As December approaches, it’s time for annual recaps, and Google Play is ready with the best Android apps and games of 2021. These lists including Users’ Choice are localized, and you can browse your country by tapping the “Best of 2021” banner at the top of the Play Store.
Users’ Choice 2021
The selections below reflect US results, with Paramount+ taking the Users’ Choice app award Disney+ won last year, while the gaming honor goes to Garena Free Fire MAX.
Best Android apps of 2021
Meanwhile, Balance, as selected by Google’s editorial team, is the best application of 2021. It continues to reflect how “apps focused on personal growth are in high demand.”
This year’s winners found creative, and often meditative, ways to help users get to know themselves on a deeper level. Apps like Balance encourage people to find their center through personalized meditations; Moonly shows users how to harmonize their lives using the lunar calendar; and Laughscape helps people reach a meditative state through laughter.
Google also has several other “best” categories:
|Best Apps for Good||Best Everyday Essentials||Best for Fun||Best Hidden Gem||Best for Personal Growth|
There’s also “Best for Tablets” (Canva, Concepts, Houzz) and “Wear” (Calm, My Fitness Pal, Sleep Cycle), as well as “Popular on Google TV” (Disney+, ESPN, Tubi).
Best Android games of 2021
Meanwhile, the Play Store team named Pokémon UNITE as Android’s Best Game of 2021 for “its dynamic gameplay and cross-platform experience.”
Meanwhile, we saw a surge of indie developers creating imaginative and personal gaming experiences we never knew we needed. Independent developer George Batchelor brought us Bird Alone, a game that challenges you to find companionship with the “loneliest bird in the world.” And in Donut County, developed by Annapurna Interactive, you become an ever-growing hole in a physics-based puzzle game.
|Best Competitive||Best Game Changers||Best Indie||Best Pick Up & Play||Best for Tablets|
|League of Legends: Wild Rift||Inked||7 Billion Humans||Cats in Time – Relaxing Puzzle Game||Chicken Police: Paint it Red!|
|MARVEL Future Revolution||JanKenUP!||Bird Alone||Crash Bandicoot: On the Run!||League of Legends: Wild Rift|
|Pokémon UNITE||Knights of San Francisco||Donut County||Disney POP TOWN||My Friend Pedro: Ripe for Revenge|
|Rogue Land||Overboard!||My Friend Pedro: Ripe for Revenge||Switchcraft: The Magical Match 3 & Mystery Story||Overboard!|
|Suspects: Mystery Mansion||Tears of Themis||Puzzling Peaks EXE||Towers||The Procession to Calvary|