No matter what version of Google's mobile OS you're running, Android remains a tinkerer's dream. Because Android is open in a way that other mobile OSes aren't — we're looking at you, iOS — you can tweak and optimize the system's performance from A to Z. Whether we're talking cache cleaners, junk file hunters, CPU overclocking tools, app disablers or task automation tools, plenty of Android apps help you get more out of your phone. Here are 20 of our favorites.
Cheetah Mobile's Clean Master comes with a Junk Files tool for cleaning your phone's app and system cache as well as temp files. It also sports a memory-saving Phone Boost tool, an app manager and antivirus feature. While you can probably skip the task-killer-like features of Phone Boost, the Junk File tool is great at cleaning out widowed and temporary files, as well as cleaning out your system cache to free up phone storage. The app manager allows users to backup APKs, move apps to the SD card and uninstall apps.
This tool will tell you about CPU usage, RAM and monitor other system services on your smartphone. Simple System Monitor also puts a file browser into the package. Some of the capabilities have been scaled back, given new tools in Android Nougat. Still, it's one of the most streamlined apps to you this type of vital information.
Another comparable all-in-one Android optimization tool is DU Speed Booster, which comes with a Trash Cleaner for app cache and junk file cleaning, a one-touch accelerator, app manager, antivirus tool, privacy advisor and built-in Internet speed test. Again, the benefits of task-killing with accelerators are dubious, but DU Speed Booster's junk file / cache cleaner is a great way to free up internal storage space. And the app manager and other tools are also solid extras.
Where Clean Master offers a multi-purpose system cleaner and maintenance toolkit, CM Speed Booster features a leaner feature set in a lighter package. Speed Booster is designed more for quick use, with a configurable phone booster that kills background tasks to free up memory, as well as a junk file cleaning tool to clear out the system cache, obsolete APKs and duplicate photos. Unlike Clean Master, Speed Booster eschews some features like an app manager and antivirus tool to keep the app compact, clocking in at around 2MB.
McAfee is best known for its desktop security products, but it's also moved into the mobile sphere with security and utility apps. Mobile Booster provides a variety of quick optimization tools to help you clean up your Android device. A one-button Quick Boost tool runs quick optimization and cache clearing, while dedicated Battery Saver, Storage Cleaner, and Memory Cleaner tools provide more tweaks for squeezing out more battery life, junk file cleaning, and background process cleaning, respectively.
Piriform's CCleaner is one of the best PC maintenance tools for Windows machines, and it's also gone mobile with an Android app that's the perfect tool to help you clean the cruft out of your system. Like its desktop sibling, CCleaner for Android is a multipurpose cleaning tool that can empty out your application cache, download folders, browser history and other temporary files; you also have the option to clean your call and SMS log selectively or in bulk. In addition to its fast, ad-free cleaning experience, CCleaner also comes with an app manager, meters for CPU, RAM and storage and battery and temperature tools.
SD Maid offers a variety of tools to help users free up additional disk space and manage apps. System Cleaner goes through your storage and file system to find files that can be safely deleted, while "Corpse Finder" specializes in searching for widowed files left behind by uninstalled apps. The app also includes an app manager as well as a built-in file manager. The Pro version includes an App Cleaner that clears out app caches, a duplicate file finder and a task scheduler for automating your system cleaning.