What's the best lock screen app for Android?
For most folks, the standard Android lock screen is just fine. For some, however, it's not quite customizable enough. For those people, there are lock screen replacement apps that allow you to tweak the way you see the time, notifications, the layout, and much more.
Here are a few of our favorites.
ZUI Locker-Elegant Lock Screen
ZUI Locker has over 240,000 5-star reviews in the Google Play Store and it's definitely the best of the best Android lock screen replacement apps.
You can download all sorts of themes that include a time widget, weather widget, wallpaper, and more (or less, if you prefer) or you can use any of the stock wallpapers and themes available right in the app. Customize your lock screen the way you want that's best for you.
The best feature of ZUI Locker is the Control Panel, á la iOS. You just swipe up from the bottom of your lock screen and many of your most-used settings are there for you to control without having to unlock your phone.
You can turn on/off Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, cellular data (requires you to unlock your phone), control brightness, enable Flight mode, and, best of all, turn on the flashlight (as an Galaxy S5 user, this is a godsend!). You can also quick-launch apps from the Control Panel, and you have your choice of which apps and how many are in your panel.
If you're looking for a versatile and customizable lock screen replacement app with really useful functionality, then ZUI Locker should be your app of choice.
Download: ZUI Locker-Elegant Lock Screen (free)
If you yearn for a simple, minimalist look for your lock screen, AcDisplay is the lock screen app for you. It features a flat black background with the time and date, and that's it. Notifications show up as app icons alone — tap 'em and unlock your phone and away you go.
The downside is that AcDisplay isn't a true lock screen replacement app, so it doesn't work unless you have the app open. If you're someone who likes a clean phone and hates apps left open, then steer clear. It also doesn't presently support pin or pattern verification, so you phone can be unlocked with just a swipe.
If you like a clean lock screen that shows the bare necessities and aren't concerned with locking your phone, then AcDisplay is perfect for you. Just be aware that AcDisplay becomes a device administrator, so if you ever want to uninstall it, you'll first have to deactivate it in your settings.
Download: AcDisplay (free)
Start Lock Screen
Start Lock Screen is essentially a start screen on your "lock" screen. "Lock" in quotes because this app doesn't replace your lock screen; it actually just masks your home screen, so your Notification shade is still fully accessible.
This is truly a lock screen app for those who need quick access to their phone at all times. That means your phone isn't totally locked and therefore not as secure as some folks may like.
If you prefer the convenience of quick-launching apps without having to poke around your home screen, then Start Lock Screen is your solution. You just tap and hold the lock and app categories pop up, featuring all of the apps that apply. For example, there's a messaging apps category wherein you can just tap an app such as Hangouts, and be taken right into it.
If you're all for accessing your phone right out of your pocket but still want some separation from instant total access, then Start Lock Screen is a very capable middle man.
Download: Start Lock Screen (free)
Echo Notification Lockscreen
Perhaps the prettiest lock screen app on the list, Echo Notification Lockscreen is a smooth, streamlined lock screen replacement that categorizes your notifications so you can quickly see what's important. You can even snooze notifications so you'll be reminded of them after a while.
The two main categories are Priority and Social, and there are already predetermined apps divided among these camps, but you can go into Echo's settings and change them around at will. So if Facebook notifications are a priority to you, you can make sure they're noted under that category.
There are only three stock wallpapers available, one of which happens to be a boring gray background. But the others are high quality, and you can always add in your own photos.
Echo offers swipe, pattern, or PIN security, and out of all the apps on this list, seems to behave the best, i.e. it works all the time.
If you want a very straightforward lock screen replacement app without all the bells and whistles that others have, but also want your notifications organized for you, check out Echo Notification Lockscreen.
Download: Echo Notification Lockscreen (free)
Locker Master is another pretty lock screen replacement app with a plethora of free wallpapers to download.
If you'd like to intricately personalize your lock screen, down to the layout, font, wallpaper, and what information is shown, then Locker Master is the lock screen replacement app for you. You can add text, the time, your battery percentage, and more to your lock screen, all while controlling the color of each widget and the look of each widget. There are myriad font and style options to download for free, allowing for limitless possibilities unlimited.
Locker Master can be a tad on the buggy side (like any lock screen replacement app), but it will definitely sate the appetite of the customization beast that lives inside you.
Download:Locker Master (free)
Lock Screen - Iphone Lock
OK, so right of the bat, yes, the developers aren't capitalizing iPhone properly — who knows why. In any case, if you made the switch from iPhone to Android and still need to wean yourself off iOS, this app makes your lock screen look just like — HOW DID YOU GUESS?!? — an iPhone lock screen.
Sarcasm aside, this lock screen replacement app actually works quite well, aside from taking a few seconds to engage and the occasional flash of your home screen when you manually wake up your phone.
Your notifications will only show in your Notification bar, but you'll have full access to your Notification Shade when your screen is locked, so this app acts as more of a home screen mask than a true lock screen.
If you're missing your iPhone lock screen, then Lock Screen - Iphone Lock is the lock screen app you've been pining for.
Download: Lock Screen - Iphone Lock (free)
What do you use?
Do you use a lock screen or lock screen replacement app on your Android device? Sound off in the comments below!