The Best of Google’s Apps and Games – 2014

The results are out. Google announced the best of its Apps and Games for the year 2014 recently. The list seems to be somewhat similar to the ‘best of 2014’ list released by Apple earlier this month. Coming to the games, Candy Crush continues to be the most sought after games. It was the most downloaded game of the year. The tech giant has put apps into a number of categories. The categories include mobile photography, education, social, health and fitness etc. As per the list released by Google, ‘Health and Fitness’ is growing real fast in the apps category as a result of which, the developers are speeding up the process of making the apps compatible with Google’s Android Wear line of smart watches.

What’s the most downloaded?

The most downloaded Google apps by category are Duolingo in the education category, MyFitnessPal in the health and fitness category, Pandora in the music category, Flipagram in the photography category, Facebook in the social category, Netflix in the entertainment category, NFL Mobile in the sports category and TripAdvisor in the travel category, Health and Fitness falls into the year’s fastest growing app category.

The most downloaded Google games are ‘Candy Crush Saga’, Don’t Tap the White Tile’, ‘Farm Heroes Saga’, ‘Subway Surfers’ and ‘Clash of Clans’. In the Achievements category, Google play games users unlocked 3.5 billion achievements in this year.

Google has good news for all the Android users. The Android users can now find the top-rated apps of the year on the Google Play Store. The Google Play has a section called ‘The Best Apps of 2014’. This section features a total of 64 apps that include popular apps like Shazam, Uber, TuneIn Radio, Skype Qik, Group Video Chat and Secret. However, only a few apps among these 64 apps can be downloaded free of cost. Some of the paid apps are Ultimate Guitar Tabs & Chords, Facetune, Afterlight, Amazing World Atlas, 7 Minute Workout Challenge, djay2 and Over.

Compared to last year, the number of Google games that have been downloaded has exceeded the number of Google apps that were downloaded by about sixty percent as per the q3 results in 2014. The popularity of Google games has contributed to a good growth in revenues in the third quarter of the year 2014. Looking at the popularity of the games and apps, it is expected that Google would very soon announce few more Android apps and games that would be compatible with Chrome OS. It is easy to hire an iPhone developer or an Android developer today and making useful and quality applications are so much easier today.

iPhone Games – The Meteoric Rise of the Mobile Game

The video games industry has been well established now for well over 30 years. In all it’s history, there has never been such a seismic shift in the industry as has been seen in the recent past. Whole new niches within the market have opened up wide, and as a result more people are enjoying video games. Moreover, the types of game selling well have changed dramatically, and even their method of distribution has shifted. Make no mistake, an awful lot of this change has to do with a device we call the iPhone.

The iPhone first caused a stir back in 2007, when it was first released. Many people don’t recall, however the iPhone did not launch with the ability to install 3rd party software. There was no App Store, and no games. Apple saw the primary appeal of their new device as a way to surf the web whilst away from home, indeed their marketing revolved around the ‘desktop’ web surfing experience that the iPhone could offer.

It was over a year until Apple launched the iPhone App Store, a place where anybody could sell their software to any one of the millions of iPhone owners worldwide. It was introduced along with the iPhone 3G, and marked a significant shift in the way software was distributed to mobile devices. Never before had anyone attempted to centralise the process, providing a one-stop-shop where anybody could extend the functionality of their phone. Digital distribution in video gaming was pretty much unheard of, but the power of this model soon became clear when combined with a device with an always-on data connection. What business wouldn’t want to be accessible for sales 24-7, whilst being carried around in their customer’s pockets everywhere they went!

On it’s launch the App Store contained just 500 applications, and nobody saw the gaming potential of Apple’s iPhone one bit. Fast forward to the end of 2008, and by this time games were the number one use for smart phones outside of actually using it as a phone, email, and texts. Mobile games had suddenly got bigger than any business application – the intended audience of smartphone devices!

Sure enough, the iPhone rags to riches stories that we are so used to hearing these days, were beginning to break.

The first person to make a living from the App Store was a man called Steve Demeter. His initial investment in developing his first game, Trism, was just $5000. After his game released, he quickly made a quarter of a million dollars in profit in just 2 months!

Ethan Nicholas was struggling with mortgage payments and medical bills when he read about Steve Demeter’s success. He decided that even a small slice of such success could help him turn things around, and worked flat-out for 6 weeks to develop his game, iShoot. Amateurish though this title may seem by today’s standards, he eventually sold over 2 million copies of this game at $2.99 a game!

More recently, the success of the best-selling iPhone game of all time has shown that these kinds of success stories are continuing. Back in 2009 a struggling Finnish games company short of funds was in the throes of a make-or-break business plan, when one of their designers came up with the idea for some bird-like characters which they eventually built a game around. That game become Angry Birds, a sales phenomenon which has been downloaded over 40 million times! Angry Birds accounts for 200 million minutes of play worldwide, every single day!

Recently the 10 billionth app was downloaded from Apple’s App Store, and guess what- it was a game! Her download of Paper Glider netted Gail Davis of the UK a $10,000 iTunes Gift card as a prize. Not bad considering it was a free game!

