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The 20 Best Android Launchers And Home Screen Replacements You Need To Download Now

The 20 Best Android Launchers And Home Screen Replacements You Need To Download Now

While Android devices remain a dominant force in the mobile media market, they do not always deliver the most compelling experience to users. This is due to their uniform look and nature, which is a typical feature of any mass produced product that is designed to meet a wide range of consumer demands.

This is why developers have created the concept of Android launchers and home screen replacements, which enable you to customize the visual aesthetic of your device. While the concept itself may be relatively tried and tested, however, it is only recently that mainstream consumers have embraced it fully in the quest to personalize their handsets.

With this in mind, it is worth considering the best android home screen replacements and the impact that they have in revolutionizing your Android user-experience. Consider the following.

Aviate

If you are new to the concept of Android launchers and home screen replacements, where better to start than with one of the more recent market additions? Aviate has evolved considerably from previous incarnations, with the result that it boasts a more mature set of customization options and smart technology that delivers relevant information in real-time. With both pre-set category sub-headings and the capacity to create unique collections, customizable images and variable homepage layout options, Aviate is the smart choice for modern Android users.

Aviate

    Nova Launcher

    If you are a relatively inexperienced Android user with less advanced technological skills, you may prefer a simpler customization tool. Take the Nova Launcher, for example, which is a straightforward feature that enables you to subtly fine-tune your device and home screen. This launcher is unique in that it uses 3D cube UI technology, which creates a revolving home page and fluid visual effect that adds a different dimension to your navigation experience. Despite this, it does not allow you to make drastic changes to your screen layout, which means you can maintain an interface that is easy to follow and understand using preset themes.

    SONY DSC

      Themer

      In terms of simplicity and pre-determined layout options, there are additional tools that can help you to redefine the look of your Android device. The Themer launcher is one such program, as it delivers established themes to users who would rather not spend their time customizing unique widgets and visual effects. This simple tool appears whenever you visit your home screen, and you can access a host of layout options by navigating the Theme settings menu at the top of your interface. Not only are these options free to access, but developers are also adding new home screen replacements on a daily basis.

      Themer
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        Buzz Launcher

        While the development teams behind Aviate and Themer have focused on enhancing the smart capacity of Android devices and simplifying the user experience respectively, others have taken a more ambitious route to market. Buzz Launcher is a full home screen replacement app that delivers an all-out optimization package to users, for example, which in turn enables them to create unique widgets and backgrounds while accessing numerous downloadable screen packs. The app offers a far greater scope to users and allows them access to a wider range of design options, although it is probably best suited to technologically aware individuals with experience of the Android market.

        Buzzlauncher

          Apex Launcher

          In many ways, the Apex Launcher represents the modern face of the mobile industry. Like all Android launchers of its type, it includes standard features such as customizable icon grids, transition effects and variable home screen gestures. In addition to this, however, it also offers two separate versions to customers, with the second being a paid application that supports a wider range themes and visual concepts. The free version should be more than adequate for the majority of personal users, particularly those who wish to create an easy to navigate layout.

          Apex Launcher

            Action Launcher and Action Launcher Pro

            Although a relatively new addition to the consumer market, the Action Launcher and Action Launcher Pro have made a significant impact during 2013. Once again designed as free and paid versions of the same concept, these tools are unique in that they focus on the use of applications rather than delivering a wide range of customization options. Simply by featuring a left-hand panel that offers instant access to your favorite applications, these tools enable you to navigate your menu more quickly and in a far more efficient manner. Another key benefit of the Action Launcher is that it includes an unique feature called ‘covers,’ which allows users to tap an individual icon and launch the default application associated with it.

            Action Launcher

              SF Launcher Beta

              Increasingly, there are a growing range of applications that attempt to differentiate themselves from key market players. Take the SF Launcher, for example, which borrows heavily from Google Now and the clear cut interface adopted by the world’s leading search engine. By designating nearly a third of the top of the home screen to a traditional clock and date widget, it leaves the remained of the space for you to customize with individual folders and app icons. By also offering a wide range of dark themes and visual effects, users can create a customized interface that retains a clearly iconic and instantly recognizable appeal.

