Today’s latest smartphones are capable of a great many things right out of the box, but to reach their true potential, you’ll need to tap into the vast marketplace of third-party apps. Since the launch of the Android Market (now known as the Google Play Store) in 2008, apps have been steadily improving the Android experience. From the apps that help with daily tasks like balancing a checkbook or calculating a tip, to integrated apps with business communication platforms, there’s an app out there for every purpose.
With over 3 million apps listed on the Google Play Store the choices can be a bit overwhelming. We’ve done the work of putting together a list of the 100 best Android Apps across a number of categories to help you pick the best apps for your daily life.
Can 2 billion people be wrong? The biggest social network on the planet has a decent official app. Keep up with your friends and family, jump into instant chats, and stay informed with push notifications. Best of all, Facebook isn’t just a place to share content stolen from Reddit and Twitter, as the world’s biggest social media site has also been pushed out into sections for dating, shopping, and videos. Pair it with Messenger for the ultimate double-act.
Alright, you probably have YouTube already — but that doesn’t make it any less essential. YouTube’s mobile app is sleek and intuitive, bringing the entirety of the video-sharing site to the palm of your hand. For those subscribed to YouTube Premium, you’ll have access to all the premium content, as well as special features like audio playback while the screen is off.
Sometimes unfairly viewed as the lesser version of Facebook, Twitter is the place where everything seems to happen instantly. Birthplace of the now now-ubiquitous internet facet, the hashtag, Twitter is the best place to be if you like to be on top of the latest breaking news as it happens. Follow your favorite content creators, actors, or crazes, and follow all the news, impressions, and opinions as they roll in.
If you’re spending more time at home than usual, you might finally have the time to get to that connected-home project you always swore you’d do. If you are the proud owner of a Google Home device, then you already know the ins and outs of a digital assistant. The Google Home app takes this one step further, allowing you to control a plethora of connected smart home devices. It also serves as a command central for any native Google-connected device and your Google-connected accounts, like maps, contacts, calendars, and more.
Netflix isn’t just one of the best video-streaming services; it’s the video-streaming service. There’s a huge selection of Netflix movies and TV shows for subscribers and the performance is silky smooth. It’s not just restricted to old favorites either, as Netflix has produced a huge amount of excellent exclusive content — though if you’re anything like us, you’ll just put The Office on again. This is as entertained as you can get from just $9 a month, or $16 a month if you want access to 4K content.
Disney holds possibly the largest library of film and television properties in the world and they are all on Disney+. From Hamilton to The Mandalorian you’ll find something for every member of the family. As theatergoers are slow to return all around the globe, Disney has begun using Disney+ for major blockbusters like Mulan and Soul. You’ll also have access to original television shows like Marvel’s The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. There’s a seven-day free trial, and it’ll cost you $6.99 a month after that — though you can pay $70 for a year in advance to save $14. In March 2021 this increased to $7.99 a month or $80 yearly.
Though it only recently launched internationally, Hulu has long been one of the best streaming platforms around. Major network shows currently on air are typically available the next day on Hulu as well as thousands of hours of original content and a catalog of licensed television shows. Hulu offers various subscription models, including one that opens up the entire streaming library for $6 a month, and another that removes midstream ads for $12 a month. If you’re looking to cut the cord, Hulu also offers live TV with DVR starting at $65 a month, but be aware it costs $5 more if you want to fast-forward through commercials on recorded episodes.
Amazon Prime Video
The content wars have been raging for well over a decade, and every platform brings something to the table. Amazon Prime offers some fantastic originals on its streaming platform, which also serves as a great home base for its extensive catalog. Prime Video also allows you to add all your favorite subscription channels to your feed. We’ve also found the best movies on Amazon Prime to start watching today if you’re interested.
With the streaming wars hotter than ever before AT&T wasn’t about to let Warner Media go without a fight. HBO Max launched in the summer of 2020 and brings with it all the HBO content audiences are already familiar with, with the added benefit of original content produced exclusively for the streaming platform. In 2021 HBO Max announced that all Warner property films will launch in theaters and on HBO Max simultaneously as studios clamor for return on investments in this new theater-less world, so you can catch blockbusters like Mortal Kombat from the comfort of your living room.
Spotify is probably the first name that springs to mind when you think about music apps and for good reason as it’s one of the best streaming services out there. There’s a massive selection of music on offer, from the latest huge releases to up-and-coming acts. Spotify also now offers video support for some of the best podcasts on their platform. There’s a free version if you want to try it out, but if you want ad-free listening, to download music, play any song, and have unlimited skips, then you’ll need to subscribe for $10 a month, though Spotify does offer a generous three-month free trial. Spotify also offers a family household plan for $15 a month, a student account at the reduced cost of $5 a month, and a “Duo” account covering 2 people in the same household for $13 a month.
