The #1 reason most Indians don’t like to invest in stocks is that they think or find it a complex task.
People have a presumption that stock market investments are only possible via stockbrokers, firms, or banking portals.
Not to mention the idea of paying hefty fees to the stockbroker is also prominent in India.
What if I told you:
- You don’t need a stockbroker to begin investing
- You don’t need to pay any commission to anyone or any platform.
- Buying stocks just takes a click of a button
In this article, you’ll learn about the 5 most popular investment management apps in India. These are smartphone applications you can install to invest and grow your portfolio on the go.
We’ll talk about each one in detail and I’ll try to help you choose the best investment app for you.
Groww is undoubtedly the best app for beginners and first-time investors.
It started as a mutual fund investment app. Now it allows you to buy stocks and Mutual funds using the same platform. The whole motto of Groww is to make investing as easy as possible. Which it does.
The dashboard is very simple and intuitive. You can track all your Mutual funds and Stock purchases through the Groww app.
Your Demat account will be opened after you create a Groww account. Initially, you’d be only able to buy Mutual Funds.
To open your Demat account, go to the stocks section from the main Groww app dashboard and click on open a new account. You’ll be guided throughout the process and receive approval notifications in your email.
Once your account is approved you can start buying and selling stocks.
The app dashboard shows you all the real-time trending stocks in the market. You can check historical data using the Rock charts.
There are all sorts of data shown below the Rock charts related to the companies’ stock you’re currently viewing.
The data includes:
- Company stock statistics (Such as market cap, dividend yield)
- Information about the company
- Shareholding patterns
- Detailed balance sheet
- Analyst recommendation
It also shows you related stocks to compare.
Regarding Mutual Funds, you can view all the important data such as:
- Fund historical performance
- Fund manager details
- The holding of the fund
- Return% over a time (you can choose between days to years)
- Pros n Cons
Groww also has an SIP and a One-Time investment calculator for Mutual Fund Investors.
It makes it easier for you to understand how much you should invest to achieve your desired financial goals.
In the Explore section of the app, you can click a category to find a variety of funds such as:
- tax saving
- Better returns than FD
- Top companies
- Sector Belts
- SIPs to begin with RS. 500
The same app allows you to track stocks and mutual fund investments.
You can add money you’d like to invest in your Groww account to buy stocks quickly if you’re doing intra-day trading.
You can also choose to withdraw your money and keep it in your Groww account to re-invest.
Using Groww you can also track your external investments. That sure will help you track all your purchases in a more streamlined manner.
The app, as well as the web platform, rarely crashes. I’ve never had any issues with Groww’s smartphone app regarding investing or withdrawing the money.
To open a Groww investment account you need to complete a full e-KYC procedure. You don’t need to submit any paper documents. And it usually takes less than 48 hours to get account approval.
Groww is the best option for you if you’ve just begun receiving your paycheque. Or you thought now is the time to start investing in stocks or mutual funds.
There is no brokerage fee as well as a zero account opening fee. Groww is the only app using which you can open a free Demat account.
Groww isn’t for seasoned investors. If you are looking forward to Intra-day trading, check out the next app.
Kite by Zerodha
Kite is the stock trading app by Zerodha. It is the most popular stock trading app in India. Not many apps have the kind of caliber Zerodha has.
It is considered the Robinhood equivalent in India, and the comparison isn’t vague.
Kite as a trading platform offers a lot of features that help average investors to overcome the complexity of the market.
The one area where Kite is the undisputed king is the Rock Charts. I’ve used multiple platforms, and none come close to the ease of use and comprehension Zerodha offers.
The Rock Chart is easy to read. You’ve all the legends mentioned clearly. The historical data goes way back in the previous decade, which isn’t offered by any other app on this list.
You can switch between the size of the cart by squeezing it and checking the tops and bottoms minutely. If you’re beginning as an intra-day trader, use Zerodha before anything else.
