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Articles on this Page
- 05/24/15--16:00: _Launcher 8 free (WP...
- 05/24/15--16:00: _YouTube Varies with...
- 05/24/15--16:00: _LifeCam HD Free 1.5
- 05/25/15--16:00: _PicsArt - Photo Stu...
- 05/25/15--16:00: _VivaVideo Free Vide...
- 05/26/15--16:00: _Layout from Instagr...
- 05/26/15--16:00: _Camera360 Ultimate 6.2
- 05/27/15--16:00: _Messenger (Facebook...
- 05/27/15--16:00: _Pinball Arcade 1.37.9
- 05/27/15--16:00: _Periscope 1.0
- 05/27/15--16:00: _Bike Race Free 2.3 ...
- 05/28/15--16:00: _ooVoo 2.5.2
- 05/28/15--16:00: _Photo Wonder 3.4.3
- 05/28/15--16:00: _aillis (LINE camera...
- 05/28/15--16:00: _VSCO Cam 3.3.1
- 05/29/15--16:00: _Camera MX 3.0.5
- 05/30/15--16:00: _Skype Qik 22.214.171.1240...
- 05/31/15--16:00: _InstaSquareMaker 2....
- 06/01/15--16:00: _Flipagram 4.5.1
- 06/01/15--16:00: _Dubsmash 1.3.10
- 05/24/15--16:00: Launcher 8 free (WP8 Style) 3.1.0
- 05/24/15--16:00: YouTube Varies with device
- 05/24/15--16:00: LifeCam HD Free 1.5
- 05/25/15--16:00: PicsArt - Photo Studio Varies with device
- 05/25/15--16:00: VivaVideo Free Video Editor 4.1.8
- 05/26/15--16:00: Layout from Instagram 1.0.3
- 05/26/15--16:00: Camera360 Ultimate 6.2
- 05/27/15--16:00: Messenger (Facebook Messenger) Varies with device
- 05/27/15--16:00: Pinball Arcade 1.37.9
- 05/27/15--16:00: Periscope 1.0
- 05/27/15--16:00: Bike Race Free 2.3 and up
- 05/28/15--16:00: ooVoo 2.5.2
- 05/28/15--16:00: Photo Wonder 3.4.3
- 05/28/15--16:00: aillis (LINE camera) Varies with device
- 05/28/15--16:00: VSCO Cam 3.3.1
- 05/29/15--16:00: Camera MX 3.0.5
- 05/30/15--16:00: Skype Qik 126.96.36.19909-release
- 05/31/15--16:00: InstaSquareMaker 2.3.3 and up
- 06/01/15--16:00: Flipagram 4.5.1
- 06/01/15--16:00: Dubsmash 1.3.10
Bored with Android’s user interface? Want to try a new style like Window phone 8?
Launcher 8 is an excellent app for you to experience the wp-style UI on your Android devices. Launcher 8 will make your Android phone look like Winphone 8.
With this fast, clean launcher 8, you can customize personalized Windows phone 8 layout for your Android phone. Just surprise your friend with the new desktop on your android phone! Also, don’t forget to share your wonderful themes designed by yourself after learning how to use this Launcher 8, may be your theme will loved by all of us!
If you have any questions about Launcher 8, just feel free to let us know. Please contact us via Email.
-You can add tiles with different size
-You can add tiles with variety of colors
- You can save and restore the theme.
- You can edit the start screen layout.
- You can set the current background style.
- You can switch the style of the application list
- You can add Android widgets in the tiles.
- You can set the wp8 style lock screen and status bar.
- You can select countless theme colors.
- You can add special features tiles, like time, LED light, Live Gallery and Live contact.
- Change tiles from 4 rows to 6 rows for big screens. (Just support Launcher 8 Pro)
- Single contact avatar animation tile. (just support the Launcher 8 Pro version)
1 The live contact needs to read the contact data (Avatar) access permission;
2 Direct dial call shortcut need the CALL PHONE permission;
3 Direct send text message shortcut need Send Message permission.
4 Download the themes need access the network permission.
5 The LED Light need access the Camera permission.
The notification feature requires manual activation . After activating this service, please return to the Launcher 8 Settings > Status bar > Notification app > Open the switch if you need to message notification on the app(eg: Facebook).