Growth in mobile gaming doesn’t look set to stagnate any time soon. Google are shaping up to be a thorn in Apple’s side, with their Android platform, and Microsoft have now entered to market with their Windows 7 Phone. One thing is for certain, it’s a great time to be a mobile gamer.

Educational Games and Resources For Kids

Children learn eye hand coordination and mental strategy. Some are even educational and they can learn about history and culture as in the age of empire game. Children are blank slates. It is up to us as parents and family to fill them full of knowledge. Children will themselves work to develop their focus and skills as they develop and these learning games will help.

Children’s Magazines are great for a child’s education and extending their interest over a period of time. The Internet has long been the ultimate magazine index for elementary and middle-school students, but there are some great web sites which are brand new and extend this facility still further! Coverage of one top Children’s magazine indexes reportedly now includes 58 popular children’s magazines and every issue includes citations to carefully selected Web sites.

ChildTopia is a toy/game for children. They will enjoy taking out the chips, shuffling them and re-loading them. The track gives the games a magical quality where new letters appear in the windows by moving the chips.

Children love good educational computer games because they are interesting and fun. What they don’t usually realize is that they get smarter each time they play these games.

But do always ensure that there are plenty of good books available for them to read. Encourage children to read through the many books they have available and to can get help with words they are stuck on. One way is use to use fun gadget called a Tag Pen. Use a Tag Pen by touching the Tag pen to the book page. LeapFrog also has the LeapPad with books organized by experience and difficulty grades to teach reading, phonics, vocabulary, math, science, music, and more.

Childrens puzzles, interactive wooden toys, wooden puzzles, learning games for toddlers, elementary learning games and puzzles can all be found at educational stores.

When you are with children be sure to ask them leading questions about themselves, when they are receptive to discussion. Children love talking about themselves and this is a great way to talk to your child, and help them learn about their own capabilities.

Teachers are encouraged to make their own quizzes for students and get scores by email. Teachers should bring their students by for some online learning and fun. You can even download Funbrain games to your computer so the kids can access them anytime. Teachers are catered for by support material for the objectives of the national curriculum regarding speaking and listening. There is nothing like a good competition to get children motivated, so do dream one up and get them to enter. Some businesses provide monetary support, and one example is supermarket offers of educational grants for computers in schools based upon shop loyalty points schemes. You’ll also find details of the monetary awards which BT makes available to schools on their web site.

Online education that combines instruction with fun learning games for children creates interactive learning and enjoyment. Learning games can help students concentrate on language arts, math, science, and social studies skills through an entertaining online curriculum.

There are even some free online learning games which can be quite good. Search for ‘Great kids online games’ to find some. Free online painting games are also abundant these days, for example to play for fun at Jelideli. Install the program and/or register, and then just choose one of the pictures from the selection, pick a colour and away we go! Free online educational games are the easy way to make learning fun for your children.

The fat is that nowadays for preschool and kindergarten age children there are many free educational games that teach matching and analytical skills.

FunBrain is a site which always has new educational games to try, but their old ones are just as much fun. The free educational games are divided by grade level or by subject. FunBrain features 30 free online, educational games for kids of all ages. In Stay Afloat, kids play a game similar to Hangman by choosing between science, history, or music categories.

Child Learning Game – Are Educational Games Online Any Good?

A lot of parents make the mistake that any educational games online are good for their children. However, most of these parents underestimate how much money children plow into internet websites, simply by virtue of browsing and clicking. With this in mind, you should be aware that many websites simply put any old game up in order to get people to click their ads.

However, there are many sites out there where you can find educational games online that are both good for your children, and do not lead them on to dangerous or pornographic websites. I advice you to use parental control software program. It gives you the ability to hold children accountable, and provide security measure to protect them. Young children are impressionable and by being able to see their activities online with PC Tattletale, it helps to know where to aim the conversations and activities.

Educational games online are generally limited by the fact that they must be web-browser based. This is not a problem for math games, word games, or basic activities, but if you want to get a fully-interactive and comprehensive educational game for your computer, you will probably have to walk into a software store. However, educational games online can be an excellent, cheap way of teaching your children important concepts and skills.

At Kidsgames.Org website you can find over 900 educational games online that are all good for developing various skills used in school. These educational games online are suitable for children up to age ten. If your child is over that age, try looking at Nobelprize.ORG website where you can find a few educational games online that are based around the work of this year’s Nobel Prize laureates.

As an elementary school teacher, and a member of the “old school”, I was a little skeptical when children started to play educational games online. Since then though I have realized that as long as the children are guided and watched over properly they can easily find educational games online all by themselves, or with a little nudging. Once you find a good selection of games it is easy to encourage the children to play these games and learn the skills they have to teach. Often these are math or language skills, but there are also social values and ethics embedded into educational games online as well.

Microsoft is on the verge of unleashing a new technology that will allow multiple children to play educational games online at the same time. By using multiple mouses which control multiple pointers, children will be able to work together in groups of up to five – all playing the same educational games online. This will allow greater classroom cooperation and improve group work.