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Top 5 Android & iOS Apps of the Week: AI Continues to Make Its Mark

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How has your weekend been? This week, despite being busy with reviews and news, we continue to curate five different apps that we think will add value to your smartphone experience. What's in store? There is a dating app, an old-school RPG (2 games in 1, talk about value), with AI playing a role yet again in an art app, and an AI scam detector. 

We intend to maintain the quality of all recommended apps in this article. Should none of the suggested apps appeal to you, perhaps you might want to check out our free apps of the week that are published twice each week at nextpit. Enough jabbering from me, let us dive into what's exciting and interesting enough to grace your smartphones this week!

Badoo (Android & iOS)

Ah, to be in a dating game can be tough for some and easy for others. It really depends on what you are looking for, and there is no surefire or guaranteed great dates. With Valentine's Day coming up, how about checking out Badoo if you feel that you want to change your single status by meeting someone whom you can resonate with?  

  • Price: Free / Advertising: Yes / In-app purchases: Yes / Account required: Yes
Badoo app screenshots (with faces blurred for privacy reasons)
Connect with new friends easily on Badoo. / © nextpit

Badoo makes it easy to connect with others because you can express yourself and your true identity without being called out for it. So far, it does not seem as though anyone will be shadow-banned or have their profiles removed. Of course, all photos uploaded should comply with the guidelines laid out, which makes perfect sense.

It is easy to make friends here if all you want is some companionship, and it is equally easy to connect with others if you are looking for something deeper or more substantial. Navigation is a snap by liking or clicking on the 'X' button. You will also see some basic information about the other person and their orientation to help you make a more informed decision.

There is a premium option, of course. The premium option will provide you with a boost once a week, bringing you to the forefront of other people's attention. Best of all, even though it is free, you need not be constrained to just a few swipes unless you upgrade to premium. Got to love that not hiding behind a paywall!

Alphadia I & II (Android & iOS)

Based on the title, you can pretty much guess that there are two games here. Alphadia I and II. The first will see you go on a journey centered around 'Energi'. This is like the "Force" in Star Wars mythology, being a mystical power harnessed from life energy. Follow the story after the Energi War in this part as a new hope arises from the ashes of war and chaos.

As for Alphadia II, much time has passed since the Energi Crisis. We're looking at two hundred years down the road, where Enah arises. This heroic figure established the Energi Guild to combat a decline in energy, but along with it, there are some dark forces behind that threaten to unravel all the good work.

  • Price: $9.99 / Advertising: Yes / In-app purchases: Yes / Account required: No

Now that you know the background, it is pretty much traveling around with your party, growing more powerful, and so on. These are not new games at all, but can be traced all the way to 2007 with their beginnings in Japan. Remastered to provide a fresh look, you will find the graphics in line with Japanese RPG art. Both games have their fair share of replayability, and at this price point, you will certainly get plenty of bang for your buck. 

Google Arts & Culture (Android & iOS)

Do not be fooled. Appearances can be deceiving, and Google Arts & Culture is one such app. It is limited to more than just art, where you can embark on virtual 3D visits to other museums. Definitely one of the highlights during the pandemic era when travel was curtailed, but for those who are on a tight budget, you can still make the most of it in a virtual world. Other important worldwide sites that can be 'visited' include Machu Picchu, Barcelona, and Stonehenge, among others.

  • Price: Free / Advertising: None / In-app purchases: None / Account required

It is all too easy for me to get lost in a particular place, fascinated by what is offered. Of course, those who are not too much into culture can still glean some benefit from this app. It has some fun aspects, including locating artworks with subjects that look like you, or perhaps you can always browse artwork that features colors you love. Maybe that might awaken the culture snob in you.

Google Arts mobile app screenshots
No money, no problem! You can still travel to historically rich sites around the world with this app. / © nextpit

There is one gripe that I have though. The selfie option is hit-and-miss, most probably due to the location restriction. All in all, this is a great educational tool for anyone who wants to learn more about arts and culture worldwide. Parents too, would benefit from using this app and bringing their children on a bohemian adventure without breaking the bank.

Norton Genie: AI Scam Detector (Android & iOS)

When I first saw this app, I asked, "Is this a scam in itself?" After using it for a while, I can safely say that this is not a scam. You do not give up any of your personal data, and neither are you asked to key in credit card numbers or other information that might be used against you in the future. It basically offers you two options: to search an image or a text, where AI will then try to determine whether it is a scam or not.

Norton Genie mobile app screenshots
Norton Genie does do its bit to determine whether such text is a scam or not. / © nextpit

Many senior citizens have been scammed by get-rich-quick schemes or other similar investment scams. Most of these begin innocently. Send some money, and gain a phenomenal return. With the appetite now whet, one then is prepared to risk more money, but then does not hear from the scammer after that. This is often the case, and instead of relying on AI, it is always best to use common sense. Does this investment scheme offer crazy interest rates for profit? If it is too good to be true, then it is a scam.   

  • Price: Free / Advertising: None / In-app purchases: None / Account required: No

After the scan is complete, it will then inform you whether the text is a particular scam or not. I am unsure what kind of AI goes behind it, but you can continue chatting with the AI bot after that. I tried asking it about the weather and received a reply that the AI bot can only provide information and assistance related to cybersecurity. Hence, the scope is very limited yet precise. Since it is free, you do not lose anything installing this on your phone.

Readwise (Android & iOS)

Love reading? There are times when you want to annotate your books, but feel it is a waste to actually soil the pages of said books. Digital books are better, there are no dog ears to worry about, but with Readwise, it does not matter whether you are reading physical or digital books, it works by letting you preserve and recall important points in a book within the app itself. 

  • Price: Free / Advertising: None / In-app purchases: Yes / Account required: Yes
Readwise mobile app screenshots
Readwise makes reading more enjoyable. / © nextpit

Apart from archiving your thoughts, it also makes your reading experience feel more alive. It does more than just recommend paragraphs from whatever books you have, but rather, ensures you can dive deeper into the tome you are currently reading and be more engaged than ever before. I feel this is more suited for those in academia and folks who are on a self-improvement journey. It does not fare that well for fiction books, apart from preserving the core ideas and values of a particularly engaging story.

Readwise is free for the first 30 days, after which it will cost you $4.49 per month to continue using the service. It is a small price to pay if you are a voracious reader. It might get addictive after a while, where important excerpts from a book can be shared as graphics with customizable options like the colors and background.

What do you think of our featured apps this week? Which is your favorite app? Are there apps you would like to recommend? Let us know in the comments!

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Edwin Kee

Edwin Kee
Freelance Editor and Forum Moderator

The love of writing and all things tech have proven to be the catalyst that has kept me going in this industry for the past decade. Here are to many more years ahead, at least until Android Vanilla Pudding is released!

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