iOS 14 Might Come with Support for Widgets, Redesigned Wallpaper Settings

7 iOS 14 Leaks That I Am Most Excited About

Every year in June, Apple announces the new iterations for its operating systems, including the latest version of iOS. This year, even as Apple has announced that its annual developer conference — WWDC will be held online instead of in-person, due to the Coronavirus, we’re pretty hyped to see what the company has been working on, especially for iOS 14.

Earlier reports around iOS 14 have hinted at a bunch of changes, including (as reported by 9to5Mac) a redesigned wallpaper settings panel, and now Twitter user DongleBook Pro has shared what he claims are screenshots of the new wallpaper settings panel in iOS 14.

The screenshots clearly show wallpapers organised into categories. The only one we can see in the screenshots is ‘Classic Stripes’, but according to code found by 9to5Mac, there will also be categories named ‘Earth & Moon’ and ‘Flowers’.

https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js

If you look at the embedded Tweet here, you would notice that the wallpaper settings show dual-displays. That is probably a part of Apple working to bring actual widgets to the iPhone, reports 9to5Mac based on iOS 14 code they have spotted. In order to not make the home-screen look crowded when overlaid with widgets, it seems Apple will give users the option to set a wallpaper for the lock-screen and a blurred-gradient for the home-screen.

It goes without saying that as interesting as these features sound right now, this information is based on leaks and should be taken with a pinch of salt. We will get to know more about iOS 14 in June, when Apple shares all the new stuff that’s coming to iOS, macOS, and other software products, so stay tuned.

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Samsung’s Next-gen Galaxy Buds Leaked; Shows Bean-like Design

South Korean giant Samsung has so far already launched two pairs of truly wireless earbuds this year alone — the Galaxy Buds+ and the AKG N400 — and it’s only April. However, a new leak has already popped up showing what the next iteration of the company’s Galaxy Buds could look like and believe me, if you were complaining that the Buds+ didn’t look any different from the Buds, well, these new ones will probably shut you up.

According to a report from Winfuture and Roland Quandt, the next generation of Galaxy Buds are codenamed ‘Beans’ which is extremely apt based on the 3D renders shared by Roland Quandt on Twitter.

https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js

According to Quandt, the renders have been made using actual 3D design data, and even though all the usual warnings about taking this information with a pinch of salt obviously apply here as well, let’s just stop and look at these for a moment.

Image courtesy: Winfuture

“These look like kidney beans” seems to be the general consensus among tech journalists around the world, and I’m not sure if that’s a good thing or not. On the plus side, they will not protrude outside the ear, which looks a little odd. However, the renders also don’t show any silicone earbuds, which probably means no ANC either, and that would be a crucial feature to miss out on.

If the report is to be believed, Samsung is currently in the Engineering Validation Test phase for this design, which means these are far from finished. However, the report also says that they should launch this year, in a few months. I took that to mean that they will be launched alongside the Note 20. We’ll just have to wait and see.

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How to Use Walkie-Talkie on Apple Watch

The Apple Watch is a feature-rich smartwatch and while most of its features are essentials, such as notifications, calling, ECG and more, there are some features that aren’t essential, but are definitely amazing to have. Walkie-talkie is one of these features that I’ve started to love using on my Apple Watch Series 5 all the time. However, setting it up isn’t the most straight-forward thing and people have a bunch of doubts about it, so today I’m going to help you set-up and use walkie-talkie on your Apple Watch.

What is Walkie-talkie Anyway?

First up, let’s take a quick look at what this feature is and why you might like to use it. As the name suggests, the feature behaves like a walkie-talkie, except instead of connecting peer-to-peer, it goes over the internet. This means that while regular walkie-talkies have short ranges of communication, this feature can work across the world as long as both you and the receiver are connected to the internet.

It’s useful when you want to get in touch with someone regarding something that’s not long enough to be a phone call, but still urgent enough to not be a simple text message. Walkie Talkie is built-in on the Apple Watch so you don’t need to worry about installing a third party Apple Watch app just to use this feature.

How to Use Walkie-Talkie on Apple Watch

  • Launch the Walkie-Talkie app on your Apple Watch.

  • Enable the toggle next to ‘Walkie-Talkie’.

