android Stuff: 10 best new Android apps of March 2016

App developers are pushing the envelope on a daily basis trying to improve and enhance our smartphone and tablet experiences. In fact, so many Android apps come out every day that it’s difficult to keep track of them all. It’s difficult to usurp the best of the best but if you’re getting bored with what you’ve got and want to try something new, check out the best new Android apps from the last month!

basket best new android apps march 2016Basket

[Price: Free]
Basket is a newer application that acts as a sort of simplified alternative to Pocket. It allows you to save articles, videos, and other types of links for later viewing and sharing. You can organize them based on what they are, such as news, research, recipes, or funny stuff. It also utilizes Material Design and it looks really nice. It’s a good alternative to Pocket if you want something that’s a little more simple.

Get it now on Google Play!

DroidID best new android apps march 2016DroidID

[Price: Free]
DroidID is a unique application that really takes advantage of the built-in fingerprint support from Android Marshmallow. This app allows you to unlock your computer with your device’s fingerprint scanner. It’s fairly easy to use. You download the computer companion app, set it up with the mobile app, and then unlock your computer with your fingerprint. It’s only available for Mac right now but the developer says that Windows support is on the way.

Get it now on Google Play!

DroidID best new Android apps March 2016

Hands Free best new android apps march 2016Hands Free

[Price: Free]
Hands Free is a new Google application that allows you to pay for stuff just by stating that you want to pay with Google. It’s not available anywhere except Silicon Valley but we expect support to increase over time. The idea is that you say you want to pay with Google, your picture appears on the register’s screen, your ID is confirmed, and then you’re paid up and ready to go.

Get it now on Google Play!

Hound best new android apps march 2016Hound

[Price: Free]
Hound is a voice assistant application that’s been in beta since last year. In March, it shed the beta tag for good and became available to the general public. This is an app that’s meant to compete with the likes of Google Now and Cortana. It does a fairy decent job. You can ask a variety of questions, sometimes multiple questions at once, and get answers. It also comes with built-in support for Uber, navigation, phone calls, text messages, hotel search, calculator, converter and more.

Get it now on Google Play!

hub keyboard best new Android apps march 2016Hub Keyboard

[Price: Free]
Hub Keyboard is a keyboard released by Microsoft this last month and it has some interesting features. The premise is that it contains extensions that allow you to interact with other apps without leaving the app that you’re in. You can do things like share documents, contact information, or even translate text directly from the keyboard without being required to open another app. It’s a preview, so there are a ton of bugs, but the concept is unique and it should be improved over time.

Get it now on Google Play!

galaxy s7 vs lg g5 quick look aa-2See also: Best Android phones!120

klara best new android apps march 2016Klara

[Price: Free]
Klara is a new weather application that seems to just do it right. It shows you a variety of weather stats and information and most of it is presented in an easy-to-read graph format. You can get both short term and long term forecasts for virtually anywhere, including precipitation, temperature, and even cloud coverage. It comes with some theming elements, a widget, and it’s all wrapped up in Material Design. It’s a good looking, simple weather app that’s entirely free to use.

Get it now on Google Play!

klara best new android apps march 2016

lastpass authenticator best new android apps march 2016LastPass Authenticator

[Price: Free]
LastPass Authenticator is a new security oriented application that gives you the opportunity to have two-factor authentication almost anywhere. It works alongside the standard LastPass app and makes you approve any action taken in LastPass as an additional measure of security. This way, if someone tries to sign in without your consent, you can know about it faster and shut it down immediately. The authenticator is a free app which is just frosting on the cake.

Get it now on Google Play!

lastpass authenticator best new android apps march 2016

playstation video best new android appsPlayStation Video

[Price: Free]
Sony released PlayStation Video this last month and it’s a solid application. The app will allow you to view and watch any video that you’ve either rented or purchased on Sony’s PlayStation Store. The design is solid and the app seems to work well although it could use some performance optimizations. There is also a fairly decent selection of movies and TV shows and you can rent or purchase them from inside the app.

Get it now on Google Play!

playstation video best new android apps best new android

[Price: Free] is a new live streaming service that seems to want to be a mixture of Twitch and Periscope. You can broadcast what’s going on with your camera like Periscope but you can also broadcast stuff like gaming on your device screen like Twitch. It seems to work pretty well so far and you can browse content created by people who are already using the service or create your own content. It’s not bad.

