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Which Android launcher are you using?

Posted: , by Daniel P.

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Which Android launcher are you using?
Besides the ability to swap the stock keyboard, messaging, or just about any kind of default apps that come with your phone, with different ones you download from the Play Store, Android gives you the option to change the whole interface layout with the so-called "launchers". These are a comprehensive combo of homescreen and app drawer arrangements, complete with their own icon packs, notification bar design, and a smorgasbord of functions and themes that your manufacturer overlay might be lacking, like a landscape UI mode, for instance.

Needless to say, not everybody is satisfied with TouchWiz, Sense, Optimus, Xperia, Emotion, Vibe, Color, or the other manufacturer-supplied user interfaces that come with our handsets, so they turn to third party solutions. We recently rounded up some of the best Android launchers, and, without pretending that the list is exhaustive, wanted to ask you which launcher is dearest to your heart, if you are always loading new launchers, or whether you are using a third-party launcher at all. Take your pick in the poll below, and throw some arguments behind it in the comments.

Phonearena polls
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Which Android launcher are you using?
37.27%
2001 votes
(2001 votes) I use the stock launcher that came with my phone
4.41%
237 votes
(237 votes) I am constantly switching launchers
4.19%
225 votes
(225 votes) GO Launcher EX
27.7%
1487 votes
(1487 votes) NOVA Launcher
4.3%
231 votes
(231 votes) Apex Launcher
1.49%
80 votes
(80 votes) Smart Launcher 2
1.17%
63 votes
(63 votes) Mi Launcher
0.91%
49 votes
(49 votes) Dodol Launcher
1.27%
68 votes
(68 votes) Action Launcher
0.8%
43 votes
(43 votes) Solo Launcher
1.62%
87 votes
(87 votes) Buzz Launcher
0.39%
21 votes
(21 votes) EverythingMe Launcher
0.99%
53 votes
(53 votes) Launcher 8
0.56%
30 votes
(30 votes) Themer Beta
2.14%
115 votes
(115 votes) KK Launcher
0.89%
48 votes
(48 votes) Next Launcher 3D Shell
0.35%
19 votes
(19 votes) Atom Launcher
1.29%
69 votes
(69 votes) Nokia Z Launcher
3.48%
187 votes
(187 votes) Aviate
4.77%
256 votes
(256 votes) Other

5369 votes

81 Comments
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posted on 17 Jul 2014, 06:28 9

1. aayupanday (Posts: 527; Member since: 28 Jun 2012)


Nova's probably the best option other than stock Android IMO.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 06:38 9

5. CoastCity (Posts: 140; Member since: 07 Mar 2014)


Nova was good for me also but Apex is a bit lighter and lets me resize my icons and make them smaller. If I can't resize icons, what's the use of more rows and columns? The get crammed

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:00 3

10. ihavenoname (Posts: 1521; Member since: 18 Aug 2013)


I'm rocking Apex also. I tried Nova, but went back immediately.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:26 2

19. RebelwithoutaClue (Posts: 1191; Member since: 05 Apr 2013)


The newest version of Nova lets you resize icons :)

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:31 3

22. LikeMyself (Posts: 302; Member since: 23 Sep 2013)


Apex is lighter with most goodies of Nova, but neater and it also allows gesture movements like swipe up or down options for free unlike Nova! Apex rocking on all my Android devices after trying tens of launchers!

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 09:52 3

49. CoastCity (Posts: 140; Member since: 07 Mar 2014)


Only in the paid edition ツ

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 08:17

36. SuperAndroidEvo (Posts: 4417; Member since: 15 Apr 2011)


I have tried Apex, & it's good, but Nova in my opinion is smoother & has WAY more features. I use Nova Prime on my rooted Samsung Galaxy Note 3.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 09:55 3

50. steedsofwar (Posts: 288; Member since: 07 Oct 2013)


That's right Apex is so much more responsive with the new updates as compared to Nova. Especially if you enable 'alpha effect' the homescreen transitions just look more graceful and smoother.

Plus, it's free version has everything you could want without being forced to pay like Nova.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 08:33

38. UglyFrank (Posts: 581; Member since: 23 Jan 2014)


The gestures e.g. Double tap/swipe down made nova great, so intuitive.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 09:15 2

45. Synack (Posts: 669; Member since: 05 Jul 2011)


Shame on you who use the stock launcher on your phones (except Nexus and GPE phones)

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 09:56

51. steedsofwar (Posts: 288; Member since: 07 Oct 2013)


ROFLMHO

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 15:50 3

66. Blazers (Posts: 246; Member since: 05 Dec 2011)


Dude, you do realize that a majority of people don't care about completely changing the look of their phone. We are a minority.

