Android home screens to make your phone more interesting


Your Android smartphone probably has a home screen that has evolved without much input from your side. There are also other screens that present your apps and settings, and can be selected as a home screen. This can all be changed with one of a number of Android home screen apps in the Google Play store. They all offer different approaches and some offer very different features. Jack Wallen listed five good ones in a Techrepublic article.

Nova Launcher is free and rated 4.5. The Prime version offers features like gesture support, unread counts, custom drawer groups, hiding of apps, icon swipes and added scroll effects. The free version offers icon themes, sub grid positioning, color controls, custom app drawer settings, an improved widget drawer, infinite scroll, backup/restore and a scrollable dock.

Power to spare

Smart Launcher 3 is ideal for less powerful devices, without sacrificing important features. Through the setup wizard, you can easily configure your default apps for music, phone, camera, photos, messages and browsing. The app also allows you to hide apps from the app drawer and integrate the lock screen into the launcher. This app has been downloaded by over 20 million users and is rated 4.5

Style it up

If it is style you’re after, ZenUI Launcher enables you to turn your home screen into exactly what you want and need, for free. One of its best features is the quick search on Apps, Contacts, Frequently Used and Trending. This one is also rated 4.5.

Time on your hands?

Only if you have time to spend on customization, look at Apex Launcher, rated 4.1. This one offers many settings, and even when you’ve customized it beyond recognition, it will not affect your device performance, which is typically the case with overboard home screen apps. This app allows you to fully customize your app drawer, which is not possible with many home screen apps.

Be popular

Most popular seems to be Go Launcher – 200 million users cannot all be wrong. This app is slicker than most and rated 4.5. Not only does it look good, it offers plenty of customizations and options. Once your screen is customized, you can also customize the app drawer, transitions, icons, fonts, gestures and app locks. The app includes a quick menu (three vertical dots in the bottom center) that gives you access to various settings and apps. The non-free version relieves you from adverts and adds a number of premium features like additional transitions/animations, secure app locking, wallpaper filters, a side dock and other additional gestures.

There’s plenty more in the Play store – if you have time to go through them. Hopefully Jack’s shortlist is where you will find the ideal home screen app for your Android device.


Anton Venter

Anton covered Google technology for over four years from the the city of Johannesburg in South Africa. He has reviewed mobiles and Android devices for a number of local blogs and magazines; Anton loves researching and numbers.

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