If used correctly, guitar tabs can be an excellent resource for guitar players whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned professional.
Whether you’re a new player trying to learn how to play a song, or a professional who just wants to have a database of guitar tabs to reference, having a guitar tab app for your mobile device is essential.
In this article, I’ll be taking a look at the 9 best guitar tab apps for iOS and Android.
Don’t have time to read this guide? Here are the 8 best guitar tab apps for iOS and Android
- Ultimate Guitar Tabs & Chords
- Guitar Pro
- Guitar Lessons by Guitar Tricks
- GuitarTab – Tabs & Chords
- Guitar Tabs & Chords
- Guitar Tab Player
- Tux Guitar
Songsterr is quite possibly my favorite guitar tab app out there and my go-to whenever I’m trying to learn a new song.
Originally, Songsterr was exclusively a guitar tab website, but has extended their platform to mobile so you can get your guitar tab fix on the go.
One of my favorite things about Songsterr is the overall look and user interface of the platform. When using it on my computer in a web browser, the layout is intuitive and everything just seemed to make sense.
The same holds true with their guitar tab app. Everything is simple to navigate and works exactly as you would expect.
What really makes Songsterr one of the best guitar tab apps out there is their interactive guitar tab player.
This easily allows you to find guitar tabs in their database and play them back so you can hear exactly what the song is supposed to sound like.
If you’re trying to learn how to play a new song, especially one that you haven’t heard before, it can be impossible just by looking at written guitar tabs due to the lack of time signature.
Having the interactive guitar tab allows you to see and hear the notes that are being played, so you can easily follow along.
They do offer a paid add-on which allows you to slow down the playback speed and isolate individual tracks for songs with multiple instrument parts.
This is definitely helpful for more difficult songs as it allows you to slow it down and process the notes that are being played. However, the free version is more than good enough for most people. The fact that the interactive guitar tab player itself is free is awesome considering this is a paid feature for most other guitar tab apps.
If you’ve been playing guitar for a while, then you have undoubtedly come across the Ultimate Guitar forum before.
Ultimate Guitar currently has the largest archive of guitar tabs and chords for songs on the internet.
As a result, the official Ultimate Guitar app for iOS and Android is one of the best guitar tab apps out there for those trying to learn new songs.
Their database currently has over 1.6 million different guitar tabs to choose from, so you’ll basically be able to find any song you’re looking for.
One thing to note is that all the tabs on this guitar tab app are user submitted. Since these are not official or professional guitar tabs, the accuracy can be hit or miss sometimes.
However, the Ultimate Guitar tab app does a good job of displaying user star reviews next to each song. This makes it much easier to sort out the good guitar tabs from the bad ones.
From my experience, if you stick to the guitar tabs with 4 or 5 star ratings, they are usually pretty accurate. Also, if you’re trying to learn a popular song, then the tabs are typically spot on because the song is so well documented.
For example, everyone knows how to play Stairway to Heaven, so you can bet that the guitar tabs out there are pretty accurate.
In terms of the actual interface of the app, it’s pretty solid. While I much prefer the overall look and feel of Songsterr, I think the Ultimate Guitar Tabs app does a decent job of displaying the tabs.
It’s very straight forward and basic. Also, if the song is in chord format instead of guitar tab format, then you’ll be able to see the lyrics of the song with the chords that you’re supposed to play on top.
There are options for more features and functionality, but you’ll have to pay for their premium monthly service.
My main issue with this app is that the interactive guitar tab player, similar to what you would find on Songsterr, requires you to pay for the monthly subscription. It’s fairly inexpensive at $20 for an entire year, but it’s a tough sell when Songsterr has their base interactive guitar tab player for free.
If you don’t pay for Ultimate Guitar’s pro service, then there’s not much you can do in the app. In addition, the amount of popups that try to sell you their pro service is pretty annoying after the 10th time they pitch it to you.
Guitar Pro is the industry standard when it comes to guitar tablature software. It was originally designed for the computer for composers to create their own guitar tabs that can be played back and shared.
Now, Guitar Pro is one of the best guitar tab apps out there.
The app allows you to view guitar tabs and play them back audibly. This makes it much easier to learn songs because you’ll have an idea of what it should sound like.
The interface is very intuitive and easy to use, allowing you to adjust playback speed, volume, and instrumental tracks.
One of the best features about this guitar tab is that there is a ton of support for it.
Since Guitar Pro is so well known among musicians, there are thousands of songs available in the Guitar Pro format.
The fact that most people use Guitar Pro as their default guitar tabbing software when they are writing music means that you’ll basically be able to find tabs for any song out there.
Guitar Pro allows you to upload guitar tab pro files directly to your iOS or Android device.
Simply download a Guitar Pro file from any popular guitar tab website on your computer, and upload it directly to your mobile device using the app’s feature.
Overall, Guitar Pro is definitely one the cleanest and most polished guitar tab apps out there.
If you’re trying to learn how to play your favorite songs, then why stop at just a “guitar tab app.”
Guitar Lessons by Guitar Tricks takes it to the next level by offering full guitar lesson video with professional instructors.
To be clear, this is not a typical guitar tab app like the rest of this list where it’s essentially just a database of guitar tabs.
