How to Hide Apps on Any Android Device

November 30, 2020 • Devin Partida

You may not always want your apps to be visible and instantly accessible. If you regularly hand your phone off to friends, you may want to hide apps on Android — like your social media apps, photo roll or others.

By default, you can’t really hide apps on your Android device. Fortunately, there are a few methods you can use to effectively hide apps from view as needed.

Hiding Apps With a Third-Party App

One of the quickest ways to hide apps is to use a third-party app launcher, which replaces your home screen with a more customizable version, or a third-party app hider.

With a Third-Party Launcher

One of the many available third-party Android launchers, like Apex Launcher, will allow you to quickly hide your apps from view.

To hide apps with a launcher, start by downloading it from the app store. The exact method for hiding apps will vary from launcher to launcher, but the process will remain broadly the same.

  1. Start by accessing your App Drawer settings. In Apex Launcher, you can do so by tapping Apex Settings, then Drawer Settings. 
  2. Then, look for a Hide Apps option. In Apex, this will be the Hidden Apps button.
  3. In the menu that opens, tap the apps you want to hide. These apps will be hidden from your home screen while the launcher is active.

To unhide apps, simply uncheck or deselect the desired apps in the hidden apps menu.

With App Hider

App Hider is a free, ad-support ap that, as the name suggests, allows you to hide your apps.

To use this app, start by installing it from the app store and opening it.

Then, tap the plus icon to choose the app you want to hide.

Once you’ve done so, the app will be imported into App Hider. If you want to run the app or hide it, simply open the App Hider menu and tap on the app. You can also run multiple copies of the same app. This will allow you to log in to different social media accounts at the same time, for example.

You can also use the same menu to disguise any app as a calculator. When you do so, you’ll be prompted to create a PIN. 

The app and its icon will then be disguised as a calculator. When you open the calculator app and enter your PIN, you’ll be taken to the full disguised app. Otherwise, the calculator will act as a fully-functional calculator 

Hiding Apps With Private Mode

If you don’t want to install a third-party app, you may also be able to use Android’s Private Mode, a feature that was available on some older Android devices.

To do so, follow these steps.

  1. Start by navigating to the “Lock screen and security” menu in your phone’s settings.
  2. Then, scroll down to the “Private Mode” option and tap on it.
  3. Activate Private Mode using the top-right toggle.

Next, you’ll need to select the content you want to be hidden while you’re in Private Mode. To do this, navigate to your Gallery or My Files folder. Then, select the content you want to hide. Next, tap the More Options button and select Move to Private.

Selected content won’t be available while you’re in Private Mode. To deactivate this mode, simply return to the menu and switch the toggle off.

Disabling Apps

You can also disable apps that come pre-installed on your Android phone. To do so, you can long press on a pre-installed app from your Home screen. On the menu that appears, press the “Disable App” button.

You can also disable apps from your phone’s settings menu. To do so, navigate to the Apps submenu in your phone’s settings. Then, tap on the app you want to disable. In the menu that appears, tap Disable.

Quickly Hiding Content on Android

By default, your Android doesn’t provide you with a lot of features to hide your apps or other content. Fortunately, there is a pretty wide range of apps available that you can use to hide content on your phone.

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