Action Launcher 3 gets update to support icon packs

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When the new Action Launcher 3 was released last week, much was made about the support for things like themes and Material support that would match colors to a user’s wallpaper. Inexplicably, support for icon packs was not included. Developer Chris Lacy has corrected that with an update released to the Google Play Store that will help users customize their icons.
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Action Launcher 3 now available in the Play Store

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Last week developer Chris Lacy took to Google+ to announce the forthcoming release of an update for his Android Launcher. As part of that announcement, Lacy made it known that the app would be a paid app due to the extensive overhaul he gave the launcher. Along with the release of Action Launcher 3, the predecessor Action Launcher 2 is being re-released as a paid app for new users. The apps are now available in the Google Play Store for anyone interested in giving them a try.
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Flow Home tries to re-imagine the Android homescreen

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Android developer Larva Labs is taking a stab at re-inventing the homescreen on Android devices with an interface called Flow Home. The idea behind Flow Home is to get rid of all the small icons and tapping and swiping users engage in when using an Android device. Instead, the Flow Home interface pulls information out of the apps and shows it right on the homescreen.
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Nova Launcher Beta updated to include new drawer animations

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Nova Launcher Beta has been updated once again, this time bringing new app drawer animations among a lot of other bug fixes. Some of the new animations included are circular opening, slide up motion, and a lot more. In addition,app drawer search now shows recently installed and updated apps without search query.

To download the beta, you have to be part of Nova’s beta community. To do that, head to the Google+ community, add yourself, opt-in to the beta program on Google Play, and finally download the beta from Google Play.

You can check out download links and a changelog past the break.


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Wear Mini Launcher gets an update and moves from Alpha to Beta

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Developer Nicolas Pomepuy has been quickly working to improve the Android Wear experience through a custom launcher, Wear Mini Launcher, for Wear-based devices. He already released an alpha version of the app for testers to try out and has been providing updates over the course of the past couple weeks. Now, the Wear Mini Launcher app has moved to the beta stage.
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Nova Launcher gets Android L-style visual tweaks

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Nova Launcher is one of the best third-party launchers available, and today’s update makes it even better. The latest stable update brings some visual flair from the Android L developer preview, including different animations and theme tweaks.

There’s a new animation option for opening and leaving apps called slide up, which causes apps to appear from the bottom of the screen like they do in Android L. Many of the default theme elements have adopted the same aesthetic, including the Google search bar and the app drawer icon. The folder icon previews can now use Android L style grouping, too.
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Here are the top functions and apps available on Android that are NOT on iOS

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Because there are so many different Android devices (and so many variants of those individual devices), developers tend to begin programming their apps on iOS before putting together the resources (and endless hours) to begin porting their creations to Android.

Developing for Android is an arduous task, and Google knows it. That’s why the company will soon be making a concerted effort to streamline the development process. Google has also pushed manufacturers/carriers to stay as close to stock Android as possible by criticizing bloatware and OEM custom skins. But with different phones running different processors, having different amounts of RAM, different screen sizes/resolutions, etc., it’s tough to make sure an app will work seamlessly across the platform, no matter what Google does to ease the process. Android’s vast device offering can be seen as a major strength (and something that has led the platform to be an industry leader in market share) but it’s also been a weakness from the development side.


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Nova Launcher update brings “OK, Google” hotword and slight design fixes from the beta

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One of everyone’s favorite Android launchers is receiving an update that puts it even closer to the stock launcher. Nova Launcher’s latest update adds the “OK, Google” hotword commonly found with the Google Experience Launcher. This feature requires Android 4.1 or higher and a device than can sit in low power consumption while listening (as not all devices can do so). Another addition is the fixes, tweaks, and changes made within the beta version of Nova Launcher. They have all been brought over to the stable release in the Play Store.

Hit the break for download links.
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GO Launcher EX updated to version 5 with new flat theme and features

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GO Launcher EX is one of the most fully-featured third party launchers you’ll find on the Play Store, even if it can be a little bloated at times. The GO Dev team has updated the launcher to version 5 that comes with a handful of new features and a flattened interface design that’s all the rage with design teams right now.

The app now has “smart cards” that function pretty similarly to smart assistants or Google Now, plus a new GO Panel that gives you quick access to frequently used apps and features. The entire interface has also adopted a flat theme, which honestly does look quite a bit like something forked from TouchWiz. If you’re a fan of Samsung’s new TouchWiz design, you’ll probably like this new interface, but if you don’t like TouchWiz, nothing here is going to change your mind.
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