soloicon

Sponsored App Review: Solo Launcher – Clean & Clever

January 4, 2015 - Written By Tom Dawson

Solo Launcher has been around for some time now, and the team is always coming with something new to offer Android users. Now they’re back with version 2.0 of Solo Launcher, and it’s been updated with Material Design and some new innovative features. The tagline of this latest version is ‘Clean & Clever’ because Solo Launcher can easily clean your RAM and trash files to keep your system running nice and smoothly, and it’s clever because of its detailed search app built right into the launcher. This search app can present you with trends popular online right now, general web searches and of course to search your device for more info. With gestures, lots of themes and more available for Solo Launcher, it sounds like one of the more popular alternatives just got a lot better. Read on to see how.

As with other launchers on Android, all you need to do is go ahead and download the app from the Play Store. Once you’ve done that, you’ll need to set Solo Launcher as your default launcher for the best experience.

2015-01-01 14.38.14 (1)

Once you’ve done that, you can go ahead and start changing the overall look and feel of your homescreen. Doing so is as simple as long-pressing anywhere. You’ll then be given a menu of things to change. This does seem like an older approach from older Android versions, but this does give you quick access to a lot of the more advanced features of Solo Launcher.

2015-01-01 14.41.44

To get even more access to the settings, there’s a ton of them to choose from in the full settings menu. Here you can change whatever you like, including icon packs downloaded from the Play Store and themes for Solo Launcher itself.

2015-01-01 14.44.49

Of course, Solo Launcher features many of the same features as other launchers, that’s not why you might be interested in it though. One of the added features is the ability to keep your device clean and running smoothly. For high-end phones this might not be essential, but lower-end devices will certainly benefit, that’s for sure.

soloclean

Thanks to this, you won’t need to install another app to keep your phone running nicely. Another fun feature is the search bar, It’s not just a typical search app, as it presents you with ongoing trends right now and allows you to find out more.

2015-01-01 14.46.05

Let’s take for instance Taylor Swift, she was trending on New Year’s Eve for a number of reasons. As such a quick tap on that bubble will take you to a web search to see just what’s been happening.

2015-01-01 14.46.15

You can also search for whatever you want and you’ll be given a pretty nice interface to use as well.

2015-01-01 14.46.40

With Solo Launcher, all your apps are arranged neatly, and you can access the Play Store easily from the menu as well.

2015-01-01 14.51.08

 

Let’s not forget the vast amount of themes that you can add to Solo Launcher, too.

2015-01-01 14.52.29

 

These themes are easily downloaded from the Play Store, like this example below:

2015-01-01 14.52.40

I’ve tried out a great number of launchers over the years and while many have more features than you can shake a stick at, Solo Launcher manages to create a nice balance. All the powerful features a lot of users want, like the ability to change their grid size and control icon size and more is all there, but the overall app itself is simple to get to grips with and you’re not pushed into messing around with settings your not comfortable with. Features like the search part of the launcher create a complete solution and give it a professional look and feel. I’m not so convinced on the need to constantly clean out the RAM and cache on my device, but for users with lower-end devices I can see why this would be a nice addition. Altogether, Solo Launcher 2.0 is a more polished, clean and premium feeling type of launcher that those looking for a change should give a go. With themes, icon pack support and a lot more besides there’s a lot on offer here.

Ratings

  • Speed (4/5) – Solo Launcher is a quick homescreen and while I didn’t find it to be much quicker than others it was certainly snappy. Plus the cleaner side of the app helps to keep things fresh.
  • Features (5/5) – This is one packed launcher with features to help you discover things with the search feature, keep your device running smoothly with the cleaner and all the customization you could want.
  • Theme (4/5) – Solo Launcher looks good out of the box with a new Material-type design, but the real fun is when you start experimenting with themes available on the Play Store and such.
  • Overall (4/5) – A solid launcher alternative that might not appeal to everyone, but that’s easy to use and still flexible enough to customize to your heart’s content.

Pros

  • Search feature allows you to explore trending events as well as find information on whatever you want from your homescreen.
  • For users with lower-end handsets, the clean function will keep their phones running nice and smooth all the time.
  • Lots of themes available from the Play Store to customize the overall feel.
  • Simple enough for average users to enjoy, while also offering all the customization options many people want.

Cons

  • Suggested app icons are a little annoying when perfecting your homescreen.
  • Isn’t particularly optimized for tablets.

Solo Launcher has a lot of neat features that many will appreciated and while it has all of the features that you’d want from a third-party launcher, it doesn’t overwhelm you with choices unlike many out there. The search function is a nice addition and the ability to keep your device running smoothly thanks to the clean feature is nice as well. On the whole, this is a launcher that does everything, without throwing these features in people’s faces. It’s quick, fully-featured, good-looking and easy to use.

Google-Play-Banner-Get-it-On-Large1