How to activation all app notification:
1.On Launcher 8 home screen, click Menu, click "Settings" - "Status bar" - "Notifications active" - turn on ;
2.Then will go to "Accessibility" - "Services" - "Launcher 8 statusbar noti
Download Launcher 8 free (WP8 Style) 3.1.0 in
The YouTube Android app offers a comfortable way to watch and enjoy clips from the popular online video repository.
What does the YouTube app do?
This official YouTube app makes it easy to watch videos on your phone. The user interface is intelligently designed to offer all the great features of YouTube without sacrificing screen space.
You can comfortably view YouTube videos in portrait mode while checking out info, related videos and comments at the same time. You can access extra sharing options directly while watching the video.
Rotate your phone to landscape mode and YouTube will automatically resize the movie to full screen; and remove the rest of the page elements. The player controls are kept perfectly simple. In fact, all you need to do is touch the screen to pause and slide your finger along the timeline to fast forward and rewind.
Navigating videos is also intuitive, with a great many features available to help you find what you are looking for. The playlist option allows you to create custom feeds, a dedicated music homepage surfaces music videos based on your history, and YouTube mix will create a custom playlist for you based on your favorite tracks. Any movies purchased via Google are available in a separate tab.
Upload video to YouTube
The YouTube app for Android makes it very easy for you to quickly grab and upload videos to YouTube from your phone. All you do is hit the video camera button, record your footage, then the app will upload it to your YouTube channel in the background. You can also select existing videos to upload from your SD card.
If you need to more closely manage your channel on the go, you can also now reply to and delete comments from the app.
YouTube is generally included by default within the Android operating system. However, it's well worth downloading the official app because it means you can always have the very latest version of the application.
Don't hate it because it's popular
YouTube may be the default, but it's also the best video player available.
Download YouTube Varies with device in
LifeCam camera hd automatically captures the things happening around you. One tap records your location, weather, date and time, what was happening in the news together with the music you were listening to.
* Add a piece of map to screenshots based on your GPS position.
* Add current weather based on your geo location.
* Add the latest news in your local language.
* Upload your images to Dropbox and Google Drive with GPS photo uploader.
* Switch between rear and front cameras to shot a selfie photos with selfie camera hd.
* Share your photos with friends or send to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, etc.
* Localization: English, Russian, Deutsch, Português, Français, Español, Italiano, Japanese, Chinese.
* OpenGL camera with 20 special image effects: Sepia, Grayscale, Sharpness, Invert, Contrast, Emboss, Posterize, Pixelation, Gamma, Brightness, Sobel Edge Detection, 3x3 Convolution, Grouped filters, Saturation, Exposure, Highlight Shadow, Monochrome, White Balance, Vignette, Lookup (Amatorka).
* Google Play services.
* Internet connection (Wi-Fi/GPRS/3G/4G).
* Geo location enabled.
Download LifeCam HD Free 1.5 in
PicsArt - Photo Studio is an excellent program for creating, discovering and sharing photos with your friends.
Packed with editing tools
Much like other photo editors for Android such as
The reason PicsArt - Photo Studio is such a stand-out program is due to the sheer number of options you have for customizing your photos. You can take pictures off your phone's traditional camera or else within the PicsArt - Photo Studio app itself (with images of up to 8 megapixels supported).
Once you've taken a picture or loaded one, you have a lot of different editing options to play around with. PicsArt - Photo Studio has lots of different effects to alter the feel of the picture you just took. You can also add clip art images to it, and give it a special message with different text fonts and colors.
You can apply effects to your photos with PicsArt, choosing from a range of preset filters, some of which can be tweaked. There's also a collage maker, where you can create impressive montages based on photos you've taken.
Needs time and patience
By creating an account on PicsArt's website, you can share your images with other PicsArt - Photo Studio users, as well as browse photos taken by others. There's also the option to export and share your photos on social networks like Facebook, as well as other platforms like Tumblr, Dropbox and now Instagram.
