The Google Play Store has over 3.5 million apps to choose from, and the numbers keep growing. In an app-hungry world like ours, this can seem a little intimidating. Many apps do the same thing or try to do too much. It’s hard even when you know what you want; it’s even harder when you do not know which app offers the features you want.

best free android apps

We have gone through the trouble of introducing you to 50 of the best free Android apps from a variety of categories. Whether you are looking for a new productivity tool, a fun game, or a social media app that lets you share content with your friends, here are some of the best free Android apps we recommend.

Disclaimer: While all apps in this list are free to download, some apps may require additional in-app purchases to get full functionality.

1. Best Free Social Apps

i. Best Free Social Media app

Our Pick: Reddit

Reddit is our top choice for the best free social media app. It is a forum where millions of users can join to discuss things, ask questions, and more. On Reddit, people can find other people with similar interests/hobbies and brainstorm conversations with them.

Honorable mentions:

  • Twitter– A platform where people can tweet their thoughts/feelings, find out about current issues, and more.
  • Linkedin– Looking for a more professional social media app? LinkedIn has everything you need. Here you can connect with the best people in the industry and also search for new job openings.

ii. Best Free Messaging app

Our Pick: Telegram

Telegram is one of the most popular messaging apps out there. In fact, it is one of the most downloaded apps in the world, with over 500 million active users. The best thing about this Android app is that all messages sent using it are seamlessly synced between multiple devices. Speaking of privacy, Telegram encrypts your messages and images with 256-bit encryption.

Honorable mentions:

  • Whatsapp– Whatsapp is also a popular messaging app for many users. The app is extremely easy to use and understand and is also the third most popular messaging app in the Google Play Store.
  • Signal– Signal has gained a lot of popularity recently due to privacy concerns over other messaging apps like Whatsapp. Signal aims to provide its users with a secure messaging service and protect their privacy.

2. Best Free Multimedia apps

i. Best Free Music Streaming app

Our Pick: YouTube Music

YouTube Music is a music streaming service from search engine giant Google. The app has over 70 million songs, including live performances, remixes, covers, and more. Moreover, it offers personalized playlists for Workouts and relaxes, to name a few. The biggest advantage of YouTube Music is that it has access to all the popular songs and videos that are available on YouTube.

Honorable mentions:

  • SoundCloud– SoundCloud has a huge collection of established artists, DJs and more. In the app, you can also follow your favorite artists to listen to new songs from them as soon as it released.
  • Spotify– Spotify is another popular music streaming service. Spotify not only has a huge collection of songs but also of podcasts.

Related Read: Best Music Downloader Apps

ii. Best Free Music player

Our Pick: Foobar2000

Foobar2000 is a top-rated and easy-to-use music player app. The app has support for most audio formats like MP3, MP4, AAC, and FLAC, to name a few. Moreover, it also supports hi-res audio playback to make your music listening experience even more enjoyable.

Honorable Mentions:

  • AIMP– AIMP is also a very good music player with some exciting features. It comes with support for all popular audio formats, and there is also a 29-band equalizer to tweak the audio to match your preferences.
  • jetAudio player– jetAudio is one of the oldest music players out there with over 10 million downloads on the Google play store. This Android app offers a very simple and straightforward UI which makes it easier to understand and use.

iii. Best Free Video player

Our Pick: VLC media player

VLC Media Player has over 100 million downloads on the Google Play Store. It supports all popular video formats such as MKV, MP4, AVI, MOV, AAC, and many more. Besides, the app also tries to repair corrupted video files when you try to play them with VLC.

Honorable mentions:

  • MX Player– MX Player is one of the oldest and most download video players on the Google play store. Other than just being a video player, the app also offers access to many popular movies and TV shows.
  • KM Player – KM player is a very simple and easy-to-use video player. It has support for all popular video formats and supports video playback up to 8k resolution.

iv. Best Free Photo Editing app

Our Pick: Adobe Photoshop express

Adobe is known for making some of the best editing tools on the market. Adobe Photoshop Express is the stripped-down version of the popular Adobe Photoshop. But do not let that fool you into thinking it’s not good enough. In fact, this Android app offers a wealth of features that will help you make your next photo look absolutely stunning and attractive. What’s more, this app even lets you create collages from multiple images. The premium version of the app will give you access to features like advanced editing tools and a premium template library.

Honorable mentions:

  • Snapseed– Snapseed is a photo editing app from Google and offers some exciting features. One standout feature of Snapseed is “Healing.” With the healing feature, you can easily remove unwanted objects from your image.
  • PicsArt– If you want to edit your pictures quickly, you can try Picsart. Moreover, Picksart is the first choice of editors on the Google Play Store, with over 500 million downloads.

