“You won’t have a calculator with you everywhere you go,” our math teachers used to warn us. And now, well, we have smartphones with us everywhere we go, and we have access to hundreds if not thousands of calculator apps.
But because there are so many options, it can be hard to nail down the right one for your needs. Today we’re going to break down the best free calculator apps for Android.
Calculator (by Google)
This is your simplest, safest bet. Google made a bare-bones, yet well-designed app that’ll will handle your easy math tasks, and not much else. It calculates in real time, so you don’t even have to reach for the “=” button.
You can get some more complex functions by swiping in from the right side, but it’s still a rather limited set. As far as other features go, you can tap on the top of the screen to reveal a three-dot menu that will allow you to change decimals to fractions — and that’s about it. There’s no history or graphing.
It is 100% free and ad-free, though, so as far as basic no-frills calculators go, it gets the job done (unless, of course, you’re trying to live Google-free).
Download: Calculator (Free) on the Play Store
If the Google Calculator is a little too basic for you, try Calculator ++. This app has both a Simple and a Engineer mode depending on your level. It supports a wide variety of functions, a history of everything you’ve calculated, and it can even create graphs. One neat little feature is swipe-able buttons. Swipe up on a button to activate the option in the top part of that button, and swipe down to activate the option in the lower part.
It’s also customizable, with several different theme options available. It has a widget for your homescreen, and it says it has a floating window mode, but that might just be for Samsung devices because I can’t seem to access it on my OnePlus One.
There are ads, but they don’t display on the calculation page, only on side pages like History. You can remove them for $3.99. Overall, it strikes a nice balance between simple and functional.
Download: Calculator ++ (Free) on the Play Store
Calculator (by Asus)
Most phone manufacturers release some kind of tweaked calculator app for their devices, but Asus went a step further and made their Calculator app available for all devices running Android 4.1 or newer.
And it’s actually not a bad app. It’s simple, but it has a floating window mode that’s activated by a Chat Head-like bubble. You have to press the equal button to get an answer, unlike in the last two apps in this list, but it does come with a built-in currency converter and unit converter.
Download: Calculator (Free) on the Play Store
ClevCalc is actually a bunch of calculators all in one. Not only does it have the basics, like a currency and unit converter, but it also has everything from a fuel cost calculator to an ovulation calculator. Seriously.
It has a bunch of different themes, and a constant banner ad along the bottom. Unfortunately, you can’t pay to remove the ad, but it isn’t too intrusive. Design-wise, the app plays nicely with Material Design.
Download: ClevCalc (Free) on the Play Store
Calculator (by TricolorCat)
Yes, another app just called Calculator. This one is probably best for folks who are super particular about their keyboard layout because it has three different layout styles: Standard, Stylish, and Ergonomic.
It also has a ton of different color options and the option to add or remove the memory buttons. Other than that, you can change how decimals appear (1.5 or 1,5) and view your history by swiping down from the top — and that’s it. It’s super simple, but also more customizable than most simple calculator apps. It does have a banner ad along the bottom, but that can be disabled by downloading the Pro version for $1.50.
This app by CalcTastic is for those of you who need more scientific calculation options. It has a basic calculator too, but the emphasis is clearly on the scientific portion. You can work on more complex problems to your heart’s content, but it isn’t able to graph anything.
It’s also nicely customizable, with some classic scientific calculator themes and a more basic light theme. If you upgrade to the Pro version for $0.99, you get 7 more themes, Polar-Form complex Numbers, landscape support, and a Programmers calculator.
Finally, an app with a somewhat original name (even if it is just a shortened version of “calculator”). CALCU has both basic and scientific layouts, a bunch of nice themes, and even an option for adjusting the font in the app.
It has swift little swiping animations — like swiping down to reveal the history or swiping up to reveal more scientific buttons. There is a banner ad along the top that can be removed by a $1.99 in-app purchase.
Download: CALCU (Free) on the Play Store
This calculator app is so beautiful, and I realize that sounds weird, but it’s true. It just has such a nice Material Design-inspired aesthetic, smooth transitions and animations, and a great color scheme. It also has a matrix calculator, a converter, and a grapher.
Unfortunately, other themes have to be bought for $1.49 each, but that’s the price to pay for an otherwise free and ad-free calculator that covers all the bases: basic, scientific, and graphing. It’s honestly just so intuitive and fluid, I can’t see any reason not to use One Calculator..
Download: One Calculator (Free) on the Play Store
Desmos Graphing Calculator
For those who want just a dedicated graphing calculator app, this is the app for you. There’s not even a basic calculator interface here — it’s all about the graphs. Easily program in and plot multiple functions, use sliders to adjust them, and you can even start with some of the app’s example graphs.
If you want, you can make an account to sign-in and sync your graphs. Best of all, there are no ads and no in-app purchases.
Download: Desmos Graphing Calculator (Free) on the Play Store
Which Is The Best?
Going into this, I was a fan of the Google Keyboard (I mean, I’m a fan of basically all of Google’s apps), but One Calculator really impressed me. Still, each of these apps has its strengths and weaknesses, so it’s worth trying out a few before settling on which works the best for you. And if you liked these, it’s worth looking for a budget calculator or a new car/home calculator.
Which of these calculator apps is your favorite? Or did we miss one? Let us know in the comments below!