To help with this recent updates have included host of interface tweaks to improve browsing and social features. These have included easier tagging and double tapping to "like".
The only noteworthy negative noticed during testing was some occasional lag time between clicking an effect and actually seeing it applied. However, this has been improved considerably in recent updates. It also takes a bit of time to get the hang of all of the features available to you just because of the sheer number to choose from. Otherwise, your options on PicsArt - Photo Studio are almost limitless.
PicsArt - Photo Studio is an impressively comprehensive photo editing and sharing app.
Download PicsArt - Photo Studio Varies with device in
If you want to create videos with snappy effects such as slow motion, storyboards, or even picture in picture, then VivaVideo allows you to do so with very few editing skills.
First you pick your clip, which can be taken from an existing gallery or filmed in-app. Once set, you can easily edit the length of the clip from its start and end points, and change the frame size and position to focus on a desired point. After you have set your raw footage, you can apply a range of filters, text, stickers, FX, music, dubbing, and intro/outro sections to give the final video a professional touch.
Want to be even fancier? The picture in picture template allows you to set two videos to run simultaneously. While lining these up is a little tricky (as both must be filmed separately), it can create some interesting short clips.
It is also possible to create short video montages of your photos. After picking images from your gallery, VivaVideo links them together as a video by automatically applying transitions and providing a host of editable tweaks such as stickers and captions.
Once your video is ready for the world, you can easily share it to any one of VivaVideo's supported social networks (including Facebook and WhatsApp), or save it to your phone to send anywhere else you fancy.
VivaVideo is a playful and accessible little package that is easy for me to recommend - even if the free version watermarks all of your videos and limits them to five minutes.
Download VivaVideo Free Video Editor 4.1.8 in
Instagram's foray into the photo collage market with its new standalone app Layout is an example of a user friendly experience that completely falls down on features.
Photo collage creation for beginners
Following the success of
Layout makes the photo collage creating process easy and straightforward by presenting you with your photo roll along the bottom of the screen when you open the app. This means that, instead of being presented with a blank canvas to fill, you can easily scroll down your photos to chose the ones you'd like to turn into a collage.
Once you've selected your photos, you then choose a grid. Each individual photo can be flipped or turned into a mirror image of itself, as well as replaced if you don't think it works with the layout. Other options include moving the grid lines and repositioning the pictures in their frames, as well as an in-app camera that allows you to take bursts of selfie photos.
When finished, you can save to your photo roll or share via all the usual methods (Instagram included, of course).
Where are all the features?
So, if you're looking to keep the photo collage creation process fairly simple and straightforward with just a few editing options, Layout does a good job. However, if you're looking for an app that has loads of advanced features, which allow you to create a work of art, this is not for you. It may look beautiful and work extremely well, but it's very light on features.
There are no options to edit any of the photos before inserting them into the collages, no filters, backgrounds, borders, video, or music. Basically, it's not a patch on other photo collage makers, although it does boast an attractive user interface.
Not as good as it should be
Layout is a bit of a disappointment. With the weight of Instagram behind it, I expected more from the app. While it may sport a sleek user interface, and allow you to make collages quickly and easily, it just doesn't have the features to compete with other, similar apps. As Layout boasts so few features, it would have made more sense to incorporate collage making within Instagram.
Download Layout from Instagram 1.0.3 in
There are hundreds of camera apps on Google Play that promise to make you a better photographer or dramatically improve the photos you take. Camera360 Ultimate actually delivers on these promises and allows you to take photos like a pro without loads of effort and years of practice.
Take SLR-style photos from your phone
Camera360 Ultimate is not short of features. It boasts a wide variety of 'cams' with different options available depending on the type of picture you want to take. The first place you'll want to start is in Easy Cam where most of the settings are set to automatic, though you can on or off the stabilizer and composition grid, and easily zoom in and out.
Other interesting camera options include the 'effects' cam, the 'funny' cam, the 'selfie' cam (which automatically smooths your face) and the 'color shift' cam, which allows you to keep just one color in your photo and make the rest of the background black and white. This is something I would never be able to do with a regular camera app, but the results are really impressive.
