The Week's Best Android, iPhone, iPad and Windows Phone Apps

By Tom Pritchard on at

Christmas is just over a month away, which means I have to spend large amounts of money buying people gifts. Enter my dad and my brother both demanding things that are way out my price range (£100 Star Trek boxset and a 55-inch 3DTV -- yeah, right). But worst of all, one annoying Canadian pop star has released a selfie app -- which I have quite graciously not included in this week's list. However, here are the apps that you should look at:


iPhone Apps

Pebble: A companion app to the Pebble Smartwatch, this updated app is designed to help you get the most out of your new wrist-bound gadget. Connected to your iPhone or iPod Touch via Bluetooth, this app lets you set the watch's display and deal with other general configuration settings. But best of all the app makes makes your phone vibrate when you have a new notification, which is a pretty cool feature. While it's fairly niche, it is useful to know about if you're trying to decide on a new smartwatch. [Free]

Keezy: A very colourful little app designed to let you create your music in a simple, yet entertaining way. There are eight keys to choose from, and with a microphone to throw in your own sound effects, Keezy is a great way to create your own samples and mixes. It may not be the most professional music creation app in the world, but since the whole point is to have fun, I'm sure it can be forgiven. [Free]

MApp - UK Indoor Maps: Google Maps pretty much has the street maps market cornered (sorry Bing), but have you ever wanted to be able to navigate inside? MApp is loaded with maps of popular indoor destinations, including airports, shopping centres, train stations, and much much more. There doesn't seem to be any tracking involved, rather its just a copy of the general maps said places would distribute themselves. But they are all together in one easily accessible place. [Free]

Hipster CEO: This one genuinely made me laugh out loud when I heard the title, which is always great news. Grab your lens-less glasses, chinos, and twirl your ironic French villain moustache, and take on the role of the Hipster CEO!  Start your business from your college dorm room and build it up into a global powerhouse. Or abandon it when it becomes too popular, because god forbid your company will become part of the mainstream. It's also oddly fitting that this is only available on iOS devices. [£1.99]

Epoch.2:  Epoch.2 is a 'protect the princess' game with one big exception. Rather than being a stumpy Italian plumber of a mute elf-like person, you play as a bad-ass robot with some sweet weaponry. If you like Sci-Fi, shooters, robots, or are just looking for a game to showcase the A7 processor in your shiny new 5S or iPad Air, Epoch.2 is the ideal game for you to buy. [£3.99 -- with in-app purchases]


iPad Apps

Pitchfork Weekly: It may sound like a newspaper aimed at either farmers or angry mobs from classic horror movies -- but it's not. Instead, Pitchfork is a music blog dedicated to independent music. Pitchfork Weekly is a companion app designed to condense their content (news, reviews, etc.) into a single weekly block comprising of the best and most relevant material. Ideal for those of you who may not be up for constantly checking for new updates. [Free]

John Lennon the Bermuda Tapes: An immersive app that looks into John Lennon's trip to Bermuda in 1980. With a collection of interviews, demo recordings, and even some of Lennon's own lyrics sheets, this app is a must for any fans of The Beatles or John Lennon himself. [£2.99]

Leicester Square Box Office: Already a leader in the market for theatre tickets in London, Leicester Square Box Office is now offering the opportunity to buy tickets in mobile form. With tickets ranging from blockbuster West End musicals, to smaller more intimate theatre settings, LSBO is designed to make your purchasing experience as hassle free as possible. But remember, keep an eye out for any discounted tickets they may have, as those won't last long. [Free]

Metric Synthetica: An interactive experience for Metric's fifth studio album Synthetica. The app is designed to allow fans to fiddle with existing songs to create their own sample tracks or even full-on remixes. All done with an impressive 3D visual layout, rather than a plain old boring audio track. So remix away, music fans. [Free -- with in-app purchases]

Monopoly Bingo: A seemingly odd combination of two classic beloved games -- Monopoly and Bingo. Work your way round the Monopoly board, playing a new game of Bingo at each property. Play to win and unlock a variety of mini-games and in-game prizes. [Free -- with in-app purchases]


Android Apps

Airbnb: Airbnb is a handy app designed to help you find affordable temporary accommodation that suits you. Potential hosts post an accommodation listing through the app, say a spare bedroom, and it's up to you to decide which one suits you and your budget most. Maybe you have a job interview at 9am halfway across the country and need a place to stay the night before; Airbnb will sort you out. Or say you want to go on holiday but don't have the money for a decent hotel, once again Airbnb is there. [Free]

Camera Awesome: Most photography apps these days seem to be exclusively focused on sharing, or adding stupid filters to your pictures (hint: the worst offender rhymes with Minstertram). Camera Awesome is a breath of fresh air. Rather than ruin those ever-important photos of your meals, Camera Awesome is dedicated to making them better. Let's face it, phone cameras aren't always that great, but they're a darn sight easier to carry around than a DSLR -- any way to improve those photos is essential. [£1.87]

Cyanogen Mod Installer: This app will allow you to easily root your Android device, allowing you to do lots of things you'd previously only dreamed of. Install a new OS, or download the multitude of root-only apps, maybe. Whatever your reason, it'll be useful to have Cyanogen Mod Installer there for the ride. You will need a Windows PC to be able to complete installation though (OS X support is coming soon). [Free]

Football Manager Handheld 2014: The ever-popular strategy game is now available on Android! Now you can take hold of a team and work your way to the top of the Premier League on the bus, or the train, or even walking down the street. Just watch where you're going, okay? [£6.99]

Tank Battles: If I ever won the lottery one of the first things I would do is buy a tank of my very own, especially to see the reactions of my neighbours. Sadly I haven't yet won the lottery so virtual tanks will have to keep my appetite sated for now. With over 90,000 different combinations and 80 levels, Tank Battles has the lovely addictive qualities we expect from mobile games. There is also a multiplayer mode for those of you who want to face off against a person rather than a bot. [Free]


Windows Phone Apps

Vine: The mini movie maker app has finally come to Windows Phone. Good thing too, Vine videos seem to be replacing pictures in my social media feeds and we don't want people to feel left out now, do we? Personally I'm sticking with good old fashioned pictures, Old-Man-Tom doesn't understand this new trend of six second videos. But as long as there aren't any kids filming on my lawn I think I'll live. [Free]

4OD: Ah, on demand services, what would we do without you? Well, probably invest in DVRs, but I digress. 4OD is now available for you Windows users so that you can catch up on the latest in Channel 4's programming wherever you are (data pending of course). Whether it be last night's Big Bang Theory, Agents of SHIELD, or a terrible piece of faux reality TV, then this is the app for you. [Free]

Tiny Death Star: A full-scale rebellion may be taking place, but that doesn't mean an end to the galactic economy. In Tiny Death Star you can join forces with Palpatine and Darth Vader to build a brand new Death Star and fill it with profitable businesses. All proceeds go towards eliminating the rebel scum. [Free]

GPS Voice Navigation: Pretty much everything you need from a GPS app. Real time tracking, estimated arrival times, turn-by-turn directions, and speed camera/police trap warnings. Useful if you don't yet have a decent GPS on your phone, especially since it lets you choose which map service you want to use: Google, Bing, or MapQuest. Hurry, it's only free for a limited time. [Free]

Readit: As you may have guessed from the name, this is a Reddit surfing app for all you Windozers. If you don't already know what Reddit is, sorry, I don't have room to explain. For those of you who are pretty much addicted to Reddit and don't have an iOS or Android phone, this app is definitely what you need. [£1.49]

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