  • Now, tap on ‘Add Friends’ and invite the person you wish to talk with. You only need to invite a contact once. After that, assuming they accept the invitation, you can contact them anytime.

  • Once the contact accepts your invite, you will see their name like this in the Walkie-Talkie app. Tap on their name and then press and hold to speak your message.

How to Accept Walkie-Talkie Invites

If someone has invited you to connect with them on Walkie-Talkie, you will first need to accept their invite. You can do that by launching the Walkie-Talkie app, and tapping ‘Accept’ on the invite as shown below.

How to Enable/ Disable Walkie-Talkie

Once you’ve set up Walkie-Talkie and invited your contacts, anyone can reach you on Walkie-Talkie at any time. While in some situations this is useful, it’s not so great if you’re say, at work, and suddenly a voice starts coming from your watch. So it’s better to disable Walkie-Talkie when you don’t wish to be disturbed.

To enable or disable walkie talkie, just open the control center and tap on the Walkie Talkie icon. The icon turns yellow when Walkie-Talkie is on, and grey when the feature is off.

Use Walkie-Talkie on Your Apple Watch

The Walkie-Talkie feature in Apple Watch is something I use a lot for quick short bursts of communication. For some reason, when you first send an invite, it sometimes messes it up and doesn’t show the new contact, but it automatically got fixed for me in around an hour. So if you face that same issue, just be patient, or try restarting your watch. Other than that, I have tried to cover everything about the walkie-talkie feature in this article but if you think I missed out on something, do let me know in the comments and I’ll add that as well.

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OnePlus 8 and 8 Pro Rumor Roundup: All You Need to Know Ahead of April 14 Launch

OnePlus 8 and 8 Pro rumor roundup

Even though the whole world is currently battling the COVID-19 pandemic, OnePlus has started gearing up to launch its upcoming OnePlus 8 flagship series on 14th April. The company has already shared with us some of the key hardware specs such as the new 120Hz AMOLED display, Snapdragon 865 chipset, and more. But, it’s thanks to noted tipster Roland Quandt over at WinFuture that we now know almost everything about both the OnePlus 8 and OnePlus 8 Pro.

So, if you’ve been wondering what the OnePlus 8 series will have in store for us, then here’s a quick rumor roundup of both the upcoming flagships:

OnePlus 8

OnePlus 8 - Glacier Green
Image Courtesy: WinFuture

Starting off with the design, OnePlus may be looking to refine its flagship lineup with the launch of the OnePlus 8 and 8 Pro. It will adopt a Samsung-like approach going forward. It will offer you the exact same design with its two flagship phones but with minor differences in the display, camera or battery department.

The design will now be the same as the OnePlus 7 Pro phones from last year, with a dual-curved display and vertical camera setup, minus the pop-up selfie camera. The pop-up mechanism will be swapped out for a punch-hole-style selfie snapper, as per the reports. It’s expected to a 16MP sensor, which is okay.

Image Courtesy: WinFuture

Moving to the front, OnePlus 8 is expected to sport a 6.55-inch Full-HD+ Fluid AMOLED display with a 90Hz refresh rate. It’s the same as the previous-gen 7T phone, no upgrades for the non-Pro variant here. The panel will support HDR10+, have better color accuracy, a faster in-display fingerprint sensor, and more. That’s pretty much everything we know about the OnePlus 8’s display for now.

The latest Snapdragon 865 chipset from Qualcomm will power this smartphone. You will also find the Snapdragon X55 modem onboard for 5G support (dual-mode 5G, SA and NSA support). The rumors suggest there will be two OnePlus 8 configurations – 8GB+128GB and 12GB+256GB. The company will use the faster LPDDR5 RAM and UFS 3.0 storage, along with Turbo Write, as revealed officially.

Image Courtesy: WinFuture

In the camera department, OnePlus 8 will stray away from the circular bump seen on its predecessor and include a vertical setup that we’ve already seen on the Pro models. It’s rumored to be a triple camera array with a primary 48MP (f/1.8) sensor, a 16MP ultra-wide lens, and a 2MP depth sensor. Yes, it looks like the company will ditch the telephoto lens (present aboard the OnePlus 7T) in favor of a depth sensor for, maybe, better portrait photography.

