One of the main reasons I prefer Android over other mobile operating systems is its customizability. I mean, you can configure every aspect of Android to make it look and behave exactly how you want it. Probably the best and easiest way to personalize your Android device using launchers. Perhaps this is the reason why Android launchers are the most popular apps on the Play Store but which are the best launchers for Android?
Well, we have tested various launchers on the Play Store and today we bring you the 20 best Android launchers. We have divided our list into several sections, so you can simply check the section that you think is best for you:
Best Android Launchers in 2018 (Sections)
- The best Android Launcher of all time
- The best new Android boot devices
- The best launchers for speed and simplicity
- The best launchers for themes and customizations
- The best launchers for productivity
- The best unique launchers
The best Android Launcher of all time
1. Nova Launcher
If you ask a longtime Android user what their favorite launcher is, there is a high probability that they will call Nova Launcher. Nova Launcher has been on the Android launcher scene for centuries, and a testament to the quality of Nova that is still one of the best Android launchers you can use. The highly customizable launcher and allows you to customize almost all aspects, including icons, colors, appearance, fill, icon size, application drawer, widgets and more.
However, my favorite feature of Nova Launcher is the fact that it is regularly updated and includes all the new features released with the new versions of Android on previous Android devices . Indeed, our article on how to get Pixel 2 Launcher on any Android device completely based on Nova Launcher. If you want a tested and feature-rich launcher, Nova just for you.
Install: free, $ 4.99 for Prime
2. Starting actions
Another popular evergreen launcher that sturdy and brings a lot of customization to the Action Launcher. Just like Nova, the Action Launcher that has been around for a long time and still one of the best Android launchers you can get in 2018. Action Launcher offers a lot of functionality and customization at the table. You can customize the icons, the home screen, the widgets, the density of the icons, the density of the grid and much more .
. Covers basically allow you to hide entire folders under an app that you can open by simply swiping down on the app icon. Likewise, Shutters lets you swipe vertically on an app to show widgets or app previews. Note that most of the features in this app are behind a paywall and you will need to unlock them using in-app purchases.
Install: free, $ 2.99 for Plus
3. Smart Launcher 5
Smart Launcher one of the oldest launchers on Android. However, the app vanished from the limelight for a couple of years as it was not updated regularly. But things have changed now, when the developers have arrived and launched a new version of the launcher called Smart Launcher 5 and really good. The launcher offers many features such as the environmental theme, adaptive icons, automatic sorting of apps, the Integrated clock and weather widget and more. There is also an intelligent search function that allows you to easily search for apps, contacts and more.
One of the most recent features added to Smart Launcher is support for new gestures and shortcuts that make launching apps and navigating the launcher interface really easy. Another unique feature of Smart Launcher 5 that allows users to hide apps . This way you can easily protect apps that contain sensitive information. Finally, the launcher also supports the theme, which means that you can completely change the appearance of your launcher by choosing and installing from hundreds of pre-built themes.
Install: free, with in-app purchases
The best new Android boot devices
1. Lawnchair launcher
Lawnchair Launcher one of the newly released launchers that quickly climbed to the top of the list. The launcher is basically trying to bring the Pixel Launcher features to the masses. One of the best things about this launcher is that it is an open-source project developed by volunteers, which means that all you get here is free. Some of the most popular features of this launcher are the Google Now integration, Android Oreo shortcuts, notification points, adaptive icons, blur mode and more . If you are looking for an Android experience, this is the launcher you should get.
2. Rootless Pixel Launcher 3.5
Another free launcher that brings the Android appearance and features of Android to the Rootless Pixel Launcher which has become very popular in recent months. One of the best things about this launcher which is regularly updated to make bug fixes and new features. Furthermore, the developers were kind enough to develop the Android Go version of Rootless Pixel Launche r, which is good news for anyone using an inexpensive Android device that doesn't provide the best hardware specs. The only thing to note here that the launcher is not present on the Play Store and you will need to download and install its APK from Github.
3. Microsoft Launcher
The new Microsoft Launcher was previously known as the Arrow Launcher until the company decided to rebrand it and release it with fantastic new features. The launcher allows you to customize the appearance of your device by giving you the opportunity to customize the background, theme and accent colors, icon packs, gestures and more . The main feature of this launcher is the customized feed section which shows the most important information such as news, calendar events, documents and contacts at a glance.
