When the power goes out suddenly, or you find yourself stranded at night in a strange place far away from the flashlight you have tucked away in your closet back home, you need to be able to see, and quickly. Just like with cameras, the best flashlight is the one you have with you. Fortunately, that smartphone in your pocket is capable of producing enough to get by in most situations, and no, I’m not just referring to its screen. Here are five apps that can turn your Android device into your most convenient flashlight.
1. Color Flashlight
The bright screen on the front of your handset is an excellent source of light. The problem is that phones tend to auto-dim, limiting their usefulness as a flashlight. Dedicated apps can eliminate this issue. Color Flashlight is a great option in this regard. It not only lets you leave the screen on at full brightness, you can select a color of your choice or use an animation, such as a burning candle. Or, if you prefer, you can use the LED flash on the back of your phone to provide a more powerful and concentrated beam of light.
2. High-Powered Flashlight
High-Powered Flashlight is the only option on this list to include a built-in compass. This makes it a great tool to use at night while camping. It can toggle the LED or set your screen to max brightness, and there’s a wheel at the top that you can swipe to activate a strobe light at different frequencies. It makes for an easy-to-use survival tool with an intuitive design.
3. Power Torch
Power Torch is ridiculously fast to launch. It uses the LED light near your camera, the source of your phone’s flash when taking pictures, to provide a steady supply of light. It’s far from unique in this approach, but unlike most alternatives, you don’t need to unlock the phone to get things going. Just long-press the power button to turn the light on. The app costs $1.36 to use, and there’s no free trial to experiment with, but things don’t get much simpler than this.
4. TeslaLED Flashlight
TeslaLED comes from TeslaCoil, the developers of the phenomenal Nova launcher and the immensely configurable WidgetLocker lockscreen. In stark contrast with those apps, TeslaLED is a pretty basic tool that just turns on the LED when you tap on the on-screen lightbulb. The perk to using this app is the ability to integrate it with WidgetLocker, allowing you to open the flashlight from the lockscreen with just a tap or flick.
5. Tiny Flashlight + LED
Tiny Flashlight + LED is impressive thanks to its many plugins. Out of the box, it can turn your phone’s screen on to max brightness or enable the LED. But when combined with one of its many plugins, the app can flicker morse code, blink rapidly like a strobe light, change colors like Color Flashlight, and more. Each plugin installs as a separate app, but they all load up inside Tiny Flashlight + LED to provide an expansive experience.
Flashlight apps can really come to your aid in a pinch, and they’re pretty basic software, so there’s little reason not to install one. Any of the apps on this list should fit the bill just fine, but if there’s another one you want our readers to know about, please share it with everyone in the comments below.