Each smartphone is a reflection of its user’s personality – each aspect of a phone, from the ringtones to the wallpapers, the games, the online pokies, the apps, and the widgets reflect the owner’s personality. But there are some things people usually don’t bother to change: the basic functions of a smartphone, like dialing and texting apps. Some probably don’t even know that you can use alternative apps for these functions. But you can – and quite often, the alternatives you can use are far better than what’s included with the phone’s operating system.
Android Messages by Google
There are many apps that can replace the built-in SMS function in an Android phone, but Google’s “Android Messages” is one of the best. It is an app that handles SMS, MMS, picture and video sharing, and audio messages among its users, all this with a simple, almost minimalistic design. It even integrates with Google Wallet, allowing you to send and receive money through it. And it can also send messages over WiFi on supported carriers.
“Android Messages” is compatible with Android version 4.4 or above. Download here.
Files Go by Google
There are many phones that come with a stock “cleanup” app to keep as much of the precious free space clean as possible. But Google’s “Files Go” stands out from the crowd here, too, with its clean, easy interface and quick, safe cleaning functions. It checks your storage for obsolete files, looks for apps that you haven’t used in a long time, backs up files to the cloud, and cleans up your storage space quickly and efficiently.
“Files Go” runs on Android 5.0 or above. Download here.
The stock dialer on your phone might take care of the basics – dialing and editing contacts – but ExDialer takes things one step further. Aside from the classic functions, it comes with a series of useful perks, like searching for contacts based on their phone number, and their email address, direct calling, and texting functions with a simple swipe, fast and smooth operation, very little space used on the phone, and the possibility to extend its capabilities through plugins. Besides, it also comes with a variety of free themes that you can download and install easily.
“ExDialer” works on phones running Android 2.1 and above. Download here.
Open Camera is the perfect app for the aspiring photographer in you. It comes with a huge variety of settings for you to tweak your pictures, including the option to auto-stabilize them, taking pictures with voice commands, zoom in and out with single-touch controls, a variety of grids and crop guides, manual setting of the focus, ISO, exposure time, and white balance temperature, and many more. It is also lightweight and completely free and open-source.
“Open Camera” runs on Android versions 4.0.3 and above. Download here.