These are the 5 best Android skins: features, appearance and more

Android is not the same on every smartphone. This is because different manufacturers put their own ‘skin’ over the software. In this article we list our favorite Android skins.

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Our favorite Android skins in a row

Android runs on hundreds of different smartphones. All these smartphones roll out of the factories of other manufacturers including Samsung, OnePlus and many more. To ensure more distinction, each manufacturer develops its own Android skin. This is a visual layer that overlays Android and the system another look gives. A skin can also add all kinds of functions that Google’s standard version of Android does not have.

What is actually the best Android skin, considering there is such a wide range? We put together our five favorite peels (in random order) for you.

1. The ‘bare’ Android, the way Google wants it

Those different skins are all nice and nice, but without a good foundation they are lost. When you buy a Google Pixel 6 or Pixel 6 Pro, you use Android the way Google envisions it. A bare, unmodified version of the mobile software, in other words. Although you get less cool functions because of this, it does look very sleek.

Google’s bare version of Android looks the most mature in our opinion, especially if you compare it with many colorful skins from Asian manufacturers such as Xiaomi. Color themes adapt to your background, giving menus a personal touch touch to get.

Google is coming later this year with Android 13, which looks almost the same as Android 12. Is the look of the software not quite to your taste, but do you want a Pixel phone? Then you can always download a launcher from the Play Store. This is, as it were, a downloadable skin – with slightly fewer functions than a pre-installed copy. Manufacturer Nothing recently released a launcher for recent Android smartphones.

2. One UI can be found on every Samsung smartphone

One UI is arguably the most used Android skin on the planet. That’s because a huge number of Samsung smartphones are sold every year. One UI runs on both the high-end Galaxy S22 Ultra and the affordable Galaxy A53. In terms of functions, the software is the same on almost all Samsung smartphones – provided you use the latest version, of course.

One UI

Samsung will support its most recent midrange and high-end smartphones for four or five of Android updates. With every new Android version, the manufacturer also provides a refreshed version of One UI. We always recommend using an up-to-date device for security reasons alone.

In addition to its own design, One UI also adds a number of features, including useful apps such as Samsung Health. This allows you to accurately track your health, especially if you also use a Galaxy Watch. There is also the payment service Samsung Pay and Samsung brings all kinds of cool camera functions to its smartphones through One UI.

3. OxygenOS from OnePlus has a hefty fan base

OnePlus became big by releasing high-end smartphones for a relatively low price. However, every year the manufacturer’s smartphones got a lot more expensive – and since the company has worked closely with Oppo, OnePlus smartphones are no longer as iconic as they once were. Fortunately, they still run on OxygenOS, the well-known OnePlus shell for Android.

OxygenOS is less customizable than most other Android skins. This makes it somewhat similar to Google’s bare version of the software. However, newer versions of OxygenOS are increasingly similar to Oppo’s ColorOS – a change we’re not very happy about.

In addition to some exclusive widgets, the software also offers its own app icons, fonts and wallpapers. Fans of the first hour are especially pleased with the many customization options of ColorOS. You can customize almost every aspect of the software, even the battery icon in the status bar.

Also read: OnePlus is working on OxygenOS 13: this is why we think it’s crazy

4. Realme UI: The New OxygenOS?

Realme is a fairly new player on the Dutch smartphone market. The Chinese manufacturer is somewhat similar to the old OnePlus in terms of vision. This means that users get a complete smartphone experience for relatively little money. Fast chips and beautiful screens can of course not be missed, but the software is also very important.

Realme smartphones run on the Realme UI. This software shell is quite similar to OnePlus’ OxygenOS. We might even like the Realme UI a bit better, because it looks even more like standard Android.

Curious about our opinion about a recent Realme device? Then read our Realme GT 2 Pro review

5. Xiaomi’s MIUI is fierce, but secretly quite fun

We close our list with MIUI, the software shell of Xiaomi. This Android skin is not for lovers of simplicity and simplicity. Bright colors, eye-catching animations and eye-catching icons are everywhere. In a number of places in the software you will even find advertisements – which in our opinion are anything but welcome.

MIUI

With a Xiaomi device you are striking, that’s for sure. Apart from the software, the devices themselves are often brightly colored and large. In general we are with Android Planet I am pleased with the devices, which offer a pleasant experience for little money.

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