For most, as long as they can change their wallpaper and ringtone, that's good enough for them.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 14:37 1

65. Arte-8800 (banned) (Posts: 4562; Member since: 13 Mar 2014)


Using Apex launcher

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 06:28 5

2. hmd74 (Posts: 390; Member since: 31 Jan 2013)


Once again there's no Google Now Launcher?
shame on u PA

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 06:45 1

7. ArtSim98 (Posts: 3316; Member since: 21 Dec 2012)


I can't even find Google Now Launcher on Google Play. Either can I find Nokia Z launcher. Some regional thing?

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:22

18. hmd74 (Posts: 390; Member since: 31 Jan 2013)


Maybe...
but the APK is everywhere :D
btw i don't have access to Google Play AT ALL :|

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:53

32. ArtSim98 (Posts: 3316; Member since: 21 Dec 2012)


wtf? You live in North Korea? lol

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:27

21. RebelwithoutaClue (Posts: 1191; Member since: 05 Apr 2013)


https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.google.android.launcher

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:47 1

29. ArtSim98 (Posts: 3316; Member since: 21 Dec 2012)


Aa so it's only for Nexus and GPE

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 09:09

44. BREvenson (Posts: 214; Member since: 17 May 2012)


Also works if you are running certain 4.4 ROMs, I have AOSB running on my Atrix HD and the Google Now Launcher is preinstalled. Of course, you can use alternatives (Apex is my pick at the moment) but the Google launcher is satisfactory for the most part.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 06:33

3. Settings (Posts: 706; Member since: 02 Jul 2014)


Can GO Launcher really be trusted?

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 06:42 1

6. ArtSim98 (Posts: 3316; Member since: 21 Dec 2012)


Why couldn't it?

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 09:48 1

48. Settings (Posts: 706; Member since: 02 Jul 2014)


Because of its data mining. They outsource your personal data to the ad companies.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:10

14. CoastCity (Posts: 140; Member since: 07 Mar 2014)


I don't know about trusting it but It's heavier than most

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:33 1

25. LikeMyself (Posts: 302; Member since: 23 Sep 2013)


It's like the TouchWiz version of custom launchers eating more RAM than necessary, but it can be trusted and the devs like most of the others are good people!

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 11:37

60. thesims2customs (Posts: 21; Member since: 12 Jul 2014)


Yeah, with so many animation and themes.
But I'd rather choose Aviate.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 21:19

74. Firedrops (Posts: 215; Member since: 06 Sep 2011)


Personally I wouldn't have any of GO's stuff on my phone.

Besides the possible data mining aspects, they're just so heavy and ad-laden, asking you to install shady apps for "gold".

Personalisation by the end-user is rather limited, too.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 06:37 4

4. Bjray (Posts: 105; Member since: 29 May 2014)


I'm using the Google Now Launcher (it's not an option?).

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 06:58 4

8. jmill75 (Posts: 20; Member since: 22 Jul 2009)


Yes they left out one of the best option in my opinion.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:02

12. techspace (Posts: 778; Member since: 03 Sep 2012)


that's okay...it comes under the first or the last option.
i have tried all those launchers(like many other android users) and right now, i am using go launcher, just for a change and as we all know, it's very customizable....it's very difficult to say which one is the best but i keep going back to google now launcher all the time(the only problem with google now launcher is that it's not very customizable)

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 06:58

9. maherk (Posts: 1208; Member since: 10 Feb 2012)


I am using the theme manager found in the Alliance Rom on my Galaxy S5. Best thing ever, bunch of themes, highly customizable, and super smooth.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:00

11. jellmoo (Posts: 704; Member since: 31 Oct 2011)


I'm always switching launchers. I'll use one for a while, then find some littler thing I don't like, and feel the need to switch. I'd be happy with the Google Now Launcher or Nova/Apex if I didn't hate they way they handled folders...

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:06

13. Dnev1 (Posts: 1; Member since: 17 Jul 2014)


Zeam Launcher is the smallest and fastest in my opinion. I've used it on my Galaxy and now on my Nexus 5. I originally needed it with my unusually slow Droid X, and haven't looked back.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:13

15. jellmoo (Posts: 704; Member since: 31 Oct 2011)


Didn't development on Zeam stop though? I think the dev has put his effort into SickSky.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:13

16. jibraihimi (Posts: 695; Member since: 29 Nov 2011)


At present i am settled at adw launcher ex, but will change it soon, as no dev support for it... But i also have Nova launcher prime, apex launcher and next launcher 3d's apk on my phone....

