Ultimate Guide: The best chess apps available for iPhone and Android

the best chess apps

The best chess app should have all the features that you need that can help you quickly learn how to play chess and, at the same time, have fun. When I was searching for a chess app, I had two specific features that I was interested in, one of them was to play offline with my iPhone and the other feature I like is chess tactics or chess lessons integrated on the chess app.

In this article, I would like to share my favorite chess apps with you with features that I want and other useful unique features, their advantages, and disadvantages! 

To make it easier for you, I will arrange the chess apps in alphabetical order!

analyze-this chess app

Analyze this!

4.5 Ratings

500,000 plus installations

Free and Pro versions available

Links : Google play store or Mac app store

Analyze this! Chess App

I used this app to watch and analyze chess games played by the grandmasters! This is the best feature of this app if you’re going to use the free version. You cannot play an online chess game with an opponent using this app, also if you don’t want to subscribe to other chess apps to analyze games, then this is for you!

The Analyze this app’s pro version, which you can purchase for $4.99, will give you other options like install new UCI chess engines, ask the engine to show threats, unrestricted import of online games. 

If you decide to upgrade to the pro version, only to get rid of the ads from the free version, you may still experience the developers’ suggested custom ads related to chess. Based on my experience, the ads on the free version aren’t that annoying but if you are interested in additional features, then upgrading to the pro version is your best option.

Analyze this! Free versionPro Version
Features I likeYou can upload PGN from your phone directly from the internet
Works offline
You can flip boards
You can set up chess positions
Everything in the free version
You can auto replay moves
Play against engine
Other available featuresUpload PGN games work for chess.com, chess24 and lichess
You can save moves and variations
Everything in the free version
Install UCI engines
You can let engines play against each other
AdvantagesYou can share PGN games via emailYou can ask engine to show threats
DisadvantagesSome features not working with specific smartphone brands
Not beginner-friendly
Playing online chess is not supported
chess24 chess app

Chess24

3.4 Ratings

500,000 plus installations

Free and Premium versions available

Links : Google play store or Mac app store

Chess24

Playing chess with this app is never boring; you have the option to play against an engine online or even offline, which I like. The interface is sleek and easy to use, making this app an excellent way for beginners to learn. You can even play with opponents of similar skill levels through the built-in matchmaking system!

You will have fun learning with its tactics trainer and enjoy live chess shows in which you can study games played by grandmasters.

To get the full benefit of this app it is recommended to upgrade to a Chess24 premium membership, you can sign up here and use the details to sign in using the mobile app.

Chess24 Free versionPremium version
Features I likePlay with the free chess engine offline
You can change the design of the boards
Clean user interface
Everything in the free version
Play against a premium chess engine
Other available featuresAvailable local game storage
Live tournaments
Tactics trainer
Everything in the free version
Quality chess articles available
AdvantagesYou can chat during tournament gamesExcellent for watching live chess game
DisadvantagesThe clock is difficult to monitor
Guest can play online with members
chess.com chess app

Chess.com

4.8 Ratings

10,000,000 plus installations

Free and Premium versions available

Links : Google play store or Mac app store


Chess.com

This chess app is easy to install and has a really clean user interface, the app has a beginner-friendly tutorial that will teach you how to play in no time, and it’s completely free to download. I love playing chess online with chess.com because there are a lot of great players registered in this app.

Playing with the free version is fantastic, but becoming a premium member comes with a lot of perks. I have been a member of chess.com since 2019 and loving the training and excellent teachers available online. I can say that some of the new tactics I learned came from chess.com!

You can join chess.com by signing up here.

chess.com chess app
Chess.com Free versionPremium version
Features I likeYou can play chess online with your friends
Works offline (limited)
Various chess board settings
You can set up chess positions
Everything in the free version
More chess tactics and training
Lessons are organized
Other available featuresYou can select different chess timings
You can try different chess variants like blindfold chess
Everything in the free version
Live twitch by popular players
Live tournaments
Popular chess grandmasters are also a member
AdvantagesYou can join an online chess tournament Well established app
Frequent updates of features
DisadvantagesChess puzzles may sometimes be very difficult
Sometimes support replies late
chess clock by chess.com

Chess Clock by Chess.com

4.7 Ratings

1,000,000 plus installations

Free version available

Links : Google play store or Mac app store

Chess Clock by Chess.com

If you don’t have a digital chess clock around your home or chess clubs, you can download this chess clock app by chess.com which is free. This chess app has the most essential settings you will need to have a great chess game with friends. There are no ads and it’s very simple to set up!

l do advise you get yourself a real chess clock, it’s excellent for simulating actual game or tournament especially during crunch times. A perfect chess clock is the one which have different timing settings, to experience different variations.

