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New Android apps worth downloading: Google Keyboard, Duolingo: Learn Languages Free, Sheep Up!

by Andrew Koziara

Today brings us the latest and greatest from Google. This time around they've decided to tackle our typing needs with Google Keyboard, featuring gesture based typing and even Voice Typing. Duolingo: Learn Languages Free opts to teach us all how to speak another language or two using fun game elements. For more traditional gaming, we've got Sheep Up!, a great and cute new puzzler overflowing with bounciness.


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Google Keyboard (Free)

What’s it about? In their continued quest for world domination, Google has released their very own gesture based keyboard app. Not so shocking twist…it's great!

What’s cool? Not dissimilar to popular alternative touch keyboards, Google Keyboard offers great swipe and gesture based typing, simply lifting your finger to finish a word, leaving the spacebar sad and neglected. With dictionaries for 26 different languages, alternative keyboard layouts, and even Voice Typing for easier note taking on the go, this is one of the most comprehensive and accurate keyboards around. This one is easy to recommend to everyone, and everyone will probably download it regardless. Another quality app from our future overlords.

Who’s it for? Do you type on your phone or tablet? Great! It's for you. Namely, it's for people who want to type a bit more quickly and accurately in general.

What’s it like? Paid alternatives include Swype and Swiftkey Keyboard. Though Google Keyboard is already being reported as more accurate.

Duolingo: Learn Languages Free (Free)

What’s it about? An easy-and-fun-to-use app for learning a multitude of foreign languages that has proven pretty effective.

What’s cool? By dividing words and grammar into various categories, and then having you play great learning and memorization games with them, you'll be on the fast track to at least a rudimentary understanding of Spanish, French, German, Portuguese, Italian, and even English if you're reading this but aren't fluent. The app is totally free to use, and it's pretty thorough in its coverage of each language. I don't know that it can make you fluent, but it's a great first step.

Who’s it for? Anyone who wants to ease into learning a new language, and wants the experience to be a bit fun.

What’s it like? Memrise - Learn Any Language also tries to make the experience a bit more fun. You could also look into the entire catalogue of babbel.com apps!

Sheep Up! (Free)

What’s it about? An adorable "Toy Story-esque" puzzle game in which you move a bouncing toy sheep through levels via tilt controls.

What’s cool? The first outing from developer Bad Seed Entertainment, this colorful and charming puzzler really impresses. In it you are a sheep trying to escape a cardboard box that you've been stored in with all the other toys. With plenty of cool power-ups, different costumes for your sheep, and novel in-game puzzle mechanics centered around your constantly bouncing sheep, this simple casual puzzler is sure to put a smile on your face throughout its 100 levels. That awesomely cute puppy certainly doesn't hurt.

Who’s it for? Anyone who likes an easy going and charming puzzler that still offers a fair bit of challenge.

What’s it like? The bouncing mechanics are very similar to Gamevil's Air Penguin, a favorite of mine.


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