Feature Comparison: The 5 Best Reddit Apps for Android

The 5 Best Reddit Apps for Android

Feature Comparison: The 5 Best Reddit Apps for Android

Whether you've celebrated multiple cake days or you're just now getting your feet wet with Reddit, it's a rite of passage to choose your preferred smartphone client.

Reddit's mobile site is pretty decent, but there's no better way to view "the front page of the internet" than with a dedicated app. Luckily, heated competition in this sector means that we have many great options to choose from on Android. The selection may seem a little overwhelming at first glance, but five apps in particular stand out above the rest. These apps will be the focus of today's comparison.

The post submission interfaces for all five of these apps are much the same, but the browsing experience varies greatly. Some use Android's built-in website rendering app (WebView) to display all links, while others can handle links from YouTube, Imgur, and more with a native pop-up viewer. Some adhere to Android's Material design principles, while others have their own unique interface. So there are plenty of differentiating factors, and I'll delve into those in more detail below.

Apps That Didn't Make the Cut

We anticipate plenty of comments about how it's a travesty that we left off XYZ Reddit app, so let's get out in front of that one.

The first omission that needs to be addressed is the official Reddit app. Yes, it's pretty decent and it's actually official, but you're kidding yourself if you think it's anywhere near as feature-rich as the third-party apps in this list.

Then there's Bacon Reader and Reddit is Fun, which used to be two of the best options several years ago. Times have changed, however, so if you're still using an app that looks like this or this in 2017, it's time to reevaluate some things. Loyalty is nice, familiar interfaces are comfortable, but trust me — the five apps that actually made our list are much more fluid and intuitive once you get used to them.

Notice: Under Construction

The rest of this article is currently under construction. We're testing each app thoroughly and expect to have the full update ready for you tomorrow. If you come across this article in the meantime, know that the list of apps below has already been updated, but some of the details in each section won't be fully updated until this notice is removed.

1. Boost for Reddit

First up is Boost for Reddit. This app has tons of customization options, so if you're not a fan of the way something looks or behaves, there's a good chance you can change it. Boost is updated on a fairly regular basis and has a developer who is active in the community, so there's plenty to like right off the bat.

Boost for Reddit Bottom Line

Boost for Reddit Quick Facts

  • Native viewer: YouTube, Imgur, Streamable, Vid.me, XKCD, and more
  • Chrome Custom Tabs: Yes
  • Themes: Fully themeable with automatic night mode
  • Subreddit navigation: Side navigation menu or drop-down menu
  • Post and comment filters: Yes
  • Gestures: Swipe to go back, swipe to dismiss media
  • App Shortcuts: Yes
  • Media-only mode: Yes
  • Sidebar support: Yes
  • Trending subs: Yes
  • History: Yes
  • Flair support: Text only
  • Table support: Yes
  • Support community: Yes
  • Best feature:
  • Biggest downside:
  • Price to remove ads: $2.49

2. Now for Reddit

Next, we have Now for Reddit, whose interface is unique in the fact that it allows you to swipe between subreddits by default. While this is an artifact of Android 4.0's Holo interface, burgeoning Material Design elements such as an additional full screen subreddit side navigation menu are present throughout the app.

A unique theme option in Now pulls subreddit header images to be used as the background for the app's action bar, but if this is disabled, a full RGB color picker allows you to choose your own background color. An in-app viewer is capable of handling most image and video links, so you can browse without interruptions.

(1) Front page, (2) Subreddit navigation (side menu), (3) GIF playback (native pop-up viewer)

Now for Reddit Bottom Line

Not updated very frequently. Last beta release was over two months ago as of this writing.

Now for Reddit Quick Facts

  • Native viewer: YouTube, Imgur, Gfycat
  • Chrome Custom Tabs: No
  • Themes: Fully themeable (if subreddit header option disabled)
  • Subreddit navigation: Tabs and side navigation menu
  • Post and comment filters: Yes
  • Gestures: Swipe to go back, swipe between subreddits
  • App Shortcuts: No
  • Media-only mode: No
  • Sidebar support: Yes
  • Trending subs: No
  • History: No
  • Flair support: Text only
  • Table support: No
  • Support community: Yes
  • Best feature: Reddit TV support
  • Biggest downside: Minimal view options and limited settings
  • Price to remove ads: $3.99

3. Relay for Reddit

Our third option (in alphabetical order) goes by the name of Relay for Reddit, and it's probably the most gesture-oriented Reddit client out there. You can swipe a post for more options, swipe up when viewing a link to expand the comments, swipe to go back from almost any screen, and even swipe between tabs in the sharing menu.

