The best free Android apps of 2023: the best apps in the Google Play Store

An image of an Android phone against a brown background with the words "best free android apps"
(Image credit: SoundCloud)

Finding the best free android apps on the Google Play Store can be a real chore, what with all the options out there. Who knew, when Google launched Android 13 years ago, that there would be this many available apps to choose from. You can find one to cater for every need, whim, or desire. And, a lot of them come with that magic price tag, free, so that you’re just a few clicks away from taking your phone to the next level.

But, just because there’s such a glut of apps out there doesn’t mean that most of them are quality. There’s a lot that you should probably skip. In fact,  the Play Store gives you a lot of tools to parse through all the noise, from Editor’s Picks for different categories to recommendations for new releases or for apps based on your prior downloads.

You can also narrow the search by reading reviews and ratings or searching for an app you have and seeing what similar results pop up.

With that said, there are so many in the store’s library, that a free android app that’s worth downloading can still get lost in the shuffle. To help you find the best android apps that are free, we’ve collected our top picks here to make sure you have all the apps you could want or need on your phone or tablet, sorted into categories so you can more easily find what you're looking for. 

Not an Android user? You can use these apps on one of the best Android emulators.

Best new free Android app

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Every few weeks we add a new app to this list, and you'll find the latest addition below.

Screenshots showing Sky Tonight - Star Gazing App on Android

(Image credit: Vito Technology)

Sky Tonight - Star Gazing App

Sky Tonight (opens in new tab) is a star gazing app that ensures even beginners can spot and identify constellations and celestial events.

Simply aim your phone’s camera at the sky and you’ll be shown the names and layouts of the stars and constellations above you, then just tap on anything you see to learn more about it.

Handily, Sky Tonight also tells you what things in the sky are going to be visible tonight, so you can plan ahead and make sure you don’t miss any striking sights.

You can also set reminders for upcoming events, and customize your view in various ways, such as filtering objects on the sky map according to their visual brightness.

Many of the features are free, but for full access to the app – and to remove adverts – you need to make a one-off payment, which at the time of writing stands at $5.99 / £5.99.

James is a freelance phones, tablets and wearables writer and sub-editor at TechRadar. He has a love for everything ‘smart’, from watches to lights, and can often be found arguing with AI assistants or drowning in the latest apps. James also contributes to 3G.co.uk, 4G.co.uk and 5G.co.uk and has written for T3, Digital Camera World, Clarity Media and others, with work on the web, in print and on TV.