50 Fantastic Free Android Apps

Finding the best free Android apps got you down? Here's a list of our favorite 50 free Android apps to get you started.
Posted September 13, 2010

Thor Olavsrud

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A free Android app is a wonderful thing. The problem is, the Android App Marketplace is a bit freewheeling, and it can be hard to separate the wheat from the chaff. Lucky for you, we've done the job for you.

So let the downloading begin. Yes, you heard right – all of these fantastic 50 are completely free Android apps. Think of them as the best free apps the Android Marketplace has to offer.

1) ASTRO File Manager

This app is a full-featured file manager that lets you view and manage the files on your Droid without having to plug it into your computer. You can even use it to backup your Android apps to your SD card.

2) EStrongs File Explorer

This local and network file manager provides a file explorer for both the local phone and your remote computer. You can view files on your phone and in your computer's shared folder and transfer files between them. You can even play audio and video, browse images and view text.

3) Dropbox

Dropbox is a client for the Dropbox cloud-sharing file storage service. It makes it easy to get files onto your phone without explicit synching. You can add files to it from any of your computers and then access them from any other computer or phone.

4) Advanced Task Killer

A task manager for Android phones, Advanced Task Killer allows you to kill apps running in the background with a single click.

5) K-9 Mail

This open source project has taken Google's standard e-mail client and enhanced it. If you want to do serious, non-Gmail-based e-mail management on your phone, especially using IMAP, K-9 Mail is a must.

6) Nesoid Lite

This Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) emulator allows you to play every NES game ever made right on your Android phone. You'll have to take responsibility for the legality of your ROMs. 7) SwitchPro Widget

This cool little app gives you the ability to control 17 of your Android phone's functions directly from one of your homescreens. You can turn 3G, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth on and off, adjust your screen's brightness, even reload your SD card after transferring files.

8) GDocs for Android

This editor/viewer for Google Documents allows you to create, edit, view, import, export, send documents and sync them with your Google Docs account.

9) DroidLight LED Flashlight

Turn the camera flash on your phone into a flashlight! It's much better than flashlight apps that just make your screen white. There's typically a different version of this app for each type of phone, as it uses non-standard APIs to address the hardware. You might have to hunt a bit to find the right one for your Droid.

10) Lookout

Want to protect your phone? Lookout does just about everything. It provides security against mobile viruses, malware and hackers, backs up your data and even locates your lost or stolen device on a map from the Web. And if you can't find it, you can use Lookout to make your phone "scream" or simply wipe out all the data on it.

11) Barcode Scanner

Scan barcodes on books, CDs, and all sorts of other products and then look up prices and reviews. You can also read the QR codes (little square barcodes) that are popping up everywhere, allowing you to decipher the encoded URLs, contact information, Wi-Fi access codes, calendar events, etc.

12) Twitter for Android

Twitter's branded client is among the best of the Twitter clients available for Android. It hasn't closed the gap with Twitter for iPhone yet, but it's getting there.

13) NewsRob

This is an excellent, plain but functional Google Reader client with built-in syncing for off-line reading.

14) Fandango

This is a solid client for using Fandango's services to check movie times and purchase tickets.

15) Google Sky Map

Hold your phone up to the sky, and this app uses the location service and tilt sensor to figure out where you are looking and overlays constellations and astronomical object information. It's a fun tool for exploring the stars!

16) B&B Gallery

B&B Gallery is a fast, no-frills multitouch image viewer. It doesn't offer any of the fancy animations of the standard gallery; it just gets you straight to looking at your images.

17) Stopwatch

Android's built-in clock app doesn't have a stopwatch feature. Stopwatch is a simple app that does exactly what it says.

Next Page: More free Android Apps

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Tags: Android, mobile, Android Marketplace, android apps

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