Chrome may be the official browser app for Android, but it’s definitely not the perfect! It’s not even a better choice when you consider qualities like privacy, customizability, and speed. Chrome not only eats up lots of resources, especially in low-end Android devices but also lacks features like extension support.
We spent the last week testing out some of the popular and not-so-popular Android browsers. And, we have narrowed down the list to 5 new browsers for Android. You can count these apps when you need an effective Chrome alternative — for all good reasons. We have made sure that you find at least one Chrome alternative for every purpose out there. Ready?
Chrome for Android Alternatives
1. Via: Best Alternatives with Low Memory Usage
Via is the epitome of simplicity when it comes to Chrome alternative web browsers. It does not come with a lot of fancy features or integration. But, when you have a really low-end device to browse the web, Via will be your savior. As soon as you open the app, you can see the simple UI with the Search Bar/URL Bar. Enter the URL or Search term, and you will be on the page in no time.
Also Read: 7 Best Adblock Browser for Android
Via Browser is also the fastest Chrome alternative for starter Android devices. You need not worry about its RAM usage or performance requirements. Just so you know, the app consumes less than 1MB of space — it is nuts when compared to what Chrome does. Despite the simplicity, Via offers standard features like Night Mode, Ad-Blocking, Translate, Web Page Save and even Add-On Support.
Pros: Truly simple UI, Smaller footprint, Minimized resource consumption and Ultra-Fast Browsing
The Verdict: Via does its job very well as a Chrome alternative and a Mini web browser for Android. It really feels that Via enhances the loading speed. With a footprint less than 1MB, you can use Via in almost every Android device, however, outdated it may be. So, when you need an easy-to-use, low-RAM-consuming yet powerful Android browser, Via will be our recommendation.
Check Out Via (Free)
2. Firefox: Best Chrome Alternative with Add-On Support
You obviously count Mozilla Firefox as a Chrome alternative — both on the desktop and other devices. It’s true in the case of Android as well. Firefox for Android is a feature-rich, regularly updated and fully-fledged app for browsing the web. You can also use Firefox Sync to access your history and bookmarks via phone. But, a great reason to prefer Firefox to Chrome is its add-on support.
There is a wide variety of Mozilla for Android add-ons you can check out. It includes basic ones like Ad-Block Plus, Themes, and even GitHub-related ones. Personally speaking, I’m not a fan of Firefox UI. But, considering that Firefox doesn’t eat up a lot of RAM, it’s a worthy recommendation. Some other features of Firefox are Login Management and in-built Save as PDF utility.
Pros: Complete add-on support, Open Source, Low Energy Consumption, and Customization
Cons: None worth mentioning
The Verdict: You’re going open-source while choosing Firefox over Chrome. You can surely consider Firefox as a fully-fledged Chrome alternative, with focus on add-on support. The browser offers a bunch of awesome utilities; such as Save as PDF. Also, compared to that of Chrome, the footprint of Firefox for Android is quite low. So, Firefox is our pick when you need better customization on your Android web browser.
Check Out Firefox (Free)
3. Opera Browser: Best Chrome Alternative for Ad-Blocking
Just to clarify, we are talking about the Opera Browser for Android, not Opera Mini. Now, Opera is a fully-fledged Android browser app you can trust. Out of the many features it offers, I recommend the Ad Block one. But, it’s not right to ignore some productive features present in its pack. If you are using Opera as your desktop browser, you get some extra features too.
Ad-blocking in Opera Browser is nearly perfect. Instead of installing third-party add-ons, just tap the ‘Block Ads’ button. Compared to Chrome, it has an entirely different User Interface, which is still usable. As far as performance goes, Opera can handle a mediocre number of tabs. Other features I love about Opera are Offline Pages and Customizable Layout.
Pros: Simple UI, Almost-Perfect Ad-Blocking, and Content Sync
Cons: Ad-Block Doesn’t Work with Pop-Ups
The Verdict: Well, you cannot compromise other features just because you want to block ads. In that case, the Opera Browser for Android is a perfect choice. You have almost every feature you need, along with extra ones like Offline Pages. When compared to some so-called ad-blocking browsers out there, Opera does an incredible job.
Check Out Opera Browser (Free)
4. Flynx: Best Chrome Alternative for Reading Articles
You know, Chrome doesn’t have the best interface for reading articles. This is where Flynx comes in. The app is a bit old, but it’s going to save your time like never before. Flynx something awesome when it opens a link — it removes everything else but the readable content. So, you can simply open the page and read what you should read. The best part is that Flynx doesn’t want you to leave the app you’re using.