              SF Beta Launcher

                Holo Launcher

                Given the rate with which new Android devices and operating systems are launched, it can be hard for consumers to keep pace. The Holo Launcher is therefore an extremely viable application, as it enables individuals with older Android devices to integrate ground-breaking designs and themes into their layout. With popular features including a scrollable dock, variable icons and an excellent array of colors, the Holo Launchers provides a foundation from which users can create a modern and appealing interface. Once again there is a paid version of the tool for professional users, which justifies its fee with application drawer tabs, notification badges and additional icons.

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                Holo Launcher

                  91 Launcher

                  A solid option for those in search of a free Android launcher, this tool is a new entrant to the market with a huge selection of themes and transition effects. The latter are particularly effective, as they enable you to slide between alternative home screens and any custom widgets that you have created. The benefit of this free option is that it can be easily trialed by anyone who is looking for a new launcher or viable home screen replacement, and its sheer wealth of visual effects makes it well worth further inspection.

                  91 Launcher

                    GO Launcher EX

                    One of the more traditional and longest standing Android tools on the market, the GO Launcher EX is completely free and easily accessible by a wide range of users. It does not have a paid version, meaning that it is easier for consumers to access a full range of features and premium themes. Go Launcher EX is therefore an extremely purposeful application, equipped with multiple features even for the broadest range of tastes. It is also compatible with all Android devices of 2.0 or above, which enables a wider range of user to enjoy its benefits.

                    Launcher

                      SPB Shell 3D

                      At this stage, it may be worth introducing an additional dimension to the world of Android launchers and home screen replacements. SPB Shell 3D is leading the current charge of three dimensional launcher replacements, featuring a full range of unique transitions and visual effects. Including a 3D home screen, widgets and the eye-catching presentation of colors and shades, it is ideal for advanced Android users who love nothing more than creating a wow-factor around their phone. While this paid launcher can hardly be described as cheap with a download price of $14.95 (£9.45), it is compatible with Android devices 2.1 or above and genuinely unique within the market.

                      SPB Shell 3D
                        SPB Shell 3D
                          SPB Shell 3D

                            TSF Shell

                            On a similar note, those with slightly reduced budgets and a love of three dimensional interfaces may wish to invest in the TSF Shell home screen replacement app. It can be downloaded for just $9 (£4.99) through Google Play. Some have argued that it boasts even more features than the more popular SPB Shell launcher. Including intuitive gesture controls that make it easier than ever to organize and access application icons, it is equipped with cutting edge technology that enables it to stand out in the existing marketplace. So while it may be tempting to follow the crowd and download the coveted SPB Shell, more savvy Android users may well prefer the cost-effective TSF alternative.

                            SPB Shell
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                              Next Launcher 3D

                              The most expensive of all 3D Android home screen replacements is the Next Launcher, which has been designed by the same team that innovated the wide range of Go applications. Costing an estimated $16.99 (£10.50) to download, it is suitably equipped with technologically evolved features which more than justify its inflated price tag. Including stereoscopic three dimensional screen previews and a rotatable dock, it is an extremely powerful launcher that has become extremely popular on the consumer market. The developers have now also launched a free version of the launcher, which retains 3D capacity despite offering a minimal range of design features.

                              Next Launcher 3D

                                Launcher 7

                                It is easy to forget that when Android devices first emerged, users were keen to adopt that launchers that replicated the popular iOS aesthetic. This trend has dissipated in recent times, however, especially since the release of the brand new Windows phone. The Launcher 7 application has therefore been designed to make Android devices look and behave like the Windows Phone 7, relying heavily on the integration of a 2×1 scrollable grid with tiles that can be customized according to your precise needs. If you are a fan of the tiled layout favored by Microsoft, this launcher serves as an ideal and freely accessible starting point.

