The Android lock screen has evolved many times over the years. There have been various slide-to-unlock methods and OEMs have always put their own spin on things. As it turns out, there are also a lot of lock screen apps in the Play Store that can do even more. These days, we usually recommend people just use a finger print scanner to bypass the lock screen altogether. It’s okay if you don’t want to do that, though. Here are the best lock screen apps for Android! In 2018, we lowered the number of apps on this list from 15 to 10. Lock screen replacement isn’t quite the bustling and energetic market that it used to be and we didn’t want to stretch the list for the sake of numbers because we were starting to recommend old, discontinued, non-functioning apps. There are still some good stuff here, though! Finally, we want to remind you that third party lock screens aren’t as secure as the stock one. These are mostly useful for personalization with a bit of security. They are not a security improvement.
Price: Free / $1-$80
AcDisplay is one of the most popular lock screen apps. It emulates the always-on lock screens of devices like the Moto X, Galaxy S8, and others. Users can play with notifications without unlocking their display. It also features some customizations. For instance, you can set it to work only during certain hours to save battery life. More and more devices are coming stock with something similar. Thus, we’d only recommend AcDisplay to those with older devices that don’t already have this feature. Its last update was in 2015. We’re not sure if the developer is doing much with it anymore. At the very least, it’s free to download and play with.
Always On AMOLED
Price: Free / $1.99 (other options)
Always on AMOLED isn’t a lock screen, but it does emulate one. It basically mimicks the Always On Display feature of many smartphones. The app shows things like the time, notifications, and other such things. It also includes features like clock movement to avoid burn in. The app can even initialize doze mode while running. We only recommend this on devices with OLED display, including Samsung’s AMOLED. It loses a lot of its luster on LCD screens.
Most of Cheetah Mobile’s apps are trash. This one isn’t so bad. It’s a lock screen app and applock hybrid. It features the usual array of security precautions along with the ability to lock apps as needed. That way even if hackers get through the lock screen, they still can’t easily get into your apps. The app also features HD wallpapers, notification support, a news feed, and intruder selfies. There are some advertisements. They may or may not bother you depending on your tolerance for such things. It is otherwise free with no in-app purchases.
Price: Free / $14.99
GO Locker is, statistically, the most popular third party lock screen on mobile. It has many of the same features as other GO products, including extensive theming options, some fun, unique features, and more. You also get notifications on the home screen, shortcuts to other functions, and more. The app also includes booster features. We highly recommend ignoring those as they do nothing but make your battery life worse. The $14.99 version includes every theme available (a $900 value). Otherwise the two work about the same way.
Price: Free / $1.99
Hi Locker is a fairly typical lock screen replacement app. It’ll show you the basics such as weather, notifications, calendar events, etc. You can also have it greet you with funny quips and greetings. It even has fingerprint support on devices with fingerprint readers. You can also have it auto-set wallpapers from Flickr. There are some customization options as well. For instance, you can have it hide notifications from certain apps so people can’t see it. It’s not even close to the most complicated lock screen apps, but it’s a great replacement for those who don’t need a ton of features.
Price: Free with in-app purchases
LokLok is different from most lock screen apps. It’s almost kind of a mash-up of a lock screen and Snapchat. Turning on the device will open your camera. You can take a picture, draw on that picture, and then send it to your friends or loved ones. They’ll see the image when they unlock their phone next and can respond accordingly. It’s not great for sending risque pictures, but it’s excellent for reminding someone to grab milk on their way home from work. The app is free to use. There are in-app purchases for things like sticker packs.
Next Lock Screen
Next Lock Screen is a simple lock screen app from Microsoft. It features both a pattern and PIN unlock. It also supports fingerprint scanning on devices with a fingerprint scanner (most of them). Additionally, the lock screen shows quick contacts, various tools like the flashlight, calendar events, weather, music player shortcuts, and a variety of wallpapers. It’s fairly standard fair. However, it’s competently done for the most part. There are a few quirks here and there, but it otherwise works okay.
Picturesque Lock Screen
Picturesque is another lock screen from Microsoft. This one features new lock screen wallpapers every day, a quick search for apps and contacts, notifications, and integration with Bing Rewards. The search bar uses Bing so that may turn many people off to this one. You also get various news about various events, although this function is directed toward India right now. Otherwise, it’s a fairly functional and basic lock screen. It’s also entirely free.
Solo Locker – DIY Locker
Price: Free / Up to $5.00
Solo Locker is one of the better DIY lock screen apps. You get access to a bunch of customization features and lock screen elements. You can then construct your lock screen how you want. It comes with various lock methods, wallpapers, and even widgets. You can use these to make your lock screen. You won’t find a ridiculous amount of depth here, but there are enough options to make it fun. The base app is free and you buy additional stuff with in-app purchases.
Start Lock Screen
Start Lock Screen is kind of like Microsoft’s Next Lock Screen. Its goal is to put a lot of stuff on your lock screen. The ultimate goal is to operate most of the time without having to unlock your phone. It comes with stuff like web searches, various password locks, widgets, tools, news, weather, app shortcuts, and more. It even has little quizzes you can take to pass the time. You won’t get tons of security for this one. The app is free with no in-app purchases. It does contain ads.
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