10 best minimal apps for Android

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Joe Hindy / Android Authority

Minimalism in software has a long tradition. Software is getting more and more complicated with flashier looks and long lists of features. Fortunately, there are people who don’t like it. The natural counter is minimalism. Minimal software is software that uses fewer resources, has a simple but functional design, and avoids flashiness. Different types of apps do this in different ways. However, there are a lot of great options here. Here are the best minimal apps for Android.

The best minimal apps for Android


Navigator: Brave Navigator

Price: To free

Brave Browser screenshot 2021

Joe Hindy / Android Authority

Brave Browser is a browser that ticks a lot of boxes. It offers high privacy, ad blocking, tracker blocking, and even private web search that doesn’t track you. It’s reasonably light, uses less battery than most browsers, and is also relatively easy to use. There are other lightweight browsers that sacrifice a lot of security and privacy features. Personally, I think it’s a good compromise to go for something slightly less minimal that also forces HTTPS Everywhere and blocks pop-ups.


Email: FairEmail

Price: Free / $ 7.49

FairEmail 2021 screenshot

Joe Hindy / Android Authority

FairEmail isn’t the most popular email client, but it’s one of the best minimal apps for email. It’s open-source, with a minimal user interface and a lightweight set of features. It’s just an email client, so you need to log in with your own data. Some of the other features include a unified inbox, unlimited accounts, offline storage, and more. The app is a bit pricey at $ 7.49, but we appreciate that it’s not a subscription. We generally recommend K9 Email, but it is under development and there are some growing pains. We will re-evaluate the next time we update.


Notes app: FiiNote

Price: Free / $ 2.99 – $ 3.99

FiiNote 2021 screenshot

Joe Hindy / Android Authority

FiiNote is about as good as it gets for minimal note-taking apps. It has a simple user interface, great features, and even a sync option if you want. The app works offline, has infinite canvas and other features. He doesn’t waste time with a flashy user interface. Plus, you don’t have to be online unless you want to. There are other decent options like FairNote and Omni Note, but FiiNote is just as good.


Launcher: Niagara Launcher (or Olauncher)

Price: Free / $ 14.99

Screenshot of the Niagara 2020 Launcher 2

Joe Hindy / Android Authority

Niagara Launcher is a minimal style launcher that seems to be doing a lot of good. It places up to eight of your favorite apps on the single home screen with fast but efficient scrolling through the app list. There are other features, but these are the main two. It takes the swiping and organizing off your standard Android home screen and stays out of the way as you go about your day. Niagara Launcher is a bit pricey though, at $ 14.99 for the full version. Olauncher is a free, open source launcher with many of the same ideas in an even simpler (and free) package. You can go with either one.


Weather: Overdrop

Price: Free / $ 1.49 per month / $ 7.99 per year / $ 17.99 once

Overdrop 2021 screenshot

Overdrop is one of the few good minimal apps for checking the weather. It has a simple user interface without a ton of extras. You can also choose your weather provider, use GPS or manual location, and the app has 50 widgets. In terms of features, you get all the basics. They include a 7-day forecast, weather radar, severe weather alerts, and current forecasts. The developers also promise that your GPS data will never leave your phone. It’s usually free. However, you can select weather providers that require payment, hence the cost of the subscription. He also uses Dark Sky until the end of 2021. He won’t be after that.


Keyboard: Simple keyboard

Price: To free

Simple Keyboard is one of the best keyboard apps

Simple Keyboard is a godsend for fans of minimalism. Usually you see people recommend Gboard or SwiftKey. However, both of these keyboards have a ton of extra features, some bloat, and require a consistent internet connection. Simple Keyboard does not have any of these issues. You get the basics like resizing the keyboard, themes, and a row of numbers. You lose cloud features like real-time suggestions, but it’s a small price to pay. The installation size of the application is less than 1MB and it does not use any data. There aren’t many keyboards like this out there, but none of them are as solid as Simple Keyboard.


Miscellaneous: Simple mobile tools

Price: Free / Varies

Simple Mobile Tools is a developer on Google Play with several good minimal apps. The selection includes a gallery app, a contacts app, a note-taking app, a calendar app, a file browser, and a drawing app. All apps have various features specific to the type of app. However, they all share similar advantages. They are all usable offline, they are all open source, and they are all relatively inexpensive. The developer actively maintains the premium versions of each app. They only cost around $ 1, so that’s not bad.


File browser: Solid Explorer

Price: Free trial / $ 2.99

Solid Explorer is pretty much the best file browser out there. There is nothing extraordinary here. It’s just a simple file browser user interface with additional functions. It works offline or online depending on your needs. You can also do things like create archives, NAS support, cloud storage support, and you can use it with root access if you want. The user interface is easy to use and does not require a subscription to operate. It’s not the most minimal file browser out there, but there is a line where you start to sacrifice useful features and we didn’t want to recommend them.


SMS SMS

Price: Free / $ 4.49

Textra screenshot 2021

Joe Hindy / Android Authority

Textra SMS is about as good as it gets for both SMS and MMS. The user interface is basic as you would expect from a minimal SMS app. It also comes with extras like customizable themes, Android Auto and Wear OS support, and other customizations. Like Solid Explorer, there are more minimal SMS applications like YAATA or QKSMS. However, I think the extra features are worth the extra space. Additionally, it works really well with Android Auto, especially after turning off Android Auto’s SMS permissions.


Zedge

Price: Free / $ 0.99 per month / $ 4.99 per year / with in-app purchases

Screenshot of Zedge 2021

Joe Hindy / Android Authority

Zedge itself is not a minimal application. In fact, it’s pretty bloated, full of advertisements, and can be quite a pain to use at times. However, it is a great source of minimal wallpapers and, believe it or not, minimal ringtones and notification tones. It has a bunch of little beeps and boops that keep things short and sweet. It also has a lot of minimal style wallpapers, and a lot of good ones for AMOLED displays. There are other sources, such as Reddit, Google Search, and other wallpaper apps. However, Zedge is a good place to start.


If we missed any good minimal apps, let us know in the comments. You can also click here to check out our latest listings of Android apps and games.

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