Best phone cleaner apps for android

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Martí Micolau
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Check out the best phone cleaner apps for Android that help you eliminate junk files that are taking up space on your device.

Most people only think about cleaning their phone when something starts to go wrong. Android devices are smart enough that they don't require regular maintenance, but it's still a good idea to do a digital tune-up every now and then. Don't underestimate the impact of staying digitally organized and having free space when you need it.

The trick is to find phone cleaning apps that actually live up to their promises. At best, a bad cleaning app wastes storage space; at worst, it could infect you with malware and spam you with ads. However, not all Android cleaning apps are useless.

Best phone cleaner apps for android

Here are the best cleaner apps for Android phones and tablets that you should try.

Google files

Google's official Android file manager has simple tools that make it the first Android junk cleaner anyone should try. Launch the app and switch to the tab Clean below to access these options.

Here you will see several areas that the app identifies as a waste of space. These include junk files , duplicates , photo on backup e unused apps . Select an option to see what takes up the most space, check what you want to remove, and confirm that the app takes care of the rest.

While you can also use the card Shop by Department to manually explore your phone's storage, letting the app take out the biggest space hogs with these automatic controls is more efficient.

As we will see, many of the following apps have useful cleaning features but also fill RAM optimizers and other nonsense you don't need. Google Files is a good answer to these; is one of the best ways to clean Android with a simple, free app that isn't bloated with unnecessary extras.

Download: Google files.

Droid Optimizer

Droid Optimizer is one of the best known Android cleaning tools, with over a million downloads on the Google Play Store. It's simple to use, especially for beginners, with an introductory screen that walks you through permissions and features.

It offers a "rating system" designed to motivate you to keep your device in tip top shape. If you don't mind having your device ashamed of better habits, Droid Optimizer is one of the best Android cleaning apps for you.

One tap is all it takes to start cleaning your phone. You will see your stats at the top of the screen; free space and RAM are displayed next to your "leaderboard" score, where you receive points for your cleaning actions.

If you'd rather set and forget, Droid Optimizer lets you set up regular automatic cleaning. This automatic cleanup will clear the cache, stop background apps, and delete all unnecessary files. It also comes with a "bedtime scheduler" to save energy by automatically disabling features like Wi-Fi when no connections are active.

Droid Optimizer can also bulk delete apps which is useful if you're looking to free up space quickly.

It's not the most attractive app, but it works. If you're looking for a good Android phone cleaner and don't want to do a lot of the work yourself, Droid Optimizer should be on your list.

Download: Droid Optimizer


The same well-known desktop app for recovering disk space is also available on Android. We discussed why CCleaner is no longer an essential app for Windows, as it has deteriorated slightly since Avast acquired the service. And while the Android app isn't perfect, it's better than many other spam cleanup apps for Android.

In fact, CCleaner on Android is a multifunctional app that does its best to analyze and clean up the stray files that are taking up your precious space. The main function is the cleanup function which can clear cache data from apps, delete empty folders and delete various histories.

It also has a App Manager , which offers a simple interface that allows you to select multiple apps for uninstall. Finally, the page System information monitor phone resources (CPU, RAM, device details) so you can see what's going on at a glance.

Root is not required and it is free, although you can upgrade to the Pro subscription for a few extras. It might be a little light on features, but it gets the job done if all you need is a quick way to reclaim your phone's storage.

Download: CCleaner 

All-in-One Toolbox

Cleaning your phone of unnecessary files is only part of the maintenance task. How about monitoring battery status, CPU temperature, and those annoying mobile ads? The aptly named All-In-One toolbox is here to do it all.

It is able to clean temporary files on your Android device, clear cache and delete empty folders and orphaned files. One tap is all it takes to scan your device, then another tap to delete it and that's it. It's a similar process with other areas of the app as well.

The function Boost cleans the system cache and closes background apps, again with two taps. You can set it automatically with the function Boost + if you prefer, but an in-app purchase is required to do so. If you're running out of office, the Battery saver is another background activity killer (see below for a warning on this), but it also provides current battery stats.

If that's not enough, there's also a mass app eraser, advanced file cleanup tools, and Wi-Fi analytics. As the name promises, All-In-One Toolbox tries to do it all. Like Droid Optimizer, there is also a rating system to encourage regular use.

Download: All-in-One Toolbox

SD Maid

SD Maid claims to be “at your service” as a digital cleaner for your Android phone. Keeps the experience simple; opening the app gives you several quick actions that you can use to “tidy up” your device.

The first, CorpseFinder , search and delete any orphaned files or folders left over from deleting an app. SystemCleaner is another search and delete tool, this time looking for common files and folders that SD Maid believes it can safely delete.

If you like the sound of this, AppCleaner performs the same action for your apps. To use this feature, however, you will need to update SD Maid Pro. There is also an area Database to help optimize your app databases. In our test, it deleted 40MB from Spotify this way.

There are also tools for storage analysis (to help you find and delete large files) and bulk app removal if you're considering a larger phone tune-up.

Download: SD Maid (Free, in-app purchases available) | SD Maid Pro 

Norton Clean

Aside from CCleaner (owned by Avast), none of these cleaner apps come from top-tier security companies. The search for the best cleaning app for Android cannot therefore end without mentioning Norton Clean, offered by the famous Norton Antivirus from Symantec.

Norton claims to "remove the clutter" from your Android device. Just like the other entries, it will search and clear the cache, remove all junk files, and help you quickly remove any unused apps you have installed. The Manage apps section lists all your apps, allowing you to sort them by last used, installed date, or amount of storage used.

The app has a simple approach. Compared to the other entries, Norton Clean has one of the cleanest, brightest, and most modern-looking user interfaces. All you need is one or two taps away, which means you don't have to be an Android pro to figure it out.

This is also light on features - it's just a file cleaner and app remover, with important announcements for other Norton apps. If you're worried about space, however, Norton Clean is a fairly easy way to help you get it back. And it has no in-app purchases or subscriptions to worry about.

Download: Norton Clean.

A notice about Android task killers

Many cleaner apps for Android offer RAM boosting and task elimination as a feature, even some on this list, like CCleaner. However, these are counterproductive, as task killers actually harm your device's performance.

On Android, full RAM usage isn't necessarily a problem. In fact, Android purposely keeps RAM usage high to maximize performance. The Android operating system is smart enough to know how to juggle open apps for optimal performance. Interfering with this process can cause Android to run more than it needs to, which ultimately slows down your device, especially if you're closing system apps in the background.

Most modern Android apps shouldn't affect battery performance much. If so, Android should warn you about the problem (assuming you have a modern device). You may need to look into how to extend Android's battery life if so. You can do this by limiting background usage using Android itself, not with a task killer or app with task kill capabilities.

These apps are useful for removing old files and clearing cache data, but you should be careful to allow them to control apps or services running on your device. The Android landscape has surpassed these all-in-one optimization solutions. Devices are faster and Android is better at managing system resources.

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