The best thing about Android is that it’s completely customizable. There’s almost nothing you cannot change about it.
And when it comes to Customization, the first thing that comes to our mind are launchers and no doubt Nova Launcher is the king of Android launchers and I guess most of you guys will agree. It’s the ultimate way to customize your smartphone.
However, there are many hidden trick or features which are often overlooked. So here’s a run-down of the most useful Nova Launcher tips and tricks including some new once which you may not know.
Excited so let’s get started.
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1- Create hidden folders
Do you want one of your folders to show only one icon and leave the rest hidden? If your answer is yes, then just head over to the folder and then long-press on it and select Edit. From here, you can press on the icon to choose a different icon and also change the name of the folder according to your preference. Once that is done, check this Swipe to open folder option and you are done.
Now your folder will only show one app which you have assign, if you click the icon, it will open the application that you have configured in, while if you slide you will see the apps that the folder contains. This will definitely come in handy if you want to keep your apps privet from the people around you.
2- Secret search Bar
In year 2017 smartphone are more powerful as most them has 3 or 4 gigs of ram and in some case 6 gigs also and that’s why now we can install 100s of our favourite apps without any problem.
But if you have 100s of apps installed on your device then finding the apps could be a mess, but in nova launcher there is a hidden gesture through which you can do find apps easily. You just have to press and hold this little arrow over your launcher and boom here is the secret search bar.
Now the best thing that I liked about this search bar is that it is divided into 3 sections which are frequent used apps, recent used apps and new/updated apps. Most of the time I find my apps in these 3 sections for that I am looking for.
3- Enables and disables the ‘Labs’ Menu
Hidden features are cool. If you like to mod, tweak, or otherwise personalize your device. All sorts of neat stuff can be found behind a door that you may not even realize is there and you know what Nova Launcher also has one of those doors.
A new option called labs menu has been recently introduced in Nova Launcher which is a kind of secret menu, containing experimental features and debugging options.
The ‘Labs’ menu hides a few options that are hidden, but to access this first you have to make it visible. It’s really easy to display this menu, simply go to the settings of Nova and hold the volume down button for few seconds to enable it.
From here you can check out various experimental options like big grid size options, upside down screen, Gmail unread count etc. and If you’re trying to customize Nova to look like Pixel Launcher, the first option is the one you’ll want to enable, it will put a weather notification in the new, Pixel-style search bar.
In case you would like to hide it again, then just hold the volume up button that’s it.
4- Double tap to lock
Double tap to lock is one of the coolest feature of android which was first introduced by lg and it’s one of my favourite because I use it more often to lock my device. But do you know there is an option in nova launcher which will enable the same feature without any root.
So let’s head over to the setting and scroll down, here you will find an option called gestures and input select that. Now click on double tap gesture and select screen lock.
Once done, double tap on the home screen, which will prompt you to choose a screen lock method. If you choose “Device Admin”, the device will be locked but if you have a fingerprint-featuring device, the fingerprint unlock will not work. However, you can choose “Timeout”, which blacks out the display for 5 seconds while the screen timeouts and the device is locked.
5- Hide Apps
Many users are quite concern about their privacy and this tip is exactly for those. Nova launcher also lets you hide any app from the app drawer which you want.
If you don’t want people prying on your private apps or if you just want to hide some annoying bloat ware then this feature is quite handy.
To hide apps, you can head to Nova Settings then App & widget drawers, scroll down and tap on “Hide apps“. From here you can just select the apps you want to hide and that’s it, the apps will be hidden from the home screen and as well as from the app drawer.
You can easily access these hidden apps by just doing a simple search. So I think it’s a very cool features which is definitely worth trying.
6- Add app drawer tabs
If you are one of those who like to try and install tons and tons of apps on your Android device then this feature is definitely for you. Installing tons of apps is not a big concern as now a days Android smartphones are very powerful and got lots of ram and internal storage. But to manage all these apps is the real mess.
