We’ve talked a lot about LauncherPro, which even received an update today, but never really featured it in the spotlight. LauncherPro, as the name suggests, is a custom launcher that can be installed on your Android device to take the place of your built-in launcher. Whether you run the stock Android interface, TouchWiz, SenseUI, or any other interface, LauncherPro could offer you the option to customize the way your phone looks and runs. Available in both a free and paid version, ultimately it gives you control over your own interface, from customizing the look and number of homescreens to application dock behavior.
The most immediately noticeable thing about LauncherPro is that it’s…well, it’s fast. Especially after today’s update — now it’s really fast. My Epic, with its built-in TouchWiz, is a snappy phone. But instantly upon installing LauncherPro, the speed increase is impressive. Even on older, slower phones, LauncherPro makes the interface feel as snappy as any phone on the market. And with the newest update, you have several choices between transitions between homescreens, which is a very nice touch.
Beyond speed, LauncherPro brings one very impressive feature to your Android device: Customizability. Not only does this launcher allow you to choose how many homescreens you have, it gives you 100% control over the application dock — the quick-launch bar at the bottom of the screen. Which, I should mention, you get three sets of icons that you can scroll between. You can even set up a custom action for when you swipe up on the icon vs. simply tapping it. In addition to the homescreen customization, you can choose several options for the application drawer. You can enable a “3D” mode which makes it look as though icons are being rotated around a cube, as well as choose the number of columns to be displayed in both portrait and landscape modes.
If you are willing to pony up the $2.99 for the paid version — which, personally, I have found to be well worth it — you get the option of adding in some specialized widgets. There are about a dozen widgets specifically designed for the LauncherPro interface, from Facebook to calendar to the “People” speed-dial widget pictured below. It’s nice that LauncherPro has its own widgets, since you’ll lose any widgets that might have been built into your phone’s tailored UI. The options offered you are plentiful, though, and you should be able to make up for anything you’re losing from TouchWiz or SenseUI.
So what’s the bottom line? It’s free, try it. Even if you think you’re happy with the launcher interface built into your phone, it doesn’t cost anything to try out the lite version, and if you like it overall and want the extra features the paid version allows, the developer certainly deserves your $3. Let us know in the comments what you like and don’t.