The Best Meditation App for Your Phone: Insight Timer
iPhone rating: ★★★★★
Android rating: ★★★★★
This meditation app features over 4,500 free guided meditations from over 1,000 meditation practitioners. It also features 750 meditation music tracks. Insight Timer also lets you customize your intervals and background sounds so that your meditation session is exactly what you’re looking for.
Review from a Daily Meditator
I wanted to start mediating so naturally I googled, “What’s the best mediation app for you phone?” The first thing that came up was Headspace. I started meditating using the app Headspace, you’ve probably heard a lot about it. I sat cross legged on my floor and got started, listening to the soothing voice of the British man lulling me into serenity.
I was disappointed to see that after 10 days of meditation (just when I was hooked) I had to pay monthly for all the bells and whistles (custom guided meditations, themed sessions, etc). So I gave up.
Listening to a podcast, I stumbled upon a recommendation for Insight Timer. I heard it was a great app AND it was free, so I decided to try it out. I love Insight Timer. Here’s what I love about it.
1. It’s Free.
You don’t need an app to meditate, but it sure comes in handy. A lot of people meditate to relieve stress and let’s face it, we don’t need another monthly expense adding to our existing stressors.
2. It has a HUGE selection.
Insight Timer offers guided meditations from well-known spiritual teachers (Jack Kornfield, Thich Nhat Hanh, and Tara Brach to name a few). The guided meditations are not reserved for seasoned vets. People record their own guided tracks and share them on the app. People then rate their favourites. This means there is a huge selection of guided meditations. You can choose your preferred length, your area of interest, your teacher, and more.
3. It has music.
There are tracks on Insight Timer that you would have a hard time finding anywhere else. Today I was listening to Tibeten Singing Bowl songs while writing articles. The music is a major bonus.
4. It has “talks” (otherwise known as podcasts).
I love podcasts. I listen to them on transit, as I cook, I even blast them from a speaker when I’m showering. The talks on Insight Timer are relevant to cultivating a mindful life and you can explore talks about mental health, addiction, having a better sleep, or other related topics.
5. It has groups.
I didn’t think I’d use the group feature on the app but turns out there was a group for Toronto meditation meetings nearby. I joined the group and discovered a weekly Dharma Talk and meditation in my area. You can make friends, have conversations, and join groups like this one on the app.
6. It has motivating stats.
The app awards you with a star when you meditate for 10 consecutive days. You can track how much time you’ve meditated, see a visual graph of your guided vs. timer sessions, and feel encouraged by the system.
7. It offers the classic timer.
If you’re feeling extra ambitious you can click on the timer with a background noise of your choice and start meditating. Keep it simple.
8. It helps you feel connected.
Insight Timer has over 2.8 million users worldwide and shows you a global map where other people are meditating. Practicing mediation with a constant reminder that you’re a part of a greater collective is really what fostering awareness is all about.