rainbow six smol

Andrew Grush / Android Authority

Welcome to the 523rd edition of Android Apps Weekly, where we discuss the latest in mobile news and take a closer look at some of the most interesting new apps and games. Let’s jump right in and take a look at some of the biggest highlights from the last week:

  • Google Pay is following the way of the dodo, it seems, with Google Wallet fully taking its place. Google has announced it will be sunsetting the app, and it will be completely unavailable after June 4th of this year. Users will be able to view and transfer their balance even after then using the Google Pay website.
  • Google unveiled a new AI model this week, named Gemma. The new open-source AI model isn’t as full-fledged as Gemini but is perfect for smaller, lightweight projects. 
  • After introducing the Gemini app as an opt-in download recently, Google has now begun phasing Assistant out by default.  When you download the Assistant app you’ll get Gemini and have to manually switch it back. 
  • Google Messages may soon be getting new camera effects, as spotted recently in several flags discovered within the app. That’s not the only change in the works, as Google may also be experimenting with removing top contacts during search and a few other small changes. 
  • Google is testing a new AI feature in the Play Store called App Highlights. This new feature summarizes key points around an app, making it easier to cut through description fluff and get to the bottom of what an app offers. For now, the feature remains available only for a lucky few users. 
  • Android Authority’s latest APK teardown of Snapchat indicates the company is working on a new feature called Tiny Snaps. In short, the feature lets you record a small Snap while taking messages. While we don’t know anything official about the feature, it seems likely the idea is to capture a user’s reactions as they type new messages.
  • This week Google revealed how Assistant AI summaries will work on Android Auto capable vehicles. The new feature will summarize both group chats and individual texts with over 40 words, giving you a more to-the-point message that you can easily respond to with your voice. 

Android Apps Weekly: New apps and games

Looking for some new Android apps and Android games to keep you occupied? This week saw two new apps worth highlighting, as well as three great games. 


  • Price: Free with in-app purchases

Healthsteps isn’t your typical health and fitness app. While the core of the experience is all about engaging in healthy activities lie watching and exercising what sets this one apart is that is also doubles as a dating platform.

From what I can see it can match you up with people that are compatible with your goals in life and share your same interests in terms of fitness as well. I’m happily married so I can’t say much about how well this app works but if it sounds like you’re cup of tea then you might want to give it a look. 

Rainbox Six is now on mobile, but definitely not as you know it. Rainbox Six: Smol plays exactly like traditional entries in the series, albeit with a much more cartoony style. There are still tactical special force missions, rescuing hostages, and breaching doors you love as well. 

In my time playing it I noticed the game was easier than your typical shooter but given its mobile nature that’s not too surprising. The good news is it gets a bit more challenging as you get further into the game. The only major catch here is that this Android game requires an active Netflix subscription to play. 

Shovel Pirate

  • Price: Free with in-app purchases

Shovel Pirate is a puzzle platformer game that gives me serious old-school Kirby vibes when it comes to the art style. There’s very little in the way of a major story here, but nor does the game need one.

Overall, this game is a blast to play, though it’s pretty short. There are also two different endings you can achieve, one good and one not so much.

Invincible: Guarding the Globe

  • Price: Free with in-app purchase

The Invincible series has been around for over twenty years now, and yet, until recently, it had never received a mobile game adaptation, despite its large fan base. The new mobile game, developed by Ubisoft, feels somewhat like a cash grab, featuring familiar gacha-like gameplay with plenty of quick battles, an easy leveling-up system, and more. However, if you enjoy these types of games and are a fan of the series, it might be worth trying.

In my limited time playing it, I found the game enjoyable enough, with good graphics and mechanics that are easy to learn. I did find much of the action repetitive, but on the plus side, the game was very stable, and I didn’t notice any major bugs. In conclusion, this game might not live up to the legacy of the series it’s named after, but it’s better than nothing and could still serve as a fun diversion. It’s also free to play, though, as you might expect, there are in-app purchases.

Nascar Manager

  • Price: Free with in-app purchases

Nascar Manager puts you in charge as Crew Chief during the Nascar Sprint Cup Series. You can manage your team, win races to get rewards, and much more. If you’re a fan of both management strategy games and racing games, this blend could be right up your alley.

During my time playing it I found the graphics were excellent and the gameplay wasn’t bad, though in-app purchases, watching videos to earn coins, and other parts of the experience were much less appealing to me. Personally I’d rather pay a premium for a game like this and do away with ads and paid add-ons, but that’s just me.  Still, it’s free so it’s at least worth giving a shot.