Get it now on Google Play!

protonmail best new android appsProtonMail

[Price: Free]
ProtonMail is a new email client that allows you to have end-to-end encryption for your emails. Not only do you get encryption, but you can actually password protect your emails which is kind of cool. You’ll also get a decent looking app that performs well and looks pretty decent although it could’ve used a little more Material Design. This is great if you value security and it’s also 100% free and 100% open source.

Get it now on Google Play!

ProtonMail best new android apps

Related best app lists:

If we missed any great new Android apps, tell us about them in the comments! To see our complete list of best app lists, click here.


Android Stuff: Teardown: Oculus Rift CV1


When VR was in its infancy – hell, it’s still in its infancy, but when it was in its most infanty infancy – Oculus Rift was synonymous with commercial VR, and avid fans and developers watched its growth with high anticipation. Now the market has become significantly more diverse with players like the HTC Vive and even Samsung Gear VR and Google Cardboard getting into the action. Nevertheless, the Oculus Rift remains one of the frontrunners in the commercial VR field, and today we’re getting a look inside its guts thanks to iFixit’s delightfully comprehensive teardown.

In their vivisection of the Rift, disassemblers noted the device’s use of many infrared dots that the Rift uses to track head movement. A new addition from earlier models is the array of IR LEDs strapped to the back of the head, which increase tracking substantially.

oculus rift vr e3 2015See also: Oculus Rift and 30 games launching March 28, including Eve Valkyrie3

They also noted that the newest model of the Rift uses significantly more plastic clips rather than screws, which cuts down on the weight substantially. Other modifications had been made to reduce weight as well, the most interesting being in the lenses themselves, which have eschewed symmetrical lenses for a pair of thinner Fresnel lenses.

oculus rift teardown

These lenses aren’t removeable as they were in their forerunners. They are, however, strapped tightly to two independent screens. That’s right, two. While earlier versions of the Rift had a single screen that operated in much the same way as Google Cardboard, the modern Rift has two smaller screens permanently affixed to each lens. That way when you’re adjusting the width of the space between the lens, the quality of immersion isn’t affected in any way.

To get all the nitty gritty details of the Oculus Rift, including a rundown of all the specific components that make up this bad boy, head on over to iFixit for the full teardown. In the meantime, let us know what you think of the Rift in the comments below. A technological marvel worth its pricetag, or are you fine sticking with Cardboard for now? Let us know in the comments!

Oculus-Rift-3-1024x576Next: No Oculus Rift for Mac until Apple “makes a good computer”105


Android Stuff: Google will stop supporting physical Google Wallet cards on June 30

Google Wallet logo

If you’re still using a physical Google Wallet card to make transactions when you’re out and about, you should probably start looking for a new way to pay. Google has just announced that it will stop supporting physical Google Wallet cards on Thursday, June 30th. The company will stop supporting the cards so they can more easily focus on the new Google Wallet app, which launched last fall.

You’ll be able to make purchases with your Wallet card until June 30th. Once May 1st rolls around, you won’t be able to add any money to your Wallet balance from a debit card or bank account. You can still receive money from others after that point. And if you happen to have money in your Wallet balance after May 1st, you can keep it there, send it to others, or cash it out anytime for free.

Google also mentions that both American Express and Simple offer debit accounts with similar features. Plus, if you switch to one of these new accounts, you’ll be able to score some extra bonuses. For details on the bonuses, head to this link.

Physical Google Wallet email

Do you still use a physical Google Wallet card? Be sure to let us know your thoughts in the comments.


Android Stuff: Best USB-C portable battery chargers


While the USB Type-C standard has yet to find mass adoption in the mobile world, 2015 saw a decent uptick in the number of devices embracing such technology such as the OnePlus 2, Nexus 5X, and Nexus 6P. Things aren’t going to slow down any in 2016 either, as LG has jumped into the mix with the LG G5 and we expect the same port to make its way to HTC’s upcoming flagship. You can also bet that other manufacturers will be offering Type-C ports on their flagships later this year, and even mid and low-end phones and tablets.

galaxy s7 vs lg g5 quick look aa-2See also: Best Android phones (January 2016)120

One of the biggest downsides to the new standard however, is that you have to either buy a ton of adapters so you can keep using your chargers, portable batteries, and other microUSB accessories — or you have to start over again from scratch. If you already have invested heavily into power packs and other accessories, going the former route might make the most sense. That said, a portable battery charger designed for USB Type-C has its advantages over using an adapter with one designed for microUSB. First, charging speed will be much faster with a Type-C connection. Second, less adapters and other cables to bring along with you.

