If you are an Android user and want to customize your smartphone according to mood and style, perhaps the best way is to install third party launchers. These apps allow you to take advantage of tons of custom Android themes and icons, as well as offering near complete control over how your phone performs when switching screens, launching apps and more.
We have sorted out and enlisted top 5 Android Launchers for you to have full control on your smartphone looks.
Zen UI, developed by Asus, is a launcher that lies just in between the low-end launchers with bunch of ads and the more complicated and enthusiast launchers.
It is intuitive, customizable and has possibly the most impressive selection of icon packs and themes of any product on the list. This could be your best entry point into the world of launchers.
You can use ZenUI free of cost and it is compatible with Android 4.3 and above, whereas it is 22 MB in size. The launcher will install three Zen-specific shortcuts on your home screen that can be removed easily, if you don’t like.
It does include a security app, CM Applock, to prevent unwanted users from accessing certain content. This component can be used with an ‘intruder-selfie’ function which employs your phone’s front-facing camera to snap a picture of a person trying to enter the app. This only works if the person has a failed attempt at opening the app first, before getting inside.
You can adjust the home screen grid size, transitional animations for moving between home screens (the ‘accordion’ one is particularly nice) – you can even theme the folders.
Click here to download ZenUI Launcher.
Smart Launcher Pro 3
Smart Launcher Pro 3 begins with a short setup procedure where you are asked for your preferred dialer app, music app and photo app from those you have installed. Select them, hit start, and you’ll be dropped into a single home screen populated by six apps, some of which were determined in the previous steps.
A swipe left brings up an organized app drawer (organised automatically, you can’t change the order) and swipe right brings up several screens designed for widgets.
That’s it. A single home screen with six apps. You can increase the number of these apps or remove existing ones, as well as customize what they do. But, crucially, you can’t add more home screens.
Smart Launcher Pro 3 implements a handful of functions to make single home screen usage easier. You can use a single tap for one action or a double tap for another. This is a great way to save space on the home screen because each app button has the potential to open two apps!
How about making your dialer app open in one tap, and making contacts appear with a double tap? Or you might consider launching WhatsApp with one tap, and Facebook Messenger with a double? Maybe a single touch on the camera icon will launch your camera app, while tapping twice could start Instagram?
You can also customize how the app drawer looks in several interesting ways. It defaults to a flower-petal setup: six apps in a circle. But you can change it to a Simple Grid, Honeycomb or Arch style. This gathers apps in a non-linear format which climbs up the side of your display. It looks organic and very cool.
Smart Launcher Pro 3 supports free and premium themes. But I’d say its focus is more on usability than style. If you want to redefine the way you use your phone and optimize for ease-of-use, give this one a try. The Pro version will cost you in PKR 350 while you can use the free version as well.
Click here to download Smart Launcher Pro 3.
The undisputed king of alternate Android launchers, Nova Launcher, holds a spot on nearly everyone’s smartphone. With over five million Play Store downloads, its fans can’t be wrong. It offers an accessible and functional entry point into the world of launchers.
A new feature called ‘icon normalization’ has become a fan-favorite, and uses surprisingly complex algorithms to make sure all your icons cover a consistent area of the screen. What this means is that rather than simply fitting the icons within equally sized frames, they are scaled to cover the same area, regardless of shape, making them far more appealing to look at.
Click here to download Nova Launcher.
Google Now gives you a search box at the top of your home screen. You can perform search option in much faster way instead of opening Chrome or another web browser for a query. You can either type or use voice commands to get started
Besides getting faster searches from the Google Now launcher, you get a clean, uncluttered experience. The icons are spaced apart well, your apps can be sorted into logical categories and the home screen can be changed by pressing down on the ample blank space.
If you swipe right from your home screen you can see Google Now cards. You can customize these cards to get movie times, sport scores, news or the weather. Enabling location services will make these cards even more effective, although you will lose some of your privacy.
Click here to download Google Now Launcher.
If you are looking for an alternate launcher having no load on your smartphone’s RAM then try Hola Launcher. It is really light weight, just 3 MB in size, making it quick to download and easy to install.
Hola Launcher is designed to minimize its memory usage thus keeping your smartphone fast and responsive not compromising on your daily needs. Not only this but Hola Launcher is equipped with a clean and simple interface letting you customize your smartphone with beautiful themes and wallpapers.
I personally like the number 1 of my list, ZenUI Launcher. Which one is your favourite? Use Comment Box to post your views.