Android comes in several shapes and sizes, and almost every vendor or mobile phone manufacturer has its unique take on the operating system. What provides them the liberty to customize Android is the fact that Android is an open-source program. This list goes beyond the Android variants created by brands and further includes the multiple different strains produced by independent developers in the form of custom Android ROMs. Like the various variations of Android, there is a kind of Open Source Android Apps that is very helpful, although they might not have received the kind of attention they deserve.
Furthermore, if you’re a developer yourself and want to improve your coding skills, you can use the code from these Open Source Android Apps as a reference to develop your own apps or add features to those applications without having to write the code from scratch. For customers, Open Source Android Apps bring an ad-free experience for free. I like Open Source Android Apps and have been utilizing them since the start.
Open Source Android Apps to Improve your Coding Skills in 2021
Here are some of my preferred Open Source Android Apps that you can use in 2021.
Slide for Reddit
As obvious from the name, Slide is a Reddit customer, an open-source app available on Android. The first thing Slide suggests you at the start is to adjust the main interface & accent colors and the background color. The navigation within the application relies a lot on swipe (or slide) gestures making it more interactive than the Reddit app. It not just loads faster than the official one but also has more sorting options for subreddits and comments. You can survey Reddit without signing in and search for a special user from a dedicated “Go to Profile” choice in the hamburger menu. Moreover, the comments hierarchy is coordinated by color, which may be too overwhelming originally but adds a sense of joy to the serious and somewhat intimidating demeanor. But the great part about Slide keeps your Reddit feed free from any advertisement.
Timber Music Player
Timber is an open-source and adaptable music player which allows you to customize your music-listening experience to a great extent. While you get the primary customization features like changing the theme or the accent colors, there is also an option to choose among 4 different interfaces for the “Now Playing” window. Besides this, the player can automatically get lyrics and the album art for a track while it further features support for LastFM scrobbler. Timber also builds playlists based on the tracks you recently add to your device or listen to the most. Finally, you can also choose which one of the three – Songs, Albums, or Artists – is displayed as the start page.
Etar is an open-source calendar app for Android which displays events daily, weekly, monthly, and agenda-wise layouts. The interface utilizes material design elements and lets you pick between light, dark, and fully black themes, and provides you the option to customize accent colors. Apart from this, Etar syncs all the events you add with Google Calendar or Microsoft Exchange accounts. Moreover, you can choose to set an event to private so that its contents are not apparent on the main screen. With the Google Calendar integration, you can invite other members to a specific event.
Frost for Facebook
Despite the growing skepticism from users since the Cambridge Analytica case last year, Facebook has been the most famous social media, especially because of the vastness of options and features. Nevertheless, the Facebook app for Android is among the most data-hungry and resource-seeking apps, oftentimes resulting in a jittery experience on entry-level or mid-range smartphones. Frost for Facebook is a lightweightlightweight & open-source app that stores your Facebook feed faster than the official application without compromising on any feature. On the other hand, it adds traits like comprehensive options for theming the interface and the benefit of adding multiple accounts at once. Frost also enables you to play stories in PiP and reply to messages without installing a separate Messenger app. Frost for Facebook can be a great alternative if you’ve been stuck between using Facebook Lite and the mobile site.
Orbot is an open-source proxy solving app for Android built on the concept of Tor (The Onion Router). This helps conceal your identity online and fight the forces that propose to curb your online freedom by routing the internet traffic by more than 7000 layers. You may feel a slowdown in the network speeds after switching Orbot on, but your identity will be fully secure. Further, you can selectively choose which apps use the network while working with Orbot to bypass geo-restrictions on certain content.
Kodi is cross-platform, and an open-source media player which gives you nearly infinite options to stream movies, TV shows, music, and even live TV. You can add some add-ons and Kodi repositories that help you download or stream content or manage your library. Besides the capacity to watch content from many sources, you can also play retro games on Kodi and theme the media player to suit your mood and preferences. Besides Android, Kodi can be installed on Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, and a kind of TV box and streaming stick for completely free.
Amaze File Manager
Amaze File Manager is a simple-to-use and resourceful file manager which stands out in the long list of file managers due to its minimum material design interface. Besides a clear interface, Amaze File Manager’s fast animations and the capacity to choose from among different themes and select colors for elements individually are what make it more interesting. Apart from engaging aesthetics, the file manager amazes (yes, the cringe-worthy pun was intended) you with the ability to backup installed applications in the form of APK files and even restore them after a fresh install. Further, you can use the inbuilt FTP option or utilize a score of cloud transfer protocols like SCP, SMB, SFTP, or even install other plugins to extend the utility.