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:16 2

17. Bison (Posts: 7; Member since: 23 Jun 2014)


It lacks the best and the more customizable launcher : Lightning Launcher

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:26

20. alrightihatepickingusernames (Posts: 440; Member since: 29 Dec 2013)


I don't use it anymore because the lack of transition effects but it is a fantastic launcher. Glaring omission PA.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:32 1

23. heutsm (Posts: 2; Member since: 17 Jul 2014)


Fast, smooth and very customizable: Next launcher 3d. Very nice transitions of homescreens also.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:36

27. alrightihatepickingusernames (Posts: 440; Member since: 29 Dec 2013)


But for $16!? I want to try it but any launcher is worth $4.99 at the most for me.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:43

28. heutsm (Posts: 2; Member since: 17 Jul 2014)


True. Light version is for free. I bought the launcher, althoug for less than $16. Can't imagine I spend that much money for a launcher...

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:33

24. Ceffmhico (Posts: 13; Member since: 17 Jul 2014)


I use TSF 3D Launcher on my Lg G2! :D

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:34

26. alrightihatepickingusernames (Posts: 440; Member since: 29 Dec 2013)


The Google Now launcher is great but with a 4x4 grid the icons are too big and there's so much wasted space. I usually switch between Nova and Apex using a 5x5 grid instead. I'm more partial to Nova due to the abundance of transition effects, and icon packs are less of a hassle in my experience.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:49

30. nasznjoka (Posts: 360; Member since: 05 Oct 2012)


Nova and smart home 2

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:52

31. Tritinum (Posts: 280; Member since: 06 May 2014)


Nova!

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 07:59

33. PressStart (Posts: 118; Member since: 08 Apr 2014)


I highly recommend KK Launcher. I've tried a few other launchers and I don't get bloatware thrown at me, with KK, its very minimal. It feels "clean." Only thing is, the free version had a better rating than the paid version, I believe. I'm still using the free version after several months and I'm satisfied still. I think I will take a chance to unlock some features and upgrade soon.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 08:02

34. livyatan (Posts: 753; Member since: 19 Jun 2013)


I don't see the deal with NOVA launcher.

GO Launcher is simply better.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 08:04 1

35. nlbates66 (Posts: 314; Member since: 15 Aug 2012)


40% using the stock launcher, that means a lot of people still using touchwiz launcher :-) I usually found that one fine myself but I only picked action launcher because I like swiping an applist in from the side.

*awaits flames*

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 08:23 1

37. b1acktiger (Posts: 210; Member since: 19 May 2012)


No launcher is beautiful and funtional than HTC Sense

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 08:42

39. Darkerm (Posts: 216; Member since: 31 Jan 2012)


Sony's Xperia Launcher is the best (y)
I love my Xperia S

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 08:44

40. Dejavu_LT (Posts: 24; Member since: 11 Jun 2012)


Stock sense 6 :) It's lighweight, beautiful and super fast :)

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 08:48

41. doubler86 (Posts: 320; Member since: 26 Jan 2011)


There are other Launchers besides Nova?

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 09:00

42. PapaSmurf (Posts: 8922; Member since: 14 May 2012)


....... Wow.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 09:04

43. Klamba92 (Posts: 206; Member since: 25 Jun 2012)


Right now using Themer love the ease of use with changing the whole homescreen with one click! But i find myself going back to old reliable Nova launcher every now and then!

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 09:16

46. tokuzumi (Posts: 348; Member since: 27 Aug 2009)


No option for the Google Now Launcher? I side loaded it onto my S4, and I use it on my Nexus 7.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 09:46

47. Takeharu (Posts: 82; Member since: 28 Oct 2013)


I'm using Trebuchet that came with my rom (CM11) and I'm fine with it...

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 10:13

52. gaara6775 (Posts: 517; Member since: 20 May 2014)


Nothing comes close to Next Launcher 3D.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 10:16

53. foreverjin08 (Posts: 34; Member since: 10 Sep 2013)


I like inspire launcher. Easy fast and convenient. Launcher 8 is also very flexible to customize.

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 10:28

54. kkmkk (Posts: 109; Member since: 06 May 2013)


personally i change my device launcher every 2 weeks but for the most part i use nova it is super fast and smooth with dozens of options . launcher 8 is also great :-)

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 10:36

55. ryan5609 (Posts: 99; Member since: 01 Nov 2011)


Heavily modified stock launcher. Xposed/Gravity Box/Other Modules

posted on 17 Jul 2014, 10:38

56. isprobi (Posts: 230; Member since: 30 May 2011)


I have tried a few launchers over the years and some have nice features. But none of them seem to run as smoothly as the one that came on the phone. The one on my Sony Xperia Z Ultra works in portrait and landscape and seems to be a fairly light skin compared to Samsung I had before. So I see no real need to change it.

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