Home navigate_next Guides Best Stock Trading Apps for 2022 Blain Reinkensmeyer Chris McKhann May 21, 2022

The StockBrokers.com best online brokers 2022 review, our 12th annual, took three months to complete and produced over 40,000 words of research. Here’s how we tested.

Ordering lunch. Paying a bill. Tracking your daily steps. Smartphone tasks like these have become everyday habits for millions of people, and now, so has stock trading and investing.

In the highly competitive realm of U.S. online stockbrokers, having a viable mobile app is simply table stakes — for traditional, full-service brokerages like Fidelity and Charles Schwab as well as upstart trendsetters like Robinhood and Webull. The question for any investor, whether you’re a beginner or seasoned active trader, is which stock trading app from this crowded field best suits your particular needs and preferences.

The best stock market apps will stand out across all categories: They’ll be easy to use, have excellent design, deliver a fully featured online trading experience and, not least, offer $0 stock and ETF trades.

For our 2022 Annual Review, we meticulously tested 15 top stock trading apps and reviewed each one across more than 25 different features. To score high marks, a broker had to provide an excellent stock trading experience across many usability categories. Testing was conducted using an iPhone XS (Apple iOS) and Samsung Galaxy S9+ (Android).

Best Stock Trading Apps 2022

StockBrokers.com 2022 Review

Here are the online brokers with the best stock market apps in 2022.

  • E*TRADE – 5 stars – Best Stock App for Traders
  • TD Ameritrade – 5 stars – Best App for Options
  • Fidelity – 5 stars – Best Stock App for Investors
  • Interactive Brokers – 4.5 stars – Best for Professionals
  • TradeStation – 4 stars – Great for Tools and Technology

Other Trading Apps

In addition to our top five stock trading apps in 2022, we reviewed 10 others: Ally Invest, Charles Schwab, Firstrade, J.P. Morgan Self-Directed Investing, Merrill Edge, SoFi Invest, Tradier, Robinhood, Vanguard and Webull. To dive deeper, read our reviews.

Best stock trading apps comparison

As smartphones become just as capable as the average laptop computer, it’s no surprise that traders demand the same features found in desktop trading platforms to be available in their stock trading app counterparts. But the manner in which those tools are integrated matters significantly.


Features such as real-time streaming quotes, charting with multiple indicators, and synced watch lists are commonly found; other basic offerings might be missing in action. For example, fewer than 50% of stock apps support basic stock alerts.


The best mobile apps manage to pack more tools under the hood in a way that doesn’t make finding what you need overly complex, whether by swiping, tapping a menu or choosing from a drop-down list. See below how our top three finishers measure up.


Looking for forex trading apps? See our picks for best forex trading apps on our sister site, ForexBrokers.com.















Feature

E*TRADE

TD Ameritrade

Fidelity

Market Movers (Top Gainers)

Yes

Yes

Yes

Stream Live TV

Yes

Yes

Yes

Videos on Demand

No

Yes

Yes

Stock Alerts

Yes

Yes

Yes

Option Chains Viewable

Yes

Yes

Yes

Watch List (Real-time)

Yes

Yes

Yes

Watch List (Streaming)

Yes

Yes

Yes

Watch Lists – Create & Manage

Yes

Yes

Yes

Watch Lists – Column Customization

Yes

Yes

Yes

Watch List – Column Filtering

Yes

Yes

Yes


Comparison Tool: Compare 100+ features side-by-side





Winner: E*TRADE

E*TRADE logo

E*TRADE ranks at the top for its mobile app suite, available for both iPhone and Android devices. The E*TRADE package consists of the E*TRADE Mobile app, optimized for everyday investing, and the vibrant Power E*TRADE app, geared more toward trading.


E*TRADE Mobile has lots of features tucked away and is great not just for beginners, but more demanding investors as well, with a surprising amount of depth and variety of tools. There are advanced research reports, and charting comes with 10 indicators. It’s easy to navigate the app and discover new features.


Power E*TRADE, in comparison, offers complex orders for trading, including advanced options orders, and more than 100 charting indicators. It’s a high-powered platform with sophisticated tools for active traders, but its modern design and interface make the app easy to use.



Runner-Up: TD Ameritrade

TD Ameritrade logo

A top contender among mobile apps in 2022 for both iPhone and Android devices, TD Ameritrade offers two powerful apps and $0 commissions when you trade. The suite consists of TD Ameritrade Mobile, which closely resembles the client web portal; and the powerful thinkorswim app, whose tools and advanced charting mirror what’s found in its web and desktop counterparts.


TD Ameritrade Mobile is great for everyday investors, with features such as news, price alerts, syncing watch lists and basic charts, along with ratings and research reports from third-party providers.


