Best free Android apps 2015

Top free Android apps for your phone or tablet

21. Any.do

A high quality note-taking and reminder app, Any.do is part calendar, part dictation tool and part to-do list creator.

There's a huge, resizable widget that provides quick access to its features and lets you dismiss completed tasks, with the mic option pulling up a voice recorder to automatically add tasks to your schedule without typing.

It's free, although should you start a task with the word "buy" a green shopping trolley appears, tempting you to press it and buy things from Amazon instead of trudging to the shops.

Anydo

22. gvSIG Mini Maps

gvSIG Mini Maps is an incredibly comprehensive mapping tool which combines major online maps including Google, Bing, Open Street Map and more, which will win UK fans for one huge reason alone - it supports the official and recently open-sourced Ordnance Survey data. This means you're never more than a post code search away from seeing where you are in OS-level detail, which offers much more in the way of accurate local data than other map tools provide.

gvsig

23. Google Keep

Google Keep is the Android maker's own attempt at muscling in on the clipboard and to-do list app, presenting a versatile corkboard tool that lets users record audio notes, capture photos, create checklists and more.

The star of the show is the resizable Home screen widget, from which you can access all the features and hit buttons to record clips and take images. Google's so proud of Keep that it's become canon - and comes pre-loaded as part of Android 4.3's app set.

Google Keep

24. Shareprice

Shareprice uses your login from financial site www.iii.co.uk to offer live share price updates on your Android phone. Watch your nest-egg lose 50 per cent in value every three weeks during the latest trans-global financial crisis, live!

It's ideal for users with share values so low they have to be checked in private, to ensure their partner doesn't see exactly how much money has disappeared into some notional financial black hole.

shareprice

25. MSN Food & Drink - Recipes

If you're struggling to come up with inspired meal ideas MSN Food & Drink could be your saviour. It's a database of recipes from various sites and sources, allowing you to easily filter results by ingredients, preparation time and more and it's even seasonal: for instance, at yuletide it was chock full of festive suggestions such as Christmas pudding ice cream.

It's even got the drinks covered with cocktail recipes and tasting notes for over 1.5 million wines and it can help you become a better chef too, thanks to a cooking school section packed with videos and guides. But if that all sounds too much like hard work you can just set the recipe filters to 'easy' and 'under 30 minutes'. That's what we'll be doing.

MSN Food and Drink

26. Dropbox

The Android version of the insanely popular stuff-syncing app has arrived, and while Dropbox is a little lacking in the sort of fancy auto-syncing options many were hoping for, it still works as expected. Files have to be specifically downloaded to your phone to be edited or shared, which is not quite the automated dream offered by the desktop tools, but it's still Dropbox on Android. Six months ago that was a distant, crazy fantasy.

dropbox

27. London Tube Status

Reduce the misery of being told you've just missed a train and it's a 14-minute wait until the next one with London Tube Status, which combines travel status updates and live departure times. It also includes a home screen widget that shows your favourite (or at least your most used) platform departures, making it easy to check how much you've just missed the next one by while tearing down the escalators.

London tube status

28. Amazon UK

Amazon recently launched an official Android app, replacing its reliance on a mobile web store. The app's very simple and fast to use, and even includes full shopping cart features with Amazon's one-click system once you've signed in with your usual account details.

amazon uk

29. Happy for Life

We could all use a little more happiness, especially when the days are getting colder and the nights are getting longer. Thankfully Happy for Life is here to spread some cheer. This novel app is beautifully simple, it just asks you to rate how you're feeling then gives you a choice of activities to carry out that day designed to make you happier.

These activities can be quick and simple too, such as complimenting someone, so it never feels like a chore. Then once you've carried it out the app asks you how you're feeling again and you can come back the next day and choose a new activity.

It's a simple way to boost your mood every day and as you can see a history of your activities you can also use it to learn which things have the largest impact on your happiness.

