At the recently held annual Google I/O conference, Sundar Pichai announced that out of every 10 phones shipped worldwide, 8 were running on Android. What’s more, there are more than 1 billion active users on the Google Play Store.
Surprisingly though, not all great apps that you can run on your Android device are available directly on the Play Store itself. There are some that are available elsewhere and Google will not publish these due to their nature or non-compliance of certain Google policies.
1. Popcorn Time
Popcorn Time is a tool that allows you to play hundreds of movies and episodes from TV series directly on your Android device, without having to download anything.
Popcorn Time app is very similar to the Windows version. The app takes the .torrent file for the movie or episode that you want to watch and streams it on your device. So, it’s a very good idea to have a WiFi connection when you use the app.
Note: Needless to say, the movies you watch using the above app may or may not be legal. Smartfonearena does not support piracy or any breach of laws. So do check the laws of your land before you decide to use any torrent-based app. This is for information purpose only. The use of App will be at user Risk only.
A free non ad-supported file browser with great functionality built right into it – that’s the easiest way to describe MiXplorer. The app looks like it’s running Material Design, but is compatible with Android devices running OS v2.0+ (if they’re still around).
Not only does it have a theme engine to customize the looks of the app, but it also has cloud integration with more than a dozen services. Although you may require root access to enjoy some of the more advanced features of this app, even so, this is a great app, well worth exploring. Get MiXplorer here.
Ever wanted an app that gives you the lyrics of all the songs in your library? Well, this is the perfect app for you, and even though there are some alternatives available on the Play Store, they don’t all scan your music library and download the lyrics for offline use.
It also appears that the devs of this app have tried their best to stick to Material Design, although it’s not a uniform experience throughout. But who’s complaining for an app that’s free and works like a charm every time. Get QuickLyric here.
4. Market Helper
Want to install those tablet-only apps on your smartphone? Or vice-versa? Well, Market Helper is just the app that you’re looking for. Once you install the app, just go about selecting what device you want emulated, even if you wish to select a different carrier. Once selected, hit Activate, and voila! You’ve got a notice that your device is registered as the one you wanted.
Not all carriers in countries with an asterisk are supported, but hey – something is better than nothing, right?! Also, if you feel that your phone has been transforming a bit too much and you can’t even recognize it anymore, all you have to do is a simple reboot. It goes back to whatever it was before it started shape-shifting. Err, you know what I mean! Get Market Helper here.
5. Humble Bundle
The legendary Humble Bundle recently received a few updates, meaning it’s no longer available in the Play Store (maybe Google now sees it as a competitor?). For the uninitiated, Humble Bundle lets you pay whatever you want to download bundles of high-end games for your Android device (and PC).
The money you pay gets divvied up between charities, the developers and the website. Using this app, you can manage your Android Humble Bundle games library easily, and receive updates on when the next Humble Bundle is available.
Videoder is probably the most functional YouTube ripper around. You search for the YouTube video you want, and the app displays a variety of formats you can download it in, including 1,080p and MP3 (although both of these are in beta, so may occasionally mess up). You simply set a download directory and get ripping. TubeMate is another app that has similar functionality.
7. CyanogenMod Installer
The CyanogenMod Installer had a brief stay in the Google Play Store (just two weeks), but hasn’t lost popularity since being booted out. It seems that the reason for the app being withdrawn was that it didn’t follow Google guidelines for developers because it ”encourages users to void their warranty”.
This APK is actually just software that guides users to activate an ADB, i.e. a debugging tool, to install the CyanogenMod ROM. This app complements a program that transmits this data to the smartphone.
8. LMT Launcher
LMT Launcher is another APK that’s very interesting, but doesn’t require root. The app offers a detachable menu, which opens into a fan shape and displays various shortcuts.
To open this menu, simply swipe from any edge of the screen toward the center. It is a customizable menu to which you can add your preferred options.