                                Launcher 7

                                  Launcher 8

                                  On a similar note, the recent launch of the Windows Phone 8 has caused a significant stir in the mobile industry. As a result of this, many switched on Android users are looking to replicate the look of this device, and the Launcher 8 has been designed to help them achieve this. This tool features a set of Microsoft tiles that are even more customizable than their predecessors, available in variable sizes and also translucent to allow the wallpaper to remain visible behind widgets and app icons. Once again this launcher is entirely free, while also compatible with all Android devices of 2.2 and above.

                                  Launcher

                                    The Yandex Shell Launcher

                                    Innovation breeds evolution, and this is certainly the case with regards to the 3D launcher market. One of the latest advancements has emerged in the form of Yandex Shell, which approaches creating three-dimensional home screen replacements in a far more subtle and understated manner. Borrowing heavily from the MIUI custom ROM, it adopts a clean aesthetic and simple widgets that help you to create a pleasing 3D interface with minimum fuss. While this launcher is free to access, however, it is not available in all countries and therefore, you will need to check availability before making a final decision.

                                    Yandex Shell Launcher

                                      Tile Launcher

                                      The Tile Launcher Beta is another application that has sought to replicate the Microsoft experience for Android users, although it has stopped short of completely imitating the technological giant. While it has only just emerged from the development phase, it will offer a customizable and scrollable tiled interface, where each segment will contain an actionable icon or widget. There is also a sliding application drawer for instant access to your most popular items, and support packs that facilitate the switch from alternative launchers.  Considering that it is a free-to-access launcher, this range of features is well worth consideration.

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                                      tile-launcher

                                        Vire Launcher

                                        Another free Android home screen replacement tool, the Vire Launcher delivers many of the 3D effects and transitions offered by more renowned paid alternatives. A relatively new application, it also features automatic themeing of all UI components including icons, widgets and folders. While the design elements remain somewhat rustic and simplistic, the Vire Launcher is different from any other application on the market and well-worth a try given its immediate and freely accessible nature.

                                        vire-launcher-2

                                          The Smart Launcher

                                          While developers seem to take variable approaches to designing their home screen replacement apps, the majority tend to focus on creating quick and easy-to-navigate interfaces. This is certainly the approach taken by the team behind the Smart Launcher, who have designed a simple home screen with five icons to represent your most widely accessed applications. In fact, so simple is the design ethos that it does not even support widgets, meaning that the free version of the Smart Launcher is ideal for those with limited technological skills. There is a paid version, however, which at least allows for greater customization and the support of widgets and more advanced features.

                                          Smart Launcher

                                            ADW. Launcher

                                            Finally, this list would not be complete without the inclusion of a launcher that has survived the test of time among Android users. The ADW. Launcher is something of a relic on the Android platform, and yet is has survived beyond its initial and considerable impact on the market. Today, it retains almost cult status among loyal followers, especially those with older Android devices. With configurable home screens and the capacity to use gestures as a way of navigating your chosen interface, it can certainly hold its own in more exalted company. There is also a huge array of themes and skins for users to choose from, which is not bad considering it is essentially a free application.

                                            ADW Launcher

                                               

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                                              Published on November 9, 2018

                                              How to Improve Your Computer Skills to Get Ahead in Your Career

                                              How to Improve Your Computer Skills to Get Ahead in Your Career

                                              Technology has taken the business world by storm. People and businesses are progressively reliant on technology world these days. As a result, the people with impressive knowledge and experience with a computer are in demand.

                                              Considering this growing market trend, if you too wish to bag a profitable job, this article is apt for you. Here, we will dig deeper into the business and technology world to look into what are the best computer skills one should invest in and what resources to get help from.

                                              So, are you ready? Here we begin.

