The Week's Top Android, iPhone, iPad, and Windows Mobile Apps

By Tom Pritchard on at

July seems like it's shaping up to be the geekiest month of 2016. Not only do we have San Diego Comic Con arriving at the end of the month, London is also playing host to this year's Star Wars Celebration and there are bound to be plenty of big announcements to enjoy. I'm going, is anyone else? Feel free to completely ignore my existence if you spot me, unless you know how I can meet Mark Hamill without having to fork out £135.

Funnily enough there is an app for the Star Wars Celebration, and on that note I suppose we better get onto this week's list. There's no Pokémon Go this week, since it's not officially available here in the UK. With that in mind, I'm waiting for the official release (and hopefully a few bug fixes).

Android: Storm It (Free)

As many people already know, Twitter has a 140 character limit on each individual post. That sounds all well and good, but in practice there are often things we have to say that don't fit so neatly. There are a lot of ways to get around this, and one of the easiest methods is just putting everything into multiple tweets. That's known as a tweetstorm, and Storm It offers a a much easier way to get it done.

It is incredibly simple to work, so simple that an idiot could manage to use it without issue. That's good for the idiots, since many of them are already on Twitter. Bad for the rest of us, since it's making it easier for them to say stupid things. But back to the point. Essentially it's a portal for Twitter, letting you write out your entire message and convert it into a tweetstorm without having to be incredibly anal about the number of characters in each tweet.

Once your account is connected, Storm It opens up to a page where you can type away to your heart's content. There are literally no limits here, so you've got more than enough room to make your feeling known. Once you're done, you can preview how it's going to look, and then when you hit the 'Tweet It' button it'll post everything on your Twitter account, automatically formatting each one to fit the maximum number of words without cutting words in half.

So, if you need to say lots of things on Twitter with minimum effort, this is the app for you. But if you use it a lot, it might just be worth investing in a blog.

You should also try:

App Shortcut Maker: A handy little tool that takes a feature present in one of your phone's apps, and turns it into its very own app on your homescreen. No more going through all the menus to get to the thing you want anymore. [Free]

Bitly: A mobile version of Bitly on desktop, letting you shorten and share links - while still keeping an eye on how well they're doing with analytics data. [Free]

iPhone: Mimi Music (Free)

This one is a little bit odd, but it's designed to make the music coming out of your phone unique to your ears by create an 'earprint' and adapting the audio to suit you.

It does this using a series of tones in each ear, similar to a hearing test that you can get at the optician (it's an odd place for them, but it does happen). You need to put on some headphones, and when you hear the tone in each ear, you hit the corresponding button on your phone. The tones start off insanely quiet, and slowly get louder the longer you wait. The first time it took me a bit to long to realise what I was hearing; it's all a little bit weird if I'm honest.

It only takes a couple of minutes, and once you're the done the app has an understanding of how your ear works. With that it's able to alter the subtleties of the music you're listening to to make it a more enjoyable experience. You can redo the earprint anytime you like, just in case you don't trust the results from the first time.

I didn't really register much difference with playing songs through Mimi Music compared with the standard Apple Music app, but the app's main page does have a scale you can alter to hear the differences. It's a sliding scale from original to the 'Mimified' version. The altered sound was a lot clearer than the original, though there was a lot more background static hissing away behind everything.

If you're not one for local files, don't fret. While Mimi Music is capable of playing locally stored music files, it can also be connected to Spotify and Soundcloud to pull in your collections from there. Even if you don't buy the whole 'unique sound' thing, it's still a great place to combine music collections from those different services – if you use them, that is.

You should also try:

live.ly (Update): Another live streaming app, so if you're sick of the likes of Periscope, Facebook, or Meerkat, this is one to try. The new version has improved social stuff, including letting you search for your friends. [Free]

Bobby (Update): One for keeping track of all your subscriptions, since they rule our lives now. It shows what you're subscribed to and when the bill needs paying. The latest version also supports multiple currencies, including sterling. [Free]

Flamyngo: A travel app for saving your favourite places, and sharing them with friends when they ask for them. [Free]

iPad: Mobcrush (Free)

Game streaming is all the rage these days but you're still not likely to see many mobile titles being streamed. So instead there's Mobcrush, an app designed solely for streaming games from your device. Doesn't matter if it's Minecraft, Hearthstone, or whatever else you happen to be playing, if it's on your iPad it can be streamed online to viewers all over the world.

Now before I go anywhere, from the looks of things if you want to start broadcasting you will need to download an extra app for your main computer. The app says you need a Mac app, but Windows users can download an alpha version for their machines. I stress the alpha part there, so you shouldn't expect it to work perfectly. You then have to physically connect your device with the desktop, and go through the setup page in the main app. Once that's done, your game play should be streaming across the interwebz - with a preview showing up on your desktop.

It's all rather simple really. The only downside is that you can't start broadcasting without your desktop device handy. That does mean, however, that it doesn't use your phone's data plan to show off you completely failing to play whatever game you have.

You should also try:

Wonder: A new platform to help you discover brand new indie music as soon as it's released. [Free]

Folioscope: A cool little tool that lets you draw out your own creations, and then animate them with minimal fuss. [Free]

Windows Mobile: Battery X (Free)

Battery is the most important part of any portable electronics device, not just your phone. But that little percentage in the corner is only slightly helpful, and Battery X is here to make sure you have the full picture. Imagine every statistic you could ever need about your phone's battery, then add a bit more. That's what it has to offer you.

Opening up the app brings you to a nice little homescreen with all the basic information you need from the app, with almost all of it presented as circle graphs. The first one is, of course, how much power you have left, and that's joined by the battery status and statistics. Status is basic stuff, battery health, how long the battery is due to last at current use, and the discharge speed. Statistics show you averages of discharge and charging.

Status and Statistics don't end there, though, and both have their own dedicated pages that go a bit more in depth. These are accessed via the home page, or a side menu. The Status page only adds some figures about your battery, which is ideal for any nerds out there who love to learn about their electronics. Statistics adds more information about how often you plug your phone in, how long it's usually plugged in for, and so on. The longer have the app on, the more it'll pick up on and relay back to you.

The final main feature is the graph, which shows you your power consumption between certain times and dates in the form of (you guessed it) a graph.

An app like this is all well and good, but being a Windows app it does take advantage of Live Tiles. Rather than having extra tiles you can add, it just changes the appearance of Battery X after you pin it to the Start Menu. You can choose the design, but it will also show you the percentage of power remaining, how much time you have until your phone dies, and the current battery health.

Battery X is a handy little app to have, especially if you pin it to your homescreen. The extra features aren't for everyone, but if you want to know more about the thing granting your phone life then you should give it a download.

You should also try:

Zonos: A third-party version of Sonos that lets you control all your Sonos devices on a Windows 10 device. It even has Cortana commands. [Free]

Vector Watch: The app that lets you connect your Windows phone to your Vector smartwatch. It's just hit Windows 10, with more watchfaces, apps, and all the thing you need to enjoy your watch properly. [Free]

Video 360 (Update): The long-time go-to Windows app for creating 360-degree video now lets you create your own 360-degree photos that can be viewed in VR. [£1.49]