You can check out this chess clock review to learn more.

chess clock by chess.com
Chess Clock by Chess.comFree version
Features I likeThe text is large and very easy to read
You can change the orientation of the timer
Option for setting handicap timing
Other available featuresSupports Fischer and Bronstein increments and delay timings
AdvantagesVery easy to use
DisadvantagesCannot save custom timing settings

chess genius chess app

Chess Genius

4.7 Ratings

10,000 plus installations

Free and Premium versions available

Links : Google play store or Mac app store

Chess Genius

This chess app has a powerful chess engine, even at the beginner’s level. This is excellent for those who are looking to have a chess tutor companion online. You can purchase the premium version of this chess app for $5.99, and I don’t advise getting the lite version because you will gain more benefits with the premium one.

This app is being praised for its chess engine’s ability to play with like a powerful human chess player, and I love to have an AI chess opponent that’s like an actual human.

Playing with a smart engine does have an effect on your brain of course, I suggest you read this article about brain effects and benefits.

chess genius chess app
Chess GeniusFree versionPremium version
Features I likeYou have the hint option
Great collection of openings
You can set up chess positions
Everything in the free version
You can fully take back and forward
You can play in a tournament level
Other available featuresYou can save and upload PGN games
Everything in the free version
Warns you with blunder moves
AdvantagesYou can copy and paste PGN to chess.comChess games can be restored after exit and restart
DisadvantagesThe screen may turns to standby mode Less software updates
chess light chess app

Chess light

4.7 Ratings

50,000 plus installations

Free and In-app purchases available

Links : Google play store or Mac app store


Chess light

This chess puzzle app has been around for the longest time, but it seems that people are still looking for a great puzzle online in this day and age. This app uses a simple puzzle idea of lighting up the square by placing pieces on board. I would recommend downloading if you’re looking for something clever with an easy interface and primarily free.

If you want to learn how to strategize just like your favorite chess players, this can help you from a beginner level to an intermediate player.

For people who loves solving chess problems, you should check out this chess tricks.

chess light chess app
Chess lightFree version
Features I likeIt’s free
Hint option can help with solving difficult problems
Other available featuresDifferent levels of difficulty
You can purchase additional hints options $0.99
AdvantagesUnique chess puzzle
DisadvantagesPuzzles may become repetitive
Chess Pro with Coach

Chess Pro with Coach

4.6 Ratings

10,000,000 plus installations

Free and Premium versions available

Links : Mac app store


Chess Pro with Coach

With the chess pro with coach app, you can study chess openings, play against the computer, and play against friends online. It’s a great chess app for beginners and experts. With 10 million-plus installations, I would definitely recommend this chess app. There is an in-app purchase that ranges from $0.99 – $2.49, do check it out!

If you are a beginner this app perfect for you, with hints option to help you with the basic moves and learn a lot faster. Purchasing the chess pro ultimate version will cost $4.99 only which is really affordable than a human coach!

The very basic in learning chess is the setup, you can read basic chess setup to know more.

Chess Pro with Coach
Chess Pro with CoachFree versionPremium version
Features I likeExcellent training using “hint” button
Works offline
You have the ability to switch to a 3D version
You can set up chess positions
Everything in the free version
Excellent analysis mode
Other available featuresDifferent modes playing included in the app
Everything in the free version
You get annotated databases
AdvantagesUnique chess engine which can play aggressively
Developers are very responsive
No advertising
More training modes available
DisadvantagesMenus are really small for smartphones
Ads installed
Few instructions available
chess studio

Chess Studio

3.8 Ratings

10,000 plus installations

Free and In-app purchases available

Links : Google play store or Mac app store


Chess Studio

This chess app works like a chess book with a chess board embedded on your smartphone, and if you like reading chess books and need to see the moves using a chessboard visually, then Chess Studio is perfect for you. Each book has been converted to the Chess Studio format and is fully searchable. The e-books are delivered to you via the app, meaning you can use your smartphone as a chess book.

