A lot of fun stuff happens on your Android screen. You may be gaming, watching YouTube videos, or scrolling through an outrageous WhatsApp thread that you just have to record and share with your friends. At times like these, you need a screen-recording app.
Fortunately, there are plenty of options, and most of them don’t come at a premium. Many of the best Android screen-recording apps are free, and we’ve gathered our favorites for you here.
1. Screen Recorder – No Ads
With a name that’s both succinct and honest, Screen Recorder – No Ads makes our list. It makes it extremely easy to record videos with a blue button to start recording and a small handy widget that appears over whichever screen you’re viewing on your phone.
It can record HD resolutions at 60fps and lets you add all kinds of flair to your recordings such as logos, images and text. Of course, there’s an option to switch on the mic so you can speak over your recordings, and there’s a Facecam option, too, if you’re trying to make a recording with that professional ‘Let’s Play’ kind of look.
You can use this in day or night mode, and it includes some pretty nifty editing features like video trimming (of course) and the option to take notes as you record.
2. MNML Screen Recorder
Still in early access but refreshingly free of all the ads and paywalls and other annoyances that blight certain apps on the Play Store, MNML Screen Recorder is an open-source screen recorder that focuses on ease-of-use above all else. (The name is pronounced “minimal,” apparently.)
Even though it’s not yet on version 1.0, it feels great to use, recording at up to 60fps with bit rates up to 24 Mbps. At this point, resolutions are capped to 1080p, but the devs are working hard to raise this limit, citing that Android has made it awkward to increase the recording frame rate.
3. ScreenCam Screen Recorder
There’s much to be said for a free lightweight app that doesn’t throw ads at you and lets you do exactly what its name suggests. ScreenCam may not have as many options as other Android screen recorders on this list, but it more than deals with the essentials, letting you change video bitrate, recording resolution and the framerate you want to use (up to 60fps).
It’s receiving regular updates, too, so has seen the addition of floating widgets that let you quickly control your recordings from any screen. One notable omission at this point is the lack of a picture-in-picture mode, so you can’t record yourself with the front camera while recording the screen.
4. RecMe Free Screen Recorder
RecMe is one of the few screen recording apps that, when used on a rooted device, can record internal audio as well as video. If you’re not rooted, then you can’t take advantage of the internal audio feature, but you still have plenty to play with on the screen recording front, including up to 60fps 1080p video quality, a front/back camera overlay (for Pro users), and microphone recording.
The UI is nice and friendly – it’s material-design aesthetic makes it look like it could be an official screen-recording app integrated into your phone. Speaking of which, that leads us to the next one on our list.
5. Google Play Games
If you want to avoid downloading any third-party apps, and particularly if you mainly want to record gaming stuff, then you can just use the official Play Games app on your Android device.
Just open the Play Games app, go to a game’s info page, then tap the “Record” icon at the top of the screen. You’ll get options to record in 480p and 720p, so nothing too high-def, but it’s integrated, so we’re not complaining.
To use this feature to record non-gaming stuff, follow the above steps, then just exit the game when it launches. Simple.
6. Mobizen Screen Recorder
Mobizen is deservedly one of the most popular screen-recording apps on the Play Store, offering a wealth of features including full HD recording at 60fps. It has a number of tools for adding pizzazz to your videos after you’ve recorded them, too, such as background music and the option to record yourself doing intro and outro videos. It’s particularly good for gaming, letting you record your sessions at the same time as recording your face reacting to the on-screen action. (Who knows? You may just be the next PewDiePie … God help us all.)
7. AZ Screen Recorder
Price: Free / $2.99
AZ Screen recorder does not require root access (great start) and has an option to pause and resume recording, which is particularly useful for making tutorial videos. It also has a front-facing camera overlay feature, but it requires a paid upgrade to unlock this. You can change settings like resolution, frame rate, bit rate or even feature a text message or logo along with the recorded screen cast. Microphone recording is supported.
Looking to do some recording on your PC instead? Then check out our list charting our favorite screen-recording software for Windows. Android is also great for off-the-radar apps that you can use to download music, so we’ve made a list of the best free music download apps for Android.
This article was first published in December 2017 and was updated in January 2020.