Alongside the launch of its first Android-powered tablet N1, Nokia today also announced the availability of its Z Launcher. The Android launcher, it had first released in June as a beta, through its website is now available on Google Play Store. Also Read - Google Play Store announces blanket ban on Sugar Daddy apps over sexual content
Earlier this year, Nokia, the part that wasn’t sold off to Microsoft in the multi-billion dollar released the beta version of Z Launcher, a third-party Android home-screen and launcher for Google’s mobile operating system. The app had received overwhelming response from users, as it was downloaded over half a million times within the first few hours since its announcement. The app was however made available from the company’s website instead of the Google Play Store. Also Read - How to download Instagram videos on Android, iOS, PC
The Z Launcher aims to replace the multiple home screens and provides users with one single page. The app understands your habits and analyzes what you normally do at different hours of the day. So suppose if you wake up at 7:00AM in the morning, and the first thing you do is check Facebook, the launcher will place the Facebook app on the top when you wake up. Similarly, if there is a person you call in the morning hours, you will see a single-click option to place a call to that person in those hours. As with any prediction-based app, this one will also need some time before it becomes good at it. Also Read - This Android smartphone comes with a massive 13,200mAh battery
The second interesting feature of the Z Launcher is its gesture based controls. The app allows you to scribble the first few letters of an app, a contact, or any relevant thing on the screen and it will show up different results. You can manually set what apps you want to open with different characters. Instead of giving users many home screens, Nokia is trying to reduce the noise and make the user experience a lot smoother.
The app also comes with several improvements, including,
- Improved speed and optimization
- Improved prediction with more context incorporated into the app algorithm
- Refined Scribble with improved recognition response time
- Added Pinyin Chinese language support
- Ability to install Z Launcher on rooted hardware
The app should work on all Android-powered devices running on Android 4.1 to Android 4.4. Tablet users will have to wait a bit (but given that the launcher works on the N1 tablet, it is just a matter of time before it becomes available to all). Android 5.0 Lollipop users however will have to wait for Nokia to release a compatible version.