The thinkorswim mobile app comes with some of the most advanced charting packages available via mobile, with over 400 indicators — that’s significant for technical analysis pros. The ability to prepare complex order types is also made easy thanks to an intelligent layout and design. Traders can access news headlines and TV streams from CNBC alongside the TD Ameritrade Network, with nonstop broadcasting throughout the trading week.


Podium Finisher: Fidelity

Fidelity logo

Fidelity offers multiple mobile apps for Android and iPhone devices, with its investing app the primary offering for trading and everyday investing. Whether you’re doing your banking, transferring money between accounts, managing orders or placing trades, Fidelity’s investing app is excellent for everyday investors and in 2022 won our No. 1 Investor App award for the fifth consecutive year.


The app features streaming TV from Bloomberg, consistent with Fidelity’s Active Trader Pro desktop platform, in addition to a personalized feed, news headlines and research. Drawbacks: Charting is basic, and the app is not optimized for day trading or more demanding traders. The layout, however, is excellent; and with innovative features continually being added, users can also toggle to a Beta Experience for a more simplified version.






What is the best free trading app?

The best free stock trading app is from E*TRADE. Unlike most brokers, E*TRADE offers two apps: E*TRADE Mobile and the Power E*TRADE app. E*TRADE Mobile is designed for casual investors, while the Power E*TRADE app is designed for the feature-hungry active trader. Both apps are top-notch.





How do I choose the best stock trading app?

Now that all stock apps offer $0 stock trades, we recommend comparing other features to choose the best stock trading app. The most widely used stock app features are watch lists, stock charts, and order tickets, so make sure those are great. To help readers, we include full screenshots of each stock trading app in our broker reviews.


Fun fact: Not all stock trading apps offer real-time streaming quotes. Instead, some apps only refresh stock quotes every few seconds or longer. Watch lists aside, apps like TD Ameritrade and TradeStation provide excellent stock chart tools and stock alerts functionality. Both brokers offer traders access to several hundred technical indicators in addition to endless customization options.




What is the best trading app for beginners?

For beginners in 2022, the best stock trading apps are E*TRADE and TD Ameritrade. Between the two brokers, TD Ameritrade has the edge for educational resources and trading tools. Meanwhile, E*TRADE stands out for ease of use.




What apps let you trade stocks for free?

Many brokers today offer commission-free trading, also known as zero-dollar commissions. Our picks for the best apps for trading stocks for free come from the following brokers in 2022:


  • Fidelity – Fidelity mobile app for Android and iOS devices
  • Interactive Brokers – IBKR mobile and IMPACT app for Android and iOS devices
  • Charles Schwab – Schwab mobile app for Android and iOS devices
  • TradeStation – TradeStation mobile app for Android and iOS devices
  • TD Ameritrade – TD Ameritrade app and thinkorswim mobile for Android and iOS
  • E*TRADE – E*TRADE app and Power E*TRADE mobile app for Android and iOS

What is the safest stock app?

The safest stock apps come from the overall best and most trustworthy brokers. The following brokers offer the safest stock apps in 2022:


  • E*TRADE: Best stock app for traders
  • TD Ameritrade: Best app for options
  • Fidelity: Best stock app for investors
  • Interactive Brokers: Best for professionals
  • TradeStation: Great for tools and technology

The best apps allow login with biometrics (fingerprint or retina, for example) and other features such as two-factor authentication to reduce the chance of accounts being hacked.


Most importantly, a broker that has proper security measures across its websites, platforms and applications will have you covered in the event of a compromise.





What app gives you free stock?

Apps from brokers like Webull and Robinhood may give you a small amount of a stock of their choice — usually one or two shares — as a way to incentivize you to trade and invest, subject to certain terms and eligibility conditions.


Often the free shares will be given after you first open and fund a new brokerage account, or when you complete certain actions for the first time, such as linking your bank account.


What is the best stock trading app for iPhone?

Our thorough product testing of stock trading apps includes evaluation of iPhone functionality. Here are StockBrokers.com’s top choices 2022, alongside their user ratings from Apple’s app store:


  • E*TRADE: E*TRADE Mobile — user rating 4.6 stars | Power E*TRADE — user rating 4.5 stars
  • TD Ameritrade: TD Ameritrade Mobile — user rating 4.5 stars | thinkorswim app — user rating 4.7 stars
  • Fidelity: Fidelity mobile app for iPhone — user rating 4.8 stars
  • Interactive Brokers: IBKR mobile app — user rating 2.6 stars | IMPACT app — user rating 4.6 stars
  • TradeStation: TradeStation app — user rating 4.6 stars

What is the best stock trading app for Android?

