One of our favorite things about Android is how customizable it is. But you don’t need to start installing themes or messing around with rooting to make your phone look great, you can do it simply by adding an interesting wallpaper. Here are some of the best free wallpaper apps for Android.
The Terra Collection: for aerial backgrounds
Inspired by the Marshmallow aerial photography backgrounds, the Terra Collection brings together well over 100 high-resolution images of the South England coast and a variety of urban scenes.
The collection is spread across three different resolutions and incorporates the Android Lollipop and Marshmallow images as well as experimental images, inspired by the Nexus 5X and 6P.The Terra Collection
Walloid: for stock manufacturer and ROM wallpapers
Encompassing a surprising amount of manufacturers, Walloid collates the stock wallpapers you will find on devices from Samsung, Xiaomi, Nexus, and plenty of others, as well as ROMs like CyanogenMod.
When I say a surprising amount, it really is quite an impressive list. Currently, the app contains over 6,000 wallpapers, from 31 OEMs, spread across over 250 devices, and 8 custom ROMs.Walloid: HD Stock Wallpapers
Wallrox: for ultra high definition
Wallrox has a huge collection of UHD handcrafted wallpapers designed by Ankit Anand in 2K (3,200 x 2,560). They make your wallpaper look so sharp you'll think you've upgraded your phone.
The app's interface is quite easy to use, so you can very quickly find a wallpaper you like, although there are so many to choose from, that you may find you like too many and have a tough time making a decision. The great thing is that you can easily go back in and make another selection once you're bored with the one you have.Wallrox Wallpapers
Wally: for variety
Wally offers a huge range user-generated wallpapers from Wallhaven, featuring differently sized images from various genres, including comics, computer generated art, nature photos, pictures of users, drawings and more.
Wally is constantly being updated with new images, so once you are sick of the image you chose, you can just jump back in and grab a new one from the feed; there will almost certainly be something fresh.Wally
Cool Wallpaper HD: for Android Wear
If you want a wallpaper app that is supported by Android Wear then you should go with Cool Wallpaper HD. The images are excellent and the variety seems endless. When I last got on there were more than 10,000 crisp, interesting wallpapers to choose from.
You can sort the images by category or do a search and see what you come up with. Be creative in your searches, there are a lot of fun images to choose from.Cool Wallpapers HD Kappboom®
HPSTR: for trendy geometry
When a simple image isn't enough, HPSTR is there to add a filtered shape overlay. Images come from Reddit, 500px and Unsplash, and the selection can be filtered through a choice of categories. Then you get to pick your shape and filter. It's surprisingly fun.
With a paid upgrade, you get access to a host of additional features, mostly customization options. The free version offers plenty to play with though, and will get your phone looking cool enough to pull out at the next Tame Impala gig.Hipster wallpaper - HPSTR
Plastexo: for select minimalist variety
Plastexo is essentially a wallpaper gallery, and it's as clean and simple as the wallpapers it provides. The selection is not that extensive – it offer 110 wallpapers – but has enough variety to cater to anyone interested in some minimal designs for their device. The quality of the selection is top-notch too.
All the designs are created by Mowmo, a great Android designer, who is worth following on Twitter if you like his style.Plastexo - Wallpaper
Tapet: for a taste of the infinite
'Tapet' is an archaic word for a decorative wall-hanging, but the Tapet app is anything but archaic. It generates endless wallpapers set to your device's screen size using a variety of patterns and colors. Using simple swipe gestures, you can change the pattern, but keep the colors, keep the colors but change the pattern, get a whole new design, or go back through previous designs.
You can customize how frequently you see certain patterns or colors in the settings, and once you've arranged things to your liking, you can set the app up to change your wallpaper on a regular basis, so you never have to worry about choosing another wallpaper again. It has a pleasing parallax effect when you scroll through pages, too.Tapet™
Minima: for parallax lovers
The parallax feature on newer devices is a simple but pleasing addition to smartphones. Tilting the screen results in the background moving, making it appear three-dimensional. Minima takes full advantage of this feature, producing wallpapers designed to look great when the screen is tilted around. All the wallpapers are cleanly designed, and a lot of them have a hand-made feel.
The free version gives you 35 themes and most of the options, which is plenty. Upgrading gets you 90 themes, full editing options and lets you set automated wallpaper changing. Try the free version and see if you think the upgrade is worth it.Minima Live Wallpaper
500 Firepaper: for slick, automatic wallpaper changes
500px is a website where some great photographers post their work. With the 500 Firepaper app, you can see their art on your phone. One of the most impressive aspects of 500 Firepaper is that you can specify how often the images change, and you can decide which categories images are selected from.
To give you an idea of 500 Firepaper's capabilities, you can set the background image to change every time you unlock your phone, or whenever you tap an image with three fingers; it's great functionality. Just watch that your internal storage space doesn't run out.500 Firepaper
Backgrounds HD Wallpapers 50M+: for a professional app and large community
Backgrounds HD offers free wallpapers for Android from artists all over the world, and it features more than 7,000 high-quality wallpapers to personalize your phone. You can crop and set wallpapers to fit your screen or just highlight the best bits, share on social networks and submit your own backgrounds for others to admire.Backgrounds HD (Wallpapers)
Muzei Live Wallpaper: for art and live wallpaper fans
Feeling a bit arty? Fancy some Van Gogh on your Moto G or Gauguin on your Galaxy Alpha? Muzei Live Wallpaper gently refreshes your screen with famous works of art from Wikiart.org as well as high-quality photography. It keeps the images faded in the background to emphasize your icons and indicators but will show them in their full glory when you double-tap.
Like Cool Wallpapers, Muzei supports Android Wear too, so you can wander around with a masterpiece on your wrist as well as in your pocket.Muzei Live Wallpaper
Shake Them All! Live 2 Wallpaper: for those who want something quirky
This one’s a lot of fun: Shake Them All! Live 2 Wallpaper features tumbling androids and a physics engine that means they react to gravity, shakes, touches, light and sound. We like to imagine that they’re real people, that our phone is a tower block and that we’re angry giants who laugh as we throw them around like dolls, jab them and generally make them feel like rush hour commuters.Shake Them All 2
Have you found a cool wallpaper app for Android or a live wallpaper that made you laugh? Tell us about it in the comments.