Quick App Updates of the Week: Nextdoor, Google Docs & More

Donate stuff to nonprofits using Nextdoor

Nextdoor has been in the thick of things since the onset of the pandemic. It recently launched a new feature called Sell for Good. This feature lets you list items on Nextdoor and sell them to folks in your neighbourhood. Sounds like Craiglist? There is a twist though. Whatever you fetch for the item goes to charity. The app has seen a 7x rise in conversations regarding donations. Due to the shelter-in-place orders and safety concerns, everyone can’t visit local nonprofits to donate money or items. Nextdoor fills the gap and the money directly goes, via PayPal Giving Fund, to a nonprofit selected by you. Nextdoor has partnered with various nonprofits such as A Better Chicago, LA Voice, New York Cares, Operation HOPE, Spark, The Hidden Genius Project and ViBe Theater Experience among others. Once the sale and money transfer goes through, you get a tax-deductible contribution receipt. Sell for Good is currently only available in the US.

Dark Mode comes to Docs, Sheets and Slides

Slowly but surely apps across the Android landscape are embracing Dark Mode. It is far better to the eye hence naturally loved by users. Google Docs, Sheets and Slides are the recent recipients on the dark mode. Dark mode can be turned on/off from settings. Beyond pleasing the eyes, it also saves phone battery. Users across the world will see the dark mode option within a couple of weeks.

Watch Radio.com broadcasts on Twitch

There are a fair share of hardcore sports fans on Twitch and there is good news for them. Twitch is partnering with Radio.com to offer live video feeds on the app. Some Radio.com sports stations will even get their own Twitch channels. WFAN in New York, WEEI in Boston and The Score in Chicago are three big ones that will be available on Twitch. They focus on the Yankees, Red Sox and Falcons respectively. These stations will have Twitch chat to allow fans to connect and contribute in real-time.

Google Maps adds complete bike-sharing directions

Google Maps offers bike-sharing directions in over 100 cities. Now, Google Maps is going one better. Earlier, you had to initiate three different trips - walk to bike-share for pickup, bike-share drop-off point and walk from the drop-off point to destination. This has now become easier thanks to the new end-to-end bike-sharing directions update. You will now get the aforementioned complete directions in a single trip. Google Maps has partnered with Ito World and several bike-sharing providers to provide this feature in 10 cities - Chicago, New York City, San Francisco Bay Area, Washington DC, London, Mexico City, Rio de Janeiro, Montreal, Sao Paulo and Taipei. In some of these cities, you will also see a link that will open the relevant bike-share mobile app.

Snap launches four mini-apps within Snapchat

Soon we will enter the era of super apps. It is already prevalent in some Asian countries. Snapchat is the first global app to embrace this idea. It has added four third-party mini-apps to Snap’s Chat section. These mini-apps, called Snap Minis, are lightweight versions of the main apps. These third-party mini-apps offer different features - meditation by Headspace, studying collaboration tool from Flashcards and a messaging service called Prediction Master. The fourth mini-app, Let’s Do It, has been developed by Snap and it helps you make plans with friends. Three other mini apps are in the pipeline. These three apps will let users plan festival trips, buy movie tickets compare class schedules on Snapchat. As other platforms copied Snapchat’s original idea of disappearing content, these new mini-apps could boost user engagement.

Jim has a bachelor in Philosophy of Science from the University of Leeds. When he is not writing tech articles he enjoys photography 📷 and traveling 🚂.