It’ still very early days for USB Type-C portable battery chargers, but a quick look at Amazon turns up about a dozen or so options. Below we listed just five that we felt were worth highlighting due to their brand recognition, as well as their positive ratings and reviews.

Anker PowerCore+ 20100 mAh

The Anker PowerCore+ packs 20100 mAh and is comes in at $50.99 on Amazon. Along with the 10 LED capacity indicator, the PowerCore+ has 2 USB ports outputting power at 2.4A each, and a USB Type-C port. Included in the box is the power bank, a USB to USB Type-C cable which is used to quickly charge the power bank, a travel pouch, and a micro USB cable. Keep in mind that you don’t just charge the power bank using type-C, there’s also Type-C output, meaning you can charge your Nexus 6P (or whatever have you) from the battery charger as well.

The Anker PowerCore+ is also utilizes a number of special technologies to help ensure the best experience possible, such as PowerIQ, a proprietary technology used to replicate the charging protocol of each device to ensure safe and efficient charging. VoltageBoost is another proprietary technology that detects cable resistance in order to provide a steady charge. It is worth noting that Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 2.0 is not supported with this one however.

Buy on Amazon


RAVPower 20100 mAh


The RAVPower 20100 mAh External Battery pack is offered for $59.99 on Amazon. The battery pack is a simple black box with a four dot LED battery indicator. The battery pack has a micro USB port used to charge the battery pack, a USB 3A Type-C port, a USB port capable of supporting Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 2.0 and 3.0 technologies, and an iSmart USB port.

The iSmart port is used for devices that have been identified by RAVPower, and is optimised on a device by device basis. There’s certainly plenty of juice here too, as 20100 mAh is enough juice to power a Galaxy S6 close to 5 times, and an iPhone 6S nearly 8 times. The pack has overcharge and circuit protection to protect your devices from the very thing that keeps them running.

While the RAVPower is the more expensive than the first two options, it’s big battery combined with Quick Charge 2 and 3 support make it a pretty compelling option.

Buy on Amazon

Talentcell 10400 mAh


The Talentcell 10400 mAh power bank the least expensive device on the list, at just $26.99 on Amazon. The power bank is charged via micro USB 2.0 and has a USB Type-C port, a full sized USB port, and an LED flashlight. Included in the box is the power bank and a male to male USB Type-C. This power bank supports a variety of Type-C devices other than the 12 inch Macbook, and can charge up to two devices simultaneously.

If you are looking for the cheapest option out there, the Talentcell fits the bill, and is still relatively well reviewed. Of course, there’s something to be said for brand recognition and trust, so if that’s a factor for you — you may be better off considering one of the previous power banks.

Buy on Amazon

iVoler 10000mAh


Once again, a lesser known brand name but the ivoler is aggressively priced at $31.99, making it a tad more expensive than the Talentcell. The ivoer 10000 mAh offers one standard USB port and one Type C that supports up to 5v 3a. While the iVoler doesn’t have Qualcomm quick charge support, it does claim to offer rapid recharge capabilities that lets it top off many devices from 0% to 100% in around 3.5 hours or less using Type-C.

Personally, we’d probably pick the TalentCell over this one, but it never hurts to have a few more options.

Buy on Amazon

Xiaomi Type-C Powerbank Pro


Xiaomi is joining the mix with its newly announced Mi Powerbank Pro, which features a USB Type-C connector port and a whopping 10,000mAh capacity. This one packs fast charging suppor wtih 5V/2A, 9V/2A, and 12V/1.5A configurations, meaning you can charge up devices and the power pack itself much faster than before. Xiaomi states that the pack can be charged up in three and a half hours using fast charging, which is 40 percent faster than using a regular 5V/2A charger.

While the power bank costs just 149 Yuan in China, or about $23, it’s a bit more to important with GeekBuying offering it for $42.99. While that’s almost double the price, that’s still in a similar league to many of the other USB Type-C battery chargers here.

Buy on Geek Buying

ORICO 10000mAh Portable Battery


Orico isn’t exactly a hot brand in the battery pack market, but this is a pretty solid looking offering. There’s input and output support for Type-C and the pack intelligently detects the ideal furrent from 0.5 to its max of 2.4A. You’ll also find 1 USB type-A slot for your traditional devices that need powering up, and a  microUSB in for charging up the battery (though you can also use the Type-C port for this if you prefer).

The 10,000 mAh size is similar to what we’re seeing from many of the other packs on this list, and the pricing is just right at $28.99.

Buy on Amazon


Any other solid options you are aware of that didn’t make it onto our list? Give us a shout in the comments and we’ll be sure to take a look.