The launcher is also quite agile and does not require many resources of your smartphone. The launcher particularly useful for people who also own a Windows PC as it allows you to easily transfer files and images between both devices . There is also a universal search bar that allows you to easily search for files, apps, documents, messages and the web. If you want something light and different, try it.
The best launchers for speed and simplicity
1. ASAP Launcher
ASAP Launcher available for a long time and one of the first launchers that I suggest to people looking for a clean and fast startup experience. ASAP Launcher uses tabs and an expandable sliding dock to provide a clean boot experience . The idea here to do more with less. There are a couple of swipe gestures that allow you to easily access your app drawer, quick setting button, contacts and calendar.
The app also allows you to make the launcher look more livable by using themes. You can choose standard themes that include dark, light, day or night themes or you can choose the background theme that automatically picks up the color from the current background and adjust the color profile of the launcher. If you are looking for a clean and fast boot experience, this is right for you.
Install: free, $ 2.85
2. Evie Launcher
Evie Launcher another launcher that focuses on speed and simplicity. The launcher offers a very clean home screen with a permanent dock at the bottom and a search bar at the top. One of the best Evie Launcher features you can scroll down anywhere on the home screen to bring up the universal search bar which you can use to search for anything, including contacts, apps, songs, and more.
Just like the ASAP launcher, Evie also offers you a little control over the customization of its interface. You can customize the layout, background, icon size, app icons or even start from scratch. What I love most about Evie's launcher is the smoothness of its animations . Use it and you will fall in love with all the little things Evie brings to the table.
3. Lean Launcher
Lean Launcher a very light and fast launcher that allows you to try Google's Pixel 2 Boot on your Android device. The launcher brings the same search bar to the bottom with voice input present in Pixel 2 Launcher. It also brings the much-loved automatic lighting and darkness mode which changes according to the choice of wallpaper and the widget at the top that shows upcoming calendar events. Other features include gesture controls, app shortcuts, the ability to hide apps from the app drawer, adaptive icons and more. If you like Pixel phones, you will love this launcher.
4. Flick Launcher
If you are looking for a launcher that is almost as fast and agile as the launchers above, but that offers more customization options, Flick Launcher just for you. Just like the Lean Launcher, the Flick Launcher heavily inspired by the design of the Google Pixel Launcher, but it also brings a lot of changes. You can customize the interface by changing colors or using pre-build modes such as night mode, immersive mode and more. You can also change the animation style to make your phone stand out.
One of the unique features of Flick Launcher that allows users to even customize the dock . You can change the number of icons and widgets it contains, change the icon for the drawer and even change its height and background. Finally, gestures, notification badges, animated icons and more are supported. Like I said, like Lean Launcher but on steroid.
Install: free, $ 1.99 for Pro
The best launchers for themes and customizations
1. CM Launcher 3D
CM Launcher 3D one of the most popular Android launchers for viewing. There are literally thousands of themes to choose from . Even installing the themes quite easy. Just click on the Theme app and tap on the theme you want to download. The app will then redirect you to the Play Store where you can download the theme. Then hit the Apply button and a few seconds later, your Android will look brand new.
In addition to the Theming features, CM Launcher 3D also offers many other features. My favorite is the 3D Effect feature which incorporates 3D transitions anywhere in the interface . Believe me, when you install this launcher, scrolling pages will also become a fun exercise. With that said, there is a downside to using this startup app. The app has no paid options so you have to manage a ton of ads that can appear out of nowhere. If you can handle this hassle, this will be a fantastic themed launcher app for you.
Install: free, with ads
2. Buzz Launcher
When it comes to launchers that allow you to create themes on your device, Buzz Launcher is at the top of the food chain. The launcher includes numerous themes that you can use to personalize the appearance of your Android device. There are more than 10,000 themes, icons, animated backgrounds and special themes for contacts . Basically, you get infinite customization with this.
In addition to its thematic features, the launcher also offers other features like the possibility to hide apps, quick search bar, 3D animations, built-in telephone repeater, smart app manager, notification reminders, and more. However, if you are thinking of installing this app, keep in mind that it is heavy on resources, so use this launcher only if you have a mid-range or high-end Android device.
