In September, I looked at a number of apps that replicate experiences from outside of Windows 10 on your PC. From a major update to a popular Android emulator to bringing Mac-style searching to Windows 10, these are the best apps I reviewed during the past month.
BlueStacks, the well-known Android emulator, received a significant update to version 4.0 recently. With it comes custom key mapping for games, a sleek new interface, and significant performance boosts over previous versions of the software.
In my testing, I came away extremely impressed by BlueStacks 4 and recommend it to anyone looking to have an Android experience on their PC. It's marketed as being six times faster than the Galaxy S9+ and eight times faster than the previous version of BlueStacks.
I ran into a few performance hiccups here and there, but overall BlueStacks did an excellent job bringing Android games and apps to my PC. Even power-hungry games performed well.
It's available for free through BlueStacks' website and it's well worth a look.
Jarvis brings a search inspired by Mac's Spotlight Search to Windows 10. It makes it easy to search Win32 and UWP apps, as well as files on your PC. You have to allow Jarvis to index folders for the search to work, but once that's done, it works well.
Jarvis pops up using the familiar Alt + Spacebar shortcut and speeds up searching on your PC.
Jarvis is in preview, so we didn't give it a review score, and you can expect some bugs. But I enjoyed using it during my testing.
It's available for free on Github.
RadarScope isn't your everyday weather app with a 10-day forecast and basic information. Instead, RadarScope is a powerful weather information app used by professionals and heavy-duty weather enthusiasts. For example, you can look at NEXRAD Level 3 data, track hurricane walls, and see information from the U.S. National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and multiple other sources.
All of these powerful features justify the $29.99 price tag in my opinion, though you can make that call yourself by studying the app more in my full review.
SmartTaskbar was featured in our roundup of best ways to customize the Windows 10 Taskbar in September. It allows you to hide your Taskbar when a window is maximized but show it when you're viewing your desktop or any non-maximized window.
It's a small tweak that makes a noticeable difference when it comes to maximizing your screen size. We're big fans.
It's available for free on Windows 10.
With popular email apps like Newton and Astro shutting down, you might be on the lookout for a good email client. Mailbird features a customizable look, integrates with services like Slack, and unifies your inboxes.
I'm also a big fan of Mailbird's design. The basic setup is spaced out well and has a clean and minimal design, but you can also tweak it to your liking. You can choose between light and dark themes, vertical and horizontal layouts, and scale the entire app to your preferences.
There's a free version of Mailbird available or you can upgrade to get pro features for about $18 a year. The pro upgrade gets you support for unlimited accounts, a handy speed-reading feature, and more.
Over to you ...
We're always looking to check out unique and powerful apps from the Microsoft Store. What do you think of these apps? Which apps would you like us to look at in the future? Let us know in the comments.
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