Google Play Store is definitely the best place to get your favorite apps and manage them. However, that doesn’t mean it is the only place where you can get Android apps. There are many other third-party app stores where you can download apps for your Android phone.
Why use alternatives to Google Play Store?
There are many good reasons why you may be interested in going for an alternative play store app. Like –
Pricing – Amazon app stores offer paid apps for free for promotion purposes (legally)
Banned From Google Play – These third-party stores can offer apps that you may not find on Google Play Store
Not approved from Google play – Some hacking apps like csploit, zAnti which don’t pass Play store guidelines, are available in this alternative stores.
Download Geo block app – You can not install apps like Spotify (even with a VPN) from Google play if you are from outside states.
Open Source – Many developers like to host their open source app on F-droid instead Play Store.
However, there are some risks as well. And one of the big ones is — malware. Google scan every app periodically for malware and virus. However, this may or may not be the case with these alternative app stores. But if ready to take that risk, then here are the 8 alternative app stores to Google Play Store that you can visit to find your favorite apps.
Turn On Unknown Sources
These third-party app stores can be downloaded from their respective website, they are not available on Google Play Store. As Android doesn’t allow app installation from other sources by default, you will have to turn on “Unknown Source” setting on your phone to download and use these store apps.
Go to your Android phone’s “Settings” and tap on the “Security” option. Here tap on the toggle button next to “Unknown Sources” and you’ll be able to download and install apps from any source.
Alternatives To Google Play Store
Slideme doesn’t offer one of the most sleek interfaces, but it definitely has some handy filters to find the right apps. For example, you can use Android OS version or Slideme rating system to find good apps. Similar to Google Play Store, Slideme also has a reliable ranking system using community ratings and comments. You can see ratings and comments on each app to see how good it is and also add comments yourself.
Slideme also had many apps that are usually not found on Google Play Store. A visit to it may help you find a great app that isn’t available on the Play Store.
Many of the apps that don’t make it Google Play Store can be found on UpToDown. For example, YouTube video downloader apps for Android are prohibited on Google Play Store, but you can find all of them on UpToDown. There are also not many location or devices based restrictions, making it easier to download your favorite apps with least hassle.
UpToDown also has a nice and polished interface that is easy to use with great recommendations. You can find all new and popular apps in the main interface and it doesn’t offer personalized apps unlike Google Play Store.
Aptoide is a great alternative to Google Play Store as it offers a similar interface as the Play Store. The apps are recommended and categorized in the same way, and you can browse through over 0.7 million apps/games to find one for yourself. Interestingly, Aptoide also offers many paid Android apps for free by filling them with ads.
If there is a paid app on Google Play Store that is keeping you from using it, then do a search on Aptoide and see if it offers an alternative free version of it. Of course, you will still have to deal with ads, but ads are usually not a problem for many people who are looking for free apps.
5. Opera Store
The popular browser company Opera also has an app store that offers apps and games for different platforms, including Android. It doesn’t offer one of the best interfaces to search for apps of your interested. However, it also has a huge collection of apps and games and you may even be able to find apps that are not usually found on Google Play Store.
The apps are also clean and of high quality without any shady stuff or illegal apps. Best of all, you don’t need another app to browse the Opera Store. If you are using Opera Mini on your Android phone, then you can browse the store right inside the browser.
1Mobile has a collection of over 1.6 million apps and games for you to browse and it offers clean and simple interface to get your apps. All the apps go through comprehensive security checks to ensure they are free of viruses. And I also noticed that all the listed apps were of high quality without any shady ones.
1Mobile promises to offer fastest download speed thanks to their wide CDN network and it allows you to continue your download from the same point where it was stopped/crashed. It also keeps adding new apps and games regularly and you can filter apps by categories such as New, Popular and Apps or Games, etc.
F-Droid is completely dedicated to free and Open source Android apps. All the apps found on F-Droid are free and have their code open for everyone to see. If you love free apps and are conscious about the security and privacy issues with apps, then F-Droid might the best place for you to get apps.
Of course, the app collection it offers isn’t as huge or high-quality as other app stores, but they are definitely worth a look. F-Droid community is also very active and you get quickly get answers to your questions. You can also contribute to projects and ask for features and new apps if you got any ideas.
Getjar also offers a simple interface to download your favorite apps and find the right one using different filters. There are many apps available that are paid on Google Play Store but free on Getjar. Getjar makes one paid app free for a day. If you are lucky enough, you may be able to get your favorite paid app for free.
Its collection is quite huge as well, and I noticed many apps that are not actually available on Google Play Store. However, some of the apps also didn’t feel right, like cheat sheet apps for popular games.
Getjar also has a customer loyalty program that rewards its users with virtual currency that can be used in Getjar or Google Play Store to buy paid apps. You can also use the virtual currency to buy in-app items in your favorite game.
Amazon Appstore has one of the biggest collections of apps for Android. With over 0.6 million apps, it has all the apps to please anyone. Using its dedicated categories and filters, Amazon Appstore allows you to search for exactly what you are looking for.
However, huge inventory and ease of use isn’t what makes it so great. Amazon Appstore offers many paid popular apps for free, including the in-app purchases. You can find some good paid apps/games such as Toy Store: Smash It!, Goat Simulator and Cut the Rope HD for free here. Additionally, Amazon also lists one paid app for free every day similar to Getjar.
Google Play Store definitely has the biggest collection of apps with great protection against malware and scammy apps. However, these alternatives are also very safe and offer enough apps to get you going. If you are looking for paid apps for free, then you should give Amazon Appstore a try. Getjar is also a good place to get virtual currency and buy your favorite apps without spending real money.
Also read: Best Android Apps not on Google Play