VLC Media Player
VLC is a famous media player who brings support for a wide variety of audio and video codecs. Apart from playing local media files, VLC can run videos, audios, and other kinds of files over a local network or internet directory. Some standard features that enhance media playback include the capacity to change playback speed, jump to a particular time, add and pan subtitles, set a sleep timer. Users can also enjoy videos in picture-in-picture mode and even tune the audio playback using the inbuilt equalizer.
I like the Pixel launcher that comes with Google Pixel phones. I crave all the Android smartphone launchers, either it is from Samsung or Xiaomi, followed the similarly minimal design language. Well, since that’s not the circumstance, we have to utilize third-party launchers, and if you want minimalism with great performance, there’s none greater than Lawnchair launcher. It produces the Pixel design language with all the traits, including adaptive icons, drawer categories, automatic dark mode, notification dots, and more. And since it’s open-source, it’s free-to-use without any ads. It is worth checking out.
Another useful and beautiful open-source Android application that I install instantly on a new Android device is QKSMS. It’s a third-party texting customer for normal messages. My favorite feature of this application is the ability to customize the look and feel of the app. The application supports dual and multi-SIM devices, so you have no problems there. It also supports normal MMS protocol enabling you to share media files like photos and audio files. One excellent feature of this application is the ability to create group messages. Overall, I quite like this application and always prefer it over the built-in messaging app.
If you consider that Google Keep was the handiest note-taking app, Omni Notes might prove you wrong. The application comes to use a material design interface. It allows you to perform actions like adding a reminder, archiving and deleting in a group, and merging the selected notes. Apart from this, you can sort notes based on the date of creation, last modification, or the date for reminders. You can further set a password to protect the notes and backup and restore these notes both locally or from your Springpad account.
Let’s start this article with 1 of my favorites and best-designed open-source Android apps. SoundSpice is an offline music player application that conforms to modern design language. The app’s user interface is both functional and useful. It’s also a lightweight application that makes it excellent even for older Android devices. The application is 100% free to use and also brings modern UI features such as dark mode. 1 of my favorite features of this application is the real-time lyrics look-up. It enables me to get song lyrics with a tap quickly. If you are not utilizing online music streaming services and still listen to your offline music collection, you should try this app.
Pixel Dungeon is an addictive and challenging game that falls under Open Source Android Apps. Pixel Dungeon is an RPG game regarding fighting megabats, rats, and evidently some monsters with pixel-art graphics and natural gameplay. On the way, you’ve to take something to eat and some valuable items like keys to unlock doors as well as weapons like swords to battle monsters on your course. The game engages your interest and can be a great time and boredom buster.
Looking for a privacy-friendly open-source email application for your Android device, look no farther than FairEmail. It brings all the modern email highlights, including support for unlimited accounts and unlimited email addresses, unified inbox, conversation threading, 2-way synchronization, and more. It’s minimal (>12MB) and is very light on resources. Finally, I like that it supports the material design language and dark mode. Gone are the days when open-source email customers were ugly and hard-to-use. FairEmail produces a modern email experience for your Android device.
The Signal is an open-source messaging program that comes with end-to-end encryption. The application has long been standing as the flagbearer for encrypted and protected conversations, and popular messengers like Facebook and WhatsApp Messenger use Signal’s cryptographic protocol for ensuring the secrecy of the messages sent and received by you. The messaging interface is straightforward and convenient to use, and there’s an inbuilt dark mode. Finally, there are many options in terms of privacy, including an auto-lock timer, the option to utilize the keyboard in incognito mode, restricting screenshots, and enabling or disabling backup – among other options.
Best Open Source Android Apps You Must Try
Open source Android apps not just provide a magnificent chance of embracing and learning about technology; however, they can also please the geek in you who might enjoy DIY solutions. Open-source protocols motivate the community to actually not develop for financial reward except for the passion of developing & the foresight for a brighter technologically-advanced future.
Therefore, whether it is for learning or taking a break from the vicious ads network tracing your internet usage throughout, you can depend on open-source Android apps to help you. Do you believe we can include some other open source apps for Android in this list? Let us know in the comments below.