StockBrokers.com thoroughly tests stock trading apps on both iPhone and Android devices. For 2022, these are our top picks for mobile functionality and ease of use, along with the apps’ user ratings on Google Play.


  • E*TRADE: E*TRADE Mobile — user rating 4.2 stars | Power E*TRADE — user rating 3.7 stars
  • TD Ameritrade: TD Ameritrade Mobile — user rating 3.5 stars | thinkorswim app — user rating 3.9 stars
  • Fidelity: Fidelity mobile app for Android — user rating 4.3 stars
  • Interactive Brokers: IBKR mobile app — user rating 3.2 stars | IMPACT app — user rating 4.4 stars
  • TradeStation: TradeStation app — user rating 3.7 stars

Can I start trading with $100?

Yes. Nowadays, most online brokers offer no minimum deposit to open an account, commission-free stock and ETF trades, as well as the availability of fractional shares. As a result, new traders can start trading with a small investment such as $100. To compare features and pricing, use our online broker comparison tool.



Which investing app is right for me?

Your level of experience with investing and your areas of interest in stock trading will help you identify the best investing app for you. Based on extensive testing, here are StockBrokers.com’s recommendations:









App Best for Rating
E*TRADE Best stock app for traders, best for beginners 5 stars
TD Ameritrade Best app for options traders, best for beginners 5 stars
Fidelity Best app for investors 5 stars
Interactive Brokers Best for professionals 4.5 stars
TradeStation Best for tools and tech 4.5 stars



StockBrokers.com 2022 Overall Ranking

Here are the Overall rankings for the 15 online brokers who participated in our 2022 Review, sorted by Overall ranking.

Methodology

For the StockBrokers.com 12th Annual Review published in January 2022, our in-house experts spent months testing 15 top online brokerages’ desktop platforms and mobile apps, amassing more than 3,000 data points across a wide array of features. This makes StockBrokers.com home to the largest independent database on the web covering the online broker industry.


We thoroughly tested key features including the availability and quality of watch lists, charting, real-time and streaming quotes, stock alerts, and educational resources, among other variables. We also look for a fluid user experience moving between mobile and desktop platforms, where offered.


Testing was done on devices for both Apple and Android operating systems. For Apple: iPhone XS with the most current iOS. For Android: Samsung Galaxy S9+, 6.2″ 4K Super AMOLED (2960×1440) 64-bit Octa-Core Snapdragon 835 Processor 2.7GHz, 6GB RAM 6.2″ with the most current operating system.


As part of our annual review process, all brokers had the opportunity to provide updates and key milestones and complete an in-depth data profile, which we hand-checked for accuracy. Brokers also were offered the opportunity to provide executive time for an annual update meeting.


Our rigorous data validation process yields an error rate of less than .001% each year, providing site visitors trustworthy, unbiased and high-quality data. Learn more about how we test.


Read Next

Explore more of our unbiased broker reviews and guides to online stock trading.



About the Author

Blain Reinkensmeyer




Blain Reinkensmeyer is a Managing Partner at Reink Media Group. He heads research for all U.S.-based brokerages on StockBrokers.com and is respected by executives as the leading analyst covering the online broker industry. Blain’s insights have been featured in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, and the Chicago Tribune, among other media outlets, and he is noted as a top expert on the U.S. online brokerage industry.

Chris McKhann




Chris McKhann has been in the industry for more than 20 years. He has worked for many of the top names in the online trading space, including TD Ameritrade and optionMONSTER, which later became part of E*TRADE. His work has been cited in the Wall Street Journal, Reuters, the Financial Times, Forbes, CNBC, Nasdaq.com and Nikkei. He has also been an advisor and outside trader for several hedge funds. He was one of the first traders to delve into the VIX tradable products and to write about them (back in 2006). Chris is also an educator who teaches high school statistics, finance and computer science.



All pricing data was obtained from a published web site as of 01/10/2022 and is believed to be accurate, but is not guaranteed. For stock trade rates, advertised pricing is for a standard order size of 500 shares of stock priced at $30 per share. For options orders, an options regulatory fee per contract may apply.

TD Ameritrade, Inc. and StockBrokers.com are separate, unaffiliated companies and are not responsible for each other’s services and products. View terms.

1Fidelity Sell orders are subject to an activity assessment fee from $0.01 to $0.03 per $1,000 of principal. Options trading entails significant risk and is not appropriate for all investors. Certain complex options strategies carry additional risk. Before trading options, please read Characteristics and Risks of Standardized Options. Supporting documentation for any claims, if applicable, will be furnished upon request.

*Webull Disclaimer View Disclaimer.







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