                                              6 Most-In Demand Computer Skills This Year (and Beyond)

                                              When talking about computer skills, following are the 6 computer skills that can fill your mailbox with endless job opportunities (besides, having an English and Hindi typing speed of 40+ WPM):-

                                              1. Spreadsheets and Databases

                                              Considering the treasure trove of data companies are handling these days, Spreadsheet and Database management skill tops the list. It is considered the most wanted job skill in the market, with a salary of around $53,129/yr for an entry-level position. However, the spreadsheet skill does not confine to auditing data from cells.

                                              To get hired based on this computer skill, you need to become a Spreadsheet ninja. From storing data to organizing them, applying complex mathematics formulas, and creating complex macros, you need to be an expert at all.

                                              In other words, you need to have an expertise at working with:

                                              • Microsoft Excel
                                              • Microsoft Access
                                              • Statistics
                                              • Data Analytics
                                              • Adobe Campaign
                                              • Quickbooks
                                              • XML Database management system
                                              • Filemaker Pro
                                              • MATLAB
                                              • Hive
                                              • FORTRAN
                                              • RDBMS (Relational Database Management System)
                                              • SAS

                                              2. Social Media, Email, and Blogging

                                              Though people are socially active, not everyone knows how to use the social media tools on the professional front. In such a scenario, having an expertise at writing engaging yet professional emails, writing blogs, and managing social media activities is a ticket to entry in reputed organizations.

                                              Some of the skills related to social media, email and blogging that will have a leg up in the hiring process are:

                                              • Content Management System (CMS)
                                              • Google Analytics
                                              • Cascading Style Sheets (CSS)
                                              • Email Marketing
                                              • Web Page Design
                                              • WordPress
                                              • Digital Media
                                              • Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
                                              • Campaign Management Software

                                              3. Graphic Design and Word Processing

                                              A solid grasp of skills to present the gained information in the much readable form is another market need. When considering this computer skill category, you need to enhance your skills at:

                                              • Adobe Photoshop
                                              • Adobe InDesign
                                              • Adobe Illustrator
                                              • AutoCAD
                                              • CorelDRAW
                                              • Microsoft Visual Studio
                                              • Maya
                                              • Microsoft Word
                                              • Microsoft Publisher
                                              • Operating Digital Cameras

                                              4. Software and Hardware Design and Development

                                              The Software and Hardware development, in simpler language, means designing, implementing, and testing the computer software/hardware applications. It is the most profitable computer skill, with a different job opening, including Software Architect, Software Analyst, Software programmer, Hardware configuration, etc.

                                              To be capable of developing and testing the software and hardware, you need to peruse your users’ needs and build an application that hits their pain points. You need to work with different web and mobile app coding languages for gaining the attention of your audience, some of which are:

                                              • HTML
                                              • C/C++
                                              • Java
                                              • Python
                                              • XML
                                              • UI/UX
                                              • LINUX
                                              • CISC and RISC architecture
                                              • Embedded Processor Hardware Design
                                              • Memory Management
                                              • PCB Layout
                                              • SQL

                                              5. IT Troubleshooting

                                              Working on computers is one thing and having a knack of looking into the associated issues and resolving them in real-time is another. There are various employees and graduates who work with computer systems in their daily lives, but get confused when it comes to dealing with frozen programs and performing routine maintenance.

                                              So, if you are familiar with the basic anatomy of computers and machines and know the tricks to perform such tasks to streamline the working process, enter the IT support arena. The prime IT troubleshooting skills one needs to work upon are:

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                                              • Backup management
                                              • Diagnostics
                                              • End User support
                                              • Client-Server management
                                              • Installation and configuration
                                              • Issue tracking system (ITS)
                                              • System administration
                                              • Tech support

                                              6. Enterprise Systems

                                              Many Enterprises have their own enterprise solutions like PeopleSoft for managing their data and operations.

                                              Becoming a master at using the enterprise solutions mentioned in their ‘Requirements’ area can also lessen the barrier to get a job.

                                              The Roadmap to Excel Your Computer Skills

                                              Now that you know the 6 most popular computer skills in the market, the first decision, you need to take is which computer skill you want to work upon. All the skills are equally considerable for making a career ahead. So, choose one as per your interest.

