Widgets are a quintessential Android feature and one of its clearest differences with iOS. The best widgets provide convenient, live-updating streams of information, easy customization, and rapid access to important functionalities, all from your home screen. In many cases, they can replace the static app icons that you usually use to launch apps. Here are 15 of my favorite Android widgets for Android Jelly Bean and later:
I’ve written multiple articles about this amazing widget. It can become the default lockscreen for your device, and it supports clickable mini-widgets/extensions for virtually every app or service on your phone.
If you make calls with your phone, this free widget is a must. It provides a full-screen widget that lists the contacts from the stock People (contacts) app. Each contact is tappable, meaning that you can call them straight from the widget.
Nice collection of weather, clock, and date widgets, with support for Daydream (Android 4.2+).
The most popular flashlight app for Android, and for good reason. Its colorful lockscreen widget lets you get your flashlight in a flash. And why not? You shouldn’t need to unlock and hunt down the flashlight app when you need it in a pinch.
A built-in Shazam which analyzes audio and links you to the track in Google Play. It has a great lockscreen widget, which is essential when you need to tag a song before it’s over.
A full-screen sleek calculator widget. Like many of the other selections here, it supports lockscreen widgets and as such is handy for calculating tips etc.
A nifty blue analog/digital hybrid clock. It fits perfectly with icon packs like SMPL Blue. It also clicks-thru to the Clock app so you can manage your alarms, stopwatch, etc.
Highly customizable widget with tons of compatible themes and icon packs. Use it for a clock, weather, or as a shortcut to any app.
This is the best Reddit client I’ve used on Android. Its widget lets you pick a specific subreddit to monitor, and then it lets you scroll thru hot topics and go directly to links and comments from the widget.
Full-screen scrollable widgets are the bee’s-kness on Jelly Bean, and Falcon Pro (already one of the best Twitter clients in existence, alongside Tweetbot and TweetDeck) is the cream of the crop in this field. It lets you refresh your feed, compose, or toggle between mentions/timeline from the widget.
This widget presents stylish, plain text readouts of things like weather, time/date, and phone statistics. It’s highly customizable.
I love Google Keep. And its scrollable widget lets you go through all of your color-coded notes, or create new notes/photos/recordings.
I usually set it to the What’s Hot filter since I don’t have many friends on G+ yet. Also works on the lockscreen.
A nice widget to keep tabs on news and Facebook (I don’t use the Facebook app for Android).
The best weather app on Android, and its stylish widget only strengthens its case. It has customizable color schemes, a host of cute icon packs, and read-outs for the entire week ahead.
-The ScreenGrab Team