OnePlus 8 will most likely come equipped with a 4,300mAh battery but weigh just around 178 grams – less than OnePlus 7T at 198 grams. The company won’t upgrade the charging speeds on the non-Pro, so expect to see the existing 30W Warp Charge 30T adapter in the box. The standard variant won’t support wireless charging, as per the leaks. You can check out the wireless charging details for the Pro variant down below.

OnePlus 8 will arrive in three attractive colorways – Glacier Green, Interstellar Glow, and Onyx Black.

OnePlus 8 Pro

OnePlus 8 Pro - Ultramarine Blue
Image Courtesy: WinFuture

The overall design and construction of the OnePlus 8 Pro will be exactly the same as the non-Pro variant. The key areas of differentiation will be the display and cameras.

On the front, OnePlus 8 Pro will feature a larger 6.78-inch 2K+ Fluid AMOLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate and a 240Hz touch sampling rate. This is a notch above the OnePlus 7T Pro. The panel is also expected to have permanently-activated 10-bit HDR support and 1300 nits of peak brightness, as per the leaks.

All of this has officially been confirmed, along with the presence of a dedicated MEMC chip onboard. It will enable the device to upscale 24fps content to 120fps to offer you a far more immersive experience. You can check out the apps that will support the MEMC chip right here.

oneplus 8 pro cameras

OnePlus 8 Pro is rumored to feature a quad-camera system with two 48MP sensors. It’s going to incorporate a primary 48MP (f/1.78) Sony IMX689 sensor that we recently saw make its debut on the Oppo Find X2. This will be coupled with an ultra-wide 48MP (f/2.2) Sony IMX586 sensor with a 120-degree FOV, an 8MP telephoto lens with 3x optical magnification, and finally, a 5MP depth sensor.

In the official marketing image above, you can notice that there’s also a dual-LED flash and laser autofocus next to the three-cameras on the back. There’s currently no info on which lenses are optically stabilized. Further, OnePlus is said to have invested heavily in the camera department but it’s something we will be able to test out once we get our hands on the device.

OnePlus 8 Pro will probably be the company’s first smartphone with an official IP rating. The device is said to carry an IP68 rating, which means it will officially be more water and dust resistant than before. The non-Pro variant is expected to have an IP53 rating.

OnePlus 8 - wireless charging
Image Courtesy: Twitter/Max J.

Finally, the device will be backed by a 4,510mAh battery with a Warp Charge 30T adapter – same as its predecessor, the 7T Pro. This may come as a disappointment for some as we had expected OnePlus to finally debut its own version of SuperVOOC with this lineup.

But, you would be elated to know that OnePlus will finally embrace wireless charging. OnePlus 8 Pro will most likely also be the first OnePlus to support wireless charging. It is said to feature 30W wireless charging, along with 5W reverse wireless charging support.

OnePlus 8 Pro will also be available in three colorways – Glacier Green, Onyx Black, and Ultramarine Blue.

OnePlus Z

oneplus 8 lite - oneplus z leaks
Image Courtesy: 91Mobiles

Apart from the two flagship OnePlus 8 devices, the company is also rumored to revive its mid-range lineup. What was earlier identified as the OnePlus 8 Lite is now expected to be launched as the OnePlus Z.

It’s expected to be a 5G-backed mid-range phone, taking on the likes of Nokia 8.3 5G and Mi 10 Lite 5G. OnePlus Z is rumored to be backed by either the latest MediaTek Dimensity 1000 or Snapdragon 765G chipset, coupled with up to 8GB RAM and 256GB storage.

The device will feature a flat AMOLED display with a center punch-hole and a 90Hz refresh rate, as opposed to the curved display on the flagship models. You will find a triple camera array on the rear, including a 48MP primary sensor, a 16MP ultra-wide lens, and a 12MP telephoto lens.

OnePlus Z may come equipped with a 4,000mAh battery with 30T Warp Charging support. Since this will be a mid-range device, we don’t expect it to support wireless charging but it’s the one thing that may set it apart from competitors if included. All three phones will obviously run the latest version of OxygenOS 10 based on Android 10. It will most likely come with a new Always-on Display (AOD) feature out-of-the-box.

