The Google Play Store is enormous, with a collection of close to 3 million apps listed in it. These apps are incredibly diverse – some of them are useful, others, fun, and many of them are entirely useless copycats of successful titles. There are a few that get all the attention, there are others that are promoted (mostly games), and some that are associated with popular services that are well-known. And there are many others most people probably haven’t even heard about – apps that everyone should check out.
Any list rounding up the ultimate apps for Android should have an entry about Blokada… except, because of Google’s policies, its full version can’t be listed in the Play Store. It’s a pity, considering how good a job it does as an ad blocker.
Blokada is a fully-fledged ad blocker app complete with host lists (whitelist and blacklist), per-app blocking and whitelisting, VPN, and custom DNS. The app has a “slim” version available in the Play Store, while its full version can be installed via XDA Labs or F-Droid.
Messages by Google
There’s your average texting app, and then there are Messages by Google. It’s the default messaging app on Google’s phones and all Android One phones – and it should be used on all other phones, no matter what make or model they are.
Google’s texting app goes way beyond its usual counterparts. For one, it has a web-based counterpart that, once paired with the smartphone version, allows users to send and receive text messages in a web browser. Then, there are its extra features – file sharing, location sharing, RCS, rich conversations, and such that turn it into an excellent choice for anyone.
Finally, let us mention one of the most feature-rich mobile email solution that is also ad-free: BlueMail.
BlueMail is a universal email app that supports every protocol, has calendar integration, supports multiple inboxes (plus a Unified one), smart notifications, Android Wear notifications, customizable menus, and pretty much everything else you may need for emailing on the go. To make things even better, it has a very smart push notification that allows you to mark an email as read or even delete it directly. Plus, a beautiful dark theme.
It also comes with a free desktop app, plus Business and Enterprise options for corporations and small businesses.