I like having in my pocket a chess book that I can refer to anytime I want, the good thing with chess studio is that it has free chess books installed already. You can also purchased chess books inside the app which is amazing!

You can also purchase our available chess ebook with lifetime update.

chess studio
Chess StudioFree version
Features I likeYou can start with free chess books or purchased premium chess books from the apps
Different categories of chess books
Works offline
Other available featuresQuick search function for words, phrases, or player names
You can play over moves and variations on screen
AdvantagesThis chess app was created with the help of Grandmaster John Nunn
DisadvantagesNo option to upload your favorite chess book
chess tactics trainer

Chess Tactics Trainer

3.9 Ratings

10,000 plus installations

Free version only

Links : Google play store

Chess Tactics Trainer

When you want to learn the finer points of chess, Chess Tactics Trainer is a great app. With tons of different levels and tactics for every stage in the game, there’s something here for everyone! Whether it be opening play or endgame strategies that concern you most right now – this Chess tactics app can help take your moves up a notch with its comprehensive solution set!

If you like solving chess problems then this app is for you, the only main concern is that there is no option to upgrade to an ads free app.

An article that you may also like are about chess tricks!

chess tactics trainer
Chess Tactics TrainerFree version
Features I likeNice collection of opening, endgame and middle game tactics
Other available featuresSaving and bookmark options
AdvantagesFree
DisadvantagesMany Ads
Was not able to find the app in Apple store
chess time chess app

Chess time

4.8 Ratings

1,000,000 plus installations

Free and Premium versions available

Links : Google play store or Mac app store

Chess time

If you’re looking for a new way to play chess, I recommend the Chess Time app. You can have up to 30 games going at once with different opponents and it’s always free! It really adds excitement when playing multiple games at one time, the exciting part about this is when I was playing online is that there are no ads which gives us more opportunity on enjoying our game without getting distracted by anything else.

There is an option to pay for subscription for only $1.99 per month, which will give you more option and enjoy playing chess even more.

If you are interested with multiplayer online chess, you should check out this article here.

chess time chess app
Chess Time Free versionPremium version
Features I likeYou get an alert notifications on your turn
Able to choose chess themes
You can play as a guest
Everything in the free version
You can play with premium members
Other available featuresYou can have a chat option
ELO rating calculation available
Everything in the free version
You can simultaneously play 75 games
AdvantagesExport PGN optionsLeader board by rating and country
DisadvantagesYou cannot set timer below 1 dayGame may take very long time to finish
chess trainer chess app

Chess trainer

4.2 Ratings

100,000 plus installations

Free and In-app purchases available

Links : Mac app store


Chess Trainer

The Chess Trainer app is a great way to improve your skills. With thousands of puzzles and interactive lessons, you’ll never be bored! If you check out the free version of this app you’ll notice different selections of problems to choose from. At the time of installing the app you will get a free pdf of chess traps from the developer, which is amazing!

The Chess Trainer app is a great way to improve your skills. With thousands of puzzles and interactive lessons, you’ll never be bored! You have the option to purchase the full option for $24.99 only.

If you’re looking for a way to become more competitive at chess, download the free version of this app today! You won’t regret it.

chess trainer chess app
Chess TrainerFree version
Features I likeYou can access free quality chess pdf
Calculates ELO rating
Other available featuresOptions to purchase other chess problems
AdvantagesBeginner’s how to play chess available inside the app
DisadvantagesSome section is difficult to navigate
chess viewer chess app

Chess Viewer by Everyman Chess

4.3 Ratings

10,000 plus installations

Free and In-app purchases available

Links : Google play store or Mac app store

Chess Viewer by Everyman Chess

Everyman Chess products are nothing if not comprehensive! Their chess app, the Chess Viewer for Android and iPhone is a must-have. The app includes all you need to view and play chess moves: text, multiple variations and sub-variations of each move will be displayed on your device screen as well as allowing you to read through any game that suits your fancy while playing it out step by step with ease.