Photo editing is good, but I want to create memes. Is there an app for that? Do not worry, we have already rounded up the best meme generator apps for you.

v. Best Free Video Editing app

Our Pick: Filmora go

Filmora is one of the most popular video editing apps on the market due to its functionality and ease of use. With this app, you can add filters, change music videos, add lyrics, and much more. The app has a 4.6-star rating with over 50 million downloads on the Play Store. Some additional features are available as an in-app purchase.

Honorable mentions:

  • Kine master – Kine Master is also a very popular video editing app. In fact, it is the app with the highest sales in the Google Play Store (#1).
  • Adobe premiere rush– If you are looking for a mobile version of Adobe Premiere Pro, Premiere Rush is for you. It does not have as many options as its counterpart PC, but it’s still very good and pretty easy to use.

vi. Best Free Entertainment app

Our pick: YouTube

YouTube is our top pick for the best entertainment app as it has a vast collection of videos covering different topics and is completely free to use (with ads). The app personalizes and recommends videos based on your search history. Furthermore, you can subscribe to your favorite channels and get notified every time they upload a new video. Recently, YouTube also introduced YouTube Shorts inside the app, which comprises short, fun-to-watch clips to keep you entertained.

Honorable mentions:

  • TikTokTikTok is one of the most famous entertainment/social media apps out there. In the app, you can create short clips with your friends or enjoy short videos uploaded by other users.
  • Disney+Hotstar– If you want to stream sports, Disney+Hotstar is really good at doing that. It not only has many movies and series, but it can also stream live sports like EPL, IPL, and more. Moreover, the app can now stream all the popular content from Disney locally.

3. Best Free Productivity Apps (Time to get more Productive)

i. Best Free To-Do List app

Our pick: Microsoft To do

Microsoft To-Do is an excellent productivity app if you want to create a to-do list for your work. You can set tasks for each day or save the scheduled tasks you want to do on a particular day in the app. Also, you can assign tasks to other people if you use a company account.

Honorable mentions:

  • Google tasks– If for some reason you do not want to use Microsoft To-Do, you can try Google Tasks. You can create a list of tasks in the app and perform those tasks accordingly. All tasks are synced with your Google account, so you can easily access them on your PC /mobile phone.
  • Tick Tick– It is an alternative to Microsoft To-Do and Google Keep and has over 1 million downloads on the Play Store.

ii. Best Free Note-Taking app

Our pick: Evernote

Evernote is one of the oldest note-taking apps on the Play Store and is the seventh best-selling app as well. The mobile app offers tremendous flexibility and control over notes. Users can also create a to-do list with this app.

Honorable mentions:

  • Notebook– Notebook is an alternative to Evernote and is also the editor’s choice on the Google Play Store. If you prefer a very simple UI with colors, then you will surely like this one.
  • Microsoft one note– If you want your notes to sync smoothly between your PC and your Android device, try Microsoft One Note. The app syncs all notes with your Microsoft account and can be easily accessed on PC.

iii. Best Free File Managing app

Our pick: Solid Explorer

Solid Explorer is our first choice for the best file manager because of its overall functionality. The file manager is straightforward to understand and use. Apart from that, you can also use this app to access the Android/OBB folder if you are interested in these things.

Honorable mentions:

  • MK explorer– If you are looking for a classic file manager, you can take a look at MK explorer. The app has a 4.5-star rating with over 500k+ downloads.
  • CX file manager– This file manager is extremely user-friendly and comes with various icons to make understanding the available options effortless.

iv. Best Free Android Browser

Our pick: Firefox

Mozilla’s Firefox is our top choice for the best free Android browser. The app offers a straightforward UI and is comparatively less resource-intensive than other browsers. As the name suggests, there is also a built-in ad blocker that blocks spam ads in browsers.

Honorable mentions:

  • Google Chrome– Google Chrome is the preferred browser for many users. Usually, the app is pre-installed on most Android devices and can be easily used without the hassle of installing it from the Play Store. However, it is a bit resource-intensive and can drain the battery a bit faster.
  • Brave– If privacy is very important to you, then you definitely need to try the brave browser. It is very privacy-oriented and offers good performance.

v. Best Free Scanning App

Our Pick: Microsoft Office Lens

The app is available for free for both Android and iOS and allows you to digitize various types of documents such as business cards, images, posters, receipts, etc. into a form that is easy to share and accessible anywhere. Besides, you can also convert images to Word, PowerPoint, or PDF files and save them automatically to your OneDrive account.

