Launcher ProLauncher Pro

Launcher Pro and Launcher Pro Plus are easily some of the most popular alternative launchers for Android. The developer has been iterating at a fast pace and has integrated some awesome features into the product. A big announcement from him today hints at big changes in the future.

The developer, if you aren't familiar, is Federico Carnales, who is very accessible and has been working extremely hard at Launcher Pro. 

To sum it up, here is what he said:

  • Launcher Pro is based on the stock Android 2.0 launcher
  • The stock launcher was not developed to support some of the iterations that Launcher Pro has introduced, such as the ability to have seven home-screens
  • Due to this, he has decided to throw out the current version and develop Launcher Pro from scratch

This will allow him to have more control over the app and have an easier time implementing some of the features he has his mind on. According to the announcement, this change will result in:

  • Improved speed
  • Reduced memory usage
  • Increased flexibility (adapting to other devices, like tablets)
  • Cleaner code to allow more features
  • The bug fixes that haven't been addressed yet

Those of us who have purchased Launcher Pro Plus will not have to pay for the app again. The new version will simply replace it. No date has been set, but don't expect anything too soon, it's a huge job. Nevertheless, Launcher Pro users should be excited at this announcement, as it will only result in a more functional app. [LauncherPro]

 
There are 37 comments

namebrandon says:

Very exciting news! Looking forward to it!

gottria says:

Improved speed, I don't know how much faster this thing can go but on my Evo it's pretty damn fast already.

decyphersmc says:

This thing blazes on my N1, so I can't imagine it going any faster than it already does.

ben dover says:

I'm already happy with LP+
Looks like I'll be even happier soon :)

Brad Lane says:

Is there any point in using Launcher Pro if you have a HTC device (i.e. - SenseUI)?

On the HERO launcher pro was a VAST Improvement on speed. ON the EVO I like it has really nice features.

Its all about cuztomization. Sense UI is Sense UI you can't really mess with or change a lot of things.

bjordan says:

Yep I run it on my Evo and love it. It's really a personal preference thing, but I love the docking options in LP.

sveilien says:

LP is more than just 7 home screens. You can customize the dock with up to 30 actions with 15 custom icons and a custom dock background (as opposed to Sense's 3). You can also have custom icons for all apps on the homesceens. LP allows you to choose how many homescreens u want and which one to be the main. And there is much more. I guess the keyword here is customization.

Impulses says:

Absolutely, Sense is great but the Sense dock is pretty bad if you ask me. I love a lot of things about Sense, from the way it handles contact integration (slight improvement over stock Android imo) to some of the UI improvements within the OS. I actually like the lockscreen w/music controls and message previews... The Sense launcher however is pretty outdated if you ask me. That big honkin' phone button along with the permanent customization button is a waste of space on the dock, once you try the ADW or LauncherPro docks you'll never go back. ADW has gesture shortcuts (from anywhere on the home screens) and a dual-dock (enabled it then swype up and scroll left or right thru it). LP has a scrollable dock by default I believe and gesture support on each dock icon.

SlappyMcgee says:

Launcher Pro+ is the best purchase I ever made. I love that Federico Carnales is constantly working on improving it and fixing minor bugs.

icebike says:

Agreed.

I kind of hate to see him wasting his time on social plugs ins, since widgets for these things are a dime a dozen.

I'd like to see him improve Folder support. I'm out of iPhone kindergarden, and I don't need all those pages of apps to search thru looking for an icon.

I use three home screens. My apps are grouped into named folders. Its faster to find anything than scrolling thru 7 home screens.

How bout "Folders" that expand to lists that disappear as soon as you launch something (you know, like every desktop os on the planet).

We don't have a shortage of social widgets.

storm14k says:

Wow. I hope that works out well for him. Thats alot of code to replace and a lot of potential bugs. I hope people are understanding of the first efforts if there are problems.

bjordan says:

I saw him mention that he was thinking about doing a full rewrite from the ground up on Twitter. I'm a little surprised he's going to take it on. That'll be a huge job but probably pay off in the end.

As a fellow coder I appreciate that it's much easier to move around in code that you developed from the ground up and fully understand.

Best of luck to him. Can't wait to see the final results.

