Apps of the Week: Julius Jr.‘s Playground, Nighty Night Circus, Google Maps + iMovie

Apps of the Week: Julius Jr.‘s Playground, Nighty Night Circus, Google Maps + iMovie 1

Apps of the Week: Julius Jr.‘s Playground, Nighty Night Circus, Google Maps + iMovie

New Games

Julius Jr.‘s Playhouse ($3) — StoryToys brings the popular Paul Frank character to life in this new kids’ app. The game provides four fun activities, including Tea Party, Garage Band, Friends Quiz, and Get Puzzling, that allow kids to decorate cakes, play along with songs, identify characters and put together colourful puzzles. The app features eight jigsaw puzzles, over 100 quiz questions, three Julius Jr. songs, professional narration, and more, all in an intuitive and child-friendly package.

Apps of the Week: Julius Jr.‘s Playground, Nighty Night Circus, Google Maps + iMovie 2

Nighty Night Circus ($4) — The sequel to Fox and Sheep’s popular “Nighty Night!”, Nighty Night Circus brings a new magical setting with a bedtime atmosphere full of colourful animations. Children are presented with a circus setting with eight animals that they can put to bed with various actions. Each animal performs various tricks before going to sleep, and the app features designs and animations by Oscar-nominated artist Heidi Wittlinger. The cute animals, calming lullaby music and narration make this a great app for a daily go-to-sleep ritual for young children.

Updates

Apps of the Week: Julius Jr.‘s Playground, Nighty Night Circus, Google Maps + iMovie 3

Google Maps (free) — Google updates its venerable Maps app with a fresh coat of paint to match its new “Material Design” paradigm introduced earlier this year—a design trend already seen in some of the company’s more recent releases such as Inbox and News & Weather. The new design features larger button targets, more blue, a more layered design, and more fluid gesture-based motions throughout the app. Uber integration has also been enhanced to provide estimated wait times and costs, and users in the U.S. can now make a restaurant reservation via OpenTable directly from a Maps listing.

Apps of the Week: Julius Jr.‘s Playground, Nighty Night Circus, Google Maps + iMovie 4

iMovie ($5) — Apple’s iMovie gets an update adding support for the iCloud Photo Library beta and sharing videos via iCloud Photo Sharing. The usual collection of performance and stability improvements are also included.