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The best Android apps for your new smartphone (2021 Edition)


Getting a new Android phone is almost akin to starting a new chapter of your life. With every new device, there are tons of new features and functions that are at your disposal. To truly utilize the capabilities of your brand new phone, however, it is essential that you install all the right apps. Here are the top Android apps that we think you should install on your brand new Android smartphone.

Cloud storage apps to keep your new Android phone clutter-free

Among the first apps that we think you should install on your phone are cloud-storage apps. These apps will prevent the internal storage on your phone from getting clogged with data, pictures, documents and videos. There are many good apps for this purpose. Google already bundles its own Google Drive on most Android devices. In case you do not wish to be tied-down within the Google ecosystem, there are other apps like Dropbox, Box and OneDrive that are also perfectly suited to the role

Now, if you don’t really fancy storing your personal data ‘in the cloud’, there are data transfer apps that will help you locally transfer data from one phone to another. This can be helpful in case you are also moving from one device to another or from a device to your own hard drive connected to a computer. One app that comes to our mind is Airdroid – which allows you to wirelessly transfer your data back and forth between your smartphone and PC (its functionality doesn’t end there though). The only disadvantage it presents, however, is that bulky files can sometimes be troublesome to upload. Portal is also a great app for this purpose, though this is pretty much its only function.

USB drives are no longer the ‘in- thing”, as network-attached storage systems are more a flexible and secure way to transfer data between two storage spaces and the risk of losing data is almost non-existent. Take a look in the Google Play Store for our recommended NAS app.

Teach your friends that WhatsApp isn’t the only messenger app

The primary purpose of a mobile phone, as has been the case for ages, is to communicate.  And instant messaging is among the most widely used apps. Though the likes of WhatsApp and Messenger have become a staple in most countries worldwide, it might not be the best choice seeing as both of them are owned by Facebook, whose privacy policies are often dubious and the risk of intrusions is high.

A better app to use is Threema. It uses less data and it encrypts messages so that only the recipient will ever see the message. Other good and secure apps are Signal and Wire. While Threema only uses text messages, Signal has voice calling and Wire offers voice and video calling.

Do note that Threema is a paid app. However, it has the advantage that you can use five different mobile phone numbers with one Threema license. This is great for large families and paying a little for a lot of security is definitely worth it.

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WhatsApp is not the only messaging app out there. / © NextPit

Social networks and games

It’s highly probable that you have already installed Facebook on your phone. You can however also get access to this social network via a browser on your device, there is no actual need to install the app on your device. Social networks for career advancement include  LinkedIn and Xing. Are you also one of those people who doesn’t quite comprehend Snapchat? Then you should really try out the messenger and send your friends funny selfies that will delete after a few seconds. Twitch on the other hand is the latest fad amongst gamers and allows users to follow video games being played in live streams.

Many people also use the Cloud-based Google Play Games app, which has the advantage of saving your progress. It’s actually quite odd that this app is seldomly pre-installed on smartphones. If you want to be able to pop in and out of a game, then install Google Play Games prior to getting started.

There are also a bunch of great games to fill up on in some of our other top lists:

Give your phone a personalized make-over

If you don’t like the user interface of your phone, then you could try a launcher, which can easily be installed from the Google Play Store. There are literally hundreds of different launchers you can get, all of which do really cool stuff with your phone, bringing neat new functions and features to make your phone even better. Two of the best launchers are Nova Launcher and Action Launcher, though there are of course a lot more. We have a list of the best launchers for your Android smartphone.

shade launcher
A new launcher gives your smartphone its own personalized look. / © NextPit

These apps are just some of the great apps to have on your phone, but of course, there are a lot more. What apps do you think are essential for every smartphone?

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