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10 best Material Design apps for Android
We first wrote this article back in 2014. We wanted to help people find Material Design apps back when there really weren’t that many. These days, Material Design is everywhere. Most popular apps use it in one form or another and new apps launch with it every day. Thus, we have redone the list to show some of the best examples of Material Design that you can find. Every app on this list was recognized by Google at some point for its Material Design use. Even if these apps aren’t the best or most useful, they really rock that Material Design well. Here are the best Material Design apps for Android! For the record, this list is unlikely to change because Google doesn’t really give out as many design awards as they used to. However, if they do, those apps will probably appear here.
The best material design apps for Android
B&H Photo Video
B&H Photo is a popular online retailer. Their app is also beautiful. It uses Material Design pretty much wherever it can. The shopping experience, search, and even cart functions are all draped in it. The categories page is not only color coded for easy distinguishing by eye, but the design of the little icons are clear and flat. At no point does the design feel overblown or ridiculous. It’s just a good design all around. We wish more shopping apps looked like this one.
See also: The best photography apps for Android
Houzz Home Design
Houzz won an actual design award from Google Play. Who are we to argue that? The app is also pretty good It’s a home design app. You can look around at decoration and design ideas for your home. You can also save ideas and check out some really unique stuff. It’s almost like Pinterest but specifically for home design products. It covers a lot of bases in very little space. Its design lets you move about and view a lot of information in a very short period of time without feeling overwhelming. It just looks and works so well. Truly one of the better Material Design apps.
Price: Free / Optional donation
LocalCast is a streaming app. It casts video, images, and pretty much whatever else to your Chromecast from your device. The app also has a good design. It uses Material Design to its strengths. However, it manages to keep from feeling bloated or unnecessary. The colors contrast nicely without being annoying. The controls look good as well. It also supports Roku, Amazon Fire Sticks, Apple TV, and a variety of smart TVs. It’s really good for what it is.
Price: Free / Varies per ride
Lyft is still an up and coming transit service. However, its app design is probably the best in the transit apps space. It uses layers in Material Design effectively. Apps like this are very busy. Having a bunch of controls and a map can is a ton of information at once. Lyft does a great job of providing a lot of information without feeling uncomfortable to use. The color palette is consistent and good looking. It’s already one of the better transit apps, but its design definitely makes it a little more appealing.
Material Design Demo
Material Design Demo is a boon for developers. It allows you to easily and quickly check out Material Design. It shows use on a lot of the elements of Material Design. That includes transitions, page layouts, card views, the floating action button, the pull out menu drawer, and a lot more. Advanced programmers already know this stuff. However, it gives beginner’s a good glimpse at how this stuff can work. It’s free to download and use. It’s a great app for making Material Design apps.
Material Design Gallery
Material Gallery is an app for developers. Developers upload their apps, UI framework, or other elements to the app. Other developers give feedback on that stuff. Developers can get critiques on their design and ideas on how to improve their stuff. It works pretty well for all of that. It also helps indie developers without huge design teams get the best feedback possible for the best design possible. It’s not essential for generating good Material Design apps, but it definitely helps. It’s also free.
Price: Free / $49.99 per year
Newton Email is probably the best email app in terms of design. It’s clean, the colors are useful for organization, it’s can be themed, and it has a lot of Material Design elements. It’s a bit expensive, but this list isn’t about price. The main view is simple. It lets you view lots of emails quickly without getting confusing. The slide-out menu houses your multiple email accounts and the floating action button does the rest. You can also swipe emails for additional commands. It uses as much of the design as needed for functionality. The good part is that it does so without feeling ridiculous, confusing, or bloated. It’s definitely among the best Material Design apps.
Robinhood is another Google Play award winner for design. It’s a stock trading app. You can view things like stock prices in real time, keep a wish list of stocks you want to follow, and make real-time trades for free. As a brokerage, Robinhood has its ups and downs, especially after the big GameStop debacle of early 2021. However, even people who eventually transfer away from Robinhood miss its fluid UI, easy controls, and simplicity.
See also: The best stock market apps for Android
Price: Free / $1.99
Solid Explorer is among the best file explorer apps. The design is also quite lovely. It features a floating action button that holds many of the more common file management commands. It uses colors to differentiate folders and files for easy organization. The slide out menu and various other design quirks all work together to create a very cohesive experience. That’s difficult to do for something so utilitarian as a file browsing app. It’s definitely among the best Material Design apps.
Price: Free / $3.99
Many texting apps use Material Design. None of them do it quite as well as Textra. It uses basic elements like the floating action button and the pull out drawer for most things. However, its stand out feature is being fully customizable. You can choose between a light and dark background, the primary color, and the secondary color. That means you can make it look basically how you want. You can even change the icon to better fit your home screen. The controls, the Material Design button, the theming, it’s all there. Textra is among the best examples of Material Design in the Play Store.
If we missed any of the best Material Design 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!
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