Almost every person using a smartphone is an internet addict. Imagine your internet connection has stopped working because of a technical issue or your mobile data pack reaches its free usage limit. If the ISP doesn’t restore the connection within one or two hours or if you don’t buy a new data pack, you may get anxious and annoyed. This is not the only thing that may frustrate you. If the internet connection is fast and your browser is taking several minutes to open a webpage, you may start cursing the ISP.
Being an internet user, you may know that a web browser is one of the most important apps on our phones. Without it, you cannot browse the Internet. If the browser provides basic features and uses outdated technology to render pages, you’ll have a horrible internet browsing experience. In this case, you must install one of the following best browsers for Android phones and tablets:
Best Android browser apps
Chrome may have eclipsed the popularity of Firefox when Google introduced it for the Windows OS but Firefox still remains a great choice when it comes to a web browser. FF is not only popular among Windows and Linux OS users but is also widely used on mobile devices. The coolest thing about Mozilla Firefox is that it lets you install plugins. If you use Firefox on PC, you may know that Firefox gives you access to over 1000+ plugins. The memory usage of a browser increases with each plugin you install. Hence, make sure that you install only a few extensions. Since the inception of Chrome, Firefox lost its user base by 20 to 30%. Firefox provides:
- Great browsing experience.
- Quantum engine.
- Fastest page rendering engine.
- Flash and HTML5 support.
- Multi-tabbed browsing support.
- Option to open a website designed for the desktops.
- Inbuilt download manager.
- Option to bookmark a website.
- Private browsing mode.
Firefox can block fingerprinting, crypto miners, social media trackers, etc. It supports full-screen browsing and has accessibility options. Firefox is not a memory-hogging application and works great on Android OS. It is one of the fastest and best browsers for Android.
Also read: Best Android Firewall apps
Chrome is a web browser app for Android that needs no introduction. It comes pre-installed on almost all Android devices and is a reliable app to surf websites, watch videos embedded in pages, etc. Chrome is a browser developed with the source code of the Chromium open-source browser. It has a powerful engine called Blink/Webkit that opens a website within 2 to 3 second you type its address in the address bar and tap on the enter button. Chrome provides a data saver utility. It also provides the “safe browsing” function that alerts the users when they try to open a harmful website. Like Firefox, GC supports tabbed web browsing and InCognito mode. When you’re browsing in the Incognito aka private mode, the browser won’t record your history.
- Blazing fast with nice UI.
- Option to enable data saver.
- HTML support.
- Voice search support.
- Powerful download manager.
- GC doesn’t support extensions yet.
- Requires up to 40% more system memory than Firefox on some devices.
Must Read: Top 10 Best Android VPN apps
Opera was the most used mobile phone browser until Google launched the Android OS and the Play Store. It has evolved from a browser with basic functionalities to a browser with fantastic features. The web browser is available in two forms on the Play Store. If you own a low-end mobile, download Opera mini else you must install the other variant of the browser.
Opera has an irritating feature called “discover” that opens thumbnails of news websites you’ve never heard of. You can ignore the discover tab but this feature of Opera wastes the precious data of the user. Like Chrome, Opera offers a data saving function. It allows users to switch user agents i.e. open desktop websites. The most impressive feature of Opera is its ability to wrap text content when the user zooms the page.
- Inbuilt AdBlocker.
- Tabbed navigation system.
- Cloud syncing option
- Opera Turbo, a feature that improves the speed of the website considerably.
- Well-designed file download tool.
- Speed dial aka bookmarks.
- RSS feed.
- The bottom toolbar looks annoying.
Opera has more pros than cons. It is a good alternative to Firefox and Google Chrome.
UCBrowser is an Android browser app owned by UCWeb – a subsidiary of Alibaba Group. Unlike other apps that don’t require special permissions, UCBrowser prompts users to enable phone call management permissions for it. It also asks you to enable permission for accessing the documents, media, and other files on your phone. UCBrowser opens the annoying UCNews portal on startup. Many users expect the browser to open a blank page but this is not the case with UCB. UCB lets you change the default search engine quickly. It supports text-wrapping and ships with an AdBlocker tool that works like a charm. It is one of the best browser apps for Android.
- Special gestures for video playback.
- Night mode to make reading articles on a website in a dark room easier.
- Smart downloader, easy to navigate.
- Saves data with a unique compression function.
- A special mode called “Facebook Mode” speeds up Facebook in UCB.
- Content Recommendation.
Brave Private Browser
Brave is based on Google Chromium. It has an ad, script, and cookie blocker utility built-in. If you disable the Adblocker, you can earn BAT tokens. The tokens convert to money. The Brave browser for Android can block ads, scripts, cookies, etc even when you’re browsing in the InCognito mode. Its APK size is 75.6 megabytes. The browser shows the number of advertisements, trackers it has blocked on the home interface. When it comes to security, DuckDuckGo is the default search engine in this browser and HTTPS Everywhere is enabled by default in Brave.
Microsoft Edge is powered by the source code of the Chromium browser. Its APK size is 80+ megabytes. The browser has an adblocker which is turned off by default. You can activate the adblocker from the Content Blockers option of the settings interface. Edge has a tracking protection system built-in. It enables you to customize the menu. The Microsoft Edge browser app for Android lets users create a collection. A collection can have interesting pages or websites you find on the internet. The browser supports 3 home page layouts – Focused, Inspirational, Informational. If you want to read non-fake news, you can enable the NewsGuard feature of MS Edge. NewsGuard is a website rating service. If a website you’ve opened in Edge is trustworthy, the NewsGuard icon will turn green.
Must read: Best internet speed testing apps
Why have I mentioned only six browsers for Android?
Guys, every time I download an alternative to Firefox, my favorite browser, I find the new application annoying. After using the new browser for a while, I switch back to FF because no other browsers provide a good web browsing experience like Firefox. Firefox supports extensions. Hence, you can install a VPN, data saver plugin, or whatever extension you want. I have used Chrome, UCW, and Opera in the past and have found them fast and reliable. The best browser apps for Android I’ve shared above are unbeatable. Their userbase will keep growing unless a developer launches something different. Don’t waste your time downloading apps other than the ones I have mentioned above. If you’re looking for an alternative to the above browsers, try out Puffin, Firefox Focus, Brave, and Microsoft Edge.
Final thoughts: A perfect browser app for Android is one that opens various types of websites in no time on a fast internet connection. If the connection speed is poor, it should allow users to turn on the data compression function. This feature helps browsers in rendering pages quickly. The apps I’ve shared above score 4 or 5 in each department. They are free and reliable.