The 5 Best Alternatives to Stock Android Apps
Stock Android apps do their jobs, but the open platform has brought forth a variety of alternatives that offer additional functionality and customization. And with over 800,000 apps on Google Play, the official Android app marketplace, there really is an app for that and just about everything else.
To help you decide from that seemingly infinite number, below you’ll find a list of five alternatives to replace pre-installed stock apps.
SMS – ChompSMS
Of the many stock SMS replacement apps, Chomp SMS offers the cleanest interface without the unnecessary features that create a bloated experience. Whether you’re a casual user looking for a few key features missing from the stock app or a heavy user looking for powerful options, additional features such as quick reply pop-ups, theme customization, message templates, scheduled texts, delayed sending, and blacklisting will help bring your SMS experience to a new level.
Price: Free | Chomp SMS on Google Play
Browser – Chrome
Google’s beloved desktop browser received a complimentary Android version last year, bringing a fast and simple alternative to the stock browser, which can vary from phone to phone. Chrome for Android syncs with your Google account to bring bookmarks and omnibox data from your desktop to your phone. And the ability to send open tabs from your desktop to phone is an invaluable sharing tool that also allows for offline viewing. Unfortunately, Chrome is only available for Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) and up. Users of previous versions will find a good stock alternative in Dolphin.
Price: Free | Chrome for Android on Google Play
Keyboard – SwiftKey
Depending on your phone, your default keyboard may not be so bad; but SwiftKey is better. This stock keyboard replacement can use your texting, email, blogging, and social networking history to learn your writing style and tailor predictions accordingly. Its customization options work for both quick and precise users, allowing auto-correct or predictions chosen from above the keyboard to take control. With its latest release, SwiftKey added a gesture typing feature called Flow for fast typing without even lifting your finger from the screen.
Video – MX Player
With hardware acceleration, multi-core decoding, and subtitles, MX Player is the app for serious mobile video viewing. It supports a variety of formats that may go unsupported by your stock video app, including avi, f4v, flv, mp4, mkv, mov, wmv, and webm. MX Player also supports network streaming to view live video feeds.
Price: Free ($5.70 for ad-free version) | MX Player on Google Play
Camera – Camera ZOOM FX
For those looking to take serious photos with a smartphone, Camera ZOOM FX has an incredible selection of features that put the stock camera app to shame. To assist those new to photography, the app’s stable shot meter and grid overlays offer a way to visualize common mistakes and take better photos. Pre-rendered effects, frames, and even cropping allow for a desired shot to be taken without the hassle of editing afterward. But for those looking to have some fun on the side, Camera ZOOM FX has a selection of downloadable add-ons for silly effects and props.
Price: $2.99 | Camera ZOOM FX on Google Play
Tags: Android Apps