There are many features that Kite alone offers, making it a super hard choice to ignore:
- Intuitive dashboard to manage a portfolio
- Quick access to favorite stocks using the Watch List feature
- Access to stock fundamentals such as dividend payout data ( only Kite has this feature)
- Chrome extension (single-click access to your Kite dashboard)
- You can add funds using UPI or Netbanking
- Can buy gold bonds, ETFs, and IPOs using the same platform
- Commodity investment options
- Easy access to data like P&L, dividend yield, corporate actions, company history, and more
- Multiple options to trade including CNC, MIS, AMO, and RGLR
With Kite, you can place aftermarket orders for CNC and MIS purchases.
Intra-day trading is absolutely smooth, better than any other platform out there. You have quick access to multiple Rock charts such as Candles, Heujib Ashi, Renko, Point &Figure, Kagi, Line Break and Baseline, etc.
The charts are fully customizable. You can customize a chart and save it as a template to use regularly. There’s a quick button at the top of the charts to take a snapshot of the current market.
Using the Kite app for iOS or Android, you can quickly switch between your pending and executed orders. It also lets you check your portfolio, live positions and holdings.
Using the same app, you can invest in the commodity market. Do remember
Zerodha is an ideal investment app for both beginners and pro investors. The account opening charge is RS. 300 flat and RS. 300 per annum from next year.
The only little con Zerodha tends to have is repeated shutdowns and downtimes. It’s not uncommon for Zerodha’s Kite and Console app to go offline for a few minutes every week.
Paytm money is relatively new in the market,
But even after being a newcomer, it has the trust of Paytm’s brand. Paytm is one of the biggest finance brands in India.
It has payment banks, mobile wallets, UPI, and now Paytm money.
Paytm Money is an investing app made for beginner investors and the common man, as the company claims. You can invest in Mutual Funds as well as in stocks using the same app.
It’s easy to use, uptime is solid as it doesn’t get as frequent outrages as Zerodha.
It also deals with ETFs, derivatives, and NPS as well.
Trading is simpler with Paytm Money due to its easy-to-use dashboard and candle charts.
Stock delivery is free. You’ll be charged RS.10 on every intraday transaction. There aren’t any charges on CNC deliveries.
You can check out the detailed chart of stock trading prices levied by Paytm money on this page.
The app shows detailed company info, which is my favorite and an important part of investing.
Why you should use the Paytm money app:
- Low fees per transaction for intraday traders
- Live market data on the mobile app
- Intuitive dashboard for beginners
- Complete portfolio analysis to understand where your money is invested and how diversified your investment is
You can also start an NPS account and build a retirement corpus using Paytm money. Read why NPS is an ideal investment for Millennials.
Overall Paytm Money is a decent app for beginners to get started.
However, you can’t buy Sovereign Gold Bonds or make a bid for an IPO using Paytm.
If you’re someone who isn’t interested in the stock market, ETMoney might be the best app for you.
ETMoney is a simple app that allows you to invest in mutual funds, NPS, buy health and term life insurance, and invest in various other non-exchange value investment options.
In short – you can invest in anything using ETMoney, apart from the stock market.
It is a minimal and beginner-friendly platform to manage your entire investment and insurance purchases.
The ETMoney platform works as an investment educator. You will find various options to invest in depending on what your goals are.
For instance, if your goal is to save tax, ETMoney will suggest ELSS mutual funds, NPS investments. Tax saving FD or PPF.
So it makes it much easier to make a correct decision on where to put your money and for how long. Because remember, all tax-saving investment schemes are locked for no less than 3 years.
All mutual fund investments made via ETMoney are direct. That means there is no brokerage between mutual funds and your money.
Some of the best features of ETMoney:
- Diversified investment – ETmoney offers multiple formats of investment schemes. Unlike others on this list, you can invest in PPF, government plans, insurances and mutual funds. All using the same app.