This is equally true of the tilt shift cam, which allows you to select a part (or parts) of a photo to blur while keeping the rest of it in focus. It's the kind of thing you normally need a top-of-the-range camera to achieve.
And if none of the pre-installed camera options in Camera360 Ultimate meet your needs, you can download more from the store. At the moment the options are limited, but hopefully there will be more released soon.
The in-app photo album is a highlight as, with one touch of a button, you can go straight into a grid view of your photos arranged by date. Other features include transferring your photos to phones that are nearby through near-field communications, as well as the option to back up your photos in the cloud.
Camera360 Ultimate also works with the Sony Lens-Style camera, which is a lens that clips to your phone to produce better results.
Takes some getting used to
When I first started using Camera360 Ultimate, I found it difficult to navigate and I was frustrated because I wanted to take a picture, not mess around trying to find the right setting and options. Nothing is immediately obvious in the app.
Camera360 Ultimate can be slow and sluggish; pressing the back arrow at the top of the screen often doesn't seem to work, while pressing the back button on your phone either seems to do nothing or take you back to your phone homescreen.
Also, you have to adjust a slider to zoom rather than pinch, which is what most people are used to. So it isn't the most intuitive app in the world.
That said, after looking at the results, I can say that the photos were probably the best I've ever taken. And, once you take some time to properly explore the Camera360 Ultimate and all its features, you'll easily get the hang of it. Being able to take stunning photos that often look like they were from a SLR camera is very impressive.
Fantastic results, if only it was easier to use...
Camera360 Ultimate allows you to take some fantastic, professional-looking photos in a variety of styles with a range of effects. It's perfect if you just want to take a 'normal' photo, and it's also great if you want to achieve a more specific type of effect, as you only have to change the 'cam'. If the developer improved the usability issues and made the app more intuitive, Camera360 Ultimate could become the one-stop camera app of choice for Android users.
Download Camera360 Ultimate 6.2 in
Facebook Messenger is a stand-alone chat app that lets you to chat with your Facebook friends. The app is also expanding to support other third party apps so you can send GIFs and short movies in Messenger.
Chat with free voice and video calls
If you have a lot of Facebook friends, Messenger is the easiest way to keep in touch with them. Chats are normally one-on-one and you can see when your friend has read the message or when they are writing one. You can create group messages and have all your messages in one place.
Messenger also supports sharing photos and videos. You can take a photo or video directly in the app or attach a photo. If texting isn't enough, you can make free voice or video calls with the app. Both voice and video calls can be made through Wi-Fi or cellular data.
Messenger also gives you the option to share your location by default, which is good if you're meeting someone. The app also supports stickers by default and you can purchase more through Facebook's store. If you think the stickers are boring, you can download compatible apps for Messenger like GIFHY or Bitmoji to add a customized message.
There is also the possibility that games will be added to Messenger in the future.
Messenger on Android supports Chat Heads. Chat Heads are a persistent floating Messenger shortcut to your current conversations. You can move Chat Heads anywhere on your screen and it acts as an overlay on top of any running app. To close a Chat Head, hold the circle and swipe to the bottom of the screen.
Great when you use it, but it's easily forgotten
The usefulness of Messenger is based off how much you use it. If you talk to friends mainly through Messenger, the app is great. But if you use alternative messaging apps, Messenger can sit unused on your device.
But when you're traveling internationally, Messenger is a great app because you don't have to worry about expensive charges if you have to dial an international phone number.
Compatible apps for Messenger add more personalization, but don't dramatically change how you use the app. Messenger is first and foremost a chat app and it is great at connecting you to your friends.
However, Messenger will never replace your phone number or dialer even through Facebook is trying with Hello.
If you use Facebook, you need Messenger
Facebook is expanding the usability of Messenger slowly. It now supports voice and video calls and you can install compatible apps to add something extra to your chats.
But at its core, it's all about chatting with friends. And since messaging isn't supported in the main Facebook app, you're forced to use Messenger.
