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During the I/O developers’ conference that was held on May 18 to 20, Google proudly informed everybody that its Android operating system was doing pretty good. Android Wear has been taken up by 12 watch brands including popular ones like Tag Heuer, while Android TV is slowly making its way into many homes, with millions of units now in the wild. More than 600 new kinds of Android phones were launched in 2015 alone, and downloads of Android apps from the Google Play Store have reached 65 billion last year.

Among these billions of app downloads, Google chose to give credit to ten apps and games that performed outstandingly and stood out from the rest. These apps are:

  • Houzz — Best App
  • Thinkrolls 2 —  Best Families App
  • Clash Royale — Best Game
  • Robinhood — Best Use of Material Design
  • Table Tennis Touch — Best Use of Google Play Game Services
  • World Around Me — Early Adopter
  • Pokemon Shuffle Mobile — Go Global
  • NYT VR — Most Innovative
  • Alpha Bear — Standout Indie
  • Hopper — Standout Startup

These ten apps were announced during the Google Play Awards, which took place during Google I/O.

Not all Android users are impressed by Google’s choices. Some, for example, think that Clash Royale (a follow-up game to the popular Clash of Clans) shouldn’t have been named the Best Game in the Android universe. Still, many people think that some the awards were well-deserved. This is particularly true for Houzz (an app that uses augmented reality to help users with interior design) and NYT VR (an app by the New York Times Company that delivers news and stories through virtual reality).

Aside from naming the top apps above, Google also officially announced its new VR platform called “Daydream”. It seems that the tech giant is determined not to make the same mistakes as it did when the Android ecosystem was first launched, in which they gave developers full reign and ended up dealing with flawed or even malicious apps.

This time around, Google will take a stronger stance and will have a more stringent review process, forcing developers who want to publish VR apps to meet the guidelines for frame rate, image latency, and overall performance. This way, users will have a great VR experience regardless of what device they use and what app they are using.

What do you think about the Google Play Awards? Are you happy with the top apps that Google has chosen? Are you looking forward to using apps from the Daydream VR platform? Share your thoughts with us!