Here is a breakdown of the best tech apps available for Android users, from services that help you hone a particular skill to apps you will use daily for various needs.
We had a look at the current supply of Android apps on the Play Store and found the best options for most of your needs.
Our list features some industry juggernauts, but some entries are sure to impress you. We will provide Android apps for various areas of interest.
Browsing apps for Android
- Most convenient: Google Chrome
- Blockchain option with ad block features: Brave
- Offers the most privacy: Tor
Yes, you have many more options than the industry giant Google Chrome which takes up a whopping 62.7% of the browser market share.
Most Android users have heard of Mozilla Firefox, DuckDuckGo, or the newer Microsoft Edge. Depending on your time on the internet and the niche subcultures you frequent, you may have also used the Tor Browser in the past. While most often associated with the infamous Dark Web, Tor undisputedly provides the most private connection. This naturally comes with a risk, be advised, but the Tor browser remains a worthwhile niche choice.
Here is, however, a notable example that most users often overlook. The Brave browser is one Android app of its kind that has one main attraction: a powerful ad-blocking functionality.
You may wonder how websites would permit access to their content with an ad blocker. Brave’s system provides one answer: the Basic Attention Token system. Android users can turn on optional ads and receive BAT cryptocurrency tokens for their attention. These, in turn, can be then donated as tips to various websites that support it. Thus, given the incentive of accruing BATs permits, most users to freely choose if they want to browse the web with ads on, without damaging the functioning of supported domains.
It is hard to surpass Google Chrome and more established browser apps for Android. However, the new approach to ad-based content, other cookie blockers and extended privacy settings make Brave an innovative service that you should at least try.
Android apps for communication
- Best for convenience: Facebook Messenger
- Best for privacy: WhatsApp, Signal
For communication apps, we have a similar situation as for browsers. You have some well-established options, like WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, or Snapchat.
This leaves smaller competitors hinge their services on an unaddressed area. In the case of online communication, encryption is a considerable concern. And while Android apps like WhatsApp already have answers to that, we will present an alternative: Signal.
This app provides a communication platform built from the beginning with privacy in mind. It offers a total replacement for phone and SMS communications in its current state.
Again, the most convenient option nowadays will probably be Facebook Messenger or Snapchat. Some privacy-minded folks will often opt for WhatsApp. However, if encryption and security of communications are vital to you, Signal is one Android App to consider.
Android apps as learning resources
Education makes up a little under 9% of the Play Store’s download and use percentage, so it would be difficult to provide only one option.
Better than Duolingo: Babbel
Duolingo remains the most popular option, both by popularity and downloads. Its approachable gamified design and considerable offer of languages are the main selling points. However, when you want to proceed more seriously with learning a language, most can agree that there are better options.
Babbel is widely regarded as Duolingo’s more serious competitor. And there is a good reason for that. Babbel is the one language learning Android app that provides something akin to an entire course. This comes at a price – $27 per three months, $46 per six, or $75 per year, to be specific – but better results are a lot likelier to show.
Coding apps for Android
Top recs: Tynker, ARCore Elements
Browse the web enough, and you’ll find a roaster of listed articles on the benefits of learning to code. Albeit its usefulness and appeal, programming still is a skill that requires commitment, guidance, and often, resources.
Android apps for coding can prove to be an entry-level resource. Here, you have some great picks, from Tynker, a programming app widely used in schools, to the simpler Pocket Code, to the more applied Robotics Engineering. The augmented reality boom may also make it worthwhile to take a dive into ARCore Elements, an app dedicated to AR design principles.
e-Learning for STEM and more
Best picks: Wolfram Alpha, Thinglink, Khan Academy
if coding is oblique, other STEM subjects are simply unapproachable. Luckily, Android app devs have come to the rescue.
It’s safe to say that Wolfram Alpha has saved more than one STEM student during their university years. The service provided an informative and straightforward system for tackling even the most complicated calculations while also providing explanatory resources. And now, Wolfram Alpha has an app for Android to the joy of students and professors alike.
Photomath provides a similar service but in a more basic form. It will naturally be more appealing to beginners, primarily thanks to its more convenient and approachable interface.
Students and lifetime learners have two great Android apps for more general needs: Thinglink and Khan Academy.
The former is often used in classroom environments, allowing virtual learning experiences via visual and audio media and even virtual tours.
As for Khan Academy, this is a platform that we can remember from our undergraduate years. The site, now existent in the form of an app for Android, provides a slew of expert-curated materials that do a great job of adding to, if not replacing costly textbooks.
Health & Fitness apps for Android
Similar to the principles of learning apps for Android, desire is a start, but practice (and routine) makes perfect.
Health and fitness apps often exemplify this motto in their entirety. Their business approach is well-established since they hit a sweet spot between developer needs and customer desires. In short, using these apps for Android implies a specific commitment to be read as long-term use and customer retention. In return, these services provide a structured approach to a healthier and, overall, a better lifestyle.
Recommended options: Fitbit, MyFitnessPal
Fitness tracker apps for Android users are essential for maintaining an active lifestyle. These provide comprehensive steps to developing and maintaining proactive habits with significant benefits in the long run.
For this purpose, services like Fitbit are a must-have on your smartphone. The Android app breaks down the process into manageable and digestible steps. For those more athletically inclined, there is also MyFitnessPal or Fitplan.
Neither will give you a complete workout routine. What they will do, is inform your approach to fitness and exercise.
