Last week I had the chance to hang out with Kellen and Tim while I was visiting family in Portland. One of the things that we talked about was what it was like to be an Android enthusiast back in 2009 and on. Back then, Android was about rooting, installing custom ROMs and kernels, customizing your device, and pushing the limits of the hardware.
It was also about not using an iPhone; at the time the iPhone was considered the state of the art device, and it would arguably continue to be a superior overall package for several years. While the iPhone had more apps and a more established ecosystem, the Motorola Droid boasted both a physical and software keyboard, real multitasking (it’s hard to remember now, but the iPhone didn’t get real multitasking until iOS 4), a higher resolution camera with a flash, customizable home screens with widgets, expandable storage, and a user-replaceable battery. It was the antithesis of the iPhone in so many ways, and those of us that used it were proud to say we didn’t use iPhones.
As I was reflecting on this, I began to wonder what it means to be an Android enthusiast today. How much has changed and how much has stayed the same? Read on for my top five things Android enthusiasts care about in 2015. (more…)
Maybe somewhat surprisingly, Action Launcher 3, which was published last week, did not come with custom 3rd party icon pack support. Thanks to an update, which is now available through Google Play, users can now attach their very own icon packs to the launcher, as well as customize individual icons at their own discretion. (more…)
As we have seen with almost all other Google applications, Mountain View is breaking the Android TV system down, placing important apps right on Google Play, allowing for quicker updating and bug squashing. From the reviews on Google Play for Android TV Launcher, the newest Google app to hit Play, it appears a few users were experiencing nasty bugs with Android TV, now hoping that a new version of the launcher will fix the issues. (more…)
Chris Lacy is back, and this time, he has a completely rewritten and redesigned launcher app for the Android world. Titled Action Launcher 3, the app has been rewritten from the ground up, and wouldn’t you know it, a new pricing scheme has also been deployed.
Chris states that the update, “takes everything people really loved about Action Launcher in the past, mixes it with Google Now Launcher, and infuses it with Material Design.” Sounds like the ultimate 3rd party launcher to me. (more…)
Still one of our favorites, if not top favorite third party launcher, Nova Launcher, received a beta update today. Inside the update, users are treated to a new Lollipop app drawer option, giving off the same look and feel if your phone was running Android 5.0. (more…)
Was your interest by chance piqued when you saw Nokia’s Z Launcher running on the recently unveiled N1 tablet? If so, now is your chance to give it a whirl. The home screen replacement, now in beta, is now compatible with most modern Android devices (it was previously optimized only for the Galaxy S5, S4, S3, and Nexus 5).
A new update is available for Nova Launcher Beta through Google Play, bringing a few Lollipop features which can make any Android version user feel as if they are running Google’s latest.
The new animation can be found for opening folders, which goes on top of the already existing window animation which slides up from the bottom of the display. In addition, a Lollipop scroll indicator is included, as well as updated icon themes for the Calculator app, Contacts app, Downloads, Email, and many more.
Here is the full changelog. (more…)
Late last week, an update was pushed out to beta testers of Nova Launcher, and today, the changes that there were made for the beta group are now available in the newest public release for all to download. (more…)