- LoanPass – with LoanPass, you can get multiple loans on one approval stamp. It’s an exclusive ETMoney offering.
- Expenses tracker – smartly manage your daily to yearly expenses with automation.
- Tools & calculators – You get access to various financial tools and calculators to calculate returns, plan retirement, get a credit score, save tax, and more.
If stock market investing isn’t a priority for you, ETMoney is an amazing app to ignore. I’d highly recommend you try it out.
It also works as a personal expenditure tracker. It automatically fetches recent transactions by reading messages and categorizes them accordingly.
You can then get a detailed report on how much you’ve been spending monthly, daily, or weekly.
Upstox is another good option to invest in the stock market.
It is a decent option if Zerodha doesn’t suit your needs.
Upstox is relatively improving. They have just started polishing their services.
Key UpStox features:
- Invest in CNC stocks for zero charges
- A low fee of RS. 20 per intraday transaction (irrespective of sale value)
The platform is very basic, yet complex. They have two plans to choose from.
You can either choose Upstox Basic or Priority. The basic plan will users will have to pay Rs 20 per intraday trading while Priority users will pay Rs 30.
Priority users get better support and a higher margin compared to the basic plan.
Upstox has a nice dashboard and the market chart is easy to read. You can invest in mutual funds using the website or app.
You can also invest in commodities using Upstox.
But you can’t buy ETFs, IPOs, or Sovereign Gold Bonds.
It’s not that easy to get started. The dashboard is not minimal and there is jargon.
The support is weak. You’ll have to wait a reasonable time before you get a reply.
So Upstox is definitely not for beginners. It is for seasoned investors looking for a new platform to try their hands on.
One thing to note: UpStox will keep charging you a maintenance fee, resulting in your securities balance going negative if you don’t trade often.
While ICICI Direct changed the game for average investors with its continuous updates and ease of use, it didn’t really solve the average investor’s problem.
Although ICICI Direct has an app, I’m not including it in this list and also don’t recommend it to first-time investors.
The ICICI Direct app is not as easy to use as Zerodha or Groww.
But if you have an ICICI bank account, sign up for a 3-in-1 ICICI account. After your account is approved call your bank and ask if they can waive your annual charges and lower the trading fees.
This will allow you to save extra money on trading and annual charges.
I hope you’ve found your ideal investment app from this post.
I’d recommend trying Groww or ETMoney first and gradually shifting to Zerodha – This is the best platform available at the moment.
If you’ve any questions, ask them in the comment section below.
Out of zerodha & groww,Which one is good for stock (delivery only, no intraday),direct mf. Does both provide capital gain report,trasaction report for free ?
Zerodha! There’s no comparison between Zerodha & any other brokerage in visual data representation and reporting.
Hi Aayush ,
thanks for your constant reviews and feedbacks on new age apps . I wanted to understand that from your perspective what would be the next best thing in the fintech space which can compete with – Zerodha and Groww.
there are more fintechs trying to make their mark in this space. Can Advisory on Technology play a key role in disrupting the market?
your comments pls
That’s a very good question.
I have high hopes and confidence in INDmoney. They’ve got the right team and skill to become the next big thing in the next five years. I can see several different apps that could replace Groww which of course includes INDmoney.
I had high hopes for an app called FirstStock when I first heard about them, but they’ve lost track since.
But Zerodha, they are not replaceable by any fintech app anytime soon. They are simple, not unconcerned about their competitors and super focused on their customers. Smallcase is going to be extremely popular among young investors when they finally realize picking individual stocks without investing in a diversified fund is a risk no one should take.
I have zero hope on Advisory services.
Lastly, Artificial intelligence is going to be the key feature in the Fintech space. Any app that is utilizing AI and ML to assist/advise investors and reduce friction between investors and investment instruments is going to win big.
Great to read your in depth analysis. I appreciate your work.
Apart from investing/ trading apps, can you also recommend best investment advisers like Value Research, Prime Investor or any others in the field.