One of the major things that separates Android from iOS is the ability to add widgets on the home screens. Widgets can be a cool way to interact with your smartphone and while you get basic calendar, clock, Facebook and other widgets with your smartphone, the online community i.e the Android Market has a lot more to offer.
Here are some of the best android widgets available for your Android, both paid and free, ranging from full widget packs to small single purpose clock/battery widgets to customize your super phone:
1) Beautiful Widgets
Beautiful Widgets is easily one of the most popular widget packs on Android which I personally love to use. You get clock and weather widgets as well as toggle widgets with for WiFi, 3G, Brightness, GPS and more for quickly toggling them directly from the homescreen.
A great thing about the app is that it provides widgets in every size you want with lots skins to choose from. If you’re looking for an all in one widget pack with over 700 skins, Beautiful Widgets is for you.
Play Store: Beautiful Widgets ($2.71)
2) Fancy Widgets
Fancy Widgets is another widget pack with widgets for your clock and weather. It looks similar to Beautiful Widgets, they both share the same clean and elegant look that’s hard to find in widgets. Further, it also offers weather forecasts, weather alerts, geo tagging, different themes, integrated battery info into the clock widget and lots more.
The upside is, Fancy Widgets is free. If you want more though, you can go for the Pro version with added features, one of the most notable of which is you can backup your widgets.
3) Android Pro Widgets
Yet another widget pack, but unlike the former widget packs, this one supports a lot more widgets. The widgets available include a calendar widget (with agenda), Facebook and Twitter widgets, Messages widget, People widget, Bookmarks widget and a Timeline widget (paid version).
I would have liked to see an email widget added in as well, but for now your limited to the ones mentioned above. They all look great, with a “Sense” feel to them but the interface for each widget, specially the Calendar widget is really cool.
This is a simple minimal Clock Widget available in different sizes and is highly customizable. It can be configured to show Textsize, Textcolor, Timeformat, Text Color, Background color, add weather forecast, battery status with lots more.
Play Store: Simi Clock Widget
SiMi Folder is a customizable Folder Widget with a horizontal/vertical scrollable Launcher, based on the Launcher from SiMi Clock.
Play Store: SiMi Folder Widget
6) My Data Manager
- Monitor app data usage for your home and roaming plans.
- Set usage alarms to manage your bill.
- Track historical consumption to ensure you are buying the ideal plan and maximize how you use your data.
Monitor per app data consumption to understand what apps are consuming the most data, and what apps are almost free. Save money by using your data plans more effectively.
Play Store: My Data Monitor
life.contacts makes your communication fast, simple and pretty. The widget will show pictures of your most frequently used contacts on your homescreen. It will learn how you communicate and select contacts based on that. This way you will always have your most relevant contacts in your widget.
Though, there is no option to manually choose your favourite contacts to be shown. Anyways, it’s a very good widget. It pulls pictures of your contacts from Facebook, notifies you of missed e-mail/calls/SMS and also syncs your widget with Sony’s servers. So, if anything your phone of if you change phones, you can always get your widget back. Like an online backup.
Play Store: life.contacts
Widgetsoid is an advanced widget app that offers more than 40 toggling widgets such as for WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, Sync, 3G/2G, Data, Brightness, Orientation, Airplane mode, Media Scanner, Torch, Battery Status, Temperature, Screen timeout, Reboot (only for root users! Shutdown, bootloader, normal, recovery or fastboot) and loads more.
You can even customize it’s look by adding custom icon & indicator color or the background. The best part? The widgets can also be added in the notification bar (like the way Touchwiz or CM7 do).
Play Store: Widgetsoid 2.x
Organizer widget displays information of last and unanswered calls, new SMS, tasks and events defined in Calendar in one panel. Unanswered calls, new SMS and Events for nearest 24 hours are marked with special icons and are summarized in red circle per group.
On clicking Calls, SMS or Calendar icons you go to standard applications – Contacts, Send SMS and Calendar.
