Amazing open-source apps that will improve your skills as a Developer

One of the best and tested ways to learn or acquire knowledge is by reading, and this advice is also applicable to developers. In a bid to become better as a developer, reading more code will go a long way in helping you achieve that goal. It honestly doesn’t get easier than that.

Blogs, forums,and books are good in their way, but the most effective way to get better skilled is with the help of open-source projects that are fully functional. The apps of these projects are available to developers, and the entirety of its resources can be accessed with minimum fuss.

With these apps, you don’t need to do a lot to gain a lot – you can sit back, chill and study some good code. In this article, I’ll be revealing a handful of handy open-source apps plucked from different genres and categories that will go a long way in fulfilling your needs.

This list is a very competitive one, and the best open-source apps for Android have been selected. These apps have a significant presence on Play Store and are frequently updated. To put the competitiveness of this list in context, its average Github stars is more than 4,000.

Amaze File Manager

Github Stars: 2,131

This is an app – a file manager, actually – that can be found on a large number of Android devices. On face value, building an app focused on file management might look very easy, but it is quite hard to get it to function across multiple Android platforms as well as devices.

You can learn a host of things with this app, but the standard of coding shouldn’t be followed as it isn’t up to scratch. The app itself is pretty sleek with a navigation drawer and essential features that include copy, cut, delete, extract and compress.

It is easily accessible, and multiple tabs can be opened at the same time. As for the advanced users, root explorer is available. There’s also a database reader that is inbuilt – as well as an apk reader, text reader and zip/rar reader.

AntennaPod

Github Stars:2,027

This is a podcast player and manager that gives you real-time access to a multitude of podcasts – paid and free alike. These podcasts are published by independent podcasters and dominant publishing houses like CNN, BBC,and NPR.

You can be able to export, import and add to their feeds with the help of the podcast database of iTunes, RSS URLs or OPML files. You can save battery power and limit data usage with the help of automation controls used in the downloading and deleting of episodes.

However, the most important feature(s) of this app is that you can stream, download or queue episodes so that you can enjoy them exactly how you like them using customizable playback speeds, sleep timer,and chapter support.

Barcode Scanner

 Github Stars: 20,083

This app is used to scan barcodes on goods and products or the barcodes containing contact info, URLs and the likes.

Dolphin

Github Stars: 4,697

This is an emulator meant for a couple of new Nintendo game consoles: these are the Wii and the GameCube. With this app, PC gamers can enjoy playing games compatible with these consoles while in HD quality (1080p).

FastHub

Github Stars: 3,642

This pure-floss fork app is also an open-source client app of GitHub, but as opposed to the other apps, this one was developed from scratch.

The app itself has three different login types – Basic Auth, OAuth or Access Token. Users can log in to multiple accounts while an offline mode is still available. There’s also the availability of code highlight support and markdown.

ForkHub

Github Stars: 2359

This is an open-source client of GitHub. Initially, it was a fork of the Android app, but it has seen some significant improvements after it was abandoned. With this app, users can be informed of all of their GitHub activities using notifications and integrated newsfeed. You can also use the GitHub repository to create, discuss and manage issues that can be seen and viewed on the issues dashboard. With GitHub supporting integrated Gists, users can also discover, discuss and share code snippets.

Gnucash

Github Stars: 1,124

This is an Android expense tracker app which serves as the companion app for GnuCash for desktops that allows for the flexibility in tracking expenses while on the move. This can then be exported to GnuCash XML or QIF formats.

The app’s interface is easy to handle, and there’s the availability for multiple accounts with a master or main account responsible for several accounts under it. Transactions can also be divided into multiple pieces meant to record fees, taxes and several compound entries.

The app can also automatically enter into and create scheduled transactions for its users. With its home screen widget, users can quickly access their accounts and transactions.

Haven

Github Stars: 4,633

This is an app that ensures that people can protect personal possessions and spaces without the need to compromise their privacy. This app leverages sensors that will monitor and provide protection as it concerns physical spaces. The app will turn Android devices into sound, vibration, light and motion detectors meant to watch for intruders or unexpected guests. The app also makes use of onion routing and encrypted messaging to ensure utmost security.

K-9 Mail

Github Stars: 3,996

This is an open-source app that serves as an email client. This app supports multiple accounts, multi-folder sync, signatures, IMAP push e-mail, search, flagging, PGP/MIME, filing, BCC-self, among others.This is a project that was communally developed, and its app supports Exchange 2003/2007 (in addition to WebDAV), POP3 and IMAP. The app has quite a reputation amongst Android devices, and one can see why.

kickstarter

Github Stars: 4,761

Kickstarter is the go-to app as it provides an environment where creative creators and enthusiastic backers come all together for the purpose of bringing innovative ideas to life and search creative projects in different fields such as art and design plus more.

KISS

Github Stars: 1,026

This app is an Android launcher, and its lightweight feature is something that stands out about it. There are also many other characteristics and features that can be learned from the project. If your objective is to make an Android launcher, then this app would be helpful in your quest. The app is simple and small which means that it is an ideal choice to start with.

The app itself ensures that Android users can increase the simplicity of the home of their respective interfaces and quickly access functions they are in need of. With this app, its developers have ensured that users can save battery power.

Kodi

Github Stars: 7,396

This an open-source media center platform and entertainment hub meant for digital media as it concerns HTPCs. It makes use of an interface that was designed to act as a media player – with the primary input device being a remote control. This platform’s GUI ensures that its users can browse for videos, music, photos,and podcasts quite easily.

Lawnchair

 Github Stars: 2,226

This is an open-source app that was developed with the help of volunteers. Since its development, it has gone on to become one of the most popular choices for Android users. Some of its features include Google now integration, support of icon pack, variable icon and custom grid size, adaptive icons and dock customization.

