Customising your Android Phone: Installing a Cool Launcher

Android phones have one very great thing going on about them. You don’t need to jailbreak them to enjoy their full benefits. What you can do on an Android phone you need to jailbreak an IPhone to do it.

In this series of articles we will look at how to customize your smart phone so that it looks different from every other Android phone. For instance, you have a Samsung Galaxy S3. It looks the same to every other Android phone out there with its Touch-Wiz!

Yes, you can customize your phone to look very different from the whole host of Droids out there.

In this series we will look at the following topics in their order

  • 1.       Installing a custom launcher! Having a cool “Home Screen”
  • 2.       Dynamic Wallpapers! Turn your phone into active awesomeness
  • 3.       Installing Custom Icons!
  • 4.       Installing some really nifty apps that actually help!
  • 5.       **For the Brave** Installing a Custom Operating System aka ROOTING your phone.
  • 6.       Security: Apps that secure your phone

We will start with number one Topic, Installing a custom launcher

What is a launcher? To simplify things here, a launcher is sort of like the home screen! I said sort of like, you tech jargon obsessed shaggies!

At the ZITF I visited the G-Tel stand and they were going on about this G-Tel 717 Infinity. It had a 3D carousel that showed all your home screens in a rotating 3 dimensional way. It was a cool feature.. but the not so cool thing is that G-Tel was claiming it was their invention. Truly G-tel should stop building an empire on lies.

That 3D carousel was ganked from custom launchers. The cool thing though is that you can install the same cool 3D launcher on your phone. If you want the exact 3D launcher G-Tel was claiming to be theirs download this launcher:

Yandex.Shell

yandex shell

This is a cool simple launcher that does not have much but, it is really good. Coming from a company that is a competitor of Google. Yandex is a cool firm that has a nifty search engine. It has Yandex Maps and Yandex Metrica which are products used mainly by Russian speaking guys. Yandex now wants to enter into the English speaking countries.

It combines  a home launcher, address book and dialer!

This launcher has the famed 3D launcher and some cool nifty features. However Yandex.Shell does not have the really fine-grained customization features you get from Nova Launchers but we trust me, it is really good.

sceren

To download this app, click here!

ADW Launcher

adw

For some of us who are still using Android GingerBread 2.3 and so forth, don’t feel left out.

Even if Yandex.Shell installs on newer versions of Android, you still can enjoy the goodness of customising your phone. There is this nifty app called ADW Launcher.

adw1

This app has one really cool thing about it, it installs on almost all Android Versions. Once you have done that, your phone will have a really cool look, different from other phones. Launchers are not some complicated piece of software. They are installed just like the way you install any other software.

Live Wall papers

Gone are the days when a wallpaper was just a photograph. Wallpapers make your phone look exciting. However, live wallpapers make your phone look extra ordinary. These wallpapers make your phone look cool and stunning. They are a battery drain though and you can look up how to save battery here!

These wallpapers range from mobile movie like affairs to games one can play with. However, you have to be careful, the more elaborate and complex wallpapers will drain your battery so much. So you have to make a sacrifice between battery power and entertainment.

The wallpapers I will point you to though are not that harsh on your smartphone battery

Koi Live Wallpaper

koi

I enjoyed hours on end watching these fish swim. If fact they are more life like than fish in your pond. Touching the screen makes the fish “run away” from were you tapped as if they are running away from your finger that wants to capture them.

SunRise Live Wallpaper

sun

This is another wallpaper that is just beautiful. It shows a cute landscape and sunrising it makes you want to go on holiday and enjoy the Vumba Mountains. However, you can soak all this goodness right now, on your phone.

However, unfortunately, it cannot match the time. It always show the sunrise even if it’s twelve in the night!

Well, these are not the heavy apps that you may find but these are easy on your phone. Besides, once you install these “basic” apps you can then take the high road and install the heavy weights.

These are also installable on older versions of Android. Look forward to the next installment of this series.

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4 comments on “Customising your Android Phone: Installing a Cool Launcher

  1. Here’s my top 3 best launchers (Must Haves)

    1) Next Launcher.
    this is by far the best launcher i’ve come accross, i’ve tried dozens of launchers but none can match to this one, you can customize anything, how your time shuld look, how your ba3, network, home screen, everything is customisable, whats more cool is that it comes loaded with its cool widgets and many stuff.

    2) Go Launcher.
    if you haven’t come across this one, you haven’t seen any launchers at all, packed with widgets, locks and live wallpapers this one is a must have, trust me.

    3) ADW Launcher.
    this one here is the first launcher i’ve ever tried, what I like most about this launcher is that it is very easy to use, its even small in size, don’t worry about your data bundles hey.Pretty cool launcher.

    • Yes I agree with you there, those are pretty good launchers, users who may find the heavy weights frightening though should try ADW launcher. You seem to know your stuff around android there

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