Price and Availability

OnePlus CEO Pete Lau has already confirmed that even the top-end versions of the new OnePlus 8 series won’t cost over $1,000 in the US. The phones will definitely be priced a notch higher than the previous-gen model, thanks to the exorbitant price of Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 865 chipset (including the 5G modem) and IP rating.

You can expect the OnePlus 8 to start somewhere around $600 (around Rs. 45,000) while the 8 Pro will most likely be priced starting at $850 (around Rs. 65,000) in the US. There is currently no official word on whether OnePlus Z will debut alongside the OnePlus 8 lineup or not. Hence, there are no pricing leaks available for this mid-range device but if it’s priced rightly – around the $350-$400 (around Rs. 27,000) then it could be ‘the’ flagship killer to beat. What are your thoughts on the OnePlus 8 and 8 Pro? Let us know in the comments below.

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Byju’s Adds Free Live Classes for Students Amidst Coronavirus Lockdown

Byju's Adds Free Live Classes for Students Amidst Coronavirus Lockdown

Edtech platform Byju’s has introduced free live classes for students in light of the nationwide lockdown imposed to contain the spread of coronavirus. Interested students can now learn real-time from Byju’s teachers by reserving a slot for their preferred topic from the app.

“We have now added free ‘Live Classes’ on our platform, where students can attend 3-4 regular sessions per week. Along with the existing content available on the app, live classes will bring a schedule to their learning and give them access to good teachers – something that they are missing especially now. Our live classes will remain free for students across the country until the current situation persists.”, said Byju’s COO Mrinal Mohit in a statement.

Students can reserve a slot by downloading Byju’s app from Google Play Store or App Store and navigating to the ‘Live Classes’ section. The topics will be available based on the class the student is in.

With this initiative, Byju’s plans to enrich the Learn from Home experience for students, thanks to its video lessons, interactive live classes, and multiple practice tests.

Byju’s had previously made their content available to students early March to help students and parents cope with the sudden closure of schools. This step, according to the company, resulted in a 150 percent increase in the number of new users on the platform.

“We are extremely heartened by the overwhelming response to the free lessons on our learning app with 6 million new students learning in March 2020 alone. This reiterates the fact that online learning mediums are a great enabler in helping students when they learn from home.”, Mohit added.

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Google’s Nearby Sharing Is Coming to Chromebooks

Google’s take on AirDrop-like file sharing service – Nearby Sharing is rumored to be in the works for quite a while now and it was even enabled on the Pixel 4 and Pixel 2 XL by XDA this January. A new report from Chrome Unboxed sheds light on the availability of the feature in Chromebooks.

Until now, there was no mention of Nearby Sharing for Chromebooks, which was strange as AirDrop is available on Macs and Google would strive to achieve the same seamless experience across its ecosystem of devices. According to a new commit spotted by Chrome Unboxed on Chromium Gerrit, the software giant is working to add a feature flag for Nearby Sharing for Chrome OS.

“[Nearby] Added the feature flag for Nearby Sharing. This flag can be used to enable or disable Nearby Sharing”, reads the commit. The commit got merged and the flag should hopefully show up in the next Canary release of Chrome OS.

In an ideal scenario, you will be able to enable Nearby Sharing from the quick settings toggles and access it from the Share sheet on your Pixel device, choose your nearby Chromebook from the list of visible devices, and share it right away with no extra hassle or complications involved in the process.

We could expect Google to debut Nearby Sharing for Chromebooks with its next PixelBook alongside the Pixel 5 series. Until then, we have the tried-and-tested alternative Snapdrop, which according to Arjun from our team, is the fastest way for transferring files across devices and platforms.

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Top 10 AirDroid Alternatives You Can Use

Top 7 AirDroid Alternatives You Can Use in 2019

If you are an Android user, you must have used AirDroid or at least heard of it. Yes, the app is that popular and deservedly so. AirDroid is an app that lets you manage your Android device from a computer using the web or the desktop clients. With AirDroid, you can manage files, check out notifications, reply to messages, remotely control your device and do a lot more from your computer. While there’s no doubt about AirDroid’s capabilities, the service did come under scrutiny, with the security firm Zimperium releasing details on various security loopholes in the app. Also, users have been complaining about the app featuring bloatware off late. So, all is certainly not well with the AirDroid app. So if you are looking for an AirDroid alternative or a similar app for iOS, here are 10 AirDroid alternatives you can use in 2020.

