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If You had to Choose a Skin for Android, Which would It be?

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This video from the folks at The Verge that is floating around today, is simply put, hilarious. During the clip from their podcast, they interview a guy who goes by the name “Big Poppa Joe” and claims to be the biggest Samsung TouchWiz fan on Earth. Yeah, you may need to read that again. Someone who admits publicly to loving TouchWiz. He may just be a brilliant troll, but if you needed a good laugh as we head into the weekend, this one is worth a watch.

With that said, we would love to hear your thoughts on the rest of the OEM skins out there. I’m curious to know which you would choose if there was no other choice but to have a skin. Stock Android is gone for good, which skin would you choose and why? HTC’s Sense, Motorola’s Blur, Samsung’s TouchWiz or something else?

As of today, I would go with Blur. While it was complete garbage for a a year or two there, the latest version is not all that bad (assuming you like the color blue). With its built in MotoCast software, semi-customizable launcher, gradually improving camera software, and new lockscreen, it’s not half bad. My opinion may quickly change on this once I get my hands on the HTC One X and see Sense 4.0, but until then, as surprising as it may sound, I would go Blur.

  • I used to like touchwiz in the gingerbread days, but the ics touchwiz is horrid. I guess I’d go with blur too, however, as long as there’s availability, I’ll never own a device with a skin.

    • in the Gingerbread days?? I didn’t think TouchWiz was on any newer Android versions?

      • Evan Knofsky

        GSII has ICS now

      • There have been leaked touchwiz ICS builds for the SGSII. They did an incredible job of taking a beautiful OS and turning it into what looks like a unicorn taking a rainbow crap onto laucherpro running on gingerbread.

        • Hahaha! Oh sh*t, that sounds terrible. Are you still rockin’ the GSII, or did you grab a heavily customized ICS ROM; like the Charge has, to sort of mask the touchwiz elements?

          • I’ve got a GNex, actually, but a friend of mine had it. He decided to go with a touchwiz-free ICS rom. Not sure which, though. 

  • jonny6pak

    I would go with Blur.  For me, Motorola is the only company that really offers additional value through their skins and add-ons.  I thought TouchWiz might be awesome when I saw Samsung hype it for the GalaxyTab 10.1, but it wasn’t really helpful to me at all after I got the Tab.  However, my appreciation for Motorola’s work is mostly due to their implementation of Motocast, smart actions, and MotoActv, all of which I guess aren’t exactly Blur, but software items that come with Blur phones.  Even so, I found that the gingerbread version of Blur made the interface feel polished and a tiny bit more intuitive.  I would have actually purchased a Droid Razr instead of the Galaxy Nexus if it weren’t for the non-removable battery and the locked bootloader.  I absolutely need the ability to pop in a backup when I use my phone for work, and I enjoy geek activities.  I think Motorolla has some really great software features at the moment and I would be happy with a Razr Maxx if I had to replace my GNex.

  • Smooth918

    Blur, it’s all about The Blur cause I know the Ladies Love It 🙂

  • If no stock Android options were available, if every Android phone on the planet had a manufacturer skin, I’d go with Apple.

    I’m as big an Android fan as anyone, but the carriers screw it up. The bloat the devices, and lock them down. If I have to deal with a locked down device, I’m sorry, Apple’s OS is cleaner and less bloaty.

  • subiedude85

    My only exposure to skins is blur so my opinion must be taken with a grain of salt. I have become attached to motocast works flawlessly and is very helpful. The smart action options are spiffy as well with the ability to program phone settings by time and location or even events. That said, I do feel liberated for a while when I run a a custom rom without a skin but find myself reverting back after a few days because it may have some crap along with everything else, blur seems worth tolerating.

  • BSweetness

    I have to agree and go with Blur if I have to use a skin.  It’s evolved to be the least intrusive of all of the major OEM skins.

  • SH

    I’d say TW. 

    Its not as invasive as other overlays, and adds some really nice features that you can see incorporated into custom ROMS like CM9. (slide finger on statusbar to control brightness)

  • Guest

    4 Skin

    • Devilsephiroth

      My second favorite skin

  • Dane Butters

    I recently traded my Droid Bionic for an HTC Rezound, and I have to say, Sense 3.6 aint half bad.  I was really surprised, because the first thing I did with my Bionic was install a Blurless ROM, and my OG Droid and Xoom are both stock Android.  If you have to have a skin, take a look at Sense.  

  • Aburtson

    Make it a poll please!