                                              Once done, look forward to the following resources for boosting your computer skills and getting a reputed, handsome job.

                                              Depending on the computer skill you opt, here are the online courses you can turn to for elevating your career opportunities:

                                              1. Become a Spreadsheet and Database Ninja

                                              a. Microsoft Excel Training Online Course – Basic & Advanced

                                              Whether you are a beginner, intermediate or expert at working with spreadsheets, this online course has something new for everyone to become excel efficient users.

                                              Divided into 48 interesting lessons, the course empowers you to learn the technique of using mathematical, statistical, logical and text functions, sorting and filtering the data, creating Pivot Tables, building macros, finding a value with VLOOKUp, and much more.

                                              b. Excel- Online Courses, Classes, Training, Tutorials on Lynda

                                              This is another impressive course to unlock the power of Excel. Designed for people from all walks of life and familiarity with Excel tools. This course helps you gain in-depth knowledge from the experts about this data-analyzing tool and make the magic in spreadsheet creation and management process.

                                              c. SQL & Database Design A-Z™: Learn MS SQL Server + PostgreSQL

                                              Build a successful career in the data analytics world with this online course.

                                              Revolving around the two top databases, MS SQL and PostgreSQL, this course will give you a comprehensive knowledge of the working of the databases and understanding of all the related elements, including how to create, update, organize, and safeguard the data.

                                              2. Rule the Social Media World

                                              a. Free Social Media Course by HubSpot

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                                              Introduced by the top experienced inbound professors from Hubspot, here you will get a comprehensive knowledge of Social media marketing.

                                              From understanding how to build relationships on different social media platforms to creating a perfect strategy to engage them, leveraging the benefits of social advertising, and analyzing your social media ROI, this course will bring out the best out of you.

                                              b. Write Professional Emails in English by Coursera

                                              This online course will be the right weapon to look into the differences and similarities between different email styles, improve your English writing skills, write effective subject lines, maintain the formality tone in emails, and more to make a powerful impact on the receivers with your email.

                                              c. Ninja Writing: The Four Levels of Writing Mastery

                                              Founded by Udemy, this online course will excel your skills to build a masterpiece everytime you write.

                                              Here, you will get the guidance from the editors of the top newspapers and websites, and understand what kind of words and tone to use for leaving a spellbinding impact on the readers.

                                              3. Launch Your Own Software or Hardware Equipment

                                              a. Hardware and Software Courses by Coursera

                                              From Big Data to IoT, Sensor Circuit Design, Embedded Software and Hardware Architecture, and Motor Control Circuit, this course will give you a glimpse of all the hardware devices, equipment, and programming languages to build wonders.

                                              b. Free Software and Web Development Certifications Online by Alison

                                              Become the software developer market demands with Alison’s Java, C#, Python, R, PHP, or MySQL database course. From backend to frontend development and software testing.

                                              The course helps you to learn how to design, develop and test software and working in a team while contributing to the team success.

                                              c. Free Online Software Development and MOOCs Course by Class Central

                                              The Class Central online course will make you a master of software development. Here, you will learn the basic concepts of development like Agile, Design Patterns, and Version Control with Git, along with gaining experience of working with the top programming languages.

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                                              4. Live and Breathe Creativity

                                              a. Udemy: Introduction to Graphic Design

                                              It is a top-rated program for the new learners and designers to explore the Graphic Design world.

                                              From the history of communication to the design principles, the course will help the students to learn everything specifically and implement in the real world.

                                              b. Canva Design School

                                              From a beginner to advanced level, this course will provide you with an elaborated and comprehensive knowledge of graphic design. In the form of 4 modules, this course will help the interested graphic designers to try out their skills at Graphics, ranging from fonts to colors, backgrounds, images, shapes, and layouts.

                                              c. Microsoft Word – Basic & Advanced

                                              62 personalized lessons, premium video tutorials, and unlimited tests and quizzes – this certified course has everything that will make your entry to the business world easier.