Honorable Mentions:
Adobe Scan– It is a free app with the usual features. It also offers in-app purchases that add a few more features into the mix. The app has OCR (Optical Character Recognition), which facilitates automatic text recognition.

ScanPro– You can use it to quickly create high-quality scanned PDF or JPG scans and upload them to one of your favorite cloud storage services like iCloud, Drive, Box, Dropbox, and the like. ScanPro is available for free but also offers a paid plan via in-app purchase that adds pro features and opens up new functionalities.

4. Best Free Android Games (Let’s Play)

i. Best Free FPS game for Android

Our pickPUBG (BGMI)

PlayerUnknown’s Battleground is one of the most popular games out there and is quite addictive among players because of its gameplay. In the game, you can create a team with your friends and play together as a squad. It is our first choice because it offers the fun we need when playing. That said, all Indian users need to download BGMI from the Google Play Store as PUBG is no longer available officially in India.

bgmi homepage

Honorable mentions:

  • COD– Call of Duty is another popular game for Android smartphones and is the 3rd highest-grossing app on the Google Play store. Also, the game offers various combat modes such as Battle Royale, PVP battle, and more.
  • Modern OPS– Modern OPS was released in 2019 and is a very popular game with over 50 million downloads on the Google Play store.

If you are not a hardcore gamer and want something more casual? Worry not; we have got you covered.

ii. Best Free Casual game for Android

Our Pick: Candy Crush

Candy Crush is one of the oldest casual games available and is the 2nd best-selling casual game in the Play Store. This casual game is a puzzle game where you have to match and blow up candies to level up.

Honorable mentions:

  • Clash Royale- Clash Royale is a very popular game from Supercell. It is a casual battle game where two players compete with their own deck of cards. There are different leagues in the game; the leagues are determined by the number of trophies you have.
  • Bubble shooter– Bubble Shooter is a casual bubble pop game where you have to match 3 balls and blast them. The best part is that you can play the game offline.

iii. Best Free Racing game

Our Pick: Asphalt 9

Asphalt 9 is the highest selling game on the Google Play Store in the racing games section. The game has some of the best graphics that make the gaming experience more vivid. Also, there are cars from popular brands like Ferrari, Porsche, Lamborghini, and many others that you can experience in the game.

asphalt 9 home

Honorable mentions:

  • Real Racing 3– Real Racing 3 is the editor’s choice on the Google Play Store. Just like Asphalt 9, the game has cars from famous manufacturers like Ford, Aston Martin, McLaren, to name a few.
  • Need For Speed– Need for Speed used to be a very popular PC game back in the day and due to its popularity we also have an Android app for it. The game is all about cars and street racing with other players.

5. Best Free Security apps

i. Best Free Password manager app

Our pick: Bitwarden

Bitwarden Password Manager, as the name suggests, manages all your passwords securely in one place. This free Android app can also automatically enter passwords into your browser, so you do not have to keep remembering passwords for different websites. The app protects your passwords with end-to-end encryption to keep your sensitive data safe.

Honorable Mentions:

  • Dashlane Password manager– Dashlane is a very useful password manager. With Dashlane you can easily import all your saved passwords from Google Chrome into the manager.
  • LastPass– Lastpass is also one of the most popular password managers out there. The free app can store passwords/logins and also offers free syncing of passwords between multiple devices seamlessly. Sadly, recent changes to the free version has made it less attractive when recommending free password manager apps on Android.

ii. Best Free VPN app

Our Pick: Windscribe

Windscribe VPN is our first choice for the best free VPN app, as it is quite easy to use and offers all the features we expect from a VPN app on an Android phone or an Android tablet. The app encrypts all data and also prevents any cyber attacks on your network. With the automatic connection feature that Windscribe likes to call “Network Whitelisting,” the VPN will automatically turn on when you come home or connect to an unknown WiFi network over a cup of hot espresso at your favorite cafe. It’s also our recommended VPN app for Android Smart TVs.

Honorable mentions:

  • Nord VPN– Nord VPN is the best-selling VPN app on the Google Play Store. With Nord VPN, you can enjoy a private and secure internet experience. With a single account, you can add up to six devices and secure your connection. Besides, Nord VPN has over 5500 servers worldwide, so you will not have any speed problems. With a seven day free trial, you can use the VPN for one week before you decide to purchase a monthly/yearly subscription.
  • Tunnelbear– Tunnelbear is also a popular vpn service provider. The free app is very simple and straightforward to use. It offers up to 1 GB of free data per month which is handy for lite users.