  • Austinrgoebel

    I would go with htc sense, i had a droid x and razr, i cant stand to look at blur anymore, touch wiz is just stupid looking and makes me feel like im 5, so htc sense

  • Paul

    Definitely Blur. It’s not a heavy skin at all, it looks pretty good, and Smart Actions and MotoCast are great.

  • HTC Sense 4.0.  I’ve used it — part of why it works is because it’s the OEM recognizing that, no, it’s not as good as Google (or Apple) at designing a whole UI, and it should let the strong points of the OS shine through.

    Helps, of course, that the One S and One X are fast and feel good in the hand (especially the One S), but there’s also just HTC reserving its efforts for the camera app and other places where extra work really matters.


    • Lgreg64

      the ladies love the WIZ

  • Jeepguy04

    I choose Nexus Skin 🙂 because if sets it apart from all the hundreds of other phones released every year.

    If only manufacturers would see that having no skin is actually more unique and would set there phone apart more than having a custom skin. You would think that they would release 1 or 2 phones a year skinless and see how the sales compared to their others. That way they could give the diehard android fans what they want but still have crappy skinned versions for the average Joe.

    • tharealoc

      The question isn’t if you had to choose a skin or stock. Considering the nexus runs a base version of android by definition, there is no skin. so your answer is useless tolling because you are not choosing a skin but the base system.

      • trollinginthedeep

        Chill out dude, making a mistake is not useless trolling. Go cheat against your kids in Go Fish.

      • Jeepguy04

        How is stating my opinion that I don’t like skins trolling? Why do I have to pick one if I dislike them all?
        That’s like saying who do you want to be president? Obama or Romney? Can’t I answer neither or Santorum? 

        Its not like I’m coming to an android site talking about my icrap just to get a response from people. That is trolling. 

        • tharealoc

          It’s tolling because you aren’t answering the question, you are stating you don’t like any. Read the title…”If you HAD to choose….” taking your presidential example, If you don’t like the people on the ballot, and don’t have any interest either way on who wins, then it’s simple don’t vote.

          • trollinginthedeep

            Haha dude, shut up. 

          • Jeepguy04

            from wikipedia – In Internet slang, a troll is someone who posts inflammatory,[2] extraneous, or off-topic messages in an online community, such as an online discussion forum, chat room, or blog, with the primary intent of provoking readers into an emotional response[3] or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion.[4] 
            How does my post provoke an emotional response from you? 

            The topic is android manufacturer skins and which one you like. I said I don’t like them. Seems pretty much on topic to me. 

            But your post accusing me of trolling brought things off topic and provoked an emotional response. So seems to me your the one trolling.

          • tharealoc

            Ahh definitions…choose does not equal like. the question wasn’t which skin do you like it was if you had to choose. so for you to comment on liking stock is irrelevant to the topic of discussion. If the question posted was do you prefer stock android or skinned android and if so what do you like? then sure be my guest.. I love stock but that wasn’t the question posed.. SO with that i CHOOSE blur because it is the most similar to stock. If i am trolling, I am trolling the GNex fanboys…oh which btw I have a GNex i am selling…

    • Austinrgoebel

      Nexus is stock not a skin

      • Jeepguy04

        Yeah anybody who reads this site knows that. It was my way of saying I don’t like any skins. That is why in my second paragraph I say ‘skinless’.

        Nexus phones are so lusted over for the fact that they are one of the very few ways you can get a stock experience anymore. Funny how the manufactures trying to differentiate themselves actually caused a stock experience to be a bigger differentiator than any skin.

  • Theriem3

    Blur(Newest version ) hands down. All you really get from it is Icons, ICS blue color scheme, and Widgets. Love the screen transitions and blur apps (MotoCast, Smart Actions, Music Player )

    Sense has aged horrible and is WAY too intrusive
    and HUGE.

    Touchwiz is awful and cartoonish….. Just an ugly UI. It ruins there devices in my opinion

  • tharealoc

    Blur, I find it the most similar to stock

    • Paul

      Totally agree.

      • Lgreg64

        agree 100%

    • Dude

       Yeah, I used launcher pro all the time but I switched back to stock blur on my Bionic. Things run smoother. Launcher Pro would go to a black screen occasionally.

    • LiterofCola


  • YesI’mThatGuy

    Bros, way too many trolls in here. It’s a legit question.

    I’d go with Samsung 100 times out of 100. My Rezound right now is stock, and without any applications open, Sense is using 610 (!!) MB of RAM.

    • AlexKCMO

      I could not have put it better myself.  Ever since getting my Rezound, I miss Blur from my DX.  Sense is SO BLOATED.