- Women’s essentials: Clue, Eve
- Other must-haves: Zocdoc, HealthTap, Fooducate
- Psychological wellness: Headspace, Sleepcycle
We’ll start with women’s health essentials. Clue is a simple app that allows you to track your menstrual cycles. With functionalities meant to give you the power to plan out ahead will help you know your body better than before.
Eve takes it even further with tacking both physical and emotional states. The Android app does a great job of providing informative insights.
General health apps need to tackle two main areas: expert medical advice and nutrition. For the former, you have two curated resources, in the form of Zocdoc and HealthTap.
When looking for information regarding health concerns, instead of googling symptoms and undoubtedly finding out from untrusted sources that you have an obscure fatal disease, you could download HealthTap or Zocdoc. Both options also provide you with a network of trusted practitioners who can inform you and intervene if needed.
As for the proverbial apple a day that keeps doctors away, you must use Fooducate. As the name implies, this app for Android will help you make eating healthy not only simple but also pleasant.
The last and oft-ignored subject is mental health. While checking in with a professional therapist is always advised, Headspace will provide some starting steps for bettering your mental health. Since no amount of self-care will mean anything without a good night’s sleep, combine your other health apps for Android with Sleepcycle.
Music and podcasts
- Music: Bandcamp, Spotify
- Podcasts: Anchor, Pocket Casts
Ok, everyone is already using Spotify, given its excellent recommendation algorithm, social aspects, and extended compatibility with other popular apps for Android. Nonetheless, it is still worth the mention. Yes, Spotify is still the go-to service for music streaming, with or without the $9.99 per month subscription.
Bandcamp, on the other hand, is for true music enthusiasts. You should get it ASAP if you really care about supporting the music scene, be it established acts or up-and-comers. The app is also an excellent platform for music artist merch, both physical and digital.
Podcasts are more niche, but their growing popularity among the wider population is uncontestable. If you want to get into listening to the most popular podcasters, Pocket Casts is an easy-to-use app for Android that will suit all your needs. Once you get the hang of it, you may try your hand at dabbling with your own podcast through Anchor, a service supported by Spotify. The app streamlines the process solely using your phone. The entry barrier has never been lower.
Visual media apps for Android
- Photo editing: Adobe Lightroom, Snapseed
- Photo storing and sharing: Google photos, Instagram, Flickr
Here is a simple breakdown. If you’re into taking pictures, the best storing app that you can use is Google Photos. It provides enough space and great syncing features. However, its editing functionalities are limited.
For giving an extra glow to your pics, you need editing apps. Snapseed is a user-friendly entry-level option. We have spent countless hours editing our pics with it. Adobe Lightroom is more complex. But the results reflect that. It is an essential tool for pros.
Where do you share your pictures? Naturally, on Flickr or Instagram. The latter is already a giant on the market, given its social aspect and the staggering growth opportunity it provides for creators.
Flickr is more niche and suited for photographers rather than acting as a visual media-centred social platform. However, it has excellent native editing and storage features. Naturally, you don’t have to stop at one choice at any step, so you should have these five apps for Android at your fingertips.
Video and streaming
Android app essentials: YouTube, Twitch, Vimeo
As for the tools dedicated to the video format, three apps cover all the main areas. You should start with these.
YouTube is a no-brainer. It would be pointless to resume its appeal and features here, and the chances are that you already have it on your phone.
Twitch is more niche. However, live streaming has seen incredible growth in recent years. Don’t miss it. There is more to learn about the platform than about others. But, once you get the hang of its basics, you receive endless content plus the option to start streaming yourself.
Vimeo is the art-directed app of the bunch. While its content volume is more restrained, it is high quality, artistic, and speaks to a particular customer sector. Vimeo will provide you with cinema-grade visual media, often for free.
Useful Android apps: Todoist, Hive, IFTTT, Evernote
We have mostly brushed up on entertainment apps for Android, with learning and health services being the only exceptions.
Now, you can add products to the list. The current market provides several options to help you out in your daily productive or professional life.
We’ll start with the most generally applicable, Todoist, which provides an approachable task management tool. You can record and group these according to projects. Indeed, you may not think of your day-to-day activities in a task and project language, but Todoist may help you do just that.
IFTTT (If This Then That) raises the bar a bit, although being directed to a more specialized crowd. The Android app does a great job of automating tasks by connecting several other tools and services. You can think of it as the central cortex of your broader productive app suite.
Another app explicitly suited for the professional environment, Hive, provides the same (or even higher) level of cohesion and organization but to workplace projects. The tool is one of the most extensive and coherent productivity apps for Android. And while Hive Teams starts at $12 per month, there’s also Hive Solo which is free for up to two users.
Lastly, no workplace suite is complete without a note-taking tool. The most organized and helpful tool must be the already famous Evernote in the mobile environment. The app is free but quite tricky to use for more in-depth tasks. The premium version is a humble $4.99.
What makes an app great?
An Android app’s usefulness to its customers and subsequent success is dictated by the primary concern(s) it addresses and its approach.
You may find this to be trivially true and uninformative. However, you would be surprised how varied attitudes are in these areas. One marketing approach for apps is their focus on one specific area of interest. On the other hand, others mean to address a broader set of functions. Think only about how budgeting apps can be of use both to recreational gambling and full-time business alike.
However, you have one advantage. You do not have to stick to one choice. Yes, it is true that often finding one valuable service and using it exclusively will streamline the process and make it more intuitive. But this will not stop you from trying several tools, even simultaneously. And now that you have a slew of recommended apps, the picking and choosing process will never be more accessible.