Pinball Arcade brings a fast-paced pinball simulation to your Android phone. In this free game, you've got to keep the ball in play on the *Medieval Madness *pinball table.
The "real" Medieval Madness pinball
Pinball Arcade simulates the real Fipper Medieval Madness pinball table, where you propel the ball over ramps and bumpers with the two pinball levers.
Use you finger to move the levers on the left and right. Pinball Arcade sees multiple players come together, one after the other, to battle for the high score. Facebook users can log in using their account, or choose to play anonymously as a guest. There's also the option to buy more pinball tables.
The gaming experience is accompanied by authentic pinball sounds and music, and the surface really looks and feels like a pinball machine.
Conclusion: pinball entertainment on the small screen
Pinball Arcade offers excellent entertainment on the small screen. The pinball table is very well implemented and the camera work is dynamic. Although the pinball sounds can quickly become annoying, it just proves how realistic the simulation is.
Download Pinball Arcade 1.37.9 in
Periscope is a live streaming app created by Twitter that lets you share what you're doing and also see what others are doing. Live streaming has been around forever but no one really nailed it on mobile. Meerkat was successful until Twitter came out with Periscope. Let's see how Twitter nailed mobile live streaming.
Peer around the world
Periscope's interface is easy to use because Twitter kept it simple. When you log into the app using your Twitter account, you're greeted with a simple walkthrough of the app's features. Once you're done with the welcome screen, you'll see a constantly refreshing feed of Periscope streams from around the world. A lot of content will be in foreign languages but that makes it interesting too.
Unfortunately, there's no way to browse for specific types of streams about specific topics. You can't even browse streams by location, something that would be super useful if you're visiting a new city. You do get a section at the bottom for broadcasts of people you're following on Twitter. I'd like to see a curated section of interesting feeds as well.
Enable permissions and start shooting
To start broadcasting your own live stream, you'll have to give Periscope permission to access your camera, microphone, and location. Once that's done, you can write a short description about what your viewers will be seeing. You can turn your stream private by tapping on the lock icon. There's also an option to tweet that you're live streaming on Periscope.
As a broadcaster, you can view live messages and switch cameras. Once you're done, you can save your video to your Camera Roll or just view the analytics of your stream. That's all there is to start broadcasting. I like Periscope for its simplicity.
Simplest way to live stream from your phone
Periscope is a simple app, which is both good and bad. Its user experience is great since everything is so simple and intuitive. However, it's also annoying not to be able to browse streams by content type, leaving you hunting for interesting things to see.
It's still early days for Periscope and I'm sure Twitter will be updating it frequently. If you want to see snippets of people's lives around the world, Periscope is worth the download.
Download Periscope 1.0 in
Driving you loopy
Over the 32 different tracks, you have to accelerate and tilt the bike to pass through the different obstacles. While it is somewhat easy at first, the game quickly becomes challenging with loops and long jumps. It is fun to try and achieve three star ratings in each of the levels, but it can take a lot of practice.
Using the accelerometer can be frustrating: with smaller devices, it is easy to control the tilt of the bike, but with Android tablets, the size is awkward and fine-tuning is more difficult.
As you level up, you can evolve your different bikes to combine their abilities. The multiplayer mode allows you to play against 8 to 40 people, and you can use your combo bikes both in single player and multiplayer modes.
Graphics in Bike Race Free are cartoony and do not feature a lot of fine details, but it works perfectly for the gameplay. The backgrounds are static, and the camera follows the motion of the bike as it runs through the course.
There is a problem with the camera because it is not possible to zoom out, so parts of the track are usually unseen and can cause you to crash.
Fun but not without its issues
Bike Race Free is a fun game, but the camera does cause some unnecessary difficulty.
Download Bike Race Free 2.3 and up in
ooVoo Video Call is a VoIP program that's already well-known on the Windows and Mac platforms. Similar to Skype, the program now runs on Android and lets you make free phone or video calls. But that's not all: ooVoo Video Call supports multi-chat video!
