Revealed: Apple’s best apps of 2022 that help people stay engaged and connected

Cupertino-based iPhone maker identifies 16 apps that deliver exceptional experiences and have a profound cultural impact

The App Store has become an engine of economic growth for apps and games developers, enabling $643 billion in billings and sales during 2020. AFP
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Apple shortlisted the 16 best apps and games for 2022 that it says have inspired consumers to engage “more deeply with the world, expand their imaginations and stay connected to friends and loved ones”.

The winners represent a diverse community of developers from around the world whose apps and games on Apple’s App Store were selected for delivering “exceptional experiences” and having a “profound cultural impact”.

Apps were selected on different platforms such as iPhone, iPad, Mac, Apple Watch and Apple TV. The list also included five cultural impact winners that have had a lasting effect on people’s lives and influenced culture in 2022, the company said.

“This year’s winners reimagined our experiences with apps that delivered fresh, thoughtful and genuine perspectives,” Apple’s chief executive Tim Cook said in a statement provided by Apple.

“From self-taught solo creators to international teams spanning the globe, these entrepreneurs are making a meaningful impact and represent the ways in which apps and games influence our communities and lives.”

Apple chief executive Tim Cook. AP

Launched in 2008, Apple’s App Store is currently home to 1.8 million apps and visited by more than half a billion people each week across 175 regions.

Apple's shortlist of the 16 best apps and games of 2022 includes:

Gentler Streak

This exercise and fitness tracker lets users find a personal balance between fitness and rest.

It responds to users’ readiness and proposes daily workout actions that keep them within healthy activity levels. Rest and active recovery are part of the actions that keep the streak going, the app developers said.

Gentler Streak app. Photos: Apple

It displays real-time heart rate zones and the effect of training while working out, so users can adjust the intensity of their workouts to avoid exhaustion or step them up if needed.

How We Feel

This free app was created to help people better understand their emotions and find strategies to help them navigate them in the moment. It prompts users to tap into their emotional well-being with the ease of daily check-ins.

Conceived in conjunction with Yale University's Centre for Emotional Intelligence, How We Feel helps people find the right word to describe their emotions while also tracking their sleep, exercise and health to spot patterns over time.

How We Feel app. Photo: Apple

Moncage

The game is a puzzle adventure that takes place inside a mysterious cube, with each side of the cube housing a unique world, including an old factory, a light tower, an amusement park and a church.

At first sight, they may seem random and unrelated, but on closer inspection, users are “mesmerised by the subtle and intricate ways of how these worlds connect”, the developer said.

Users can use their imaginations and intelligence to find the connection and pinpoint every possible interaction between different sides of the cube. Behind the puzzles lies a story with a surprising twist for players to uncover.

BeReal

This social app allows users to share their daily life in photos with friends. Every day at a different time, everyone is notified simultaneously that they need to capture and share a photo within two minutes.

BeReal app. Photo: Apple

It is a “new and unique way to discover who your friends really are in their daily life”, the company said.

GoodNotes 5

This app allows users to access digital notes that are synched on various devices using iCloud.

Users can search their handwritten notes, typed text and document outlines. They can create unlimited folders and subfolders, or mark favourite ones to keep everything organised. They can also add hyperlinks to external websites, videos and articles to build their knowledge map.

GoodNotes 5 app. Photo: Apple

Wylde Flowers

Play as Tara, who arrives on a rural island to help her grandmother and the family farm.

Users can explore a world of magical realms, beautiful beaches and secretive forests. They can transform the Wylde family farm into a productive place with fresh vegetables and fruit trees.

They can also wield their wands and broomsticks to use magical abilities to tend the farm, control the weather and change the seasons.

Dot’s Home

This app is a production of the Rise-Home Stories project — a creative collaboration between multimedia storytellers and housing and land justice advocates who have come together over the course of three years to reimagine the past, present and future of our communities by transforming the stories we tell about them.

Dot's Home game. Photo: Apple

It is a single-player, narrative-driven video game that follows a young black woman in Detroit living in her grandmother’s home as she travels through time to relive key moments in her family’s history where race, place and home collide in difficult choices.

Locket Widget

This app shows live photos from users’ best friends on their home screen. Users and their best friends will see new pictures from each other every time they unlock their phone.

“It’s a little glimpse of what everyone’s up to throughout the day,” the company said.

Waterllama

With its colourful design and guidance, Waterllama makes meeting hydration goals fun. It uses creative challenges, reminders and cuddly characters to keep users on track.

Waterllama app. Photo: Apple

How big is App Store?

Over the years, App Store has become an engine of economic growth for the apps and games development community, enabling $643 billion in billings and sales during 2020.

Developers have earned more than $260 billion through the sale of digital goods and services since the launch of the marketplace, the company said in January.

It helps creators and learners of all ages and backgrounds connect with the tools and information they need to build innovative products.

App Store’s best apps and games of 2022

  • BeReal
  • GoodNotes 5
  • MacFamilyTree
  • ViX
  • Gentler Streak
  • Apex Legends Mobile
  • Moncage
  • Inscryption
  • El Hijo
  • Wylde Flowers
  • League of Legends Esports Manager
  • How We Feel
  • Dot’s Home
  • Locket Widget
  • Waterllama
  • Inua
Updated: November 30, 2022, 5:46 AM
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