Best AirDroid Alternatives in 2020

1. Pushbullet / Portal

AirDroid is a one-stop solution for everything, be it notifications, file transfer, screen mirroring, remote access and more. However, there are very few apps in the market that offer all these features into one app. One of the best examples is Pushbullet which allows you to access your smartphone notifications, send messages, links, files, share universal clipboard and more. All the while, offering end to end encryption for top-notch security. However, it misses out on the WiFi file transfer that AirDroid is so popular for. Sure, Pushbullet has native support for local file transfer, but it does not offer a full-fledged local web address for file sharing. So to bring this support, Pushbullet has released a new app called Portal which offers you the same WiFi file transfer through a designated web address. So in a way, Pushbullet and Portal make the best combination as an alternative to AirDroid.

pushbullet

Availability: Android, iOS, Windows, macOS, Chrome, Firefox, Safari (Free, Pro subscription starts at $4.99/month) / Portal (Free)

2. Snapdrop

If you are looking for an AirDroid alternative for file sharing purposes then you must check out Snapdrop. It’s the fastest and easiest way to share files across various platforms without downloading any app, creating an account, or scanning a QR code. Snapdrop is an open-source web-based platform that works across all platforms. All you need is a common WiFi access point. If your PC and smartphone are connected to the same WiFi network then simply open snapdrop.net on both devices and start sharing files. The best part about Snapdrop is that it’s extremely fast, you can share multiple files in one go and there are no ads whatsoever. Not to mention, all your file transfers are encrypted using TLS protocol unlike the free version of AirDroid. To conclude, if you use AirDroid mainly for file transfers then Snapdrop is the best alternative bar none in this list.

snapdrop

Availability: Android, iOS, Windows, macOS, Chrome OS, Linux, Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Web (Free)

3. Your Phone Companion

Your Phone Companion is an app by Microsoft to bridge the gap between smartphones and Windows computers. Similar to AirDroid, you can receive notifications, send messages, access photos and best of all, receive calls on your PC using this app. Microsoft seems to be working really hard on Your Phone app and as a result, it has got many new features in the recent past. In fact, if you own a flagship Samsung smartphone then you can do a lot more. You can mirror the screen on your computer, resume document editing from where you left on the smartphone and more. Overall, Your Phone Companion is a feature-packed app and can bring lots of AirDroid features without paying for the Pro version. The only downside is that Your Phone Companion is not available on iOS at this moment, but you can expect development in the future.

my phone companion

Availability: Android (Free), Windows 10 (Free)

4. ShareMe (MiDrop)

Although ShareMe is not as feature-packed as AirDroid, I have mentioned it for the sole reason that it does not show any kind of ads. There are a plethora of apps for local file sharing on the Play Store, but almost all of them push intrusive ads including sleazy videos which makes the experience bad to worse. Apart from that, ShareMe is best known for sharing files between Android smartphones. But with the recent update, ShareMe has got an option to share files between computers and smartphones. You can easily create a local FTP URL on your Android device using the app and then you can access all your files on a web browser. So if you want an app for local file sharing between Android smartphones and computers then ShareMe is another great option you can consider in place of AirDroid.

4. ShareMe (MiDrop)

Availability: Android (Free)

5. AirMore

As the name suggests, AirMore is very similar to AirDroid. While it does not offer all the features from AirDroid, it does include almost all the important features. Like AirDroid, you can use AirMore to transfer files from your Android smartphone to PC and vice versa. The app lets you play media and syncs your apps, contacts, and messages. That’s not all, it also includes a “Reflector” feature, which lets you mirror your Android device’s interface to a computer, like AirMirror. Plus, the app mirrors the notifications and also lets you send messages from your PC. Also, if you are an iOS user and you have always wanted AirDroid for iOS, well, AirMore is available for iOS devices.

5. AirMore

Apart from that, unlike AirDroid, AirMore is free and while it lacks features like remote camera, screen recorder, ability to make calls, take action on notifications and desktop clients, it’s still among the best AirDroid alternatives that you can reliably use.

