5 Essential Gaming Apps for iOS and Android

April 27, 2015 • Devin Partida


gaming controller

The videogame industry has come a long way since the days of Atari and Pac-Man. With the technology behind these consoles improving daily, there is rarely a dull moment in the world of videogames.

Gaming has quickly evolved into a $10 billion industry, inspiring tech giants like Microsoft and Sony to create hugely successful consoles of their own.

Recent statistics from the ESA indicate that almost half of all gamers are women and the average age of a gamer is 35. This means the notion that videogames is an activity dominated by teenage boys is an antiquated stereotype.

Additionally, with the thousands of mobile gamers out there, consoles are no longer the only way to play your favorite games. Speaking of mobile, even though videogames aren’t always associated with productivity, there are ways to make your gaming experience more efficient with the help of the following smartphone gaming apps.

Twitch.tv (Android and iOS)

twitch tv

Ever since the advent of YouTube and social media, popular culture has become obsessed with the idea of sharing. The gaming community has embraced this trend in the form of live video streaming or “livestreaming.” Users around the world can broadcast themselves playing popular titles like League of Legends and Destiny.

One of the most visited livestreaming sites, Twitch.tv boasts around 100 million unique visitors per month (that’s about as much as YouTube and Netflix). Since its acquisition by Amazon in 2014, Twitch has become one of the premier sources for livestreamed content.

Sometimes you’re not in front of your computer to watch your favorite streamer. If that’s the case, download Twitch’s free mobile app, so you can be close to the action no matter where you are.

Archive VG (iOS exclusive)

archive vg

Gamers of all kinds know that videogames are more of a lifestyle choice than a simple hobby. Companies churn out new consoles once a year each with, at least, 100 different games during the console’s lifecycle. Buying just one game is almost impossible, especially if you were exposed to gaming at early age. Having so many games makes it difficult to keep track of every title you own.

Archive VG has made it easy to keep a record of every game you’ve bought dating back to your very first purchase. The app’s ever-expanding database of games dates as far back as the original NES, so feel free to let nostalgia take over as you recount your illustrious gaming career or plan your next conquest.

Appy Gamer (Android and iOS)

appy gamer

News travels at the speed of the internet (pretty fast) when it comes to videogames. If you’re like me, and want to be the first to know the latest news as it breaks, Appy Gamer is the solution for you. You probably already have your favorite gaming news website and companion app, but have you ever thought of getting all your gaming news from one place?

Appy Gamer consolidates the most recent gaming news from a variety of trusted sources like PC Gamer, Rock, Paper, Shotgun, Eurogamer, VG247 and many more into an intuitive, flipboard-style hub for all of your gaming needs. Best of all, it’s completely customizable. From notifications to news sources and everything in between, you’re your own personal content creator. Thanks to the app’s easy to use “TagNav Explorer” feature, selecting your favorite topic is a tap away.

Steam Mobile (Android and iOS)

steam app

PC and Mac gamers should already know about Steam, a digitally based distribution platform created by Valve Corporation. Its purpose is to provide gamers who left the console community a similar experience on a computer. At last count, Steam has over 780 million games available for download and over 100 million users.

If the game has a digital variation, it’s probably available on Steam. The service offers popular titles like the recently released Mortal Kombat X as well as lesser-known independent titles as soon as they become available on consoles. While you can’t yet play games on the Steam app, you can browse the expansive collection, make purchases and chat with other Steam users on your friends list.

Xbox Smart Glass (Android and iOS)

xbox smart glass

The gaming apps on this list have been rather general, but this last one is specific to Xbox users. Smart Glass is an extension of your console. You can navigate your dashboard, watch movies, play music or even use your smartphone as a keyboard to browse the web from your console. The possibilities are endless. Check out a short informational video about some of the app’s other features.

If I didn’t cover your favorite gaming app or if you have anything to add, let me know in the comments below. Game on!