We love apps. We love free apps. And we love paid apps that cost nothing most of all. But we don't like pirates, so if you have an eye patch on your face and a parrot on your shoulder, be gone with ye! Having said that, there's plenty of legal ways to get paid apps for free for your Android so today we're going to share a few with you. Here is our guide on how to get paid Android apps for free.
- Best alternatives to the Google Play Store
- How to install the Google Play Store manually
- Best off-the-grid apps you won't find in the Play Store
Amazon App of the Day
The Amazon Appstore may be the oft-forgotten little brother of the Google Play Store, but one of the great things about Amazon being second best is that they offer up a free app every day to drag your attention away from Google's monster market.
You have options on how to get this, just hit the Amazon Appstore online to see the App of the Day listed up the top, download the Amazon app or grab a notification app like Free App Notifier for Amazon (which sadly only works for the US Amazon Appstore right now) for daily alerts. Just bear in mind that to use Amazon's Appstore you will need an Amazon login.
You can't install the Amazon App Store from the Google Play Store anymore, you need to install it right from the Amazon website here. Make sure you go into the settings of your Android phone first, then choose check the box for allow Unknown sources under Security and tap OK. Once you have installed the app, go ahead and uncheck this button.
AppGratis is one of my favorite apps because every morning I'm greeted by another new app for free. There's no overload of offers – just one app a day – curated by Sam the ever comical developer with the bad jokes.
Sometimes the free apps offered by AppGratis won't be eligible for updates, so keep that in mind, and not every free app offered ever cost anything in the first place! Nevertheless, the AppGratis deals just keep coming and there's often some real gems in there.
Google Play surveys
We've written about Google's free Play Store credit in exchange for answering surveys before. If you're not aware of it yet, Google offers it's very own rewards program because, well, they want even more information about you and your habits.
Simply install the Google Opinion Rewards app, fill in a short survey and collect your coinage. You're limited to one survey a week (so you can't exactly retire early), and I've seen reports that you don't always get paid for every survey, but you can earn up to a dollar per survey. Not bad for a few minutes of your time.
There's another app called Get Paid Apps Free where you watch short videos or download selected apps in exchange for credit that can be cashed out to buy other apps in the Play Store.
App of the Day
App of the Day does basically the same thing as AppGratis and Amazon, offering a paid app for free (or discounted) for a limited time only. There's lots of different versions of this app, so you need to get the one relevant to your location (otherwise the Play Store will tell you it is incompatible with your devices), but once you've got it installed you can add it to your daily check list for scoring paid apps for free.
I should also note that other apps, like AppSales, let you add apps you're interested in to a watch list, so you can be notified when they go on sale. Not exactly free but still better than full price. Plus, AppSales occasionally post free apps too.
Google Play return policy
If you're interested in a game and actually don't mind spending a few bucks on it but don't want to commit unless you know it's actually worth it, then you can take advantage of Google's returns policy for apps. When you pay for an app you've got two hours to test it out before you are stuck with the purchase.
A couple of hours may not seem like a long time, but it's definitely long enough to get a feel for a game and know if you actually want to pay for it or not. And if you're really, really skint you could manufacture a night's entertainment out of just your phone and a stopwatch!
How do you score paid apps for free (no illegal methods please!)? What's the best deal you've ever had on a paid app?