The Nexus 5 was one of the most popular Android smartphones of last year and even though the phone is already incredible, you can make your phone even more awesome by loading in some cool third-party apps. Not only will these apps improve the productivity and functionality of your phone, but they’ll also make you feel more comfortable while you’re using the phone.
I install certain apps that I installed on my previous phone as soon as I buy a new Android device. Then, I look for apps that I specifically like for my new phone. If you just purchased your Nexus 5 and don’t know which apps to download, then continue reading to find out the best apps for Nexus 5.
Please note that this list represents my personal view of the apps that I feel all Nexus 5 users should use. Some of you might have different preferences and you might choose other apps from the Google Play Store over this list. That being said, the list below will definitely be of great help if you’re a totally new Android or Nexus 5 user.
1. SwiftKey Keyboard + Emoji – Free With In-App Purchases
A better typing experience
SwiftKey Key board is one of the most widely used third-party keyboard apps available on the Google Play Store and if you’re not impressed with the keyboard on your Nexus 5 or you’re looking for something better, then SwiftKey is the perfect option. Aside from the keyboard’s advanced features, it is also highly customizable.
Checkout some other cools keyboard apps too.
In-app Purchases: $0.99 – $4.99 per item
- Next word prediction that becomes better over time
- Smart autocorrect
- Downloadable themes to customize your keyboard
- Over 80 languages supported
The keyboard brings over 800 different emojis which makes it even more awesome.
2. DashClock Widget – Free
Lock screen clock and more
If you’re looking for a cool and informative lock screen clock widget for your Nexus 5, then DashClock Widget is probably one of the best options available.
- Beautiful lock screen clock widget
- Shows weather information
- Shows calendar entries and scheduled alarms
DashClock Widget brings several extensions for additional information on your lock screen including extensions for missed calls, unread messages and weather.
3. ES File Explorer – Free
The Ultimate file manager
One of the most widely used file managers on Android is ES File Explorer and it is a must have app on all Android devices. The app is not only a file manager, but it’s also an app manager for managing all your third party apps.
ES File Explorer supports over 30 different languages and also features a remote file manager for managing your phone’s files through your PC.
ES File Explorer is also a cloud storage client and supports Google Drive, Box.net, Sugarsync, Dropbox and SkyDrive. You can also copy your files between Bluetooth devices.
- Supports RAR and ZIP files
- Built-in media player and viewer for photos, videos and music
- Built-in text editor and viewer
- Cache cleaner
ES File Explorer also supports root functionality and if your Nexus 5 is rooted, then you’ll be able to play around with system files.
4. MX Player – Free and $5.99
The best video player
4.A Free Version
The Nexus 5 is great for watching movies and if you’re looking for the ultimate video player, then MX Player is arguably the best option available on the Google Play Store.
Even if you haven’t had any problems with your phone’s stock video player, I would highly recommend using MX Player as it supports various formats and brings in many advanced features.
- Hardware acceleration
- Kids lock
- Multi-core decoding
One of the best features of MX Player is that it lets you manually add subtitles to your videos. You can check out my detailed guide on adding subtitles to MX Player.
4.B Paid Version
There is also a paid version of MX Player available which is ad-free.
5. Pocket – Free With In-App Purchases
Save everything in one pocket
Pocket is another one of the best Android apps for the Nexus 5. The app lets you save different types of web content, such as articles and videos. If you have a lot of bookmarks or you try to save a lot of website links, then Pocket is definitely the perfect app. All your saved items will be in one place and you’ll be able to access them easily.
You can also upgrade to Pocket premium to get additional features. Pocket premium lets you search text, tags, authors and topics. It also gives you a permanent library and suggested tags.
In-app Purchases: $0.99 – $44.99 per item
- Easy to use and beautiful layout and interface
- Content will be synced across your tablet, phone and PC
- Save articles, blog posts, recipes, news and videos
You can also use Pocket offline on your phone. Articles and links will be accessible without an internet connection.
6. QuickPic – Free
A better photo Gallery
Another great app for the Nexus 5 is QuickPic and if you’re not impressed with your phone’s stock Gallery app, then I’m sure you’ll love this app. QuickPic is fast, lightweight and is really fun to use. The app also supports online services such as Google Drive, Picasa, Dropbox, Flickr and OneDrive. You can also play videos and GIF files using the app.
- Transfer files between devices through WiFi
- Smooth experience
- Hide photos and videos
QuickPic features a built-in photo editor with tools such as crop, shrink and rotate.
7. Camera ZOOM FX – Free and $2.99
Capture amazing photos
7.A Free Vesion
If you’re not impressed with the stock camera on your Nexus 5 or you’re looking for a camera that has advanced features, then you should definitely try out Camera ZOOM FX. Downloaded by millions of Android users, the app brings various advanced features such as time lapse and a photo editor.
- Photo frames
- Photo filters
- Photo gallery
You can download additional packs for more stuff, such as frames and shutter animations.
7.B Paid Version
There’s also a paid version of Camera ZOOM FX available that brings additional frames and filters, photo collage, timer mode, burst mode, voice activation, tilt shift, stable indicator, color splash, silent camera and best photo mode.
8. Light Manager – Free And $1.50
Play with your LED lights
8.A Free Version
If you want to configure and manage the LED notifications on your Nexus 5, then you should try out Light Manager. It lets you configure the color and frequency of your LED notifications.
- Change the flashing frequency
- Edit the LED color
- Various notifications supported
The app features three different modes including normal mode, alternating mode and screen mode.
8.B Paid Version
You can also get the pro ad-free version of Light Manager.
9. Nexus Flashlight – Free And $1.99
Walk around in the dark
9.A Free Version
Nexus Flashlight is a great little app for Nexus smartphones that uses the camera LED on the back as a flashlight. This app can be really useful when walking or trying to find something in the dark.
- Turn on LED automatically when you launch the app
- Turn on LED instantly without waiting
- Enable notification to quickly turn off LED
The app features a resizable widget for quickly using the LED.
10. Flipboard – Free
Your personalized magazine
The final app in this list is Flipboard and it is another cool app that you can install on your Nexus 5. You can use Flipboard as your personal magazine with the latest news, videos and pictures. The great thing about this app is that you can set up your preferences and subscribe to your favorite sources in order to get a personalized magazine.
The app also features social media integration and you can check out posts from your Facebook and Twitter accounts.
- Easy to organize and manage your magazines
- 24 localized editions
- The app also features a widget
The best feature in Flipboard is that it lets you create a personal magazine and collect stories, videos and pictures.
The Nexus 5 is already quite powerful and there’s a lot you can do with the phone right out of the box. However, if you want to get comfortable with the phone and want to make it truly your own, then I would recommend installing the best apps for Nexus 5 mentioned above.
For me, the list above represents the best apps for Nexus 5. Some of you might disagree with me, but for people who just got the Nexus 5, I feel the list above is a great start to load up your phone with some really cool stuff. You might also be interested in reading about the 10 best custom ROMs for the Nexus 5.
If you have any questions, feel free to mention them in the comments area below and let us know about your favorite app for the Nexus 5.