                                              d. Microsoft Office: Word, Excel and Access Productivity Bundle

                                              The course will make you productive in Word, Excel, and Access through video lectures, articles, and various other supplemental resources.

                                              Besides, it will offer you exclusive tips and tricks to enhance your skills at using Microsoft office.

                                              5. Raise Your Reflexes to IT Troubleshooting

                                              a. IT Troubleshooting Skill Training by Udemy

                                              IT Troubleshooting Skill Training will upgrade your logical concepts over technical components to find and repair faults.

                                              It will provide you with a methodological approach to learn the basics of troubleshooting, practice them via exercises and drills, and enhance your IT troubleshooting intelligence.

                                              b. IT Help Desk Online Course on Lynda

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                                              The Lynda’s IT troubleshooting online course will train you how to respond to the issues related to Windows 10, Office 365, JIRA software, and more, from a local as well as a remote location.

                                              Mobile Apps and Websites to Enhance Computer Skills

                                              The aforementioned online courses will undoubtedly train you for a successful career ahead. But, in case you want a long-term support, turn towards the following websites and mobile apps:

                                              • Duolingo – Duolingo app will improve your spoken and written communication skills in different languages. With the magic of gamification added to the study, the app will make learning a fun and addictive task.
                                              • Hemingway – Hemingway app defines the length, complexity, and common errors associated with the sentences. In this way, it helps you to write effectively and go ahead in the career.
                                              • Udemy – The Udemy, with its 2000+ courses, is a great platform to master new skills, advance your career and explore the newer technologies and programming languages. Enrol a course as per your budget and make a brighter future.
                                              • eDX – eDX is yet another commendable platform you can look forward to. The platform offers you the best of the tutorials prepared by the business professionals and technology experts, ensuring a great boost in your computer skills.
                                              • Excel Easy – Excel Easy, as the name depicts, will make working with Excel easier for you via their detailed tutorials and 300+ real-life examples.
                                              • GCF LearnFree.org – It is a one-stop platform for accelerating your future in the computer world. From graphic design to Microsoft Office, resume writing, enhancing adaptability, and much more, the top experts will guide you with everything on this platform.
                                              • QuarkXPress – The QuarkXPress will aid you to add soul to your design with its unparalleled collection of font style, size, and typography. The best part is that it is avails all the options in different languages, including English, Spanish, German, French, and Italian to name a few.

                                              Bonus: Tips to Accelerate Your Approach For a Better Career Ahead

                                              Though these resources will make you stand out from the crowd and get hired at once, you need to focus on various other things, such as:

                                              1. Practice, Practice, Practice

                                              It is common to forget what we learn. To ensure that you do not miss any opportunity just because you forgot, keep practising.

                                              Make it your routine. Polish your computer skills and you will surely end up getting an offer letter from a recognized firm.

                                              2. Work on Your Efficiency

                                              Remembering what you learned is not enough; practice to enhance those skills to do better.

                                              For example, if you take around 50 minutes to create a design, target for 40 minutes.

                                              3. Look for Shortcuts

                                              Smart work rules over hard work more often. So, look forward to learning shortcuts to do any task. This will increase your chances to crack an interview and get selected.

                                              4. Apply for an Internship

                                              Last but not the least, apply for an internship to see what’s trending in the market and how much you are ready for it. While doing an internship, pay attention to your weak points and work on them. This will ensure a success when you apply for your dream job.

                                              By the late, it’s never too late to be an intern or grab whatever opportunity to learn something new! Here’s how:

                                              How to Start Over and Reboot Your Life When It Seems Too Late

                                              The Bottom Line

                                              Seeing the current market scenario, it is evident that having computer skills is a boon for a better career ahead.

                                              So, rather than struggling with thousands of other things and trying to crack interviews, focus on the computer skills mentioned in this article. Utilize the resources and experts’ tips shared and look forward to having a successful and prosperous future.

                                              Featured photo credit: Glenn Carstens-Peters via unsplash.com

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