So you own an Android handset and harp the level of customisation you can achieve with the device among your iPhone owning friends. But, there is a catch. Neither you are comfortable rooting your device or installing custom ROMs, nor have the required expertise. No need to feel disappointed though as there are tons of apps available on Android market, which let you customise almost everything in your device. Custom diallers, SMS clients, homescreen launchers, lock menu, you just name it and it’s there in the market. Installation is pretty easy too. You just need to download the app and customise it after automatic installation and that’s it! However, today we are going to talk about four best homescreen replacements you can get for your phone. Here is our list of the best.
1. GO Launcher EX
Requirement: Android v2.0 minimum
Developer: GO Dev Team
GO Launcher EX is a recently developed launcher by Go dev team and if you go by the sheer number of customisation options available, it’s the best we have seen so far. The GO dev team is already famous for their Go dialler, Go keyboard and Go SMS client and addition of a homescreen replacement actually completes the customisation scene.
The Go launcher nearly levels on extremes of customisation so much that you can actually spend hours over it to get right mix of everything according to your taste without getting bored. There are so many preference selections available ranging from Display, Screen, Dock, App Drawer, Operation, Advanced, Theme settings etc that the developers have scored one fan in us already!
Task killer has been provided inbuilt with the launcher, available in some 5 sizes, you can use according to your screen real estate. Hence, no need to drain your battery by keeping a taskmanager running all the time when GO taskmanager can do the same with just one tap, any time.
2. SPB Shell 3D
Price: Rs. 768.47
Requirement: Android v2.1 minimum
Developer: SPB software
If you are a 3D FX fan, then you can also check out SPB Shell 3D homescreen replacement. Touted as next gen UI, the application shell relies on a 3D homescreen engine to generate amazing effects, along with smart folders, 3D widgets and plethora of other customisation options.
The 3D engine runs like a charm and live screen animation creates a truly wowing experience. However, this customization option will set you back by Rs. 768 as this app is available in paid version only.
Price: Free (Rs. 179.39 for Plus version)
Requires: Android v2.0 minimum
Developer: Federico Carnales
With more than 5 million downloads, this app easily counts among the most downloaded from the Android Market. Boasting of a slick interface and tons of features, the app is available in both paid as well as slightly stripped down lite version.
Launcher Pro comes armed with features like screen panel management, scrollable widgets with third party app support, transition effects and so on. Scrolling between screens is a breeze, even with lots of apps on screen panels. The app is tried and tested by millions of users now, who swore by its stability and ease of use. Still, as a precaution, you can also backup all your settings to SD card if something does awry.
The LauncherPro is a free app but you'll have to shell out Rs. 179 if you want to go for the Plus version.
Price: Free (Rs 149.80 for EX version)
Requires: Android v2.0 minimum
If LauncherPro doesn't excite you enough, you may check out ADW launcher, which has established itself as a worthy alternative. ADW launcher heavily stresses on the wow factor to attract the users who are more into enjoying the aesthetics of UI.
Hence, if you want some UI which does your bidding with snap of a button, then ADW launcher isn't for you. ADW comes across as somewhat more customisable than LauncherPro but the biggest advantage of ADW launcher is the huge amount of themes available for it. It's more configurable than LauncherPro -- but having said that, most of the preferences make no sense at all unless you first read the guide. ADW also has gestures; as in you can swipe up or down on the home screen to launch apps or make calls. You can't swipe icons like LauncherPro, though.
The ADW Launcher is available for free from Android Market for free. There is an EX version available too, which goes for Rs 149.80 and adds more transition effects and more app drawer styles.