Compared to Chrome, which takes up the entire screen, Flynx is a true multi-tasker. Links you open in Flynx will be available in a floating window. Suppose you found an article link on Facebook. If you open that using Flynx, you can read it without closing Facebook. Flynx also lets you save these articles offline so that you can read it anytime you like. It also happens to be a practical alternative to Pocket.
Pros: Easy to Use, Multitasking-Friendly UI, Offline Reading support
Cons: Lacks some standard features
The Verdict: Flynx may not be a 360-degree replacement for Chrome. However, if you read a lot of articles online, you should check this out. It’s also worth noting that Flynx doesn’t take up a lot of resources. The app also offers enough customization. Altogether, if you use your Android browser mostly for reading, Flynx is a great Chrome alternative for sure.
Check Out Flynx (Free)
5. Brave Browser
Brave Browser is not only a good replacement for Google Chrome but the ideal browser for Android. It is an open-source browser built on top of Chromium. The look and feel of the browser are similar to Chrome for Android, so you would feel home. The highlight feature of Brave is privacy and security.
You can also enable website fingerprinting protection as well as block third-party cookies. Brave claims that the website load time is 3x faster than Google Chrome because the trackers and ads are blocked. I have been using Brave for a considerable amount of time and I would say it is quicker to load websites than Chrome; not 3x times but yes fairly quicker. My favorite feature is the private mode. Unlike Chrome, Brave switches to DuckDuckGo search engine and doesn’t store your data on their server.
Brave has started a new program called Brave Rewards in order to monetize its platform. This is a program wherein you can watch generic ads which are not personalized. In turn, you will get Brave Reward points which can be encashed
Brave has rather faster development than any other open-source apps which is why I prefer it on my mobile. Brave also has a desktop version which allows syncing your history, bookmarks throughout the devices.
Pros: Open-source, Faster website loading time, Chromium-based, inbuilt ad blocker, etc.
Cons: Uncertain monetization policy.
The Verdict: Brave is an ideal replacement for Google Chrome on Android. Do try it out for a week and the experience should speak for itself.
Download Brave Browser(Free)
6. Tor Browser
Tor has been the favorite app on desktops to browse those Onion Sites. For the past 6 months, there is an alpha version of Tor running on the Play store. Until recently, Tor launched their first stable version on the Android Play store. In case you are not aware, Tor functions more like a VPN by bouncing your connections through multiple Tor Servers.
Tor does a wonderful job of keeping you anonymous on the Internet. However, this comes with a bargain that you have to bear with a slow website load time. But this bargain comes with huge privacy benefits. Tor basically functions over thousands of volunteered servers around the world. So, as soon as you exit your browsing session, your history is deleted from these servers. Since you are browsing via these Tor public servers, there is no possibility of personalized tracking or profiling. And all of these keeps your identity anonymous on the Internet.
Tor is a great utility which should be used wisely. You cannot use Tor browser as your regular go-to browser due to the slow website load time. Use it wisely when required but it is a wise choice to have it installed on your Android Phone.
Pros: Open-source, true anonymity on the Internet, privacy-focused.
Cons: Slower website load time.
The Verdict: Tor is not a replacement for Chrome on Android but it needs to be installed on your phone. It can be used to browse those onion websites or transact through the Internet at times. Look out for Brave for your regular browsing.
Download Tor Browser (Free)
Some Honorable Mentions
These Chrome alternatives aren’t the best ones in their categories. However, if you are looking for something specific, you can give them a try.
- Firefox Focus is focused on privacy but lacks some certain standard features. If you need a browser that has more privacy-oriented features, you should give it a try. It has an easy way of cleaning your tracks in such a way that optimal privacy is ensured. It can easily block trackers and ads, though.
- Opera Mini is the mini-version of the Opera Browser. This one does not take up much resources or space for storage. However, it offers a standard and lag-free browsing experience on your Android. Video downloads and ad-blocking are some cool features.
- DuckDuckGo Browser comes from DuckDuckGo, the privacy-friendly search engine. Once again, you have a minimized web browser. It packs a simple UI, which is user-friendly and productive. However, it compromises in other areas while focusing on Privacy.
Interested in trying them out?
Best Chrome Alternatives for Android
We certainly believe that Brave Browser is the best Chrome alternative for everyone, for almost every purpose! That having said, if you are looking for an ultra-light browser, you can go for Via or Firefox Focus. They have a good knack of managing resources and keeping things low-profile. We have also included some purpose-specific alternatives like Flynx, which are no less productive than others. We hope you find the dream perfect browser here.