Install: free, with ads
3. Launcher only
Only Launch Launcher may not bring as many themes as some of the other thematic applications on this list, however it offers some unique features that have allowed us to place the app on this list. One of these unique features of this app is that allows users to use their photos as app icons, thus allowing you to customize your device. Other features of this app include gesture support, universal search, built-in cleaner and booster and more. The only drawback of this app that shows too many ads.
Install: free, with ads
4. C Launcher
C launcher another great launcher for anyone who is looking to create themes on their Android device. Just like the CM Launcher 3D, C Launcher also has a theme shop which hosts hundreds of themes. You can download and apply the themes you like to give your Android a makeover. One thing I love about this app is that the animations change depending on the theme you are using, a feature that I learned to appreciate much more than I thought.
However, remember that, just like other themed launchers, this one is also quite heavy on resources. Other than that, I have no complaints why. I also noticed that despite being supported by ads, C Launcher shows far fewer ads . I never bothered with advertisements when I used this launcher and this is a really good thing.
Install: free, with ads
The best launchers for productivity
1. FastKey Launcher
When it comes to productivity, my favorite launcher is the FastKey Launcher which offers an intuitive user interface with a permanent keyboard with quick and intuitive search functionality . Just start typing the name of the app / contact / file you want to find, and very often FastKey will give you exactly what you are looking for before you can type the full name. The best part of the search functionality that learns your behavior. So if you have two files with similar names, I'll give you the file you use first. I love this launcher and if you use your phone as a tool to do things, this is the right app for you.
2. DailyDo productivity launcher
If your life revolves around your calendar and your task manager, this is the right launcher for you. DailyDO's productivity launcher integrates with the calendar and Todoist and allows you to access all your events, activities and reminders with a simple scroll on the home screen. One of my favorite features of this app the magic plus button that allows me to easily create events, alarms, activities and more . There is also a convenient search bar at the top and a contact page on the left that allows you to easily find the apps, people and files you are looking for. This is one of the best productivity launchers you can get for your Android device.
Install: free, $ 3.49 for Pro
The best unique launchers
1. Lucid Launcher
Lucid Launcher a truly unique launcher and one of my favorites on this list. My favorite feature is probably the most exclusive of Lucid Launcher that instead of bringing the horizontal home pages to scroll, the app brings the home pages to vertical scrolling . Before Lucid Launcher, I was a homepage guy, however, vertical scrolling home pages changed it.
Plus, you get several swipe gestures that can help you find apps or surf the web easily. You can also edit and apply themes to icons and use unlimited widgets . There is also a favorite sidebar where you can access your favorite apps with a few taps. I really like the app and its vertical scrolling home pages are something that I find really useful.
Install: free, with ads
2. SquareHome 2 – Launcher
SquareHome 2 heavily inspired by Windows 10 Mobile as it carries the same resizable square frame structure that existed when Windows 10 Mobile was still a thing. However, apart from the appearance, everything else is different here. Cards allow you not only to add apps and widgets, but also shortcuts for apps, dividing lines and more . I particularly like the app's shortcut cards. In the image below, you can see that I have a link of Maps to Home, by tapping which, Google Maps automatically starts navigating with my home as a destination. This is only the tip of the iceberg. You can create shortcuts for contacts, messages, camera and even third party apps. If you like this concept, try it.
3. ap15 ??Launcher
This is one of the most unique launchers that I have used in my past 5 years as an Android user. Basically the app removes everything and replaces the home screen with a text-based app drawer. To open an app, simply touch the name of the app. The launcher also learns your behavior. Over time, apps with longer usage times will have a larger name while the one you don't use frequently will become smaller . You can also customize the color and background of the text. If you love minimalism, this is a strange but rather useful launcher for you.
Install: free, with in-app purchases
4. Launch CLI for Linux
While the three launchers listed above are quite unique, if you are looking for the most exclusive launcher of all time, this is what you should get. The Linux CLI Launcher does what the name suggests. It basically turns the home screen into a Linux command line interface a which you can interact with using native Android commands or T-UI commands. For example, to uninstall an app just type the command " uninstall (app name) ". truly the most exclusive Android launcher out there.
Spice up your Android device with the best launchers
This concludes our list of the 20 best Android launchers that you can install to renovate your Android homesecreen in 2018. I hope you have managed to find your favorite launcher from the list. If you did, let us know which launcher has won your heart by writing in the comments section below. Also, if there is a pitcher that you think deserves to be on the list but does not, it also lowers its name.