Even though many tablette android 8 and smartphone apps are cheap, it is amazing how quickly the bill can mount up as you download new things to try. Buying even a couple of apps each week could mean you spend hundreds of pounds a year in an app store.
The good news is you can cram your téléphone portable android or tablet full of apps without parting with hard-earned cash, with a little effort. We are not talking about free apps either. Instead, we will explain how to get any app without paying anything – and the methods we will describe are entirely legal. So, if you want all the best apps without paying a penny, read on.
How get apps
We will be concentrating on how to get free apps for iOS and Google Android smartphones and tablets. But do not worry if you have a Blackberry or Windows Phone as we have tips for you, too. And if you would simply like some good free software for your PC or Mac, look at the ‘Free PC and Mac applications’ box on page 51.
Both the iTunes App Store (for iOS) and Google Play (formerly Market, for Android) have thousands of free apps, and the best places to browse them are the respective ‘free’ charts. To browse these quickly, Android users should launch a desktop web browser and visit the Google Play store.
Click Android Apps on the left, followed by Top Free to browse the rankings. In iTunes on a PC or Mac, click iTunes Store followed by App Store and pick at the top. On the right, you will see Top Charts. Scroll to Free Apps and click See All to browse the top 200. The App Store home page also offers a ‘Great Free Apps’ showcase, and a free ‘App of the week’ (which is an app that usually requires paying for).
So far, so obvious. But these rankings are just the tip of the free-app iceberg, and if you are after something specific, a search is a more effective way to find it.
Google Play enables search results to be filtered. Use the All Prices dropdown menu to choose Free. The iTunes Store offers a similar feature. Click the search bar at the top and execute a search. When the results appear, click Power Search in the top left, and use the first dropdown menu to select Apps. The options to the right will change to display a ‘Search only for free Apps’ tickbox. Click to tick it, type in your search term and click Search.
What are lite apps?
As well as selling paid-for apps, some developers release free ‘lite’ versions. These will often contain adverts or offer fewer features than their paid-for siblings, though the exact limitations differ from app to app and, in some cases, they are minimal. If you find a paid app in iTunes that you would like to try, click its name to view the details, then scroll down to the ‘More Apps by this developer’ heading. You may well find a free version, though you will need to click on each app individually to check the price.
Alternatively, scroll to the bottom for the ‘Customers also bought’ section, which could point you in the direction of similar (and possibly better) apps, some of which may be free. In Google Play, an app’s details page sometimes has a ‘More from developer’ panel on the left, which even lists the price of each app, meaning you will spot the free ones in an instant. Alternatively, click the developer name just below the app name at the top. Below are also lists of apps other users viewed or installed, which may point you towards similar offerings.