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F-Droid is an installable app store and software repository for Android devices. F-Droid is a package that contains only FOSS (Free and Open Source Software) applications, games, software, and the likes for Android devices.
F-Droid has been around since 2010, developed and published by Ciaran Gultnieks. The app is available for Android devices and works on Linux, windows10, macOS, and certain servers. It is relatively easy to install and operate on various Android devices. The F-Droid is a volunteer project and is not profit-based. It is the most serviceable and efficient app store after the most common and popular Google Play Store, which already comes pre-installed on most Android devices.
F-Droid has its repository, which is still a part of the F-Droid project. The app is relatively secure, efficient, and has a simple interface. There are numerous advantages of F-Droid compared to other app stores, its security and budget-friendliness being at the top of the list. For a tangible number of Android users, F-Droid is already serving as their go-to source for downloading apps, especially open source apps, and also for users who desire to secure their privacy or not be affiliated with Google.
Why Choose F-Droid?
Many reasons make F-Droid a preferred app store choice for some Android users, and those reasons include, amongst others:
- Completely Free: F-Droid is a voluntary, non-profit project, as already mentioned, so all the apps available on the F-Droid are completely free. It is also possible to find free versions of some apps monetized on Google Play. The apps provided on F-Droid also have no in-app purchases or ads or any other monetary-related discomfort that may be experienced while using apps from other app stores.
- Optimum Security. With F-Droid, the security of all the apps being downloaded on your device is assured. While using F-Droid, the complete information of all the apps and their source codes are provided. Therefore, there is a hundred percent knowledge and assurance of the nature and tendencies of every app contained on the F-Droid app store.
- Open Source Software. The software applications on F-Droid are all open-source applications. Open source software simply denotes that the source code of such software is accessible to the users of that software and allows the users to edit, change or fix any issues or problems they feel such apps might be having. Other apps are proprietary or closed apps and do not allow this. However, F-Droid is a legitimate catalogue for getting open-source apps any day and at any time.
- Optimum Privacy. F-Droid does not require its users to register or open any sort of account on the app. There is no provision for such, and the app managers have no idea who visits the app, at what time, or whatever activity is carried out. It is completely anonymous and trackless, a feature that means a lot to user who is discretion about their private information. Unlike Google Play Store, where your activity is continually recorded and documented, F-Droid provides a warmer alternative. Besides, given that the apps on F-Droid are open source software, as already mentioned, they rarely record or store user data. The F-Droid app does an awesome job of alerting users concerning certain apps available on the platform that may record location or private data. With this being said, the F-Droid app is a hundred percent private in all its dealings.
Disadvantages of Using F-Droid
Although the advantages outnumber the disadvantages, there are still certain features and perks of using F-Droid that might not work in favour of the app for some. They include:
- Scarcity of Common Apps. On F-Droid, many of the common apps are not available. Many popular social media apps, gaming apps, recognised special tasks and features apps, and generally popular apps are missing on F-Droid. This is because many apps are closed-source software, given that F-Droid operates with open-source software applications alone. F-Droid cannot access the source codes of these apps and make them available to their users, hence their absence. However, there are a lot of many different apps that replace the actions of these common apps. Search engines, tools, tasks apps, and the likes abounded on F-Droid and some other common apps. They perform the same tasks, although they are differently branded.
- Slower Updates. The apps on F-Droid do not receive updates and changes as fast as the apps on Google Play, and so versions of apps on F-Droid stay older for longer.
Requirements For Using the F-Droid App
To set the F-Droid in full functioning mode, there are a few steps that best be taken. First, you will have to enable Android to accept the installation of third-party Apks, a system known as sideloading. Sideloading is automatically unadvised by Android devices, but sideloading will pose less harm to your device than it seems. Only when this is enabled can the F-Droid App be stably installed on your device?
You can download files from the F-Droid App website directly, although the files are in the form of Apks However, the safer, easier, and most efficient way is to download the original F-Droid client after your sideloading has been completed and then download whatever apps and software you required that are available on F-Droid.
The processes required might sound burdensome for a user who has not done such installations before or is pretty new to the system. However, they are relatively easy and can be completed in just a short amount of time. Besides, the F-Droid App is known and praised for having straightforward procedures required to start the app running perfectly on any Android.
Although the Google Play Store does not necessarily require any installation processes in most cases, it can be a very disheartening option because of the security and privacy policies that most users often ignore. However, F-Droid is completely discreet, trackless, and efficient all at the same time.
F-Droid is a fast-growing app with advantages and disadvantages like any other. However, the app serves the purpose of Android users keen on security and privacy policies or who do not ride with Google policies. F-Droid remains a highly resourceful app and can be downloaded and used alongside other app repositories as the user deems fit.