6. Best Free Customization apps

i. Best Free Launcher app

Our Pick: Nova Launcher

Nova Launcher is one of the most popular and oldest launchers available on the Google Play Store. The application offers some of the best customization options with support for custom icon packs, grid customization options, and more. You can also backup and restore custom setups across multiple devices. Nova Launcher has a 4.4-star rating and over 50 million downloads on the Google Play store.

Honorable mentions:

  • Microsoft launcher– Microsoft Launcher is a relatively new launcher, but a good one. It is a fast and simple launcher with support for custom icon packs.
  • Lawnchair– Lawnchair is a community favorite because of its ease of use. The app supports notification dots, adaptive icons, an automatic dark mode, and more.

ii. Best Free Wallpaper app

Our Pick: Walli

Walli is our choice for the best wallpaper app because of the high-quality, beautiful 4K wallpapers available in the app. Wallpapers from the Walli app can even be seen on many devices from Google Pixel. You can choose from thousands of wallpapers to suit your preference.

Honorable mentions:

  • Wallcandy– Wallcandy is also a very good app for wallpapers. In fact, the app has over 5000 wallpapers to choose from.
  • Google Wallpaper– Google Wallpaper is one of the simplest wallpaper apps out there. It has a collection of wallpapers from all famous artists and different apps.

iii. Best Free Icon pack

Our Pick: Rondo

Rondo is a simple and minimalistic pastel icon pack for your Android device. The app has over 5000 icons and is supported by most launchers.

Honorable mentions:

  • Whicons– Whicons is one of the most stylish icon packs out there. As the name suggests, the icons are in white and go perfectly with dark wallpapers.
  • CandyCons– CandyCons is also a really nice icon pack. The app has over 1 million downloads and an overall rating of 4.3 stars on the Google Play Store.

7. Best Free Informative apps

i. Best Free News app

Our pick: Flipboard

Flipboard is a well-liked and convenient news app. While the app offers personalized news content based on your interests, you can also create a custom news magazine incorporating people, hashtags, and more. Moreover, Flipboard is also the Editors choice on the Google play store.

Honorable mentions:

  • Google News– Google News is a really good alternative to Flipboard. The app categorizes news based on your search history and according to your interests.
  • Feedly– Using Feedly, you can easily organize your favourite blogs/publication in a single feed. This comes in extremely useful in reading news from your favourite/trusted sources without creating a fuss.

ii. Best Free Sports app

Our Pick: The Athletic

The Athletic is the third highest-grossing app in the sports category on the Google Play Store. You can get information about your favorite team, players, and more. You can also listen to podcasts of your favorite teams and learn from their experiences.

Honorable mentions:

  • Bleacher Report– Bleacher Report displays scores and upcoming matches of your favourite teams. Moreover, the app showcases stories written by popular writers.
  • BBC Sports– BBC sports is also a very good sports app. The app provides prompt news updates, set match reminders and much more. You can also create a custom page and add the topics you are interested in.

iii. Best Free Health and Fitness app

Our Pick: Google Fit

Google Fit is our top choice for the best health and fitness app because of its functionality. The app logs your workouts and displays real-time stats for your runs. You can also pair your fitness tracker/smartwatch with Google Fit.

Honorable mentions:

  • Step tracker– Step tracker is a very simple and clear app. It records your daily steps and counts the calories burned throughout the day.
  • Calorie Counter– Calorie Counter helps you burn calories by guiding you with the right diet plans, home workouts, and more.

iv. Best Free Weather App

Our Pick: AccuWeather

AccuWeather is one of the most popular weather apps on this list. Recently, the app has undergone a major redesign and some new features have been added. The app is known for providing accurate weather forecasts at all times. Also, the app offers a detailed weather report with wind speed, humidity, and UV index.

Honorable Mentions:

  • Windy– Windy indicates wind variations on the oceans. If a hurricane approaches one’s city, the app tries to display its current position and warn users. Users can also switch between radar and satellite views depending on their preference. It is one of the best apps when it comes to severe weather warnings.
  • Overdrop– What is unique about this app is that it supports themes. Users can go through the numerous themes on the app and choose the one that suits their preferences.

So these were some of the best free apps available in all categories, in our opinion. As with any ‘Best apps list’, these things are very subjective. We haven’t included some obvious ones like Google Drive for cloud backups, Google Maps for navigation, Google Camera app, Adobe Acrobat Reader for reading PDF files, and others.

There are still many more great apps available out there, and we are very thankful to our hard-working developers for that. Do let us know your favorite apps in the comments section below.

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