I have this app on my iPhone it’s totally worth it, when you install the free app you can access free chess books inside the app which is fantastic. The chess books inside the app can cost around $9.99 up to $15.99 each.

If you love reading and playing with a board then this app is for you! I do recommend you check out one of the chess books available on our site here.

chess viewer chess app
Chess Viewer by Everyman chessFree version
Features I likeYou can bookmark pages of the chess book
Other available featuresUpload PGN games
AdvantagesVariety of chess books to choose from
DisadvantagesDifficulty in navigating the books
droidfish chess app

DroidFish

4.6 Ratings

1,000,000 plus installations

Free version only

Links : Google play store

DroidFish

The Droidfish chess app is a surprisingly strong analysis tool. Often beats the strongest of computers, with many different engines to choose from that provide you varying play styles and strengths- perfect for when your opponent has figured out all your tricks. Once you get used to its user interface it becomes by far the best game on earth for studying and improving (and quite possibly even beating) any other player in an informal setting or tournament!

The DroidFish Chess App offers surprising insight into next moves as well as expert commentary which can be turned off if desired; there are also several different engines players may use depending on what they want their style of gameplay to entail, like whether they prefer more defensive strategies or aggressive ones–allowing one’s creativity flow free

droidfish chess app
DroidfishFree version
Features I likeExcellent graphics
Vibrates after move
Great for practicing chess puzzles
Other available featuresYou can play blindfold mode
AdvantagesYou can import and export PGN
DisadvantagesUses a lot of your batteries power
follow chess app

FollowChess App

4.5 Ratings

100,000 plus installations

Free and Premium versions available

Links : Google play store or Mac app store

FollowChess App

Get notified of the moves and game results even when you’re on a business trip! The app FollowChess allows for live watch of top international chess tournaments, without having to be there in person. Players have different levels; Free users can follow one tournament while Pro members get all coverage.

If you have a favorite chess player and you want to follow tournament result then this app is for you. You can pay a subscription of $0.99 per month or $5.99 a year which is not too expensive.

follow chess app
Follow Chess AppFree versionPremium version
Features I likeYou can have 3 games in watchlist
You can hide time-per-move
Everything in the free version
You can follow 8 games in watchlist
Other available featuresYou can launch analysis board by tapping the board
Everything in the free version
More choice for chess board themes
AdvantagesYou can show the chess board coordinatesTop chess players recommends and uses this app too
DisadvantagesMay have delayed response compared to real time playNo option for one time payment
forward chess app

Forward Chess

4.7 Ratings

50,000 plus installations

Free and In-app purchases available

Links : Google play store or Mac app store


Forward Chess 

Forward Chess is an Interactive reader of chess books. Play through the lines in with the apps interactive book, or try your own favorite chess book- it’s like having a fully customizable chess board and personalized instruction right at your fingertips! Forward Chess includes the ability to purchase over 100 different chess books with new ones being added weekly from popular authors.

Forward Chess features innovative technology that will keep you engaged for hours on end–without losing interest. You can purchase chess books from inside the app which may cost up to $22.99 each.

You will enjoy this chess app because of its collection of chess books available on the app, there are popular chess books that you can study and keep it in the app ready to be played.

forward chess app
Forward Chess Free version
Features I likeWide selection of chess books is available
Multiple plans to get a subscription plan
Other available featuresYou can purchase books on their main site as well
AdvantagesYou can view sample pages of a particular chess book
DisadvantagesSometimes chess books does not open and the app crashes
iChess - Chess puzzles

iChess – Chess puzzles

4.2 Ratings

500,000 plus installations

Free and In-app purchases available

Links : Google play store or Mac app store

iChess – Chess puzzles

The iChess app provides 1000 offline puzzles from real FIDE tournament games so that you can practice without the need for an opponent or time spent playing a game. Unlocking more puzzles, or playing with other players, is available for a fee.

If you like playing chess puzzles then this app is for you, even if you are a beginner this is a great app to improve your chess skills. You can upgrade and increase your selection of chess puzzles by paying $1.99 only, which I think is really worth it!

