Most of the popular apps we use on our smartphones require a stable Internet connection, but depending on your location, you may not always have access to the Internet. That being said, do yourself a favor and download some handy offline Android apps for when the Internet stops flowing.
There are many Android apps that work completely offline or only require periodic connection to sync data. In this article we introduce seven Android apps that will be sure to entertain you during those harsh times when your Internet connection is not working.
1. Pocket – Save Content for Offline Viewing
Price: Free / $4.99
Pocket is probably the best app out there that makes it a snap to save articles and videos for later offline viewing. Just save content to Pocket using the sharing button from within browsers or apps, and it will be synced to all your devices that have Pocket installed.
The app supports content on both web pages and popular apps like Twitter, Facebook, Feedly, etc. It also cleans up pages and makes it easier to read without additional distractions. There’s also a read-aloud option that works even when offline. Unsurprisingly, Pocket has a few options that require an Internet connection. For instance, the Discover tab, which allows users to discover new content on topics they care about.
Pocket has a premium tier that offers extra features and unlimited content storage. The upgraded experience includes a calm, ad-free reading environment, the ability to look up articles by keyword, topic, author or tag, and the option to customize your reading experience.
2. HERE WeGo – Offline Maps and Navigation
HERE WeGo is one of the best Google Maps alternatives that brings robust features, such as complete offline access. If you are heading out to a location that doesn’t have good data coverage or are simply worried about roaming charges, then the HERE WeGo app may be just the thing you need to download to your phone before you go.
The app allows users to download full maps of entire countries (100 supported worldwide) and provides offline turn-by-turn navigation services and a clean UI.
Apart from the excellent offline component, the app also provides real-time traffic and road condition reports to allow you to choose the quickest way to your destination, as well as location sharing.
3. PlayerFM – Listen to Podcasts Offline
Price: Free / $39.99 and up
If you love podcasts, this app will provide ample distractions whenever there’s no Internet to entertain you. All you have to do is tell PlayerFM which topics you are interested in, and the app will create a curated list of podcasts you can subscribe to.
You can opt to be updated when new episodes are added, and most importantly, it’s possible to create playlists for offline listening. Naturally, you’ll have to download these podcasts in advance in order to be able to listen to them later in the absence of internet. PlayerFM also syncs your preferences and offline playlists between your PC and Android phone to make it easier to listen to podcasts on both devices. Moreover, the service is highly customizable, allowing you to change themes, although to unlock all, you’ll need a Premium subscription.
4. Spotify – Turn Your Mobile into an Offline Listening Device
Price: Free / $4.99
Spotify is a popular digital music streaming service that gives you access to millions of songs, podcasts and videos from artists all over the planet. While you need a connection to the Internet to be able to stream the music, it’s possible to download all your favorite tracks and save them in the app’s library for later (offline) listening.
This option makes the app extremely practical when you want, for example, to go for a walk or run while listening to some music. If you want to access your musical library anywhere and without wasting precious data, remember to always download your favorite songs and albums on Spotify so that you can have them at hand even when you’re away from a stable Wi-Fi connection.
Actually, most streaming apps – including Netflix, YouTube Premium, Amazon Prime and others – have an option which allows users to download content for offline use.
5. Kiwix – Wikipedia in Your Pocket
Kiwix is an offline reader that downloads the whole Wikipedia database for offline use. It supports other Wikis, too, including Wikitionary, Wikiquote, Wikibooks, Wikinews, Wikisource, and Wikivoyage, as well as also Ted Talks and Project Gutenberg. All this data can be in your palm with the help of the Kiwix app.
Of course, the data sets are quite large to download and require a working Internet connection, but Kiwix lets you save the file in external storage (SD card), so your phone memory won’t have to suffer. What’s more, as the data is already on your phone, searching and navigation is very smooth and fast. One thing to consider, though, when using this app, is that the search function does not work very well, so finding specific data and information is quite challenging.
Alternatively, you could try another method for accessing Wikipedia articles offline. Install the Pocket app discussed above and save the Wikipedia articles you’re interested in there for later reading.
6. Amazon Kindle – Your Library Accessible Anywhere, Anytime
Moving to a remote location to get away from the pandemic? Fortunately, you don’t have to pack many books with you. Instead, simply download the Amazon Kindle app and enjoy your complete collection of books wherever you are, with no internet needed.
Books cost money to purchase, of course, but once you’ve made the transactions, the app will download the titles on your device for you to access later. Older books that you own and plan to take along will also have to be downloaded (at no extra cost) on the handset or tablet you’re currently using.
The Kindle app offers nifty customization features, including a dark mode, the ability to change font and background and provides easy access to a dictionary while reading (even when offline).
7. Google Translate – Decipher Anything
The Google Translate app is an extremely useful tool to have at hand when you’re traveling abroad. Even with the pandemic putting most voyages on hold, it’s still worth having the app on your phone in case of a linguistic emergency.
To ensure optimal results while offline, users will have to download the database of the language they want their translations in in advance, and this requires an active internet connection. Once past this step, you’ll be able to type text into the app and get an instant and mostly correct translation in the language you’ve selected.
Google has also made available a camera mode so you can point the camera at any foreign text to get the translation. That works offline, too, provided you’ve previously downloaded the right language pack.
These Android apps prove that going offline doesn’t have to be limiting or dull, but if you’re sitting there wondering what to do to get things running again, then perhaps you should read about how to fix mobile data not working on Android or how to troubleshoot MiFi connection issues.