Sometimes you just want to keep prying eyes away from your stuff. We understand. There are a variety of ways to do it too. Applocks provide a quick, if somewhat ineffective, means of privacy. There are also special vault apps that store files and hide files from other apps. Of course, there are also OEM solutions as well. Whatever you choose to go with should keep out snoopy roommates or kids. However, a tech savvy individual can bypass these without too much effort. Additionally, a bug or a forgotten password means losing quite a bit of data. It’s not the end of the world, but more of a heads up that these aren’t infinitely secure apps and they do have problems. These really only provide short term privacy benefits. In any case, here are the best gallery vault apps for Android!
Price: Free / $2.99
1Gallery is one of the newer gallery vault apps on the list. It’s a mix of a regular gallery along with a gallery vault function. You can view your images, GIFs, and videos as you normally would or lock them behind a vault and view them there. The vault includes full encryption for every file along with a couple of different ways to access the vault (PIN, pattern, fingerprint). Additionally, it works with RAW, SVG, and even panoramic images. Some other features of this one includes a super basic photo and video editor, a few different themes to choose from, and a relatively low price tag. It’s a good entrant into the category.
AppLock by DoMobile Lab
Price: Free / Varies
AppLock by DoMobile Lab is one of the most popular applocks for Android. It basically turns any app into a vault app. It has a variety of security measures. For instance, you can hide it from the app drawer. Additionally, it locks down your gallery, cloud storage apps, file explorer app, or any other app that might access your files. This should work well for snooping individuals or kids. There are a few ways to pay for this one. You can use the app for free with ads, though, if you prefer. It’s pretty decent for what it does.
Price: Free / Up to $14.99
Gallery Vault is kind of the default, popular option in this space. It lets you hide photos and videos as usual, but it also supports other file types as well. You can also hide photos on your micro SD card, use the integrated privacy browser, GIF supoport, and it even supports fake passwords and failed login alerts. The free version is absolutely riddled with ads so we only recommend that as a trial version for the premium version. If you need something free, there are better options available. However, the premium version of this is honestly not half bad if you can stomach the steep price tag.
Price: Free / $1.99
Hide Something is one of the cleanest gallery vault apps we’ve seen. It also works well enough as a vault app. You can share files directly from third party apps to this in order to hide them. Additionally, it features Google Drive support for hidden backups. That’s kind of neat, actually. Some other features include GIF support, a fake vault mode, fingerprint support, and more. It also doesn’t show up in the recent apps menu. It’s cheap, it looks good, and it has the more common features. The one caveat is that it doesn’t encrypt your files. Thus, a more tech savvy person with a file browser can still access your files. Great for your kids, not great for nosy and tech savvy thieves.
Price: Free / Up to $3.99
LockMyPix is another decent gallery vault app. It has a lot of desirable features, including complete offline support, a fake login, AES encryption, fingerprint scanner support, and SD card support. You can even open a fake vault if you want to. That is potentially useful if someone is forcing you to open the app for them. We found the occasional report of backups not functioning all that well. Otherwise, this app actually seems like a solid pick. We’re not too thrilled with its Google Play page having a different name as the app’s real name, but that about sums up the negative thoughts we have about this one. You can also use the premium version of this for free if you use Google Play Pass.
Memoria Photo Gallery
Price: Free / $3.99
Memoria is one of the newer gallery vault apps on Android. We actually really like this one. It functions as a full gallery replacement app and it has all of the features of a gallery replacement. That includes customization options, favorites, sort options, slideshows, pinning content, and all of that. The app also includes a built-in vault for your photo content, including whole albums. The vault is secured with a password. Thus, even if people get into your gallery and find your regular photos, there’s an extra step before they see the sensitive content. The app struggles a bit with larger galleries and some options are only available in the pro version. It also has a few bugs thanks to its newness. However, we expect it to stabilize over time.
Norton App Lock
Norton App Lock is another surprisingly good applock from a typically not-so-great developer. This one has all of the common features. It also includes a few different passcode options, support for multiple apps, and it takes photos of people trying to break the applock. Other app locks have more features. However, this one does the basics and it’s surprisingly light for a Norton app. It’s also entirely free with no in-app purchases or ads. Of course, it has the same caveats as other applocks. People can get around it with enough time.
Price: Free / Up to $4.99
SpSoft AppLock is another popular and dependable applock. It has all of the usual features, including a function to record intruders, fingerprint support, a fake lock, support for 31 languages, and more. This one also includes support for different passwords for each app it locks and it has remote lock functionality as well. That gives it an extra step above most other applocks. We found the occasional report of a bug, but most people seem to like this one a lot. It’s also relatively inexpensive.
OEM locking features
OEMs add a lot of extra features to their devices over stock Android. Occasionally, that includes an app lock or a privacy vault of some sort. Samsung’s Secure Folder feature (in the security and lock screen settings) is an excellent example. These apps have an advantage over third party apps because they are system-level. They can’t be uninstalled, they’re built right into the OEM version of Android, and that all makes it much harder to crack than an uninstallable app. If a lock screen isn’t enough, we definitely recommend looking at OEM specific locking features before going with a third party app. It’s usually the better option overall with fewer problems.
Or just use a really good lock screen
Here’s the thing, folks. If people are in your phone, your security can only be so good. We really only recommend applocks and vault apps to people with kids because thieves can get around them with enough time. A good lock screen with a good pattern/PIN/fingerprint lock will do more to protect your device than any app on this list. If you’re worried about extra protection in case of theft, we actually recommend Find My Phone apps that can remotely wipe your device like Google’s option. Set up a good lock screen and we have a list of Find My Phone apps just below!
If we missed any great gallery vault apps for Android, tell us about them in the comments! You can also click here to check out our latest Android app and game lists!