IRC Clients for Android

A variety of Android devices are out there, including smartphones, handhelds, tablets, netbooks, set top boxes, and even dedicated digital cameras.

Note Due to power management and wireless network instability, long-lived persistant connections such as IRC on Android devices tend to be somewhat unreliable. This is a general characteristic of mobile devices rather than a flaw in any particular client, but it does mean that the utility of a mobile client for channel or server management will be limited.


AndroIRC is a popular choice for Android - it works well on most devices, and it’s more than enough for keeping up with happenings on a channel or even performing basic channel operator functions. It comes in two versions - an ad-supported free version, and a paid version on the Google Play store which removes the advertising. Other than the ads, the versions are identical.


Android IRC

Stands out with a clean readable interface with little wasted space. It’s also featureful, including support for SSL, SASL, and IRC proxies, nickname completion, and many of the things you’d expect from a desktop client.

Using Linux IRC clients on Android

As Android is Linux-based under the hood, it’s possible to run some IRC clients for a Linux terminal directly on an android device, using a terminal emulator application to interact with them via the shell. Depending on the device, you may be able to do this without root, but it will always work on a rooted device.

Using Linux/Unix IRC clients via SSH

If you have a desktop client running somewhere where you can access over SSH, a better solution may be to forgo the native Android clients altogether and opt to run a traditional desktop client under screen.

ConnectBot is a popular SSH client for Android, and a version exists which has been modified for ease of use with irssi.

irssi is notable in this area, as a single irssi client on a stable host can be accessible both via SSH and as an IRC proxy for a client running directly on the Android device, allowing you to maintain continuity of conversations even when the mobile network connectivity is very intermittant.

Using a bouncer/proxy

Using a bouncer or proxy from a more stable network may be useful to improve connection reliability.