Materialistic

Github Stars: 1,690

This is an open-source app client responsible for hacker news – with the app designed for phones and tablets alike. This app was generated with the intention that its users will be able to view news with optimum speed and without the need to use data excessively.

With this app, users will be able to browse the top stories, vote and comment on these stories. Users will also be able to submit and share their stories, create multiple accounts and save stories or posts for offline reading.

Omni-Notes

Github Stars: 1,590

This is an open-source app used for taking notes. Its developers created it to ensure it has a simple interface as well as a smart behaviour.

The inspiration for this project was garnered from the fact that apps like these are not compatible with old phones or Old Android versions. The app aims to follow the current design guidelines that are peculiar to the operating system of Google.

At the moment, some of the functions that have been implemented include a material design interface (add, archive, modify, delete, search, merge, share and trash actions), to-do list, audio, generic and image file attachments, multiple widgets, an extension of DashClock, sketch-note mode among others.

OpenKeychain

Github Stars: 1,066

This app ensures that communication is more private and secure. While also being compatible with OpenPGP’s standard, it makes use of encryption to make sure that messages can only be read by people whom they are sent to. These messages can also be signed digitally so that the people who receive them know who sent them. With the OpenPGP standard, encryption is compatible across systems and devices.

Osmand

Github Stars: 1,630

This is a navigation app predominantly offline that has access to worldwide, high quality and free offline maps. This app ensures for POI, offline maps, transit and GPS navigation mainly based on OpenStreetMap data. With this app, users can enjoy the creation and management of GPX tracks, visual and voice offline navigation, OSM editing, among other things.

Owncloud

Github Stars: 2,605

This app ensures that its users can connect Android devices to an ownCloud server that is private – with this server operating within your data center. This sync and share platform is for anyone ranging from individuals that operate the server, to major service providers and enterprises that operate within ownCloud’s enterprise subscription.While using this app, users can view all of their synced files, edit, create and share files – as well as keeping the folders’ contents in sync across several of your devices. All you have to perform is to copy a file to a directory within your server, and the app will do the rest.

Pedometer

Github Stars: 1,090

This is an app that makes use of a hardware sensor meant to calculate steps without impacting so much on the performance of the battery of the device. This is a great project to begin understanding step tracking. However, the standard of coding and design isn’t good enough to be followed.Developers designed this app so that it can be able to run without impacting the battery life of the device. The app – unlike most pedometer apps – doesn’t track your location or movement which means your GPS sensor doesn’t have to be turned on.

Phonograph

Github Stars: 1,894

This app is a music player, and it contains most of the standard features like creating and editing playlists, home screen widget, lock screen playback controls, etc.The app’s interface is also very detailed, and it matches that of the guidelines of the material design which ensures that the app is attractive to users. The app’s clean interface ensures for a simple, yet compelling experience.

QKSMS

Github Stars: 2,087

This is an open-source messaging app that is ad-free. QKSMS also supports multi-SIM and dual-SIM phones. The app’s design is simple and beautiful which ensures that its users can make use of the app while focusing on what is essential.This app is also customizable, and users can choose from a plethora of colours for the theme of the app or specific conversations. You can also demarcate and prioritize messages with the help of per-contact notifications.

Shadowsocks

Github Stars: 17,733

This is a platform that enables you to securely and privately browse the internet. It should be noted that after upgrading the app to 3.x upwards, you might need to uninstall and install the app again.Some of the app’s features include event-driven programming and asynchronous I/O that results in bleeding edge techniques. The reduced source consumption ensures that it is suitable for embedded devices and low-end boxes.

Shuttle

Github Stars: 1,703

This is an Android music player open-source app. This music player is very similar to Google Play Music, but it has some extra features. It has a modern and material design, and it also has an embedded 6-band equalizer accompanied with bass boost.

Signal

Github Stars: 10,291

This is a simple, yet useful messaging app meant to establish and maintain communication with your friends. The app makes use of the data connection of your phone – whether 3G, 4G or WiFi – to establish secure communication. It also supports the optional function of SMS and MMS so that the app can serve as a kind of unified messenger, while also being able to encrypt stored messages onto your device.The app’s server doesn’t have any access to your communication in its entirety and also doesn’t save any data of yours. The app also employs end-to-end encryption that ensures that your messages are always private.

Simple Calendar

Github Stars: 1,309

This is a calendar with an option for CalDAV synchronization. With this calendar, you can be able to set up reminders and recurring events. It also has an event widget – here you will be able to customize the text’s colour, the background colour, and the alpha.The app doesn’t contain any ads or permissions that aren’t necessary. Permission to use storage is only needed to export or import events, while contacts permission will only be granted to import contact anniversaries and birthdays.

Telegram

Github Stars: 10,558

This is one instant messaging app that has gained so much popularity over the years – with over 200 million people actively using it today. The app itself is simple, yet fast, accessible, yet secure and can be synced to multiple devices.

Timber

Github Stars: 5,124

This is a music player, but it doesn’t let its users download music. This music player has all the classic features regular music players have like the browse albums, songs, artists and device folders, creating and editing playlists, lyrics support and material design. It also has Chromecast support, Android auto support, Android Wear and LastFM scrobble.

 Wire

Github Stars: 2,133

This is an open-source app and platform meant to secure all your chats – whether business or personal – and your calls and files. This is made achievable with the help of end-to-end encryption. This app works on different devices and platforms which means that your chats, calls, and files are perpetually in sync and are available anywhere.

Summary

These open-source apps for Android have been selected from different genres and categories so that this list can be relatable to almost any developer. I hope that you have discovered this article to be helpful in your aim to improve as a developer.

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