If you’re looking for an all-you-can-eat buffet of sound with no ads and no subscription fees, you’ve found it. You can discover new music and stream it from the cloud, but this is no Spotify replacement — most of the music on Soundcloud is from relatively unknown artists, and if you’re not able to find it on Spotify, you can probably find it here. Listening is free, with the pro versions of SoundCloud mostly being for the artists themselves. It’s not just about music, though, as you’ll find a lot of podcasts on here too. A great complement to another music streaming service.
Believe it or not, radio is still alive and kicking, and iHeartRadio puts thousands of FM and AM radio stations right into your pocket. Not a lot of major smartphones in the U.S. have FM tuners, so we rely on great apps like iHeartRadio to listen to our favorite talk shows and oldies stations at the office, the gym, or on the go. The app also features podcasts, sports channels, and playlist tools.
Google Play Music
Google’s official streaming service is a worthy competitor to Spotify. Not only does the app provide a vast library of content, but it also allows users to upload up to 50,000 of their own songs for online storage. So if you’ve got a collection of MP3s from before the days when streaming was the normal way to consume music, upload them to Google Play Music and stream them from any of your mobile devices. Be warned though, it’s not long for this world.
It’s hard to believe that Shazam was first released 19 years ago, blowing our collective minds and putting the concept of apps and their reach squarely in the zeitgeist. Today, Shazam’s integration and services go far beyond the simple song identifier it started as. Shazam can be activated passively to catch songs when the app isn’t open. Once you’ve identified a tune, you’ll be offered live lyrics to follow along with, as well as the option to add to your Apple or Spotify playlists.
The Wall Street Journal
During these harrowing financial times and in a volatile macroeconomic environment , you’d be well served to stay apprised to the goings-on of our economy, markets, and financial news. The Wall Street Journal app places all this information in your pocket as well as the multifaceted award winning journalism that’s been printed since 1889.
Whether you’re trying to follow international news, have friends or family in the United Kingdom, or are just trying to stay in touch with newsworthy events stateside, BBC News has you covered. The BBC, an English government-funded news agency, has a long history of fair and moderate news coverage and is worth a look if you’re tired of the glitz and glamour of American 24-hour news networks.
The official app of National Public Radio provides a steady stream of straightforward reporting in both print and audio. Users can not only listen to news reports but also various programs such as All Things Considered and Radiolab.
The Associated Press has a long-standing reputation for being one of the least-editorialized news sources around, as well as being consistently on the cutting edge of breaking news. So, if you’re looking for your daily dose of news without the added fluff, then AP News on Android is the perfect accompaniment to your morning coffee. AP’s self-ascribed description says it best — it’s “where the news gets its news.”
Though it may seem like a no-brainer, the Google News app is a worthwhile recommendation, thanks to its smart curation and diverse news feed. Google News puts together news from sources all over the world, which makes it likely that you’ll find your favorite news source from back home within its catalog.
Feedly is another powerful news aggregator that places all your favorite news sources in one place. The Feedly app is home to over 40 million unique feeds and offers integration with all major social media platforms. It serves as a one-stop shop for your favorite magazines, newspapers, YouTube channels, and more.
With an international audience and a sport-loving home demographic, BBC Sport covers a vast array of sports in both live games and related news. Users can stream some sports live and customize their feed to receive up-to-the-minute information from their favorite teams, leagues, and games. Of course, no U.K.-based sporting app would be complete without coverage on over 150 football teams, so you’ll never miss a piece of news or goal again.
Whatever gets you excited, from NASCAR to the NFL, theScore will have you dancing in victory or crying in your beer. It brings you all the latest touchdowns, goals, and home runs as they happen.
Having the official ESPN app installed is a no-brainer for any die-hard sports fan, especially if you have ESPN+. You can quickly get the latest news on your favorite teams and leagues, including MLB, NFL, NCAA, MLS, NHL, and more.
Barstool Sports has grown into an empire comprising podcasts, journalism, and content focused on pop culture, politics, and many other topics. It still keeps its roots in sports coverage and commentary. So if you’re looking to not only see pundits discuss your favorite team but also get a chuckle or read the latest political news, then you’ll enjoy the Barstool Sports app.
