Nokia releases the Z Launcher app for Android phones
Nokia rolled out a home screen replacement app for Android phones called Z Launcher and reviewers are already praising it to the heavens. It looks similar to the Aviate Launcher, which was recently acquired by Yahoo and what it does is it learns about what kinds of apps you want to launch depending on where you are and what the time of day is. “Throughout the day, Z Launcher is learning how you use your phone and promoting your favorite apps so you can get to them faster. Whether you’re texting a certain someone, trying not to search for apps in the car, or multi-tasking at the office, your screen changes based on your everyday life. The more you use it, the better it gets.”
As opposed to Aviate, Z Launcher comes with a very simplified user interface. The most notable UI feature lets you draw the first letter of the app you want to launch. For example, if you want to launch Twitter you just draw a “T” on the screen and the app launches. The Z Launcher feature that allows you to draw the letter of the app you want is called Scribble. As you might have heard Microsoft bought the Nokia hardware division earlier this year. However, this app has nothing to do with Microsoft and was created by what was left of Nokia after the acquisition of their mobile business.
So now that the Finnish company is finally free of Symbian and Windows Phone they can do whatever they want and it looks like they’ve started by making an Android app. They have probably been working on this for a long time because they were apparently planning to launch an Android phone, which now Microsoft is going to be in charge of. People tend to forget that Nokia is an extremely innovative company with great R&D, but the Z Launcher serves as a reminder of that. Just to be clear, this is an app for Android users in general so not only for those built by Microsoft.
The app is in a limited pre-beta release, which means that it’s not only unready for prime time and still buggy, but they are also going to limit the number of people that can use it. It’s kind of a first come first served thing so if you want to get it you better hurry up. For more information on the app you can visit the official Z Launcher website.