Action Launcher for Android, from creator of Tweet Lanes, promises speed and unique features

Daniel Bader

December 8, 2012 4:08 pm

There’s a new launcher in town, and it’s from the creator of now-defunct-but-still-awesome Tweet Lanes. Chris Lacy, the Australian one-man Android development studio, has released Action Launcher after a long period of teasing.

Available for $3.99 from Google Play, it finds a nice balance between the separate app drawer traditionally found in stock Android and other launchers like Apex and Nova, and the launcher-less design of MIUI. Using gestures, the “action” drawer is always available by swiping your finger in from the left side of any home screen.

You can still outfit your home screens — up to seven in total — with apps and widgets, and they’re easy enough to add. But the main feature here is something Lacy calls ‘Covers’, which he believes are the natural extension of folders. You create Covers by going ahead with making a regular folder and then “embedding” the secondary and tertiary apps within the main icon. It sounds confusing, but it’s actually a great idea. Lacy gives practical examples of how Covers may be used: tapping on the Contacts icon once opens the app itself; double-tapping the icon opens up a hidden folder with your favourite contacts. You can do the same with Chrome and browser bookmarks, Settings and specific menus, and more. The list is endless, but the implementation is a bit hokey at the moment. According to Android Central, Lacy has promised to improve the Covers workflow in a coming update.

For $3.99, Action Launcher may not offer as much value as more mature and feature-heavy launchers like Nova and Apex, but knowing the quick development process of Tweet Lanes, Lacy’s defunct Twitter client, it should improve quickly. It would be nice if there was a free Lite version for users to test drive the functionality, but we can’t have everything, can we?

Download Action Launcher for Android here from Google Play
Via: AndroidAuthority

  • Rich

    Just grabbed it quick and it’s quite smooth, but lacks severely in the customization/settings department.

    I think you’re better served by some of the free options out there for the time being, unless you are blown away by the app drawer appearing on the left hand side.

  • Shaggyskunk

    Hold me back – 4 bucks for something that has no track record – from a dev that was pushing hard for a twitter app, that he abandoned – really? Lacy, how about a free or trial version 1st?

  • passerby

    Eh, too bad that the top left corner is possibly the worst spot to place one of the most often used buttons.

  • nik

    I was going to try it and then i read $ 4…screw that s**t lol…ill make my own launcher.

  • guy

    why does everyone balk at the idea of a $4 app. This isnt some game or pathetic app you use once. It forms all the basic functionality of your phone UI you use everyday. And its about half the price of a fast food lunch.

    That said I wont be buying this yet. It looks promising but ill wait until it has matured a bit and has more features similar to Nova prime.

    • PkaTka1

      As an android user you should know that we do NOT pay for apps. Developers should make them for free and if they don’t, custom roms are just a few clicks away. I am already spending my time using their apps so why should I pay someone for his work? It’s the android way – everything is open and free! As an android user, I’d rather spend 2 hours figuring out how to sideload the app illegal rather than pay 10 cents for it.

    • 45

      @PkaTka1 that has nothing to do with being an Android user, and everything to do about being a jerk.

    • d3v14n7

      PkaTka1

      Right, because iPhone users NEVER pirate paid apps, nope, never in a million years…

      That has nothing to do with Android users at all, you can (and many do) pirate apps on pretty much any platform, much like how people pirate software and games on PCs and Macs. The main reason why people jailbreak their iPhones and iPads is for exactly that, gaining access to alternative app stores to download paid apps for free. So don’t act like Android users are the only ones doing this, it’s been a huge problem on iOS as well from the very beginning.

      And this shows just how absolutely clueless you are about Android, you don’t need a custom ROM in order to pirate apps. So next time you want to talk trash about something, at least know what you’re talking about first, otherwise you’re only making yourself look like an even bigger i***t than you already are.

  • Plainzero

    The app is about the price of two coffees, something I go through in a day. I just picked it up and I’m loving it so far. There may be better options out there, I haven’t personally tried them, but for the sleek and clean feel this gives my SII, I’m satisfied with my purchase. If I’m really hard done by I’ll skip a couple trips to Timmies this week.

  • Tom

    What weather widget is that???? /me want!

  • nsnap

    This looks like a great idea. I recently started to use Smart Launcher by GINLEMON and have been really thrilled with it but wanted it to use the slide from the left type menu. This seems to answer that call.
    The only thing is like others mentioned, I would be cautious of paying for an app that the dev already dropped their last project.