Android Stuff: LEGO Jurassic World lands in the Google Play Store

LEGO Jurassic World 1

The folks at LEGO are always bringing fun new titles to the Android platform, and today marks yet another addition to the company’s growing lineup. LEGO Jurassic World has just come to the Google Play Store, allowing you to relive the storylines of all four films: Jurassic Park, The Lost World: Jurassic Park, Jurassic Park III and Jurassic World.

In LEGO Jurassic World, you’ll be able to take on the roles of Owen Grady (Chris Pratt), Claire Dearing (Bryce Dallas Howard), Ian Malcolm (Jeff Goldblum) and Dr. Wu (BD Wong). There are 20 story levels in the game, and you’ll need to collect precious amber containing dinosaur DNA throughout your journey. You can use this DNA to build your own dinosaur collection, mix and match pieces to create new species, and you’ll even be able to play the game as the dinosaurs themselves.

Sounds pretty awesome, right? LEGO Jurassic World is available now in the Google Play Store for $4.99, with no in-app purchases. I know $4.99 might sound a little pricey for a mobile game, but normally LEGO titles offer up a ton of replay value and are quite fun. If your’e interested, be sure to follow the link below for more details.

Get it from Google Play


Android Stuff: Ottm is the wooden band for your smartwatch


If you’re a smartwatch owner, then you’re probably well aware that the number of options you have for your band isn’t really overwhelming. If you’re not a fan of leather, silicone, or metal, then you’re kind of just up a creek without a paddle. What Ottm is promising is the opportunity to really stand out with your smartwatch’s look. The hand-crafted wooden bands look perfect for someone rocking a less techy or corporate vibe, and with three options to choose from, there’s something here for just about anybody.

wearealSee also: Get realistic Android Wear watch faces with Weareal5

No matter which variant you go for, these bands are splashproof and can be used on Android Wear, Pebble, or Apple watches. This Indiegogo campaign has a goal of just $7,000, and the lowest amount you can chip in to get your hands on one of these bands is $25 plus shipping. However, if you throw $99 at the project, you’ll get all three variants. If you’re a business or fundraiser and you want to snatch up a fair quantity of these stylish bands, $450 will get you 5 of each of the 3 styles.


So what kind of options do you have with Ottm? First on the table is Maple, which offers a crisp, lighter color aesthetic. This band provides some nice contrast for darker colored smartwatches, and it kind of has a delightful summery feel to it. Snagging Maple will run you $25 if you make the early bird special.


Next up is Zebrawood, which sports a much more complex grain work. Although it’s quite striking, you’ve got to be careful with this option. If you’re already rocking a heavily detailed face and a more baroque smartwatch body then this could look pretty noisy on your wrist. Best paired with simple, elegant smartwatches. Early funders can catch Zebrawood for $39.


Lastly, we have Sandalwood, and my God is it sexy. This earthy-colored, red-leaning band seems like it would pair well with just about anything. The contrast in colors between the inner and outer links is stylishly gripping, and it makes for one of the most unique smartwatch bands we’ve ever seen. Sandalwood will run you $65 whether you’re early or not.

If all this isn’t enough for you, Ottm is pledging to plant a tree in a national park for every single band they ship. That’s pretty cool, and not something you see everyday from a crowdsourced campaign. If this article reads a bit glowingly, it’s because this is one of our favorite crowdsourced projects that we’ve seen in the last few weeks. With a reasonable goal, a cool product, and a promise to give back to nature with each item sold, there’s a lot to like here. Click the button below to check out the campaign yourself, and let us know what you think in the comments. Which band catches your eye the most?

Check it out!
mighty splashNext: Kickstarter project of the week: Mighty Audio brings offline Spotify playback (Update: goal met)7


Android Stuff: Smartphone etiquette in the digital age




What is rude? What isn’t? These are questions many smartphone users have asked themselves over and over. I believe it’s safe to say we haven’t been able to morally catch up with the digital age, and so our smartphone manners continue to evolve along with technology.

In a world where communicating and finding any information you want is only a hand’s reach away, it’s easy to get lost in that shiny screen. Should we set the record straight once and for all? Because some of these bad smartphone manners are really starting to get to me!

Put that thing away!



It’s OK to look around Facebook during your downtime or send an email here and there, but in some situations this action is really uncalled for. You can guess what I am talking about, right?

Just put that thing away when you are on a date, eating dinner with someone, in a meeting or watching a movie at the theater. Those are only a few examples. If you feel like a person or moment is important, your phone should not take priority.


