Congratulations on your new Android phone! It’s a powerful device brimming with potential yet navigating the vast Google Play Store it can be overwhelming. To help you unlock the full potential of your Android experience, we’ve compiled a list of 8 must-have apps that suit different needs. Whether you’re a productivity enthusiast, a social butterfly, or a photography enthusiast, these essential apps will enhance your everyday interactions with your phone. From streamlining tasks and managing finances to exploring hidden creative corners and staying in touch with loved ones, these apps will become your favorite companions on your Android journey. So, dive in and discover how these apps can turn your new phone into a personalized powerhouse that enhances your mobile experience!

When you first start using your new device, you’ll notice that it comes with a carefully curated set of apps and utilities. No duplicate services or unnecessary add-ons from operators. This setting allows you to customize your app drawer with software that you really find useful. Fortunately, the Google Play Store offers a wide selection of high-quality apps for you to discover, download, and try.

Below, we’ll discuss 8 must-have apps that will help make your life easier with your new Android smartphone. It’s worth noting that these apps are in no particular order.

Backdrops app for Android

Wallpaper apps are a big hit on both Android devices and iPhones, and Pixel phones are no different. One excellent choice from the Play Store is Backdrops, which offers a wide selection of wallpaper designs. Many of these wallpapers are free, but some premium designs require an in-app purchase to download.

Saving wallpapers to the Favorites tab in the Backdrops app is super easy, and you can quickly find useful information like resolution and file size. Like many other apps on this list, Backdrops boasts an aesthetically pleasing design along with a friendly and streamlined user interface, making it both attractive and easy to use.

In recent years, Google has improved the wallpaper features of its Pixel phones, introducing options such as automatically generated wallpapers through artificial intelligence and an “Emoji Workshop” feature. Despite these improvements, it’s safe to say that the rich selection available in Backdrops remains unmatched.

Google Authenticator app for Android Apps for Android

If you’re not already using a password authentication app, it’s a good idea to start. Most of your online accounts offer an option to enable 2-factor authentication (2FA). Turning this on adds an extra layer of security by requiring you to enter a code when you sign in. This means that even if someone discovers or guesses your password, they won’t be able to access your account without the authentication code specifically associated with it.

Some apps send verification codes via text message, which is unencrypted and usually less secure than using a dedicated app. Google Authenticator is a more secure option that provides auto-expiring codes for all your compatible accounts. Setting it up is as easy as scanning a QR code, making it a convenient and robust choice for improving your online security.

There are several authentication apps available for Android, including Microsoft’s Authenticator app. However, I usually prefer to use Google Authenticator because it was developed by the Android creators. This alignment means it integrates well with the operating system’s design language, offering a seamless and cohesive user experience.

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Snapseed app for Android Apps for Android

Snapseed is another app from Google and is a surprisingly powerful yet lightweight photo editing tool in the Android ecosystem. It’s somewhat unexpected that Google doesn’t include Snapseed by default on Pixel phones. This decision may be related to Google’s focus on promoting AI-driven photo editing features in Google Photos.

Snapseed sticks to the basics of photo editing without diving into the experimental AI features that some other apps might offer. However, this direct approach is more of a strength than a limitation. The app has consistently provided a reliable set of tools for many years. It includes a set of filters similar to those you can find on Instagram and a handy button to quickly rotate images in any direction. The real heart of Snapseed is in the Tools tab, where you’ll find plenty of options to adjust your image. Here you can change the settings, crop the photo and apply various additional effects to enhance your images.

Snapseed may not be the most advanced photo editing package available, but it stands out for being simple and convenient, especially for use on smaller mobile phone screens. This makes it an excellent choice for quick and efficient photo adjustments while on the go.

Link to Windows Apps for Android

If you own both a Windows PC and an Android phone, you’ll definitely want to check out Microsoft’s Link to Windows app available on the Play Store. The app does exactly what its name suggests: it creates a seamless connection between your computer and your Android phone. This allows you to easily access your phone’s media and various functions directly from your computer, increasing productivity and convenience.

Specifically, when you use the Link to Windows application on your computer, you get several convenient options. You can view your phone’s photo gallery, send and receive basic text messages, answer and make phone calls, view notifications from your phone, activate Do Not Disturb mode, and control media playback. This integration effectively extends the functionality of your phone to your computer, making it easy to manage tasks without switching devices.

Many Android devices, especially those from Samsung, OnePlus, and Oppo, ship with Windows Connection pre-installed, providing seamless integration right out of the box. Google, on the other hand, tends to promote its ChromeOS laptops for a similar level of ecosystem continuity. However, if you own a Pixel phone, you can easily download the Link to Windows app from the Google Play Store and enjoy almost the same interconnected experience. This allows Pixel users to effectively connect their Android and Windows devices without even investing in a ChromeOS laptop.

BatteryGuru Android App Apps for Android

Google is reportedly planning to improve the visibility of battery-related information in the upcoming version of Android 15. However, until this update is available, BatteryGuru remains the best app for monitoring and managing battery health and usage. This app provides detailed information and tools to help users effectively increase the battery life of their device.

BatteryGuru offers a wide range of statistics and tools related to your phone’s battery, all presented in a user-friendly format. It includes detailed information on charging and discharging patterns, battery health ratings, and alerts on battery temperature and levels. The app also provides access to graph data, giving you a visual representation of your battery’s performance over time. These features make it an invaluable tool for anyone looking to optimize their device’s battery life and keep it healthy.

Smartphone batteries are consumables that chemically degrade over time. Monitoring your phone’s battery health is a smart practice, even if it’s just a quick check every now and then. BatteryGuru is a great tool for this purpose. The app is free to use and offers a comprehensive overview of the status and health of your battery. For those who prefer an ad-free experience, there is a paid tier available that removes the ads. This makes it easy for you to monitor your battery performance without interruption.

The Top 5 Apps Every Android Phone Owner Should Download