www.makeuseof.com How to Find Hidden Apps on Android
  • mobile phone
  • 18/10/2022
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www.makeuseof.com How to Find Hidden Apps on Android

Smartphone users can disable apps they don't use or want others to see, but devices also keep many system apps out of the limelight. If you're wondering how to find hidden apps on Android, whether on your phone or someone else's, there are six standard ways you can go about it.

Keep in mind that smartphones aren't all the same, so you may need to install a launcher that provides the following steps to the letter or adapt your moves on different Android systems. The result is the same, however. You'll be able to see all the apps on your device.

Find Hidden Apps Through Your Settings

Your Android settings are the first place to look for answers to the question "How do I find hidden apps on my phone?" Since every device features a full list of its apps, get to know the basic steps to display it.

First, tap on your Settings icon and choose Apps & notifications from the menu. If things look different on your device, just go for the tab that deals with your phone's apps.

From there, you should have access to a See all apps option. Tap it and you'll see all your available apps. Just scroll through them to explore the device's contents.

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If you or another user did disable and hide apps, you should also find the option to only see these programs. Look for a dropdown menu that offers to show you Disabled apps.

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Find Hidden Apps With Special Access

In your Apps & notifications menu, there are Advanced settings and then a tab titled Special app access or something similar. Here your apps are broken down by the privileges they have on your phone.

For example, if you go into All files access, it will show you every single app that can use your digital files. You can filter through apps with access to pictures, notifications, Wi-Fi control, and more.

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This is a great way to narrow down the kinds of programs you're looking for, putting a more productive spin on how to find hidden apps on Android.

Find Hidden Apps in App Drawer Folders

As Android devices evolve, they offer better and better ways to manage your content. In terms of how to hide apps on Android, different manufacturers and launchers offer different solutions, but they all have something in common: the app drawer.

It's the scrollable display of apps that you get when you swipe up on your phone's home screen or tap the app drawer icon at the bottom.

www.makeuseof.com How to Find Hidden Apps on Android

From here, you can hide and unhide apps on some Android systems via the menu button—it usually looks like three dots or a gear icon. Other devices have alternative features, such as folders. These let you open the menu, select Create folder, type in a title, and choose apps to group together.

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When looking for hidden apps, make sure you check for folders as they can obscure the applications they contain.

Find Hidden Apps Through Your File Manager

Another way to sift through the apps on your phone is by using the file manager. All Android devices should come with this feature in one form or another (it'll usually be an icon labeled "Files").

So, tap the relevant file manager icon to open a list of categories and tools. Go into Apps and you'll see all the programs installed on your device, as well as any Android Package Kits (APK). You can manage each item from here, too, from sharing to uninstalling it.

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However, the file manager doesn't always display system apps that are part of the device's basic functions. In other words, turn to your file manager only if you want to find hidden apps that the user or manufacturer actually downloaded.

Another feature to keep in mind is the Safe folder in the file manager. This is a secure place to store files, needing a PIN or pattern to unlock. It doesn't deal with apps so much, but it's a good place to look for hidden data, while also demonstrating the nooks and crannies available on Android devices.

If the file manager you already have doesn't suit your needs, you can always download a better one. Try out apps like Cx File Explorer so you can enjoy a cleaner interface, smoother organization of your files, and a lot more detail into your phone's active and hidden apps.

Find Hidden Apps With a New Launcher

If you don't like the layout of your current Android system, you can install another launcher that fits your workflow better. Apps like Microsoft Launcher and Nova Launcher are among the best on Google Play.

Take Microsoft's software, for example. It adds a Hidden apps tab to your App drawer while displaying the device's most frequently used apps, not to mention all those that the launcher uses, hidden or not.

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Take a look at the best lightweight launchers for any Android phone and check which ones are the most efficient in spotting hidden apps and files.

Find Hidden Apps Inside Trick Applications

As already mentioned, Android users can hide more than apps on their phones, so it's important to know the many different ways someone can keep materials secret. Trick apps are a popular method.

A great example is Calculator Photo Vault, which does everything a calculator should do while hiding a very handy stash along with several security tools. For example, you can protect your hidden pictures, videos, and files behind a disguised icon, password, and intruder selfie.

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Trick software affects your search into how to find hidden apps. If nothing else, even if you use all the methods above, you could completely overlook the innocent calculator icon.

Tackling this problem is a matter of knowledge. Stay up to date on the range of mobile apps around and make a note of specific programs that double as secret vaults.

Related: How to Hide Your Private Photos on Android

Understand Why Users Disable or Restrict Apps

Now that you know how to find hidden apps on Android devices in the most productive ways, it's important to understand why people would hide data in the first place. A parent would want to stop their child from using risky programs, while a lawyer—or spy—would hide sensitive information.

You can use these Android tricks to unearth your old apps and files, too. So, getting into your own mindset helps just as much in remembering when and why you put them there, as well as for deciding whether or not to keep them.

How to Restrict Apps on Android: 5 Ways Read NextShareTweetShareEmail Related TopicsAbout The AuthorElectra Nanou(171 Articles Published)

Electra is a Staff Writer at MakeUseOf. Among several writing hobbies, digital content became her professional focus with technology as a key specialty. Her features range from app and hardware tips to creative guides and beyond.

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