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5 apps worth downloading this week

Featuring Google’s latest attempt at a messaging service, a way to automatically manage your vast photo collections and a keyboard that’s designed for *ahem* larger fingers.

Image: Orbeus/YouTube

EACH WEEK, WE highlight five apps that are worth downloading for your smartphone and tablet. There are a lot of apps released on a daily basis, but not all of them are worth paying attention to.

This week includes Google’s latest attempt at a messaging service, a way to automatically manage your vast photo collections and a keyboard that’s designed for *ahem* larger fingers.

Google Messenger
For: Android
Cost: Free

- So Messenger is Google’s latest app for SMS and MMS, even though it already has Hangouts. Confused yet?
- Messenger does one thing different that’s important, it doesn’t require Google+ integration, but it does require you to still be sending SMS and MMS messages (which might not be the case for some)
- It also uses the new Material Design look, which is coming with the newest Android update, meaning the app is easy on the eye.
- It’s faster and easier to manage than Hangouts, and allows you to block senders and send audio messages as well.
- If you’re getting sick of Hangouts, or the traditional SMS messages app that comes with all phones, this is a nice alternative.

Google Messenger Source: Messenger/Google Play

Chronos Calendar +
For: Windows Phone
Cost: €1.99 (Trial version also available)

- Being organised is important, but while there are many calendar apps out there, few can be described as essential. This is the exception.
- First things first, this is a beautiful app and while there’s an original version, this has been rewritten from the ground up to support Windows Phone 8.1, and it’s all the better for it.
- The app comes with a ton of customisation options, and has some nice features like smart add feature which makes it faster to create events
- If you have a Windows computer as well, it supports universal app mode, meaning you will soon see it appear for Windows 8.1 tablets.
- Provided you’re not put off by the price tag, this is an app well worth getting.

Chronos Calendar + Source: Chronos Calendar +/Windows Phone

PhotoTime
For: iOS
Cost: Free

- Chances are if you have a smartphone, then it’s very likely you’ve taken a lot of photos. So many that it’s could be difficult to manage them all.
- PhotoTime is a smart photo app that organises, sorts and tags your photos on both your phone and social media accounts so they’re easier to find.
- Depending on how many photos you have saved, it can take a few minutes to process but it works better than you expect.
- Admittedly, it’s not perfect. At the beginning you will have to filter through it and remove wrongly attributed tags, but over time, it learns what kind of photos you take and how you tag them.
- If you’re overloaded with photos, give it a try.

Source: Orbeus/YouTube

Rormix
For: iOSAndroid
Cost: Free

- Tinder has a lot to answer for. Since its release, most apps have gone for a swipe right to approve and music apps are no exception.
- Rormix doesn’t make this the main feature, but takes inspiration from Tinder to help with quick discovery. Watch 15 seconds of a looped music video and if you like it, swipe right.
- Outside of that, the format is quite similar to Soundwave, but instead of user generated content, it focuses on unearthing unsigned bands and artists.
- It takes your musical tastes into account so you will be listening to bands and artists that have similar sounds to those you like.
- If you want another way to discover the next big thing before everyone else, this is the app for you.

Music discovery Source: Rormix/App Store

ThickButtons
For: iOS, Android
Cost: €1.79, Free (Android)

- If you’re not a fan of swipe keyboards like Swype or Swiftkey, then you will know how annoying it is to type with a small keyboard.
- ThickButtons tries to solve this by making the most popular keys you will (likely) use bigger.
- It enlarges buttons that you’re most likely to use while minimising the others, reducing the chances of you making a mistake.
- The app also includes word suggestions, and you can customise the size of said keys so they don’t squeeze out other letters (it automatically adjusts whenever you hit a key).
- For those who regularly find themselves making mistakes with the keyboard, or if the GIF below is something that happens all too often.

p7Y0eRW Source: Imgur

ThickFingers Source: ThickButtons/Google Play

Read: 5 apps worth downloading this week – 8th Nov >

Read: Why the next step for Hailo involves people without smartphones >

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About the author:

Quinton O'Reilly

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