How To: Display Recently Used Apps and Files On Android

If you are familiar with your Android device, you may seldom face a situation when you don’t remember where you saved the file or an apk, or a recently taken picture or the most recent download. Nevertheless, sometimes it takes time to locate the files or a recently installed application or game, or remember the location of an image if it’s not in the default folder. Sometimes you just don’t remember the name of the application and cannot locate it, sometimes you just want to see the list of recent downloads. Of course, you can make do without third-party applications if you browse all possible folders, or go to the list of applications from the settings menu and see how many apps you have there. Nevertheless, there are third-party tools that will help you manage the recently used files and apps from within a single user-friendly interface that is similar to that of a Windows Explorer tab displaying recently used files and folders.

Here’s how you see your recently used items on Android with the help of the Recent app. Alternatively, you can check out Recent Task, Recent Apps Quick Button and let us know which one you prefer.

The Recent app is simple and straightforward, displaying recently used items so that you never have to search for them again. You can use the application itself to browse for the recently used items on your Android device or enable the on-screen widget that displays on your screen the recently used apps and images so that you don’t have to launch the app itself.

Recent images

By default, Recent displays four lists:

  • recent apps
  • recent photos
  • recent installations
  • recent downloads

As you can see, the lists are pretty self-descriptive, so whenever you launch one of these four lists you can quickly see the list of the installed games and apps along with the size of the files and the dates of installation. As far as images are concerned, when you launch the recent photos list, you can see the photo thumbnails that are arranged according to date and time.

At the bottom of the main window, you’ll find the number of actions you can do on selected items – for example, you can choose the application and run it, or view the details of the installation, or even delete batches of applications from your device. Other lists have a number of options you can perform with their items – for example, you can locate the downloaded file on your device, delete, or run it.

Recent pie

Alternatively, you can tap on the floating hand icon that will effectively display the most recently used items in all of the four categories, and you can rotate the pie to see the various items on the list, as well as open the item right from within the circle. The floating icon can be disabled from the program settings, though.

You can also locate apps by frequency of use, so you can weed out the apps you’re not using to dispose of them, and free some storage space.

Overall, Recent is a handy Android tool that gives you quick access to recently used files and applications, installs, downloads and images from within a simple and straightforward interface available as a standalone application and as a widget. It completely solves the problem of locating files and downloads on your device. Even though it is not the only application of its kind on Google Play, it stands apart because it is lightweight, intuitive and functional. Nevertheless, Recent Task and Recent Apps Quick Button have earned a high rating on Google Play and are worth checking out, too.