Of course, they do have guitar tabs for thousands of songs. They just have full on guitar lesson videos to accompany the tabs.
For this reason,
If you’re a beginner, then sometimes just having guitar tabs in front of you isn’t enough to help you learn a song.
There are a lot of nuances including strum patterns, picking techniques, finger shapes and time signatures that don’t translate well in typical guitar tablature.
Therefore, having a professional instructor actually teaching you how to play the song alongside the guitar tabs is SUPER helpful.
GuitarTab – Tabs & Chords is one of my personal favorite guitar tab apps on the market.
In terms of functionality, it’s on par with the rest of the apps on this list.
But the main reason I like it is for it’s playback options and overall versatility.
With this guitar tab app, you’ll have access to a database of over 80,000 different guitar and bass tabs.
This app reads Guitar Pro files, so you’ll essentially have access to an unlimited number of songs since you’ll be able to download these tab files online and import them.
It has the typical playback option that you would expect which allows you to audibly hear how the tabs are supposed to sound with midi instruments.
However, you’ll also be able to transpose the guitar tab time and convert it to a pure text format.
For more experienced players who just need to have a quick glance and don’t need to play along with it, this is much faster because you can see the more of the song on a page with minimal scrolling.
On the other hand, if you’re a complete beginner, having the playback option is nice. But in addition to the regular guitar tab playback, the app also pulls in YouTube guitar lessons for select songs, which is a great feature to have.
Yousician takes guitar tab apps to the next level by making the guitar tabs interactive like a video game.
Yousician is meant to be a way to help you learn guitar by actually listening to you play and giving real time feedback based on your performance.
Rather than just being a way to to display your guitar tabs, Yousician actually teaches you how to play the song.
In this regard, it’s basically a form of online guitar lessons, similar to
If you’re a beginner and are looking for a guitar tab help to help you learn new songs, Yousician is a great option.
The main issue with Yousican is that there is a limited selection of songs to choose from in the platform. They used to have a way to import your own songs, but that was removed due to copyright issues.
If you’re already an experienced player and just want a quick way to display your tabs, then you’ll probably want to go with a regular guitar tab app that allows you to download Guitar Pro files.
This guitar tab app is one of the highest rated music apps in the Apple App Store and Google Play Store.
And for good reason.
Most of the other apps of this list started as full on guitar tab websites and ported to mobile devices after.
While the other guitar tab apps are great, you can tell that the priority for these other companies still lies in their websites.
For Guitar Tabs & Chords, it is apparent that it was designed as an app intended for mobile devices first and foremost.
It offers all of the same functionality as the other apps on this list in terms of the playing back guitar tab files and chords for songs.
However, it takes it to the next level with useful features that are handy to have right on your phone including a guitar tuner and a chord bank that lets you quickly see the finger positions for common chords that you’ll need.
The interface is clean and intuitive, allowing you to navigate between the different app features relatively easily.
In terms of song selection, it’s on par with the others on this list, mainly because it basically reads the same guitar tab files as the other apps. It allows you to download tabs from the main sites on the web, so you’ll essentially have access to the same guitar tabs.
Guitar Tab Player
In App Purchases: No
Download Links: Android
Guitar Tab Player is exactly as the name suggests…
It’s simply an app that plays back guitar tab files. That’s it.
But its simplicity is the best part about using this guitar tab app. There aren’t a hundred different features that boggle down the user experience.
The app is meant to play back guitar tab apps to help you learn a song and does a great job at it.
It supports all versions of Guitar Pro files, so you’ll be able to download and playback pretty much any song you can imagine.
The interface is very clean, easy to use, and readable.
In terms of features, it has everything you would need including the ability to switch between tracks, adjust the volume of tracks, change playback speed and more.
If you’re someone who simply wants something to playback your guitar tab file and nothing else, then this app is a great pick.
By: Julian Casadesus
In App Purchases: No, but there is a paid Ad Free version
Download Links: Android
Tux Guitar is known by many as the premier free Guitar Pro alternative.
It was originally a completely open source guitar tabbing software available on the computer, but a mobile app had since been created to compete with Guitar Pro.
Like I mentioned, it’s completely free with no strings attached. No freemium subscription plans or in-app purchases to speak of.
In terms of features, it offers everything you would expect from Guitar Pro including the ability to view and playback guitar tabs.
Tux Guitar actually supports several different formats including Guitar Pro and PowerTab files, which is one thing it has over Guitar Pro.
Aside from that, it’s pretty much the Guitar Pro app, but for free. So if you’re using an Android phone and don’t want to pay, this is your best bet.
One thing about Tux Guitar is that it likely won’t get updated as frequently as Guitar Pro, since it’s an open source project rather than a large corporation.
Also, if you’re an iOS user, then it’s not available at this point in time.
Guitar tab apps are a great way to learn new songs on the go. Whether you’re on an iOS device or an Android device, you should be able to find something on this list that fits your needs as a player.
If you’re a beginner looking to learn new songs on the guitar, I would recommend looking at an actual guitar lesson app such as
If you’re an experienced player who’s just looking for as many new tabs as possible to reference, then I’d recommend something like Songsterr, since their database is enormous and the user interface of the app is excellent.
I hope you found this article helpful. Good luck playing!