Action Launcher's June 2017 update is here, and it's a big one. A previously unearthed Android O feature, a host of new features, some sweeping changes that will impact the app for years to come and a slew of other enhancements combine to form the single biggest Action Launcher release in years.
A new (old) name
Going forward, the app will drop the "3" suffix and instead solely use the name "Action Launcher".
This name change is intended as a clear statement to current and future customers alike that the current version of the app is, and will remain, the home for current and future Action Launcher development.
You can read more about this change, as well a new app version numbering system and a whole lot more, here.
A new look
Action Launcher is preparing for the world of Adaptive Icons and post-Lollipop era material design with a brand new look that encapsulates the Action Launcher of today and tomorrow:
A new, previously unknown Android O feature comes to Action Launcher
Did you know that all signs are when Android O ships, Pixel Launcher will support an animating clock icon for the Google Clock app? Neither did anyone else!
Check here for the full lowdown of this discovery, but the good news is you don't have to wait to use animating clocks, as its available today in Action Launcher, on your device.
But wait, we've not gotten to the rest of the update yet!
Pixel Launcher features by default, for everyone
As of this update, Action Launcher moves on from the Lollipop era and makes all new installs of Action Launcher default to Pixel Launcher styling. You'll get the sliding All Apps drawer, folder styles, animated caret indicator and more. Furthermore, all of these features, many of which previously required the one-time Plus in-app upgrade, are available for free.
Pixel Launcher styling for App Shortcuts
Action Launcher was the first launcher to support Android 7.1's App Shortcuts, and also the first to bring app shortcuts to earlier versions of Android (5.1 or later).
A consequence of releasing App Shortcuts before Pixel Launcher was that it wasn't yet clear how Google intended for launchers to support and display App Shortcuts. Since Android 7.1's release, that dilemma has been answered, and Action Launcher now uses Google's official "hold to activate" mechanics, as well as the bubble UI:
New icon indicators
Action Launcher's informative and iconic icon indicators (say that 5 times quickly!) have been given a brand new look:
One terrific usability enhancement the new icon indicators bring is the ability to use App Shortcuts and Action Launcher's Shutters (which reveal an app's widget) on the same shortcut:
Please note, that if you would like to disable these indicators and embrace the guessing game as to which apps do and don't support App Shortcuts, you can do so.
But wait, there's still more
Action Launcher's June 2017 update contains a host of other enhancements, tweaks, optimizations and fixes.
The full change log for version 25.0 of Action Launcher is:
• NEW: Action Launcher 3 has been renamed to Action Launcher, and has a shiny new icon to prove it! • NEW: Use an animating, Android O-style clock icon for the Google Clock app (requires Lollipop or later). This animating clock is also available as a standalone widget. • NEW: By default, all new installs of Action Launcher will use Pixel Launcher style All Apps, folders and everything in between. • NEW: Many Pixel Launcher features that previously required Plus are now free for all users. Furthermore, the app is now far less aggressive in prompting users to upgrade to Plus. • NEW: Full integration of Pixel Launcher's UI styling for displaying App Shortcuts (previously known as Quickcuts). App Shortcuts display when long pressing an icon from either the desktop or All Apps list. • NEW: App Shortcuts can be used in combination with Shutters and Covers. • NEW: App Shortcuts can be dragged and placed as shortcuts on a home screen. • NEW: Revamped appearance of the icon indicators for Covers, Shutters and App Shortcuts.. • NEW: Smartsize icon resizing is no longer a beta feature, and is enabled by default for all Plus users. • NEW: Add animated caret indicator when opening/close Pixel style All Apps. • NEW: Custom system fonts are correctly applied to labels on the desktop. • NEW: The horizontal screen margin can be adjusted (via Desktop settings, phones only). • IMPROVEMENT: Lots of polish to ensure the app's look and feel mimics that of Pixel Launcher. Notable areas of focus include the padding of All Apps drawer and folder appearance. • IMPROVEMENT: Optimizations to memory, battery usage and scrolling performance. • IMPROVEMENT: Order the date and month displays on the date widget is correctly localized. • IMPROVEMENT: The screen edge shadow no longer displays at the bottom of the screen when using a tinted dock. • IMPROVEMENT: On first boot, the home screen animates smoothly on screen rather than having shortcuts snap on. • IMPROVEMENT: Update translations. • BUG FIX: Remove stutter first time All Apps drawer is opened. • BUG FIX: Open folders display a shadow. • BUG FIX: Fix aliasing on the icons of the first 3-4 shortcuts in a folder. • BUG FIX: Improved support for tall devices like the S8 and G6. • BUG FIX: Notification panel shortcut works on Galaxy S8. • BUG FIX: Fix issue where removing the last shortcut from a Home screen page would sometimes also fail to also remove the now empty Home screen. • BUG FIX: Fix issue where items could appear on the Quickbar multiple times. • BUG FIX: Improve detection of App Shortcuts on pre-Android 7.1 devices. • FIX: Misc. stability fixes.
Action Launcher's June 2017 update is available now in the Play Store: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.actionlauncher.playstore
Press assets for Action Launcher's new logo and this update are available here.