You can also check an article I made about chess puzzles here.

iChess - Chess puzzles
iChess Chess PuzzlesFree version
Features I likeWorks offline
You can track your progress
Other available featuresAnalyze chess puzzles using Analyze this app
AdvantagesYou can load your own favorite PGN files
DisadvantagesYou cannot play chess online with this app
lichess app

Lichess

4.5 Ratings

5,000,000 plus installations

Free version only

Links : Google play store or Mac app store


Lichess

The Lichess app is a fantastic way to improve your chess skills or play. Some improvements that could be made are the chat features, which can sometimes have bugs and you may need to send messages multiple times for it to go through; also when starting a correspondence game there’s no option where I want my score at the time of start–it always displays what was before.

One of my favorite feature is having the option to turn your Lichess app into a timer, not only that it has different option or settings that you can choose which is great!

If you are interested in buying a chess clock, you should check out this simple chess clock and here is my full review.

lichess app
LichessFree version
Features I likeIt’s 100% free which is awesome
Play against computer offline
Other available featuresAvailable chess variants inside the app
AdvantagesThe app is available in other languages
DisadvantagesUpdate may cause lag
scid on the go chess app

Scid on the go

4.2 Ratings

50,000 plus installations

Free and In-app purchases available

Links : Google play store

Scid on the go chess app

Scid on the go is an app that will prove to be almost perfect if it had a few more features. The position search makes this app unstoppable because you could find your desired move in seconds. The only flaw I found was not being able to add lines of analysis after going into engine mode – which can get annoying and feel like wasted time when scrolling through moves without making annotations about them (which are saved with each game).

But these faults don’t take away from how great Scid on the Go really is! If you enjoy studying games from chess masters then this app is for you.

You should also check out this article about great chess players fails.

scid on the go chess app
Scid on the goFree version
Features I likeYou can easily look for a game using its search box
You can import PGN games from other chess sites
Other available featuresYou can search games by the chess piece position
AdvantagesHuge database of chess games
DisadvantagesSome PGN import doesn’t work
ultimate chess clock

Ultimate chess clock

4.2 Ratings

500 plus installations

Free and Premium versions available

Links : Google play store

Ultimate Chess clock 

Chess players don’t always have an official clock on hand to keep track of time. The Ultimate Chess Clock app is easy to use, and works with any time control. You can change the timer for each game, which is really helpful for those preparing for blitz tournament etc.

I have not seen any option to remove the ads by paying premium, so I guess this is totally free of cost which is great but not for those who gets annoyed with tons of ads and can only be downloaded through Google play store.

If you want to buy a chess clock you can read my chess clock review here.

ultimate chess clock
Ultimate Chess ClockFree version
Features I likeWorks offline
Graphics are large and buttons are easy to press
Other available featuresYou can pause and restart the clock
AdvantagesSmooth functionality between the buttons
DisadvantagesWorks on android only
warfare chess 2

Warfare Chess 2

4.1 Ratings

1,000 plus installations

Free and In-app purchases available

Links : Mac app store

Warfare Chess 2

Warfare Chess 2 has fast-paced, immersive modes that make for an addicting and enjoyable playing experience. Warfare chess is a 3D chess game with many different online multiplayer options as well as quality animations and effects in action. The Free Chess also includes the Blitz mode which only lasts 5 minutes per match because it encourages quick thinking gameplay to take advantage of your opponents weaknesses before they do you!

If you just wants to have a different type of way to play chess then this is the app for you, well my daughter loves to play with this app because of the animation and its fantasy like thing. You can subscribe to this chess app for as low as $3.99!

I was confused at first eventually it was kinda fun to play with, the chess theme is different but the graphics and animation is great!

warfare chess 2
Warfare Chess 2Free version
Features I likeGraphics and animations is amazing
Chess board at the side to identify pieces
Works offline
Other available featuresOnline multiplayer Blitz mode (5 minutes per player per match)
Available ranking online for Pro mode
Advantages24/7 customer support
DisadvantagesNot really good for small phones

Gary Flores

Hi there! I'm a dad with kids who loves to learn how to play chess by learning online - also, this is my way of refreshing my knowledge about this game of tactics & strategy. I created chessdelights.com to inspire people who are also learning, re-learning or teaching their kids the game of chess.

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