We are in the midst of the Holiday Season with Christmas right around the corner. If you have young kids, they are likely heading into the Holiday break and their full attention will be focused on Santa's arrival. The Windows Phone Store has plenty of apps featuring Santa and that may help channel their enthusiasm.
We searched the Windows Phone Store using the keyword "Santa" and pluck four of the top rated apps from results to highlight in today's Windows Central Roundup. These apps will help you track Santa's Christmas Eve travels or create an interactive Santa you can share all your wishes with. We are even seeing Windows 10 Maps is getting into the Christmas spirit by adding the ability to track the Jolly Old Elf.
There are plenty of options to consider when looking for a Santa app and if we have missed your favorite Holiday app, feel free to toss out your recommendation in the comments below.
1. NORAD Tracks Santa
NORAD Tracks Santa is the official app of the North American Aerospace Defense Command or NORAD Tracks Santa program that first started back in 1955. Available for both Windows Phone and Windows 10 devices,
NORAD Tracks Santa offers the following features:
- Countdown Timer to the start of Santa Tracking
- Online Holiday related games that become available daily up until Christmas
- Short movies on the history of tracking Santa and NORAD
- A small collection of Holiday songs for your listening pleasure
- Access to the official NORAD Tracks Santa Gift Shop
- A library of Holiday related books
NORAD Tracks Santa will also plot Santa's course as he begins his global journey. In tinkering with the app for a short time, it was a little buggy on the Lumia 950 but worked like a charm from a Windows 10 PC.
Please note that if you are running Windows 10 Mobile, you will need to use the Windows 10 Store link. Those running Windows Phone 8.1, head to the Windows Phone Store link.
2. Talking Santa
Talking Santa is a wondrous Holiday app for our Windows Phone. The app presents you with an interactive Santa that you can treat to a helping of cookies and milk, smash with a humungous snowball and pose for greeting cards. You can also speak into your Windows Phone microphone and have the Santa mimic what you say.
The novelty app has a few settings that include a child mode that scales things down slightly to make the app more child friendly. You also have the option to turn on/off a violence setting. When turned on you can slap and punch Santa around by swiping and tapping your Windows Phone screen. You can even tickle Santa and get a jolly old laugh out of him.
When the child mode is turned off, you can record the animations and any phrases you have Santa repeat and then share the .mpg file with friends by email or SMS as well as upload them to YouTube or Facebook.
Talking Santa is a fun Holiday app to have in your Windows Phone library and can be surprisingly addictive. While technically an app, Talking Santa has more of a game like feel. The app is a free, ad-supported title with an in-app purchase opportunity to remove the ads for $.99.
3. Where is Santa?
Where is Santa? is a novelty app for your Windows Phone to help your kids keep track of Santa's progress on Christmas Eve. It might even help you get your children to sleep if they can see how close the Jolly Old Elf is getting to your house.
The app will plot Santa's course across the globe utilizing millions of Santa tracking stations. Two control buttons are present on the map view. One to center the map on your location that will display Santa's estimated time of arrival and one to find out where Santa is currently located. Once you scan for Santa, his location will update every sixty seconds.
There isn't many bells and whistles with Where is Santa? but it can be a handy app to have around when curious young minds begin to wonder when Santa will arrive.
4. Santa Claus - Fun Christmas Games
Santa Claus - Fun Christmas Games is a collection of Holiday activities ranging from an interactive Santa to mini-games. Activities are accessible from the main menu through various buttons that surround Santa.
Here is a rundown of all of Santa Claus - Fun Christmas Games features.
- Talk to Santa and he will repeat everything you say in a funny voice
- Write a Christmas card for friends or family
- Swipe the screen left or right to see Santa Claus dancing
- Touch Santa's hand and he will start ringing Christmas bells
- Swipe the screen up and down to see Santa jumping around
- Play ten mini games
- Press the music button to listen to Christmas songs and see Santa dancing to them.
- Press the smiley face button if you want to listen to funny Christmas jokes
Christmas songs include Jingle Bells, We Wish You a Merry Christmas, Deck the Halls, Up on the Housetop and Oh, Christmas Tree. There are two additional features, sharing a cup of hot chocolate and shooting fireworks, which are unlockable through a $3.99 in-app purchase.
The core Santa Claus - Fun Christmas Games app is free and available in the Windows Phone Store. It comes across as a fun Windows Phone app to keep the young one busy on that ride to Grandmother's house.