Essentially Vine for a new generation, TikTok is the home of short videos that are amusing, meme-laden, and just generally fit for easy consumption. What started as the app Musical.ly, geared at miming songs while dancing, has bloomed into one of the fastest-growing social media apps in the world. Its algorithm has become legendary as it curates content for you based on what you like and interact with, and there is now content on the app for all generations, hobbies, backgrounds, and interests.
Instagram is ubiquitous in photography now, so you might as well have it on your phone. Owned by Facebook, the social network centered on photos offers great filters and connectivity with others. Instagram has also been angling for younger market share with its TikTok competitor called Reels.
The social network made famous for its disappearing photos has blossomed in recent years to become a full-fledged social media platform. With over 250 million active users, Snapchat is here to stay. Users can share snaps, stories, and their location on a map with close friends, as well as peruse the quality content of Snapchats biggest creators. From family chats, funny filters, or flirty messages, Snapchat is a platform for everyone.
In today’s privacy-minded world, Signal provides an encrypted way to share messages and video calls. Whether you’re sharing sensitive work info or traveling abroad in a place with more prying eyes, Signal allows you to communicate privately and worry-free.
Messenger & Messenger Kids
Facebook’s best feature is arguably its built-in messaging. Facebook now offers its messenger service as a stand-alone app, enabling you to chat with your Facebook friends and anyone in your contacts with the app installed — without having to be signed into Facebook or even have Facebook installed on your phone at all.
If you’re a parent, then Messenger Kids is a must-download on your child’s phone. Messenger Kids might seem like it’s built for kids, but it’s really built for parents. With the app, parents have control over their kids’ contact list, and messages can’t be deleted — meaning that parents can check in to take a look whenever they want. Of course, there are some pretty sweet features for kids, like kid-appropriate stickers, GIFs, emojis, and so on.
The Google Play Store has no shortage of messaging apps, but WhatsApp’s secure end-to-end encryption and feature-rich interface mark it as one of the best. This cross-platform app lets you send and receive messages, pictures, audio notes, and perform video calling for free. A must-have for messaging addicts, travelers, and anyone with loved ones abroad.
Kik has been around since 2010, and while its users have spanned from millenials to Gen Z its target demographic remains the young folks, You know, the ones that know what’s “bussin” and are way too cool for us, no cap. Use Kik to stay in touch with friends, trade GIFs, and form chat groups.
Hugely popular among PC gamers and office workers, Discord is a place for messaging, image sharing, voice, and video calls. It features an intuitive interface that makes it easy to communicate and share with friends and co-workers. Discord is also home to countless communities where members with shared interests can hang out digitally.
Tinder is the ultimate dating app for mobile users, thanks to its location-centric features. Regardless of what its reputation may be, it’s still a great way to meet people. Your next match could be a swipe right away.
Coffee Meets Bagel
This app is geared toward those who are looking for a real relationship, rather than a quick hookup or short fling. Every day at noon, you get sent a prospective match based on a specific set of criteria. You can Like them or Pass on them. If you like them, you’ll be set up with icebreaker questions; if you pass, the app will learn your preferences and try again tomorrow.
Owned by dating mega-conglomerate Match Group, Inc., Hinge takes the common dating app experience and adds a whole new level of honest vulnerability and a throwback to pre-internet dating by incorporating your Facebook friends in your search for love. What Hinge offers is a far more limited dating pool with an average of only 10 suggestions per day, in the hopes that each suggestion will be of significantly higher quality than blindly swiping through some of the more crowded alternatives.
The dating app of choice for gay, lesbian, bi, trans, and queer people of all sorts, Grindr is one of the biggest dating apps around. Using it is simple — let the app know your location, and you’ll be matched with other nearby members so you can chat, swap pictures, and hopefully meet up in person.
Don’t worry if you don’t have a Kindle — you can still read your ebook directly on your smartphone. From best-sellers to the classics, it’s all here, with more than 900,000 titles in Amazon’s store.
Google Play Books
If you’re not a fan of Amazon, then Google’s Play Books is an excellent alternative. Google has a massive database of books to choose from, including all the classics — and you can even buy and play audiobooks too.
Audible is the premier place to consume audiobooks on your Android device. There are thousands of audiobooks on offer, from classics to the most recent hits, and you get your first audiobook for free. A $15-per-month subscription gets you a credit per month to spend on any audiobook, and options for playback speed and cross-device syncing make listening even easier. There’s even a car mode for listening on the go.
Moon+ is a versatile e-book reader supporting a number of different file formats, making it easy to upload and use files that might not come from major outlets. The app lets your browse smaller, independent e-book libraries, and sports a catalog of thousands of free titles. Moon+ offers a number of visual options and customizations, as well as support for 40 languages.