Multi-user video conferencing
It's easy to get started with ooVoo Video Call but you have to first create an identifier. It's quickly done and not too complicated. Once you're signed in, you can access your contact list by entering your ooVoo ID on the app's main page. You can send text messages, make a voice call or start a video conference with any of your online contacts.
You can also use ooVoo Video Call to contact offline friends via written messages, as you would with instant messaging. They receive the message basically as they would an email.
The key feature of this Android version of ooVoo is clearly the previously unexplored territory of video conferencing to more than one mobile device. You can invite several friends to a multiplayer video chat, but unfortunately you can't see them all at the same time. You pass from one to the other by clicking their avatar in the column on the right. It works fine since not everyone can talk at the same time anyway (up to 5 simultaneous users).
The quality of the videos provided by the application are pretty average and, strangely, don't reflect the quality of your phone's camera. The sound quality is average.
ooVoo Video Call for Android allows you to add or delete contacts at your leisure, and access their profile pages containing basic information (date of birth, language, place of residence, phone number, etc.) about them. You can add a photo by taking it with your camera phone or use one you already have in memory. Change your status to reflect your availability.
Looking to the future
ooVoo for Android is a quality video conferencing app that's likely to evolve very quickly. It's also very useful for making free phone calls and sending free SMS.
Download ooVoo 2.5.2 in
Photo Wonder is an app that lets you edit your photos and decorate them with fun motifs, stickers, and a host of other effects and elements.
Despite having many functions, it emphasizes its "Beautification" options that let you turn people into sex symbols by correcting imperfections. You can share your creations through social networks and take pictures in real time with filters.
Filters and customization
Explaining everything Photo Wonder offers is complicated because the list is so long. It is organized into four sections: Edit, Collage, Filter Camera, and Material.
"Edit" offers all the editing tools you can imagine, from color correction to decorative items. The edit function highlights the Beautify options, which have specialized filters and effects to let you pretty up the people in your pictures.
The "Collage" section lets you group two or more original images together, forming mosaics. With custom backgrounds and a selection of available templates, there are plenty of possible combinations.
Finally, you can use "Filter Camera" to take photos with real-time filters applied to its camera, and "Material" to download more items to decorate your images.
Hundreds of options
Photo Wonder is easy to use, allowing you to edit with no prior experience. Its menus are extensive but well organized, although their sheer scale can make some things hard to find.
The preview option lets you see how edits will alter your pictures in real-time. And if you do not like a change you can easily undo it.
While some sections could still use some refinement, Photo Wonder offers an endless palette to retouch and edit your images before sharing them with your friends.
Download Photo Wonder 3.4.3 in
Aillis (formerly LINE camera) is a camera app that lets you customize your images with text, stamps, and effects.
The point of aillis is to take pictures and then add filter effects to the image. After applying the filter, you can add different cartoon stamps to the image. This can either be adding various characters or even adding glasses to the pictures you have.
There are a lot of different additions that can be added to your pictures. You can even import pictures from your phone to add new effects. Once you are finished customizing, you can upload it to various social networks like Facebook and Twitter.
The quality of images is great for the web, but you cannot save images locally. They are uploaded online. That is the main issue with aillis. If you are a member of Korean social networks, you will have a better understanding of aillis because it connects to Naver’s Line service.
Aillis is a good camera app and has similar functions to other Android apps.
Download aillis (LINE camera) Varies with device in
VSCO Cam is a feature-packed camera app for Android that allows you to take high quality pictures and edit photos.
How is VSCO Cam different from the Android camera app?The default camera application that comes pre-loaded with Android, especially after
Testing on a Samsung Galaxy Nexus we replicated several shots using the default settings of VSCO Cam and the Android camera app. In all cases the raw images captured with VSCO Cam looked better. For example, colors were more vivid, images were sharper, whites were better balanced, and images were better exposed.
An even better argument for favoring VSCO Cam over the native camera app is its wealth of presets and editing tools. Presets allow you to apply filters to your images, in the same way as you can with apps like Instagram, for example. Presets can be fine-tuned using a precision slider, so you can achieve exactly the right mood and tone. There are 10 presets included with VSCO Cam and you can purchase new ones via the in-app store.
