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New Android apps worth downloading: DriveOFF, Cosmic Colony, Stick Tennis

by Marty Gabel

Here are three great Android apps to enjoy. DriveOFF is an app that aims to prevent your Android smartphone from distracting you while driving. Cosmic Colony is a fun simulation game which sees you building an interplanetary society. We’ve also got the lowdown on Stick Tennis, a fast-paced tennis game just in time for the U.S. Open which starts later this week.

DriveOFF (Free)

What’s it about? Mobile devices are distracting, especially when driving. DriveOFF from esure aims to curb this.

What’s cool? DriveOFF will prevent your phone from distracting you. Once your speed reaches 10 mph, the app will automatically switch off your Android’s smartphone screen. In addition, it turns off all call and message notifications, too, while displaying a screensaver of your choice (the ones bundled with the app are amusingly dull). It’s a neat idea, providing it works of course.

Who is it for? According to the app’s description, a single beep of a phone diverts motorists’ gaze away from the road four times longer (2.30 seconds vs 0.48 seconds) compared to standard driving conditions even when unanswered. Clearly, that’s enough time for an accident to happen and make this app a worthwhile download.

What’s it like? Your Android may have an in-built car panel app for use in your vehicle, which only shows a few apps with large icons. If not, an app like Car Home Ultra might work. But, while trying not to sound like a fuddy-duddy killjoy, I’d probably suggest curtailing any phone use while driving.

Cosmic Colony (Free)

What’s it about? With this new adventure game from Gameloft you can create your very own space colony on a mysterious planet!

What’s cool? It’s 2088 AD, apparently. You and your heroic space crew reach a planet called Mochwoi and explore this amazing new world. You’ll create and expand a space-age settlement while completing missions and managing your resources so you keep everyone happy. Along the way, there are some exciting mini-games which will see you fighting off space pirates, and you’ll also face unexpected events like meteorite storms... oh my.

Who’s it for? Fans of time- and resource-management games will likely get a kick out Cosmic Colony. It also has a social element (think Zynga games) because you can visit the colonies that your friends create to see how they stack up.

What’s it like? It’s a bit like SimCity (but in space, of course) or Kairosoft’s recently released Kairobotica.

Stick Tennis (Free)

What’s it about? With the U.S. Open beginning today, why not work on your forehand with this free, fun and frantic tennis game?

What’s cool? The game has simple swipe controls so it’s very easy to learn. However, the opposition are pretty tough as it all moves pretty quickly. In conjunction with the U.S Open, there’s a North American theme and you get to play as your favorite tennis stars. In addition, there are daily challenges to keep you on your toes and keep things fresh. An in-app purchase unlocks the World Domination and full Grand Slam modes.

Who’s it for? Despite Stick Tennis being hard to master, casual players should enjoy it, though there is plenty of challenge for hardcore gamers. The controls are intuitive and it demands good reactions to succeed.

What’s it like? There are other cartoony tennis games out there like the old-school Gachinko Tennis and more in-depth simulators like Virtua Tennis Championship from Sega. The folks who make Stick Tennis also make the hugely popular Stick Cricket.

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