Category: Google Pixel Launcher

Download the Android P Updated Pixel Launcher

As to be expected, the dominant Android news this week has been the release of the first developer preview for Android P.  While the code is still considered alpha and not near completion, you can already pick out areas of important changes in the upcoming release.

One minor change that has surfaced is a slightly revamped Pixel Launcher.  The Pixel Launcher was introduced with the original Pixel phones and Android Nougat.  It was tweaked slightly on the Pixel 2 lineup and Oreo and appears again to be set for a minor tweak with Android P and, presumably, the Pixel 3 lineup.  But you can try it out today on any phone.

Hard-to-Track Bug Impacting Pixel Launcher Searches for Some

A hard-to-track and not always an issue bug is impacting many that have the Google Pixel Launcher running on their Pixel phone.  The issue is around searching when you tap the search pill at the top of the launcher.  Some have reported that when they tap it, their search history does not display and suggestions does not load.

The issue does not seem to be universal.  Some users have had no problem (I fall into that category) while others have found that a restart of their phone resolves the issue, others haven’t been able to get it resolved with a reboot.  Equally, it is not clear if the issue is related to the recent update to the Pixel Launcher which rolled out earlier this week.

Pixel Launcher Lands in The Play Store

Today the Pixel Launcher has made its debut in the Play Store.  The launcher which comes standard on Google Pixel devices however, cannot be installed on non-Pixel devices.  Well, officially at least.  If you want to download the APK and side load it, the team over at Android Police have the link available on their site.

The question that many are already asking is why Google would put this in the Play Store even if only two phones can actually install it?  That actually is pretty easy to answer.  Google has been porting out standalone version of a multitude of their apps over the course of the past year.  By doing this, it makes it far easier to update and not require a system update as it would if it were baked into the Android build.  This process has actually allowed non-Nexus phone to use Google apps on their devices and while the Pixel Launcher is only for the Pixel phones now, the foundation is laid at the very least for Google to expand it to other Android devices in the future.  If they chose to do that in the future.

Pixel Launcher Will Only Be Available on Pixel Phones – For Now

A few weeks ago I posted the Pixel Launcher which you could sideload to your current Nexus or other Android device.  For now, that may be the only way you can get onto your device.  The new launcher will be exclusive to the new Google Pixel and Pixel XL for now although according to Android Police, Google is considering bringing it to other phones.  The new launcher as you have likely seen by now, is a significant departure from the Google Now launcher with a slide up App Drawer and the Google “G” pill at the top to activate searching.  Personally I’m a big fan of the new look but as a Nexus 6P owner, I may be waiting a while.

Download The Pixel Launcher

As you have probably seen or read by now, there is a beta app of the Google Pixel Launcher that is expected to be a part of the upcoming Google Pixel phones.  You may recall earlier this Summer there was a Nexus Launcher that was running around in beta.  This is the exact same thing, renamed and updated a bit.  If you want to try out the new launcher, you can download both the launcher APK and the new wallpaper pack APK in one zip file after the break.

First, a few of housekeeping items before you download these files.

  1. This is a beta app and is not officially supported.  There is no tech support for it so if you aren’t comfortable with that, don’t install it.  Wait until it becomes official.
  2. No, I’m not tech support.
  3. No warranty is expressed or implied. is not responsible for any damages to your phone, data, pictures, files, etc. on your phone.  Load at your own risk.
  4. In order to install the APKs, you will need to allow for apps to be installed from unknown sources.  You can find this setting at Settings>Security>Unknown Sources.
  5. You will need to install both APKs for everything to work properly.  I recommend installing the wallpaper pack first.
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