- Android Phones
Top 10 Android Lollipop Games & Apps Upgrade/Downloads
It is still early days as regards Android L apps – many of the early releases have been so buggy that one wonders why the developers could not take time to refine their apps before releasing them to the market.
That is not to say that there are no functional Android L apps available. The developers who have taken time to understand the requirements of the new Android L OS are creating some really useful apps with real functionality.
We review the best Android L apps and games that actually work with very few known bugs, plus some upgrade installation tips from previous versions.
Installing the Android Lollipop App Upgrade
While there is debate on whether it is necessary to try installing Android L before the full version is out, there are still some early adopters who are keen on trying it out.
Getting to taste the goodies of Android L from the developer version is a technical endeavour that is best left to people with the right skills.
Trying to flash your phone so as to get Android L without the prerequisite skills can result in damage to your device. Novices should just hold their horses and wait for the release of the full version later in the year.
There are very good instructions on installing Android L on PhoneArena that if followed will give you a nice feel on the new OS user interface. One point to note is that you will a rooted Nexus with a custom recovery installed.
Material Design Themed Android L Apps
When the Material Design user interface concept was unveiled during the 2014 Developers’ Conference, many people did not think that it would elicit the kind of interest that it is currently getting from developers.
Already, there are many apps that are already using the Android L Material Design themes for their user interface. Looking at these apps, one gets a feel of the direction Google is going with its new OS – a flatter, cleaner and more organized appearance.
Google Chrome Android L App Beta has been redesigned with the look and feel like the Material Design UI as expected. Google has hit the road running on this one as a sneak preview of the amazing simplicity and power of its new UI design philosophy. Though not having all the expected features of material design such as stack cards for multiple tabs, one still gets a fairly decent idea of where Google is going with all this. To try out the new Chrome app, you can from the app store.
Today Calendar has already made a name for itself as a reliable calendar app for managing one’s busy lifestyle in a simple way. The redesigning of the app using material design is just the icing of on the cake for a highly functional and convenient app. To upgrade your Today Calendar with the new appearance, you can install it and try out for yourself.
Local Cast is a simple app for sending various content to you TV from your smart device. The app has implemented the Android L material design concept beautifully as can be seen from its new look interface that also has many elements borrowed from the G+ look.
Flip Currency Converter is an app that is very useful for those who travel a lot and have problems converting prices to the local currencies from their currencies. This early adaptor to the Android L user interface concept has done a god job with the buttons which have an almost flat appearance that comes to life when tapped. If you have the older version and want to upgrade or you are just new to the app, you can download and install it at the app store.
Root Check app is targeted at those who want to get the maximum use of their Android device by giving you the ability to check whether the device is truly rooted. This is very important especially if you are buying used phones and need to confirm whether the device has been rooted properly. The app provides a lot of information that is presented in a beautiful material design themed interface.
Google Play Store is another Google product that is been revamped using the new UI concept, reflecting the importance it places on the philosophy. Though the redesign is still in its formative stages, it does look pretty cool and easy on the eyes – not to mention the functional benefits that it gives to the website. Installing the Google Play app is very simple and we would recommend that you download it and enjoy the cool material design look on your smartphone.
Now Browser has taken the navigational component of material design and implemented it just like Google intended. Navigation is achieved through simple swipe actions – swipe left to go back and right to move forward in the browser. While swiping in a browser may not be entirely new, the ingenuity is in the way one goes about accessing historical browser settings. If you want to enjoy the browser in its new format, it can installed in simple steps at the app store for free.
Mind Flux Open is an organizer for your calendars that is still in its beta design mode therefore you will expect some occasional bugs. These will obvious be resolved in later iterations but if you are hungry to experience its neat implementation of the material design concept you can install it just for the sake of it.
Moonshine Icon Pack cannot be described as a function-heavy app and as with some of the apps we have reviewed above, it is how the UI has changed that really impresses us. You will want some consistency across all the apps in your device and it won’t hurt upgrading to the new Android L UI by downloading it from the app store.
Which of the above Android L apps did you like?
Android L Games
There are a few games that have been tested with the Android L beta version on the Nexus appear to be working well. The following video contains a test of the early version with the games that work and those that do not work on the platform. Games tested include:
- GTA-SA when tested does not load at all with the Android L Beta version
- Dead Trigger 2 works properly without any hitch
- Mortal Combat 4 does not load and gives you a blank screen
- Amazing Spiderman 2 works though it takes a long time to load
What is apparent from the test is that most of the games have not been fully optimised especially the ones that have a high demand on system resources. Hopefully, developers are working on optimising the apps and games for Android L and we will be seeing many improvements in the coming months.