Maybe in some cases it’s alright to glance at what’s going on. You know, many have families and kids. One never knows when an important situation or emergency may arise. But please leave it at that, and try to apologize if you must really use the phone. Don’t jump in there and start talking about the last Game of Thrones episode with your buddy.

Don’t swipe through a friend’s photo gallery

Most people I know hate this. No one wants a friend snooping through his/her photos. If someone hands you a phone to look at a picture, just stay in the same image. You don’t know what kind of naughty stuff your friend may have. Hey, you probably don’t even want to see what there is beyond that cat photo! Curiosity may just kill it.

At least try to ask first, if you really think you should see what’s going on past the picture you were shown.

smartphone privacy security 4See also: How to hide files, photos and apps on Android9

google photos 2

There is definitely such a thing as taking way too many pictures

Talking about pictures… some people really need to stop wasting away shutters. I understand – memories are beautiful and important. But really, they become much more mundane if you take a picture of literally everything. Not to mention you may just miss some of the best moments of your life by trying to capture them.

If you are spending time with people, enjoy them first and then take time for a good selfie. If you are in a concert, try to enjoy the music and stop creating so many distractions for people behind you. Take in the view before snapping 20 photos of the same skyline. Take this as an advice from a fellow avid photographer. Images always come out better when you have already lived them.

concert phones


On sharing photos

Also, it’s a bit rude to just assume it’s OK to share a photo away. If it’s just you or a nice view, that’s fine, but be specially careful of images where other people show up. I am actually guilty of this one. I just love taking the random shot of friends in funny poses.

When this happens, you should ask first before publishing away on a social network. It’s only common courtesy. Hey, maybe there are other reasons why your friends and family don’t want certain photos online. And while we are on this topic, please don’t publish every single thing you are doing online. We don’t really want to see what you have for breakfast, lunch and dinner… and snacks.

This is not a reality TV show, guys.



Unnecessary tagging

We’ve all seen unnecessary tagging in social networks, right? It’s OK to be tagged when you show up in a picture or are doing something with the original poster, but I hate when I get tagged in pictures and posts that have nothing to do with me. If you want to call someone’s attention about the post, just send them a message about it or mention them in the comments section (but don’t overdo it).

Just be courteous. Remember tagging can clutter your feed.


Your phone is yours, no one else needs to know what’s up

I am actually a bit guilty of this one too. Like everything else in my crazy life, my phone brightness and sound are always at 100%. This is not nice, unless you are in a place where excessive sound is permitted. When you are in an office, a library, a classroom, a meeting room, a movie theater and other similar environments, at least set the phone to vibrate and keep it out of sight.

Also, some people love to have music playing on their phones in public areas. Well, I guess it depends on where you are, but usually it’s not cool to have your music blasting out of your pocket. Use your headphones.

back to school gadgets smartphones headphones


Keep people around you safe

If you want to run into trees while playing Flappy Bird, be my guest, but you should always be aware of your surroundings to keep people around you safe. Especially when operating a vehicle. If you must take that call or answer a text, just pull over and get out of people’s way. Not only would you be slowing others down, but you are risking endangering them, as well as yourself.



Generic is alright, but uniqueness is great

I suppose it’s not really rude to have that “sent from _____” signature on the bottom of every email, but it looks a bit tacky by now. Why not make your signature unique, or maybe even professional? It will look much better and offer recipients a look into your personality.

Don’t be a phone spy

The finders keepers rule doesn’t apply here, so don’t go looking through a friend’s phone, even if he doesn’t have a protected lock screen. Don’t read through the conversations, don’t even open the browser to log into your own Facebook account. And if it is locked, don’t try to get creative to unlock it.

There’s a reason why this is considered such a personal item. It has way too much information. Ask before using it; even if it is just to check the time.

photo-spySee also: 5 ways to keep your personal stuff private when lending a smartphone5



Looooooooooooong voice mails

Voice mails are meant to be concise and to the point. “Hey, this is so and so calling about this and that. Please call me when you can.” That’s it! It’s not meant for actual conversations. People will call you back when they have time to hear the whole story.



I suppose the rule of thumb is to just keep in mind your surroundings and other people’s space/time. If you don’t know if something is right to do or not, just try to relate it to other non-digital examples that would be similar. Or maybe try to think if you would like someone else doing something similar.

What other things do you guys think are rude when it comes to smartphone usage? We are sure you have plenty of things to rant about, and I have already done enough of that. It’s your turn!