The range of photo editing tools in VSCO Cam is as good as any you'll see in a free photo app for Android (including
VSCO Cam also has great photo sharing features. There are options for sharing your pictures instantly via Instagram, Facebook, email, or Twitter, and clicking the 'More' option will bring up all the compatible apps installed on your device that can be used share the image (messaging and chat apps, for example).
The app also gives you access to the VSCO Journal, where you can get tips and check out inspirational photography taken by others.
Hit and miss user experienceThere's no question that VSCO Cam for Android is a gorgeous looking app. The minimalist, industrial-style design is stylish and attractive, even if it encroaches on the photography itself at times (the viewfinder window isn't full screen, for example).
At first, VSCO Cam is quite awkward to navigate, largely since the interface differs wildly from conventional Android design. There's no introductory tutorial to show you how to get started, which would be helpful since many interface icons are not well labeled. Also, navigating backwards through the app is infuriating since the back hardware key always takes you out of the app completely.
The VSCO Cam interface does get some things right though, particularly when it comes to editing. The use of sliders makes tweaking very clean and simple, and you can hold down an edited image to see its original state, which is handy.
We'd expect to see some improvements to VSCO Cam in future updates. At present the app won't switch to landscape mode when editing, we experienced frequent crashes, and the loading speed of the app is much slower than the Android camera app. Another annoying aspect of VSCO Cam is that images need to be saved manually to your Gallery, rather than automatically appearing on your SD card.
The verdictVSCO Cam is an excellent alternative to the default Android camera app. It takes great pictures, has lots of editing tools, and looks fantastic. That said, it's in need of some improvements to make it more practical and easier to use.
Download VSCO Cam 3.3.1 in
Download Camera MX 3.0.5 in
Skype Qik - Skype's first standalone app - is taking on not just the world of mobile video messaging/chat, but also the likes of ephemeral messaging apps, such as Snapchat.
From videos to GIFs
The story began back in 2011 when Skype acquired an online video streaming app called Qik (pronounced 'quick'). While this app disappeared into the ether, it has now been resurrected three years after Microsoft bought Skype, but this time as a video messaging app.
It aims to fill a gap left by the main Skype app - which allows you to record a video voicemail when you can't reach someone or they are not online - by allowing you to record video messages for people to respond to when they can, a kind of video version of WhatsApp etc.
When Skype Qik starts up, it asks you to add your phone number and then confirm this by entering a code it sends by text message. And then you're ready to start recording videos without any more complicated sign up processes.
Skype Qik has one main feature: to record video and send it to your friends. To do this either pull down on the homescreen or tap on the big red logo when you are in a chat and then tap on the red logo to stop recording.
Each video has a time limit of 42 seconds and you can send videos to one person or set up a group of friends. It's worth mentioning that, as there is no Skype integration, you can only send messages to contacts in your phone book that have the app, not you Skype contacts. If your contact doesn't have Skype Qik already installed, it sends them a link via SMS to install the app so they can view the video and start chatting.
You can also pre record short video segments (a feature called Qik Fliks) and quickly send these whenever you're short of time, need to reply quickly or just want to send a funny response.
The videos in Skype Qik are arranged just like chats in a messaging app and when you click on the chat, it pulls up all the videos you have shared with that friend or group.
When you delete a video that you’ve created from your phone it will be deleted from all the recipients’ phones. Videos are also deleted automatically every two weeks, anyway. While there isn't currently any functionality in Skype Qik that allows you to save videos, this something that third-party apps could exploit so how effective this delete feature is remains to be seen. Best not to send anything you don't want other people to see then.
It really is quick
Recording a video is really easy with one tap to start and one to stop. Sending the videos is then just a case of selecting the relevant contact(s) from your phone book. Alternatively, you can record a video from within a chat and this will send to the recipients automatically.
The videos record and send very quickly and you can also easily switch between front and back cameras while recording.
Here today, gone tomorrow?
Video messaging isn't a new concept and there are already apps on the market that offer this feature or something similar, such as Glide, so it's difficult to see what makes Skype Qik stand out. While it's easy to use, quick to send and receive videos, and enables group chat, do users really want a separate app just for sending video messages?