      Even using a “clean” ROM, the bloat is almost out of control.  I feel like I don’t control my phone anymore. 

      I think my DX with CM7 could benchmark better than this thing with all the bloat.

      Ask me a month ago I’d tell you Blur is the worst, now it’s easily Sense.

      Blur is probably the best right now based on the time I spent playing with the Droid RAZR.

    • LionStone

      Bloated? My TB is stock and is running with 205 MB used and 297MB free, runs quick as when I first bought it…so is that what you mean by bloated?

    • balthuszar

      so you would go with samsung 100 times out of a 100, except that one time you bought a rezound?

  • Rodeojones000

    Can’t really answer this. My only two Android phones have been skinless- OG Droid and Nexus. My wife owns the Bionic, but she won’t let me use it out of fear that I’ll “mess with it.”

    • Jacob121791

      I get told that on a daily basis…..

      • Rodeojones000

        Good to know I’m not the only one.

        • LocBox

           Not at all..

    • Droidzilla

      My wife actually loves me messing with her device; she’s come to expect that I’ll tweak and theme it. I love that I can simply change a theme on her launcher and she feels like she got a brand new device through my ub3r h4x x-D

  • Liderc

    I’ve only owned the OG and the Nexus, but I’ve used both blur and sense.  I’d say I like sense the best over vanilla.  It feels more fresh and snappy than blur. 

  • After going D1 > Bionic > GNex, I feel like I’d rather go back to a rotary phone before having to deal with a skin again.

  • PC_Tool

    TouchWiz (The version found on the SGS2, with the launcher as modded by Frogger on XDA)

    The modded launcher allowed widget resizing, column/row changes, home placement, # and location of items on dock, themes….

    Note: Frogger is not correct…he uses “leet” spelling, and I can never remember which letters are substituted..

    The current TW4 launcher modded to work on the G’Nex functions, but I do miss the mods and landscape is borked…not to mention the lack of TW email, contacts, etc…which were all *greatly* improved over the TW version included on the SGS 1 (TW 3).

    TW4 and TW ICS is fast, beautiful, and actually *adds* useful features…

  • Kuboo99

    New Blur

  • MooleyBooleyTroll

    If Google adds it, it’s a feature. If a vendor adds it, it’s bloat.

    • Nevelos85

      I would go with blur as well because of the built in apps, to is too iphoney and sense is too much like a chubby fat girl who used to look good back in the day that had too many kids

    • Droidzilla

      You could also say, “If [insert ROM here] adds it, it’s a feature; if an OEM adds it, it’s bloat.”

  • BulletTooth_Tony

    Still sticking with Sense, although the newest TouchWiz on the GS2 is unobtrusive. Blur…. I just can’t get over their garbage gallery and terrible icons. It is much improved… but still has a ways to go.

    • tharealoc

      agreed that motorola’s gallery app is horrid, but that’s the beauty of android, the market errr..uhh play store…has many options to enhance user experience to their liking

      • BigEZ

        All the OEM galleries, and stock as well, suck. Quickpic is the best I’ve found, it syncs everytime you it and is very fast unlike the stock apps that wont show your newer pics or are very slow at syncing all of your new stuff. I still hope someone makes a gallery that supports sub folders, thats one feature thats missing on all gallery apps.

        • Droidzilla

          LOVE QuickPic! My RAZR was good out of the box; with themed GO Launcher EX (with widgets) and QuickPic, it’s pretty much perfect.

      • BulletTooth_Tony

        True. Easy fix. I answered as if it was to be used “stock” out of the box…

  • I’d definitely go with Blur, given the option (tho, WTF can’t they have it in black?) The launcher is decent now, and I love the social networking widgets/app.

  • My favorite skin? ICS by Google.

    • sc0rch3d

      my favorite skin is skin itself

  • STiK

    New Blur

  • ApplesNAndroids

    lol, always something with the Verge cast. Good people.

  • r0lct

    I see you trolling but you won’t catch me riding TouchWiz.

  • Lacokanostra

    Anyone who doesn’t say sense is a f ing idiot

    • John

      that’s a bit presumptuous

    • Rodeojones000

      Says the f ing idiot.

    • Billyrouth2000

      Why? BC people like phones that aren’t bloated and buggy

  • JayMM

    I’ve never had to use a skin. My only two Android phones have been the OG Droid & G-Nex. THANK GOD.

    • Ditto. 