A drop-down menu at the top of the screen serves as your subreddit menu, and Material design animations cause lists to playfully expand onto the screen. Relay has a native pop-up viewer for most of the common media sharing sites used on Reddit, so content consumption is a seamless experience.

(1) Front Page, (2) Subreddit navigation (drop menu), (3) GIF playback (native pop-up viewer)

Relay for Reddit Bottom Line

Relay for Reddit Quick Facts

  • Native viewer: YouTube, Imgur, Gfycat
  • Chrome Custom Tabs: No
  • Themes: Night/Black/Blue/Pink
  • Subreddit navigation: Drop-down menu
  • Post and comment filters: Yes
  • Gestures: Swipe posts for options, swipe up for comments, swipe back
  • App Shortcuts: No
  • Media-only mode: No
  • Sidebar support: Yes
  • Trending subs: No
  • History: No
  • Flair support: Text only
  • Table support: No
  • Support community: Yes
  • Best feature: Gestures galore
  • Biggest downside: Vertically split comment/link view is not intuitive
  • Price to remove ads: $2.99

4. Slide for Reddit

Up next, we have Slide for Reddit

Slide for Reddit Bottom Line

Last update was also 2 months ago, but this was a stable release, so not quite as bad as Now for Reddit.

Slide for Reddit Quick Facts

  • Native viewer: Imgur, Gfycat, YouTube via plugin
  • Chrome Custom Tabs: Yes
  • Themes: Fully themeable (automatic night mode with Slide Pro)
  • Subreddit navigation: Tabs and side navigation menu
  • Post and comment filters: Yes
  • Gestures: Swipe to go back, swipe between subreddits
  • App Shortcuts: No
  • Media-only mode: Yes (with Slide Pro)
  • Sidebar support: Yes
  • Trending subs: No
  • History: Yes
  • Flair support: Text only
  • Table support: Yes
  • Support community: Yes
  • Best feature:
  • Biggest downside:
  • Price to remove ads: $3.99

5. Sync for Reddit

Last (but certainly not least) comes Sync for Reddit. If Lord Duarte himself created a Reddit app, this is what it would look like. Sync's interface is chock full of Material Design elements, which makes for a consistent user experience when run alongside most modern Android apps.

Sync supports more link types in its native pop-up viewer than any other app on this list, but users can opt to open links in an external app if they so choose. The side navigation menu allows for easy subreddit browsing, and many different color schemes are available. The first 10 pages of any subreddit can quickly be downloaded for offline use, which would come in handy for your next flight out of town.

(1) Front Page, (2) Subreddit navigation (side menu), (3) GIF playback (native pop-up viewer)

Sync for Reddit Bottom Line

Sync's creator Laurence Dawson is by far the most active developer in this list. If you think the app is lacking something, you can post a request thread in the app's official subreddit, and if the community agrees with you, there's a good chance the feature might be added in the next beta update.

This practice has made Sync for Reddit one of the most feature-rich apps out there, and I'm not just talking Reddit clients. However, that does come with one possible drawback, depending on how you look at things: While the defaults should be fine for most users, you'll have to spend some time tinkering with settings to get the most out of Sync's personalization options.

Sync for Reddit Quick Facts

  • Native viewer: YouTube, Imgur, Gfycat, Streamable, and more
  • Chrome Custom Tabs: Yes
  • Themes: Fully themeable with automatic night mode
  • Subreddit navigation: Side navigation menu or drop-down menu
  • Post and comment filters: Yes
  • Gestures: Swipe to go back, swipe to dismiss posts and media
  • App Shortcuts: Yes
  • Media-only mode: Yes
  • Sidebar support: Yes
  • Trending subs: Yes
  • History: Yes (with Incognito Mode)
  • Flair support: Text and images
  • Table support: Yes
  • Support community: Yes
  • Best feature: Automatic night mode, offline sync
  • Biggest downside: Settings overload
  • Price to remove ads: $3.99

And the Winner Is...

If you ask me, this is an easy call. Hands down, no question about it, Sync for Reddit is the best Reddit client for Android. After testing the waters initially, I've been a Sync user for a few years now—but researching for this article only helped to reinforce my opinion here.

That said, each of these apps has its own unique features, as well as its strengths and weaknesses. Considering that everyone tends to use Reddit in their own unique way, your posting and lurking habits may be better suited to a different app than the one that works best for me.

Click on image to enlarge.
Cover image and screenshots by Dallas Thomas/Gadget Hacks

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