Google Play Store is the most widely used store for installing apps and games on Android smartphones and tablets. One of the major reasons is that it comes pre-installed on almost every device that gets launched barring the ones in China. It provides a good level of security to prevent users from installing malicious apps. There is no doubt that Play Store does its job very well but that does not mean you cannot look at other options out there.
Third-party app stores can prove to be handy in various situations, especially when you want to install apps that are geo-restricted on the Play Store or not available due to store policies. We have listed the 5 best Google Play Store alternatives that you can have a look at to get the app you have been wanting to install for so long.
However, it should be noted that these app stores do come with security concerns as they are not as strict as Google when it comes to allowing developers to publish their apps. This is the reason we would suggest if you see any kind of red flag while browsing a particular listing, it is better to avoid and move on. And if you decide to install an app or game, you should do that at your discretion.
Amazon Appstore for Android
Amazon Appstore for Android is probably the most reliable and secure Play Store alternative that you can have on your device. It is the same app store that comes pre-installed on Fire phones and tablets. There are thousands of free and paid Android apps and games spread across different categories. It includes a number of popular ones too and at times, it also offers paid apps for free.
It has dedicated charts for browsing top paid and free apps along with personalized recommendations. It further has a separate tab for checking installed apps, pending updates, and managing subscriptions. The overall UI is very clean with no ads or popups to bother you.
Other noteworthy features include the ability to enable parental controls and disable in-app purchases. It also lets you set an app size limit for downloads via mobile data.
APKMirror is more like an online repository of Android applications but is a good alternative to Play Store. It features almost all the popular apps and games from around the world. It means if a particular app is not available for your region via the Play Store, there is a good chance you will find it here.
One thing that differentiates it from other options is that it not only lists the latest version but also older versions. It is accessible via the website but APKMirror also has an Android app that makes it convenient to install APKs.
Aptoide is another third-party Android app store that houses popular apps and games. It has a plethora of categories for you to find apps that match your needs. There are even those apps that you usually would not find on Play Store. It offers a toggle that can be enabled to show only those apps that are compatible with your particular device.
If you have a particular app already installed on your phone, it will show you an icon to update if a new version is available. It is one of the well-known Play Store competitions but still, we would suggest you be careful before installing an app through this store.
F-Droid is an Android app store with a focus on free and open-source software aka FOSS. This is the reason you are unlikely to find popular apps on this store as those are usually not open source. But there is a good collection of apps including some that are not listed on Google’s own store.
Since it has open-source apps, they are safe to install as any developer or security researcher can browse source code anytime they want. Another thing to keep in mind is that most of the apps on this store are related to productivity and utilities with less focus on entertainment stuff.
TapTap is a different kind of Play Store alternative. It is dedicated to Android games to help you find popular and new titles with ease. If there is a particular game that you want to play but cannot find on Play Store, you are more than likely to find it here.
There are games like PUBG Mobile that offer different versions for different regions. So if you wanted to try out a particular version, it can be downloaded from this store. You can also pre-register for upcoming Android games so that whenever they become available, you receive a notification.