Happy for Life

30. Beelicious

If you're into the slightly last-generation social networking site Delicious, you ought to get yourself organised with one of the many third-party Android apps out there that support the bookmarking tool. Such as Beelicious, which, once you've got through the slightly cumbersome initial set-up process, lets you simply send website links to your Delicious account via the Android browser's 'Share Page' sub menu.

Beelicious

31. Snow Night Live Wallpaper HD

Want to get into the Christmas spirit all year round? You can't help but when you're bombarded with it every time you look at your phone. Or at least that's presumably what the makers of this festive live wallpaper are hoping.

With Snow Night Live Wallpaper HD you can choose from 8 beautiful pictures of wintry scenes and watch the snow fall over them. If this doesn't make you want to curl up with some mulled wine by a log fire nothing will.

Snow Night Live Wallpaper HD

32. iPlayer

The BBC came in for quite a lot of stick over its Android iPlayer app, with the code lacking some basic features and requiring Adobe's discontinued Flash Player in order to work properly. Happily, most of the issues have now been fixed in a recent update, while the BBC's standalone Media Player removes the need for Flash. It also works while minimised and with the screen turned off, so is actually usable as a radio player. Much better.

bbc iplayer

33. Feedly

33rd position in our list used to belong to Google's fantastic cross-platform RSS Reader app, but... it killed it. Which was a big shame. There are plenty of replacement options on Android, though, with Feedly one of the best both in terms of desktop sync functionality and general look and feel on mobile.

You sign in, import your Google Reader backup (you did remember, right?) and away you. Just like Reader, only prettier and more versatile. Like a younger wife.

Feedly

34. BT FON

BT's incredibly clever FON network is often a lifesaver, letting you legally borrow Wi-Fi for free in many public places. And while standing outside strangers' houses. The BT FON Android app (recently renamed BT Wi-Fi) lets you automate the sign-in process, so you can walk around towns and housing estates safe in the knowledge that your phone's always seeking out available Wi-Fi. You need a BT FON username, though, so sort that out before you venture out into the scary internet-free world.

BT fon

35. Amazon Kindle

Amazon's Kindle app is a great e-reader, which is seamlessly linked with your Amazon account. Support for magazines and newspapers is limited at the moment, with only a handful of niche publications in Android-friendly format. But for books it's great, with plenty of screen and text display options to get it looking a way that hurts your eyes the least. Another exciting new way to collect classic novels you'll probably never get around to reading because there's the internet now.

Amazon kindle

36. Endomondo

The free version of Endomodo is essential if you're sporty, or even if you just like using a GPS tool to stalk yourself walking around. You select an activity, initiate GPS mode and it'll keep track of you, time you and even whisper robotic words of encouragement at you, before generating a stylish map charting your achievements. A map which you can spam out to social networks to show off the fact that you can ride a bike.

Endomondo

37. Androidify

Let your hair down by creating a realistic interpretation of what you hair looks like with Androidify. It's an avatar creator that uses the Android mascot as its base, letting you swap trousers and hats with the swipe of a finger. Results are then sharable via Twitter and the usual social tools. There aren't enough types of beard, though. Please release a Beard Expansion Pack.

Androidify

38. Kongregate Arcade

Thanks to Android's Flash Player powers, casual gaming portal Kongregate is able to bring a huge number of its internet games to Android. They run in the browser so resolutions can be a bit all over the place, but with over 300 games to choose from there's bound to be something there for you.

Kongregate

39. Blogger

The Google-owned Blogger platform now has a presence in the current decade, thanks to the official Blogger app. It's remarkably simple, supports image uploads and geo-tagging and imports the settings of all blogs associated with your Gmail account. There's no fancy editing the positions of your photos, which just get chucked in at the bottom, but it works.

blogger

40. RD Mute

RD Mute serves one purpose – to turn off all phone sounds when the Android accelerometer tells it you've picked it up and turned it over. It's a 'silent mode' shortcut for when you can't even be bothered to press a button. Put your phone on its front to shut it up – and add any very important numbers to the app's exceptions list, so people you don't mind talking to can get through.

RD mute