The Week's Top Android, iOS, and Windows Apps

By Tom Pritchard on at

So you might notice that this week's list of apps looks different. Well it is, because I got bored of the last version and decided things could be done better. So from here on out the lists will look like this, with greater focus on the apps themselves rather than the platform they're on.

Most apps are universal and -- unless you use a Windows phone -- the platform is irrelevant. If you do use a Windows phone, then eh. Sucks to be you.

So here are all the latest apps and updates you can enjoy right now.

Fabfocus

£1.49: iOS

You know how the iPhone 7 Plus has a special 'portrait mode' that messes with your images to (theoretically) create an incredibly focused image with the blurry 'bokeh' effect in the background? That's restricted to the one phone, with its fancy dual camera setup, but Fabfocus brings something similar to older mono-camera iPhones.

It uses advanced AI (or what passes for advanced AI outside science fiction) to automatically adjust the depth of field, has tools that let you quickly play with the image's bokeh, and touch-up features that lets you tinker quickly and efficiently.

Evernote (Update)

Free (with subscription)Android 

We all know what Evernote is by now. As the name suggests, it's a note-taking app. But this week it got a nice update which, even though it's a cross-platform tool, seems to be exclusive to Android devices. Once you download the updated version, you'll be able to create your own homescreen shortcuts that will take you to key areas of the Evernote, including: search, text notes, audio notes, and camera notes.

It also has an update that improves the camera's auto-focus, and includes a bunch of useful stats about your notes.

Battlefield Companion

Free: Android | iOS | Windows

If you're big fan of Battlefield 1 and 4's multiplayer, this will be an app you want on your device of choice. It has all you need to keep tabs on your online career, including all the stats and achievements corresponding to your multiplayer games, the chance to manage your friends list and see how they're all doing, plus customisation features that let you set your loadout and in-game emblem.

It's simple stuff, but if you're a big fan of the franchise this is going to make managing your online career much, much easier.

AutoTools

Free: Android

This root-free app lets you expand the functionality of the main Tasker app, letting you do a lot more automation with less work and effort. The number of settings are too great to list here, but AutoTools brings with it access to previously inaccessible quick settings, faster and easier data processing, more customisation options, OCR, gesture support, and so much more.

Crystal DiskMark 5

Free: Windows

Storage is incredibly important, but not all storage is equal. Obviously space needs to be taken into account, but that's easy to look into. Speed is incredibly important, and this benchmarking app lets you figure out exactly how fast your drives are going. It measures the read/write speed of hard drives and solid state drives in laptops and computers, showing you exactly which ones are fast enough for your needs.

Paint 3D Preview

Free: Windows

Paint is a staple of all Windows machines, and as announced last week it's getting a complete overhaul. Or a sequel, whatever you prefer to call it. In the same way that Paint is a basic graphics tool that anyone can pick up and start using, Paint 3D will be an easy-to-use piece of graphics software that lets you create in three dimensions rather than two.

Obviously the final version isn't out just yet, but if you're a member of the Windows Insider programme and have an early-build of the Creator's update installed, you can start messing around with it right now.

Firefox Aurora

FreeAndroid

Chrome has the Canary build, and Firefox has Aurora. It's pretty much the same deal as Google's offering, letting you enjoy all the brand new features Mozilla has built as soon as they're able to be implemented. The key thing to remember here is that these new features are unstable and completely experimental, and there's a huge chance that they won't be working as expected. But if you want to appreciate the new features as soon as possible, this one is the browser for you. Just keep another one on stand-by, alright?

Pocket Casts (Update)

£2.49/£2.69: Android | iOS 

This one is one of the most popular podcasting services out there, and this week it got an update on Android and iOS (but apparently not Windows). Both platforms got different features, though Android certainly got the raw end of the deal. That version now has split-screen support for Nougat users, and the option to use audio effects while streaming, and share your lists of podcasts with other people.

iOS, on the other hand, got a brand new dark theme, greater control over playback from the Control Center menu, list sharing, and 3D-link integration to give you previews of podcasts before you play them.

Duet Display (Update)

£14.99: iOS

This one is well known as a way to turn your iOS device into a secondary display for your PC or Mac, and this week it got an update that's going to make it much more useful for artists and other creative types. It now lets you use an iPad as a high-end drawing tablet, though most of the great features have gone to users with an iPad Pro and an Apple Pencil. If you're using both you'll find that Duet Display now has pressure and tilt sensitivity, meaning it's one step closer to feeling like your drawing with actual art supplies.

WhatsApp (Update)

Free: Android

So this one is universally available, but so far Android is the only platform to get WhatsApp's most asked-for feature. Finally, finally, one of the world's most popular messaging services is getting a video calling. That one thing that every other messaging service has had for what seems like forever. That means you can call people in a way that lets them see if you're not wearing any clothes.

The roll-out is still ongoing, so it might not be in your build just yet. But Android being Android, you can always install the new build manually by downloading the APK here.