Play Store: Organizer Widget
10) Simple Calendar Widget
Simple calendar widget will show you next appointment. It is an analog of standard calendar widget, with updated look to match style of “SiMi Clock” widget. Also, it supports a lot of configuration options:
- Different skins
- Possibility to choose which calendars to show
- Font and background customization
- Show or hide current day of month
- Possibility to choose which application to open
Play Store: Simple Calendar Widget
11) Car Widget
This is very similar to the basic Car widget you that comes along with different UIs (HTC Sense, Touchwiz 4 etc.) but it has a much cleaner look and you get three themes to choose from, along with a Metro-esque theme for WP7 fans.
It’s great for using your phone while driving and different shortcuts can be assigned ranging from messaging and calling tasks to shortcuts for music player, Gmail or your contact list and the shortcuts will be displayed across the whole screen for easy use while driving.
Play Store: Car Widget (Free]
12) Minimalistic Text Widget
Looks are always important in a widget and you’ll be blown away by how Minimalistic text looks. Most of the widgets on Text stands out though with its excellent looks which you can tweak as its highly customizable.
You can make your own widget with time info, weather forecast and battery info.
Play Store: Minimalistic Text
13) Make Your Clock Widget
The app lets you make a personalized widget, you can tweak the layout, size and other parameters to get the perfect widget for your taste. Add in a battery icon and weather info for additional detail if you wish.
Play Store: Make Your Clock Widget (Free)
14) Ice Cream Sandwich Clock Widget
Not much to say here, but if you’re on an older device which will won’t be getting any Ice Cream Sandwich update soon, here’s a ICS styled clock for your Gingerbread / Froyo device.
Play Store: Ice Cream Sandwich Clock Widget
15) WP Clock
It can be displayed on the lock screen as well if its supported by your phone, adjust transparency of text and change fonts etc. to get the look and feel you want.
Play Store: WP Clock
16) Widget Locker
You can add unlocking sliders, app shortcuts, music player or anything you want. It’s a must have app for those who are bored with the basic lock-screen on your device.
It costs $2.99, but its worth every penny in my opinion.
Play Store: Widget Locker Lock-screen ($2.99)
17) Audio Manager Widget
As the name implies, it’s one of the best audio managing applications for Android and it comes with an excellent widget that lets you change volume for your Ringer, Notification, Alarm, Media as well as set 1×1 grid shortcuts for changing sound profiles right from your homescreen.
For those that change audio profiles a lot, managing all the different volumes can be a irritating and time consuming task. This widget is for them.
Play Store: Audio Manager Widget(Free)
18) Pulse News Widget
Pulse News is actually an app for Android, and easily one of the best news readers on the market. You can view the latest, most popular stories based on your interests and Pulse will keep you updated.
If you’re looking for a way to stay updated right through the home screen, Pulse News’ built in widget is the app to have.
Play Store: Pulse News Widget(Free)
19) TweetDeck Widget
TweetDeck, as the name suggests, is primarily a Twitter client that also works with Facebook and Foursquare. app has one of the best Twitter widgets for Android.
It offers 3 different widgets which you can use to read tweets, tweet yourself, see and send messages and more. It’s probably the most feature packed Twitter widget you can get and a must for hardcore Twitter users.
Play Store: TweetDeck Widget(Free)
20) Touch Calendar Widget
You can use the widget in several sizes, but the full page widget is the most impressive with all your events showing up week by week in a detailed yet organized manner.
21) ColorNote Notepad Widget
ColorNote is a simple yet handy note taking and to-do app for Android. It offers some interesting widgets that allows you to “stick” notes to your homescreen.
You can add tasks by long pressing the home screen and choosing the widget as usual, add a task and customize each sticky note’s color to give your home screen a colorful look and manage your tasks in an intuitive way.
The best bit is when you don’t have any tasks at the moment, there won’t be any empty full page widget taking up the space on your homescreen.
Play Store: Colornote Notepad Widget(Free)
And there you have it, we’ve covered everything from all in one widget packs to specialized single purpose clock and calendar widgets, to-do lists, lock-screen widgets and more.
Do check out the ones you find interesting and share your opinions with us. And once you’re done with these, you can search the Android market for more unique widgets and share any noteworthy ones with us as well!