As much as we use our Androids, every inefficiency can add up to become a significant waste of your time. For instance, how many swipes does it take to find an app in your drawer? If you do this multiple times a day, every day, you are wasting time. Or perhaps that’s no matter, you say, because you put those apps on your home screens(s).
Even then, how many apps should reasonably be on one screen before it gets too crowded? Sure, you can add multiple screens, but eventually it will become like your app drawer–more swiping than necessary and maybe even less organization. So how can you organize and optimize your app space? You can make your own folders, or if you prefer a maid to help with housekeeping (and who doesn’t if it’s free or nearly free?), you can download a folder app.
If you find the prospect of adding a bunch of new folders and organizing them to be tedious, Folder Organizer can group and label your app shortcuts for you. (Typically, folders house shortcuts, not the actual apps themselves by default.) The app then allows you to customize these folders and associated widgets, so you still have a lot of say in how you organize. Once you have created these widgets or shortcuts, you can simply tap on them to see everything connected to that label. Folder Organizer can assist you with organizing bookmarks, apps, contacts, and shortcuts.
Download: Folder Organizer
Download: Folder Organizer Lite (Free, but with fewer features)
Whether you consider it to be a widget or an app (it has somewhat of a dual nature), it’s going to make it much easier to organize the icons on your home screen. The icons will still be visible within the folder on the home screen, never far out of your sight. You can also use App Folder to create shortcuts for Contacts and Bookmarks. Rename folders by going to Settings > Set Up My Apps > Folder Name box.
Download: App Folder
Apps Organizer also uses labels, and it has options for custom icons. And, if you start out with Apps Organizer but find yourself yearning for organized bookmarks, apps, contacts, and shortcuts, it’s easy to import Apps Organizer data into the Folder Organizer app mentioned above. However, most users find Apps Organizer to be sufficient in and of itself. It can also be used to uninstall applications.
Download: Apps Organizer
SiMi Folder Widget
Customizable—with different sizing, layout, icon, and text sizing and color options—SiMi Folder Widget is undeniably one of your best bets. It offers a vertical/horizontal scrollable launcher. Forget the ugly and extraneous pop-up window that usually accompanies Android folders (making you deal with yet another screen), SiMi gives you immediate access through a drawer. Creating the customized folders might take a little time and practice before it seems easy, however. However, it will be worth it, because this is one of the best folder apps on Android.
Download: SiMi Folder Widget
Action Launcher—Oreo + Pixel
Do you think of folders as being exclusively used for boring storage? Or do you think it will be years down the road, if ever, before you see anything like the Oreo OS? The Action Launcher app could prove you wrong in both cases. The app was just updated toward the end of October 2017 and now includes all Pixel Launcher features, including a new circular folder style.
There have been a few bugs along the way, as is always the case with new features, but the developers have been working to squash them. Also keep in mind that Launchers can bring big changes to your UI, not just in terms of folders. The new Action Launcher really does a decent job of integrating lots of Oreo’s features on phones that are still running Lollipop. There’s a lot of fanfare about the new features, and deservedly so, but even the old Action Launcher would have made the list for its ability to turn folders into gesture shortcuts. This has sweetened the deal—with Oreo goodness.
Download: Action Launcher – Oreo + Pixel on Your Phone
Nova Launcher for Folders with Optional Swipe Actions
Maybe Nova Launcher’s not so action-packed as Action Launcher, but maybe that’s not a bad thing, depending on the person. You get a say in whether you would like to access your folder with a swipe or a simple tap. Just hold your finger down on the folder, press Edit > Swipe action, and choose the shortcut or app you want to launch with the folder gesture. Nova swipe actions can be applied to individual apps, not just folders.
Download: Nova Launcher
Smart Launcher 3
Smart Launcher may not be a folder app per se, but it still serves our purposes: making your Android experience easier and faster. It automatically organizes apps and allows you to access them in the most efficient way possible. The launcher itself also makes an effort to be quite customizable, what with icon packs, free themes, widgets, and skins. If you aren’t ready to turn your entire interface on its head as so many launchers require, Smart Launcher 3 can selectively perform its services on just your app drawer. No control issues with this app.
Download: Smart Launcher 3
Contextual App Folder
An app folder that anticipates your needs based on the situation? Even your significant other probably can’t even do that as well as this app does. Your athletic tracking apps suddenly move to the forefront when you hit the gym, or your music apps pop up when headphones are plugged into your Android. The cause and effect scenarios make sense and make things more convenient, and the same things could be said about you downloading this app to your Android.
Download: Contextual App Folder
Glextor App & Folder Organizer
Google Play certainly categorizes its apps, but then you lose that aspect by the time you download. Glextor changes this, so that you retain the labeling for easier organization and grouping. Glextor App & Folder is an app of many hats: start menu, app and folder organizer, manager, and backup tool. It can take the place of your app drawer, and cut down on the time you spend searching for apps instead of using them. Glextor is one of the best folder apps on Android, and can serve so many other functions as well.
Download: Glextor App & Folder Organizer
Samsung Secure Folder
This is your safe place. If you need a folder that is private and encrypted, Samsung utilizes its Knox platform to give it to you. Use it to hide your apps and hide your data, and protect them from nefarious attacks. Access to these apps, contacts, pictures and more can only be gained through the PIN, password, pattern, or biometric lock of your choice.
Download: Secure Folder
Once again, Google Play Store comes through in terms of its apps selection, this time for folder apps. Give these apps a chance to come in and organize your Android home, make things easier and faster to find, or more secure. Or in the case of Action Launcher – Oreo + Pixel, gain gestures, the features of the newest Android operating system, and folder organization all-in-one. Pretty much any of the launchers can transform your interface into something new if you wish. Find your one app to organize or maybe even rule them all.
How do you organize on your Android? Manually, by app, launcher, or a combination thereof? Share with us in the comments.