Weebly is a powerful site and content creation app utilized by millions of users. This app lets you create and manage your online store straight from your Android device. Keep track of all the most important analytics for your e-commerce store from the Weebly app. Powered by Square, Weebly is a true workhorse in the mobile site development space.
The Tumblr app makes it easy for you to share anything from anywhere. You can post any kind of content to multiple blogs, save drafts for later, schedule posts, and then join in the discussion.
This app mirrors the functionality of your WordPress blog and helps you create and edit posts. It’s a simplified version that’s easy to use, and it also displays reactions to your latest articles.
Steam is the biggest and most prolific community and storefront for PC gaming. Through the Android app, users can access the Steam community, browse the store, and purchase new games.
Google Stadia is Google’s platform to play games you own across multiple devices. Any games you own on Stadia can be played, paused, and continued seamlessly across Android devices and laptops. With the ability to stream games across devices, you won’t have to download the game onto each device, saving space and time.
Microsoft’s Xbox app not only brings your Xbox Live account and console interface to your phone, but it also opens up your gaming experience, with many games offering special, second-screen features, such as maps and bonus content.
While platforms like Facebook Gaming try their best to compete, Twitch remains the preeminent option for video game streaming and sports a growing roster of celebrity streamers. With the power of Amazon behind it, it’s unlikely Twitch will be dethroned anytime soon.
While the world of food delivery apps is vast, Grubhub is one of the best. Its seamless integration with local restaurant menus makes it one of the most user-friendly experiences in food delivery. If you’ve developed a recent taste for ordering in, then check out the options on Grubhub.
MyFitnessPal Calorie Tracker
If you want to lose weight and get in shape, then you need to start counting those calories, and this app, from MyFitnessPal, is an easy, accessible, and completely free way to do it.
Food Network Kitchen
Find thousands of recipes from your favorite food network chefs and personalities, including recipes featured on their TV shows and specials. How-to videos and shopping list features will equip you with everything you need to make a great meal.
Calorie Counter by FatSecret
The calorie counter from FatSecret offers one of the most comprehensive nutrition and calorie-tracking apps supported on Android. The service has thousands of restaurant and grocery meals in its incredibly diverse array of existing foods with nutrition information attached. The apps lets you set goals, keep a food diary, and like most apps these days it includes a social angle allowing you to create a profile and share your progress with others on the platform.
The fitness sensation of Peloton is certainly hard to ignore. While the price of its bike or treadmill may be out of reach for some folks, its app offers a thorough library of workout videos with great production value and neat organization by fitness subject. The Peloton network also offers live classes by lively instructors and allows close health tracking to help keep you motivated. Peloton currently offers a 30-day free trial, and a full membership for the app without the bike will run you $13 a month, though compared to a private trainer or gym membership, it’s a fitness app that seems well worth it.
If you’re trying to jump on the running bandwagon but need a little extra motivation, then try gamifying your workout experience. Zombies, Run! is exactly what it sounds like and precisely what it needs to be. This app runs you through (pun intended) an engrossing story plot as the world gives way to a zombie apocalypse. So, you better run!
Adidas Running App by Runtastic
Runtastic is a smartphone staple, with a simple interface that doesn’t sacrifice advanced features. The no-frills app uses your smartphone’s sensors to track metrics, such as your distance and relative pace, as well as calories burned and your heart rate. A few extra features, such as 3D mapping and a workout diary, only complement the app’s wearable integration. Runtastic is now owned by Adidas, adding an extra element of branding to the app, but it still functions much the same way as before.
Runkeeper is a community based GPS run tracker and exercise companion. Used by over 50 million users, Runkeeper can help you set and achieve your fitness goals through monitoring, encouraging interaction, and a slew of features designed to help you track and share your progress.
Sleep as Android
Sleep as Android is one of the biggest sleep tracking apps on Android, and there are a bunch of reasons it’s popular. You can track your sleep, movement, and snoring, you can play soothing noises to put you to sleep, and it syncs data with quite a few other apps and devices, including Google Fit and Philips HUE smart bulbs.
Yoga is unbelievably powerful. It strengthens your core, increases flexibility and focus, and decreases stress. Plus, it can help you lose weight and stay healthy. This app will guide you through daily yoga routines of varying difficulty and length, and step-by-step, HD videos showing exactly how to do each pose.
Taking a moment of calm can be crucial for your mental health, and Calm is one of the leading meditation and sleep-promotion apps in the Play Store. It has guided meditations, breathing exercises to reduce anxiety, sleep stories, and more. There are guides for beginners and experts alike, and while you’ll need to pay to get access to most, there’s still a lot here for free users who aren’t sure if they’ll enjoy it.