      • Lgreg64

        that was not the question 

        • George

          They’re just being dicks. That’s like an iPhone owner commenting on this thread and saying “I have an iPhone so I can’t answer”.

          • LiterofCola


        • Definition of DITTO
          1: a thing mentioned previously or above —used to avoid repeating a word.Maybe your moronic comment should have been directed to the person above as I am in agreement with them. Also, you’re right, it’s not the question. It’s a statement. There’s be a question mark if it were one.

      • Guest

          I have an iPhone, so I can’t answer. 

    • Jdstell

      Same here.

    • jtwildman1

      Thus no reason to post.

      • LiterofCola

        Just about

    • ditto

    • dhirensavalia

      Same here. But if I had to choose, it would be MotoBlue… excuse me, MotoBlur

      • palomosan

        Really Kellex, Blur, that the ugliest skin that Android has.

        • Billyrouth2000

          Blur isn’t near as buggy as sense or touchwiz

    • Nick177th

      you have been blessed. I had an OG Droid and my kids bugged the hell out of me to upgrade. I fell to the pressure and Got a T-Bolt. I’m running a stock rom though. I hate skins.

  • greenblattsam

    Sense seems to be the most consistent out of all of the OEM skins.

  • Haloruler64

    …I’d actually go with TouchWiz 4. Though I’m not as nuts as that guy, I’m a big fan of it. It’s great compared to stock GB.

    • Nice troll. 

      • Haloruler64

        Not troll, just honest… it’s a lot better than GB, though AOKP is a lot better than TW. But I still enjoy TW a lot, it’s what I’m running happily on my SII.

  • It depends on the end user! For my parents and girlfriend, I would recommend Sense. It gives you the most useful widgets in the prettiest package!

    For me I would choose blur because it has a minimal effect on the appearance.  But then again I have a Gnex and would choose Vanilla any day of the week!

  • Jonathan Ofalla

    Before my Galaxy Nexus I owned an HTC Incredible.  I love HTC Sense.  My home screen is still somewhat modeled after the HTC Sense style.  

    I have to say though, the skins are getting better and better.  Maybe it’s the upped specs and better screens that are making the difference too.  But I’ve tried my friends’ TouchWiz phones and they look and feel good.  Maybe sluggish on the S1 but otherwise good.

    • Dain Laguna

      i agree here. touchwiz on my wife’s fascinate, and later on her charge, was buggy and laggy as hell. 

      a buddy of mine has a sprint Galaxy SII (the skyrocket i think?) and that thing is ultra smooth. interesting to see how ICS will work on it.

  • 4n1m4L

    cyanogen mod.

  • Dan

    I’d pick sense

  • Blur’s Launcher is complete crap but I love everything else about it.

    • Greg Morgan

      Agree, it definitely needs more customization options for the stock launcher.

  • Zebra

    I ran stock blur on my DX for a while before I got my GNex. I was surprised on how many things stock ICS was missing that blur had. So my vote goes to blur.

  • Motoblur for sure.

  • I would totally go for LG’s skin. that thing is so awesome. 

    • John


    • Lacokanostra

      Crack kills

  • Greg Morgan

    I think out of all of them, the newer blur is probably the best. I’ve used them all and find blur to be less annoying.

  • 3rd Party Launcher! but i am partial to the blur icons

  • ocdtrekkie

    I would take Ninjablur, easily. Some of Motorola’s recent work even successfully improves on stock, and it’s much less radical than it used to be.

    Sense is evil. I know this isn’t the requested information, but my LEAST favorite is Sense. It’s actually the only UI that would prevent me from buying a device. I’d take any other UI over Sense.

    • Lacokanostra

      Troll. Everyone knows sense is the best ..

      • ocdtrekkie

        The fact that Sense replacements for stock apps behave nothing like the stock apps in a cluttered and confusing fashion is positive to you?

        • AlexKCMO

          They replaced the stock people app with their own in ICS :-(.

      • nice troll flamer

      • Calvin Williams

        Sense is one of the worst.

      • Droidzilla

        It’s no longer 2010. True story.

      • Billyrouth2000

        Yep if you like a slow, bloated buggy pos

  • If I HAD to choose… Blur, definitely.

  • r0lct

    I agree, Blur until I see if Sense 4.0 is better.  However picking your poison is never a fun.

  • moelsen8

    i guess blur.  that would be a sad day.  still waiting to see how they screw up ice cream blurwich

  • Could you add a poll with options such as Sense 4.0 – (or other 2 recent versions) TouchWiiz moto thingy skin, and others if any

  • KleenDroid