With a big name like Skype behind it and video quickly becoming one of the key messaging mediums for sharing, it has more chance of success. But Skype Qik could equally just as easily be another flash-in-the-pan app that will disappear as its user base wanes.
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Flipagram is a slick way to turn your photos into a video accompanied by your favorite tracks.
Make a montageWhen you open Flipagram you can add photos from a variety of sources (Instagram, your Facebook profile, your friends' Facebook profile, your camera, Twitter profile etc) to create a video. These photos can then be edited by applying filters, cropping and adding text. Writing text wasn't a smooth process as it was difficult to get it to go onto more than one line so the text ended up out of shot.
Once that's done it's time to add some music, which can either be a tune you own already or a free, 30-second clip of a song. The speed of the video can then be edited according to how many seconds you want to dedicate to each photo.
Flipagram also features an Instagram-style social network where you can post your videos to your profile, check out what your followers have been sharing, add searchable hashtags, and comment on and like videos. Although you can keep the videos you create hidden if you don't want to share them with the world. At the time of reviewing, there seemed to be endless videos boasting about what great years people had in 2014.
Speed it upThe process of creating a video is both quick and easy, although you do need to play around with the speed settings to get the best results. It's worth previewing the speed you've chosen with the music you picked to ensure the two go well together.
The transitions aren't always so seamless, which can make the video seem a bit jumpy and Flipagram does lag occasionally. But the user interface is attractive and slick while being simple to navigate.
Keeping it simpleFlipagram is like the Instagram for videos. Easy to use, great results and very social. While this isn't an app that will suit advanced users due to it's lack of options, Flipagram keeps things simple to make it easy for everyone to create a cool video.
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Dubsmash is a quirky, original, and unique way to communicate with your friends by sending them dubbed videos of yourself.
Pick your soundtrack
The concept of Dubsmash is a simple one: pick a short soundbite, record a video of yourself doing whatever you feel like (the app says it's for lip syncing but there's no reason you need to stick to that), and click finish to put the two together. Then you can send the video to your friends via WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger (the only current sharing options), or save it in your gallery for future use. If you don't like the final product you can always make some tweaks.
But it's not just normal songs that you can use to dub your video, there are all manner of clips from movies, TV shows, chat show interviews, and other random sounds. The categorization of the tracks is slightly unusual but does help to create super funny videos, with categories including 'Chick Flicks', 'Action Heroes', 'Hangover', 'Swag', and 'Pick Up Lines'. You can record sounds from your microphone, or upload them from your phone, and there is also the option to add text or stickers to your creations to make them that bit more interesting.
To make it easier to find all the videos and sounds you have created, you can organize them into your own personalized collections (called Soundboards).
One thing which the Android version of the app lacks is a countdown timer that lets you know when the video will start, leaving you no time to prepare. At the moment, you have to jump straight into recording and there is no way to edit the start out.
A touch glitchy
Creating a dubbed video is an easy, two step process: pick song, record video, and you're done. However, it's not always a smooth process and can be a bit glitchy. The first time I tried Dubsmash, the app didn't pick up the front-facing camera and so wouldn't let me record a video. A quick uninstall and reinstall solved the problem, but it wasn't the best start for the app. And there were several occasions when it wouldn't make the final, dubbed video and I had to exit the app and restart the process.
The user interface is also pretty basic; it's definitely a no-frills experience.
A fun, novelty app
Video messaging is a hot trend at the moment and Dubsmash has tapped into this market perfectly with it's unique take on the genre. The app can produce hilarious results and gets points for being original and innovative. However, it still seems like a work in progress, as there are usability issues to iron out and it is limited by only being able to share on WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger. What about Twitter, or Viber, or LINE, or the plethora of other messaging apps out there? Dubsmash does also run the risk of being a short lived novelty app, rather than an app with a long shelf life.
Overall, Dubsmash manages to be fun and fresh by adding something new to the video messaging formula - but only time will tell if it is here to stay.
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