Availability: Android, iOS, Web (Free)

6. ApowerMirror

Apart from AirMore and Your Phone Companion, ApowerMirror is the third app in this list which supports screen mirroring. It’s a dedicated app for screen mirroring and the app has been developed by the same company as AirMore so you can expect great reliability while controlling the device from your PC. The best part about ApowerMirror is that it does not need root or any ADB command to enable screen mirroring. Similar to AirDroid, all you need is its desktop client and you are all set. Other than that, you can stream Android and iOS screens to Windows PC or Mac. Furthermore, it allows you to remotely control Android devices on the computer using mouse and keyboard. All I would say is if you want an AirDroid alternative for only screen mirroring then ApowerMirror is an excellent app.

apowermirror

Availability: Android, iOS, Windows, macOS (Free)

7. Scrcpy

Scrcpy is another powerful app for screen-mirroring that is open-source and available on a host of platforms including Android, Windows, Linux, and macOS. While you need to have some expertise to get the app running, it’s highly recommended that you do so. You will have access to a number of great features that are generally found in the premium version of apps. For instance, you can control the Android screen from your PC with almost zero lag. Further, you can record the screen in various resolutions, use keyboard shortcuts on your Android device, push audio through the computer, send files and more. Simply put, if you are looking for a free alternative to AirDroid then there can’t be a better alternative than Scrcpy.

7. Scrcpy

Availability: Android, Windows, macOS, Linux (Free)

8. Vysor

The AirMirror feature on AirDroid is pretty great, however, due to its wireless nature, the quality of the mirror largely depends on the WiFi connection. Thankfully, you can use Vysor, which lets you mirror your Android device’s screen to a computer. Moreover, you can even control the Android device through the mirrored interface using the keyboard and mouse on your PC or Mac. The app is available in a free version but you can get the Pro version if you want features like wireless mode, full screen, better quality mirror, drag & drop files and more.

8. Vysor

Availability: Android, Chrome (Free version, Pro subscription starts at $2.50/month)

9. Xender

If you’ve used AirDroid primarily to transfer files from your computer to your smartphone, you can try out Xender. It’s a popular file-sharing app available on multiple platforms but what makes it a great alternative to AirDroid is its web app. The web app lets users drag and drop files from their Windows PC or Mac to an Android smartphone or iPhone/iPad. While there’s a Windows app available, the web app makes sure you can use it on almost any platform. The app is free and you can transfer any number of files of any size and the good news is, it works pretty well and transfers files very quickly without using your bandwidth.

9. Xender

Availability: Android, iOS, Windows, macOS, Web (Free)

10. Join

Join has gained a lot of popularity among the Android community as a Pushbullet alternative and that in turn makes it a decent AirDroid alternative. While Join does not offer a polished interface like AirDroid, it lets you share files, links, and location to multiple devices. It also mirrors your notifications, messages and you can use the app to send messages from your computer. Also, if you are a Tasker user, you are going to appreciate the Tasker integration in the app. While it lacks the device management features, screen mirroring and other features of AirDroid, it’s still an app worth a try.

AirDroid Alternatives join

Availability: Android, Windows, Web (Free, Full version at $1.49)

Bonus: AirMirror

AirMirror adopts a different fashion in which it works and unlike other apps in the list, it is actually dedicated to casting the display of your smartphone onto another mobile device. AirMirror is an app developed by SAND Studio, which is the developer of AirDroid. The app can be useful for a variety of applications including tech support, file sharing, or simply entertainment. The only caveat of using the app is that the setup process is a bit complicated and requires some technical know-how. If you are rooted then the process is seamless. However, for non-root users, you will have to use the AirDroid PC app to authorize some permission through ADB. Nevertheless, if you want to mirror an Android device to another smartphone then it’s a great app to try.

Bonus: AirMirror

Availability: Android, Windows (Free)

Try Out These AirDroid Alternatives

AirDroid is no doubt a brilliant app but the security of users is of paramount importance. So, if you want to move on from AirDroid, these alternatives should be good enough. Well, that’s all from our side, try them out and let us know your thoughts and suggestions in the comments section below. Also, if you think that we miss out on an app, drop them down too.

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