Top Emerging Android Apps: Photo Editing, Animal Collecting and Contract Killing

Once again, the Android charts were all over the map this week. With the exception of Autodesk’s Pixlr-o-matic and Booyah’s Early Bird, there were very few new releases that made the charts, as older apps continued to reign, often using sales and updates to increase their revenues and downloads. Last week’s #1 paid app, JFDP Labs’ Paper Camera also kept its hold on the top spot, which parlayed it into an appearance on the top grossing chart as well.

New Titles With the Top Free Android Apps Chart:

Wi-Fi Finder – The first app in our update this week is #9 ranked Wi-Fi Finder. A relatively new utility, it has been immensely successful since its debut, seeing over 5,000,000 downloads in less than a month. Wi-Fi Finder is a simple app that works both online and offline to locate wifi hotspots (free and paid) for users, and then overlay the results onto a Google map. Wi-Fi Finder was developed by Jiwire, a mobile advertising company that places advertising onto wi-fi networks by integrating it with the login page.

(Update) – The #15 ranked app makes our roundup this week thanks to an update on September 23rd that completely resigned the user interface and added landscape orientation support, voice search, access to the popular Word of the Day and Hot Word blogs. The app also now includes a limited time option to upgrade to an ad-free version for $1.99.

(Update) Google+ – Just as its counterpart on iOS saw a huge upswing in popularity after the social network went into open beta, the Android version of the Google+ app has seen installs shoot up, peaking at more than 10,000,000 after the September 20th update. Users can now join Hangouts from the mobile app, set profile photos, move the app to their SD card, and use a long press when in their stream to +1, share and mute posts. Google+ is currently the #19 free app in the Android marketplace.

Pixlr-o-matic – Retro photography app Pixlr-o-matic is the #35 free marketplace app, released for Android on September 15th (but previously available for iOS, web and Facebook), Pixlr-o-matic lets users add vintage-inspired filters, lighting effects and frames to their images. Android users can can choose from an existing photo in their gallery or snap a new photo from within the app, and share them via Facebook or the app’s own image sharing service. Pixlr-o-matic was developed by Pixlr, creator of several popular free photo editing tools. The developer was recently acquired by Autodesk, the makers of AutoCAD, Maya, and 3ds Max.

Mouse Trap – Puzzle game Mouse Trap has seen a big jump in installs, landing it at the #47 spot, thanks to a September 21st  update adding 200 more levels – bringing the game’s grand total to a staggering 2100. Mouse Trap is an ad-supported game that challenges players to guide a mouse of of a maze by sliding blocks out of the way. Users can also collect coins which can be used to unlock bonuses and more level packs. Mouse trap is just one of the many applications created by French developer Magma Mobile, who are also the creators of the popular Android app listing website Androlib.

New Titles With the Top Paid Android Apps Chart:

Early Bird – Early Bird has migrated to Android, making its debut on September 15th, and climbing to the #8 spot on the paid Android app charts. Booyah’s new game has similar gameplay to Angry Birds – players must ensure the Early Bird gets his worm by guiding him around obstacles and pitfalls with swipe controls. The Android version of Early Bird costs $0.99 and comes with leaderboards and achievements powered by OpenFeint.

WP Clock – At #11 this week is an older app that has seen installs skyrocket in the last 30 days. WP Clock is a is a live typographic wallpaper for android devices that displays the current time, date, battery life and wifi SSID (if available) as a dynamic wallpaper. Users can also download or choose their own photos to display behind the information, change the font and even set up background slideshows. The app costs $0.99 and is just one of several android apps credited to Tom Bernard Anyz.

(Update) Dragon, Fly! – Previously seen on our Android charts as a free app, Dragon, Fly! made its debut as an ad-free paid app on September 22nd, climbing to the the #13 spot since its release. Dragon, Fly! copies the gameplay of Tiny Wings, but adds in-app purchases to the mix, allowing players to purchase extra items like potions and diamonds to make beating levels a little easier. The game currently costs $0.99 due to a half price introduction offer.

(Update) Game Dev Story – Kairosoft’s Game Dev Story has seen resurgence on the charts this week, climbing into the #14 spot thanks to a 40% off sale that has slashed the price to $2.50. A hit when it was released in last December, the game challenges players to create a million-selling video game by managing their own company and developing their own unique video game console. Kairosoft have had several appearances in our Android charts recently, thanks to the success of their latest game Pocket League Story.

Moto X Mayhem – Moving down to #33 is Moto X Mayhem, a $0.99 app that has seen steadily increasing sales since its debut on the Android marketplace a month ago. The game challenges players to keep their balance as they race down one of three motocross tracks filled with bumps and jumps, steering their rider with the accelerometer or their phone’s keyboard. Developed by Vancouver based indie studio Occamy Games, the game was named the best racing game in Nokia’s Calling All Innovators app development contest, a prize worth $150,000.

New Titles With the Top Grossing Android Apps Chart:

Tap Zoo – Pocket Gems’ game Tap Zoo made its Android debut on August 25th, and we wondered if it would be as successful on Google’s platform as it had been for iOS. Sitting this week as the #4 top grossing app, it would appear that answer is yes. While the Android version doesn’t have some of the features the iOS version does, the core gameplay is still the same – players collect and breed animals to expand their zoo from a tiny patch of land to a world-class safari park. The game monetizes through in app purchases; users can speed up progress, add more animals and improve their zoo by purchasing more coins. Tap Zoo is Pocket Gem’s first game to be brought to the Android Market.

(Update) Paper Camera – Last week’s #1 paid Android app Paper Camera continues to do well, still sitting at #1 on the paid charts and now #5 on the top grossing charts, despite seeing downloads begin to drop off from their peak. The $1.99 image editing app from UK developer JFDP Labs allows users to add one of 11 different cartoon inspired filters to their camera’s feed in real time, or “cartoonize” images already on their phones.

doubleTwist Player – The #20 top grossing app is free utility doubleTwist Player. Developed by Norwegian founded and San Francisco headquartered doubleTwist Corporation, the app allows Android users to import and export music, movies and other media from their smartphones to their computers. The base app is free, and monetizes through optional add-ons, like the $4.99 AirSync system, which lets users transfer music wirelessly. doubleTwist Player made our news roundup earlier this year after it added support for Apple’s Airplay system, allowing users to send their media to their Apple TV.

Aqua Pets – Older aquarium game Aqua Pets continues to do well on the top grossing charts, sitting at #28 this week after an update on September 22nd added new fish, backgrounds and rods. The first game from by startup developer Bionic Panda Games, Aqua Pets is a collecting game that primarily focuses on its fishing mechanic, and the ability to let players turn their phone into a virtual fish-tank by enabling the game’s built-in live wallpaper feature. The free-to-play game monetizes through in-app purchases, and was an early adopter of Google’s in-app billing. (Disclosure: Bionic Panda’s co-founder Charles Hudson is a co-author on our Inside Virtual Goods reports.)

(Update) Contract Killer – The #39 highest grossing Android game this week is Glu Mobile’s Contract Killer. The free to play game lets players assume the identify of a contract killer rising up the criminal ranks by through stealthy assassinations. The game has 17 story based missions, but players must be at a certain level to progress through the game, and experience is gained by completing random levels. Players can get better guns and ammo, by earning them, purchasing them outright with credits from in-app purchases, or by downloading other sponsored apps in exchange for credits, a practice Apple cracked down on in their app store.

Publish date: September 30, 2011 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT