When you buy a brand new Android smart phone, then you do not have to worry about any malicious apps installed on it as the reputed manufacturers check everything properly. But when buying from third party distributors or getting second hand products from ebay, you will always stay suspicious whether they accidentally sent you a phone with questionable app installed. Even though these apps may not be malicious in nature, they could be adware and flood your phone screen with advertisements. Just like you would on a Windows PC, you can now scan your Android device using the VirusTotal multi-antivirus scanner.
The VirusTotal for Android is a simple app that enumerates all the runnings apps and services on your smart phone and checks their file hashes or signatures on the VirusTotal server to determine whether they are malicious in nature or not. All the clean items are shown with a green Android logo, unknown ones are assigned a question mark while the malicious items are shown in red Android icon.
It scans both the user installed apps as well as the system apps. The user installed apps are the ones that you have downloaded from the Google Play Store while the system apps include the apps that are necessary for Android operating system to work.
Selecting any of the apps in either the user apps list or the system apps list will display its detection ratio. If the app has not been previously scanned (the ones with question mark icons), then they are uploaded to VirusTotal for scanning. For each of the apps, you can see both the summary of scan as well as detailed detection statistics.
Conclusion: VirusTotal can act as a supplement for already installed anti-virus app on your Android device and can save you from becoming a victim of malicious apps. The VirusTotal for Android app can scan both the user installed and system apps and provide you with detection results in seconds.
You can get the VirusTotal for Android app from https://www.virustotal.com/en/documentation/mobile-applications/.