Third party home launchers are one of the greater things about Android allowing seemingly limitless customization options for one’s device from the homescreen style to the app drawer look and feel, and tons of other things that can otherwise enhance the user experience on the device like shortcuts, gestures, icon packs, themes, and more. Action Launcher 3 is one of those third party home launchers that users should definitely pay some attention to as it offers pretty much all of what’s listed above plus other elements you might not find in any other home launcher application. Developer Chris Lacy is further expanding its usefulness with the latest update of the app, bringing Action Launcher 3 up to version 3.3.
First and foremost, one of the more notable changes worth mentioning is the addition of a new system for shortcuts and gestures which is now fully customizable. For gestures support, users can now single, double, or triple tap the home button to get quick access through a shortcut to virtually anything. You can use these shortcuts to open apps or get to a certain place in the phone, and with the ability to implement three different shortcuts into one button (the home button) users have added productivity here and ultimately more shortcuts thanks to this intuitive consolidation. Another new feature is the ability to use the Google Search box widget with an overlay on screen, this way users don’t have to be taken into the Google Now app to perform a search query, which may only shave off a fraction of a second but it comes in handy.
For users who have been on Action Launcher 3 since its release, quick theme is likely the most popular feature that was introduced, unfortunately, it never worked with live wallpapers or live wallpaper apps due to Android system limitations. With the Action Launcher 3.3 update, live wallpapers now work with the quick theme settings, allowing the search bar, folders, quick settings slide out menu and other elements to extract colors from the color scheme of live wallpapers just like with regular wallpapers. This can work great for example with live wallpaper apps like Muzei, which essentially can be set up to change your wallpaper with a time interval like say, for every hour. When Muzei changes out the wallpaper, quick theme will adjust to reflect the colors derived from that new wallpaper and continue to do so every time it changes. There have also been lots of bug fixes and improvements included, and you can check out the full details at the source. Action Launcher 3 is free to install, however, many of the most intuitive and useful features are only accessible with “Action Launcher 3 plus” which will set users back $4.99.