He's one busy guy! haha

Aenemchu says:

I like launcherpro plus, but it seems to be a tad laggy when switching screens, Sense UI seemed a bit faster, but I LOVE the app drawer!

myriad46 says:

Sense UI is baked right into the ROM on HTC devices. For an "aftermarket" launcher that is actually running on top of the stock launcher, this thing flys!!!

houserhythm says:

This might have a bad side aswell. It might lose that "stock launcher" polish.
It's actually the reason I chose LP over ADW when they both started out. ADW had way more options back then, but no matter how I fiddled with them, I could never get that nice feeling that LP always gave me. Not saying it was slow, it was just missing "something."
So I'm a bit affraid that LP might lose that too if rewritten from scratch.

tom1l21 says:

Easily the best app I have ever downloaded for free/purchased. Developer is always on the ball.

If he's based his code off of the stock launcher, how is he able to make us pay for the product and not release the source code? Isn't that part of the Android license?

I love launcherpro, but this has suddenly made me very wary of this guys ethics.

houserhythm says:

Android is released under the Apache Software License and not GPL.
Here's why:

"ASL, which is widely used in the open-source software community and has been approved by the Open Source Initiative, is a permissive license that is conducive to commercial development and proprietary redistribution. Code that is distributed under the ASL and other permissive licenses can be integrated into closed-source proprietary products and redistributed under a broad variety of other terms."

sookster54 says:

I'm not liking the idea of a fully redone LP from scratch, that means new bugs and problems. The state of LP right now is awesome, why "fix" something that isn't broken?

In that case I'm going to back up 0.7.9's apk and store it somewhere.

yuniercirco says:

i like, is very nice and productive in my Evo...

Any reason I'm not seeing it in the market?

Sean Brunett says:

Try typing LauncherPro as one word rather than as separate. Launcher Pro Plus is not in the Market yet because there are no paid apps where the developer lives

Found it. Thanks.

Ms Charli says:

ok downloaded this but can't open it!!! says download home switcher but it does not support 2.2!!!

Smahie says:

You don't need Home Switcher. You just need to clear out all existing widgets (recommended, and long press on the screen and click on the Launcher home icon. Once it's running your screen will only have like, 3 icons on them. One was browser, mail, and market (i think).

ottscay says:

Also, home switcher works fine to get yourself over to LPP. Then just uninstall homeswitcher so you don't have any issues.

Smahie says:

home switcher is not compatible with 2.2

sookster54 says:

Home Switcher works just fine on 2.2

Smahie says:

in the market, the app says it's not compatible with 2.2

sookster54 says:

Yes the dev wrote that, however read the feedback, everyone is stating that it works. I had it left in the backup when I flashed the 2.2 upgrade on my Desire and it reinstalled and I used it, no issues. The dev must be referring to specific models that won't work with it, so far so good and many in feedback even says so.

TrueDrooid says:

If he's going to re-write the entire code why not call the new product something different entirely. it seems that most people here like the current version and its linkage with the stock SenseUI.. if he'll keep developing for whats already out now too, may as well have two product$ Just my opinion

ottscay says:

I can't wait for this. @TrueDrooid, he's not changing the appearance or function of the product, he's changing the underlying code so it is less hobbled by outdated code. And he isn't going to keep developing once the replacement is out, that will simple be LauncherPro 2.x, or whatever. He just was letting us know he's going to keep working on the current version until the replacement update is ready.

I, for one, am very excited!

Pugz3D says:

Heads up boys, it's LauncherPro not Launcher Pro. I only mention it because I was flashing SkyRaider yesterday and couldn't find it in the market because apparently he doesn't have the words "launcher pro" in his app metadata or whatever. Call me a stickler for consistency. :)

Besides, an app this awesome deserves proper recognition. (If only the lag spots were cleared up a bit more I'd give it 7 stars. :)

bobaka says:

It's so much better than anything else... genius

RTaylor692 says:

Can't wait. LP is the one of the best launchers I have tried, and definitely the most stable. Thanks for the good news.

Impulses says:

I've been using ADW for a while but I've been meaning to try LauncherPro... Maybe I'll hold off for now if he's going to re-write it from scratch. From the little I've managed to glean off XDA it's just a matter of taste between the two... ADW has general gesture support for instance, I use swipe-down to bring the notification bar down from anywhere and swipe up to reveal the expanded dock so I don't have to swipe up from the app library icon specifically. Meanwhile LP has swipe support to invoke individual functions on each app on the dock (and the main dock is scrollable whereas only ADW's expanded sub-dock scrolls).