But don’t worry in nova launcher there is an option which will let you create tabs in the app drawer for a simpler and cleaner look. For instance, you can create tabs for different categories of apps like you can create a tab and name it Social and in this tab you can put all your social apps like Facebook, Twitter etc. This feature will not only keep your app drawer cleaner but also help you to stay organised throughout your apps.
Now to do that first you have to enable TAB BAR from app and widget drawer option. Once it is done, you can also change the tab style, menu action icons and isolate tabs.
Now to create your own custom tab scroll down below and tap on “Drawer groups“. Here, you can add different tabs by tapping the plus icon on the top right. You can also change the order in which they are available in the app drawer.
7- Swipe actions on apps
Do you know in nova you can assign a swipe up gesture for a specific app to perform different activities or to launch any other app just like this?
For instance i have assigned the gallery icon to open the camera app when I swipe. This could be very useful for those who like to use multiple apps at a same time very often.
To enable this on any app, press and hold on an app icon on which you want to assign the action and tap on “Edit“. Now here you will find an option called swipe action. Just click on that and from here you can assign different actions to that particular app.
8- Pixel’s App Shortcuts feature
I hope you do remember the pixel’s app shortcut feature which is just a software level approach of Apple 3d touch and I really love the fact that Google has provided the same functionality without using any additional hardware. But do you know you can get the same feature on the latest version of nova launcher and i am not kidding.
In nova you will get this app shortcut feature by which you can access different shortcuts and functions of an app without opening it sounds cool so let’s check out how it works.
Suppose you want to check out the trending section of YouTube. For that you will first open the app then you will swipe left to access the trending section right.
What if you can access it without even opening the YouTube app yap that’s right? Just press and hold YouTube app then this app shortcut option will pop up from here you can directly access the trending or subscription section. As you now this feature is working for all Google apps but most of the third party app doesn’t support this but still it’s very fun to use.
9- Change apps icon according to your choice.
I am sure most of you guys who are watching this are aware of the fact that you can easily change the icons in nova launcher by just Appling icon packs, but i am also sure that not many people are know that you can also change the icons according to your preference from different icon packs. Yap that’s right so let me show you that.
Currently i am using Taz icons which looks really cool and minimal but there are some icons which I don’t like for instance this Google Photos icon which i think is too flat So i want to change it. To change the icon just press and hold the icon and select edit. Then click on the icon and now you can select from various built in icons or you can also select icons from different icon packs which suits you style.
10- Lock the home screen
In case you are going to give your smartphone to someone and you don’t want that someone to mess with your home screen layout. In that case nova have you covered because in nova launcher there is a feature through which you can block the home screen for anyone to modify it without your permission isn’t cool. So let’s see how you to do that.
In the settings of Nova, go into ‘Desktop’, down to where it says ‘Advanced’ and, in the new menu that appears, change the switch of ‘Lock desktop’. That’s it now your home screen is locked.
In order To unlock it you have to press and hold on the padlock that appears when you want to change something on the home screen. In addition, you can choose if you want to re-lock automatically each time that you check out Nova Launcher or turn off the screen.
One of the main reason why i use nova launcher rather than any other launcher is the gesture support. Due to this I can cut short most of my works with some simple gesture like swipe up and down, pinch in and out and there are bunch of others.
There are various configurable gestures here, all of which have the same set of options available to them. You can configure as many as you want, but for the sake of simplicity we’ll just work with the “Swipe up” gesture. The same rules apply to configuring all of the gesture options.
When you tap on the “Swipe up” option, a new menu will open with three tabbed options: Nova, Apps, and Shortcuts.
The first tab basically shows all of the options available exclusively to Nova Similarly, the “Apps” tab allows you to assign a gesture to an app. The third tab, however, isn’t as simple as the first two—but it’s also the most powerful. Basically, the “Shortcuts” option allows you execute more complex choices than just launching an app or opening a menu.
So guys I think these are some of the coolest and useful tricks of nova launcher which you should definitely try and if you are using nova from a long time then you would surely know that there are lots of things which you can do.