Whether you’re looking to learn something new for work or just for yourself, Udemy probably has a course to help you. With over 130,000 video courses taught by expert instructors, you can use Udemy to pick up skills with coding languages, Photoshop, yoga, and even more. You can download individual lessons to learn on the go, and there’s an audio-only mode if you’d rather learn in places like the car. Most courses will cost you money, but there are deals and discounts available for many.
Duolingo offers a free and approachable way to learn a new language. Through a mix of gamification, read and repeat, and a challenging but engaging skill system that the user has to climb through as they learn the new language of their choice. Duolingo offers a plethora of languages for English speakers, as well as some languages for native speakers of other languages.
Fabulous — Motivate Me!
With science-based coaching as its backbone, Fabulous — Motivate Me! will help instill healthy, positive habits and routines into your life — everything from better sleep, sticking to a morning routine, finding time for creativity, daily meditation, losing weight, and more.
Looking to save a little more money? Acorns helps you invest by rounding off your credit card or debit purchases to the nearest dollar. Once you’ve accumulated a little money, it’s easy to transfer the funds to your bank account. Acorns also offers retirement accounts like a Traditional IRA, so you can start saving for retirement now.
Mint is our favorite money management website, but it also has a terrific app. Mint can keep track of multiple bank accounts or credit cards to help you stay on budget and out of the red.
Venmo allows users to send money for free. The transactions can be sent to any bank and occur overnight. This makes paying back your friends simple and quick.
Honey brings automated saving and expert couponing to over 300 online stores. The Honey app will help you save money by offering coupons at check out, price tracking, and rewards all built around shaving off a few dollars from online transactions. Shoppers can also choose to browse products right from the Honey app.
Getting started on your investing journey has never been easier. An app you’ve undoubtedly heard about by now, Robinhood is a free equities and crypto trading platform. It’s a great way for young and beginning investors to get their feet wet in the world of Wall Street.
Depop’s ultra-minimal, online marketplace takes little more than a photo to get started. Once captured, share it on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter before striking a secure deal with a host of potential buyers via the built-in chat function.
There’s very little that you can’t buy or sell on eBay. The app is full-featured and much easier to use than the website. Bid on items, track your orders, and sell all of your unwanted stuff right here.
Amazon Prime Now
While the selection on Amazon Prime Now may not be as good as what you find on Amazon, the upshot is free delivery within two hours. If you’re in a real-time crunch, some products and locations offer one-hour delivery available for a small fee. With Amazon’s recent acquisition of Whole Foods, Amazon Prime Now even offers a decent selection of groceries.
The easiest online checkout method right on your smartphone. You’ll be able to manage your PayPal account, send and receive payments, and more. The app can also notify you of transactions, offering handy reminders and alerts when you use PayPal as a payment method or have an upcoming bill due.
RV Parky is a leading app for travelers to find RV campgrounds and parks across the country. RV Parky will help you choose from national, state, and privately owned RV sites with reviews, pictures, and info on the type of hook-ups and amenities available at the site. If you’re trying to explore the country with your family or friends in an RV, then RV Parky will be an essential tool in your travels.
If you need to get somewhere and don’t have wheels of your own, hop in someone else’s ride. Uber allows you to call upon a private driver in your city who will help you get to where you need to go. It’s all the ease of a taxi, at a lower cost, and without the fumbling for cash at the end.
Lyft is another private cab service, that helps you to find a — well — lift whenever you need one. Basically an alternative to Uber, you can hail a cab and pay directly in the app, and can even split the tab with a friend easily.
Forego the headache of trying to find and book a hotel, and instead find an open room or home to stay at on your travels. Users can search for accommodations, communicate directly with hosts, and book, all without leaving the app.
Translate speech or text between more than 70 languages with this app. It can act as your interpreter, enabling you to decipher signs and menus and enable two-way conversations. You can download translation files if you know you’ll be without a data connection, and it can even translate signs with Google Lens.
Tripadvisor is the ultimate going out app, with millions of recommendations and reviews from people all around the world, covering the best things to do wherever you are. Plan ahead with Tripadvisor’s tools, allowing you to organize your hotel bookings, restaurant trips, and attractions. You can even book them from the app with Google Pay access. It’s also great when you’re traveling, thanks to support for mobile tickets and bookings.
Craving a decent microbrew, a breakfast burrito, or a good latte? Yelp will help you scratch that itch. It’s packed with user reviews, directions, and tips for almost every place around, making it invaluable for almost every trip out.