History teaches us that the Green Revolution, White Revolution, et al are the milestones that changed the world. But, if we look deep into the Silicon Valley, we’ll hear whispers and rumors about people adding the “Application Revolution” in the books today.
Smartphones and Applications today, have really changed how we perceive and interact with technology today, and a lot of that gratitude should go towards companies like Google and Apple.
Talking about Google’s biggest product in the smartphone market, Android provides a top-notch user experience for customers (both tech-savvy, and the not-so-tech-savvy). But one of its biggest perks is the ability for users to change almost the entire look & feel of their smartphones.
One way to do this is to install Third-Party Launchers on your smartphones. Being open-source, and having the ability to re-design the system however one likes, Android comes with a plethora of Launchers
(Read as: Home-Screens alternatives to the native home-screen interfaces pre-installed on your smartphones).
Here, we bring to you a few of the best Android Launcher that you can install, to change the look and feel of your Android smartphones:
This has probably been on the market for more than 5 years now and is probably one of the smoothest too. It has more than 200 Million users around the globe and provides the maximum functionality and customization. GoLauncher is one home-screen alternative that could completely transform the look of your phone: from the home-screen to the dialler, to the notification drawer, to the control panel, too…Well, you get the point. It provides Millions of themes, hundreds of animations, thousands of wallpapers. But the best part about this launcher is that it is just 8MB’s to download, initially.
Download it for free to get more for very little.
If you’re not using a Google Nexus or a Moto smartphone, you still might wish to have the similar stock-Android experience that the native launchers there provide. Google Launcher comes to the rescue. It is the official Google’s own launcher, the exact same version used in the latest Marshmallow versions of the Android smartphone. It gives the exact same experience as that of a Google stock smartphone. Plus, it is free to download.
(Hint: Combine the official Google Keyboard app, Google Now App, and a few stock Google Apps to make your phone look completely like a stock Google Product). Plus, it is free to install and doesn’t take up a lot of storage.
iLauncher (Lite & Pro)
For those customers, the developers of the iLauncher have come out as a boon.
I myself have used the iLauncher in my previous Android smartphones, and trust me, you can never look back once you start using this. It is the perfect alternative for a home-screen that gives you the exact same experience as that of an iPhone. And add to this, the applications like Control Centre, Notification Centre, and iLocker, and at first look, even the most meticulous of the techies won’t be able to judge the difference.
This launcher comes with a Lite version that is free to install but doesn’t provide as many features as the Paid (Pro) version does.
Another alternative for the iLauncher, if you’re looking for the iPhone look, is the Espier Launcher. It is a great alternative but isn’t as smooth and realistic as the iLauncher. (I say this with utmost confidence, as I’ve spent my share of time, with both the launchers.)
Launcher 8 (WP Style)
Before talking about this, though, I would like to mention the Launcher 7. It has been discontinued from the Android Play-Store but gave an exact replica of the interface that the original Windows 7 smartphones provided. And, to be honest, although Launcher 8 is the best Windows phone launcher available today, I still miss the simplicity & the style of the previous version.
That being said, Windows Launcher 8 provides the most advanced style Windows launcher interface, along with a fully-usable LockScreen that is exactly the same as the original Windows LockScreen.
I used this on my previous Android Smartphones, and people actually came and asked me more than once, whether I liked using a Windows smartphone. So much so, that one person came to me and asked, “Hey, I didn’t know that Windows Phones could look that good!”
Thus, this is the best alternative for a homeScreen, if you’re looking for a clean, minimalistic, yet a powerful and HIGHLY-customizable interface. It comes free of charge, but also has a paid version, which provides a little more functionality than the free version.
These are my favorite launchers, that have been tried and tested and give out the most classic user-experience in any Android. Plus, they are so addictive that once you start using them, you would actually forget how your actual smartphone looked like.
However, these are the ones that completely change the look of your smartphones. If you’re looking for something more subtle, we also have a few other alternatives for the homeScreens that really deserve a special mention, and are worth a try:
TSF Shell 3D: This is a highly customizable 3D Interface, which brings in amazing Graphics to your homeScreen. The animations and the themes really make you fall in love with it, in no time.
Nova Launcher: The style of the Nova launcher is exactly the same as that of the GoLauncher. So, if you don’t want to rush in with the masses, this too, is a good alternative.
MiUi launcher: This launcher isn’t available on the regular Google Play Store, and you’ll have to find other means to download it. However, if you’re ready to go the extra mile to get this in your hands, trust me, it is worth the while. It is the official User Interface used in the Xiaomi smartphones, and you can also get it from their websites, although the entire process is a bit tedious. But, all being said, the amount of customization, clarity, functionality, and awesomeness that this launcher has, isn’t exactly fathomed by many others in the list.
With this, I really hope that you can find more than one alternatives for your new (or old) Android smartphones so that you would never feel bored with them.
But, if you ask me, my picks would be in the following order: WP launcher 8, iLauncher, MiUi.
Happy Binge Re-Designing!