Nexus 5’s ‘Google Now’ Launcher Available on Google Play

white-nexus-5-01Earlier this month, we blogged about Google changing the name of their Nexus 5’s ‘Experience Launcher’ to ‘Google Now.’ This lead many people (including our staff here to believe that Google was going to release the launcher as a standalone app for all Android devices. Well, it looks like this turned out to be true, as Google officially released the ‘Google Now’ launcher app on Google Play, making it available to all Nexus and Android 4.4 KitKat devices.

The Google Now launcher (previously named the Experience Launcher) was released exclusively for the Nexus 5 during the rollout of the Android KitKat update. Google Nexus 5 users from across the country were ecstatic to have their fingers on the new launcher interface. Technically, the launcher was a combination of the traditional Android home screen and the Google Search app, which means users could search for a keyword simply by speaking near their device.

During its initial release, the Google Now launcher was designed, and released, exclusively for Nexus 5 devices. However, it didn’t take long for tech-savvy individuals to find out how to use the Google Now launcher on other Android devices. This was done simply by pulling core files off the Nexus 5 and transferring them over to another device running Android 4.4. KitKat (give or take a couple extra steps).

Google noticed the demand for the Google Now launcher on other devices, so they decided to modify and release it to everyone (assuming you have an Android device running 4.4 KitKat).

The most attractive feature of Google Now is the ‘Ok Google’ hotword search function. When you need to Google something, start by saying “Ok Google” followed by your keyword and it will automatically pull up Google and begin searching.

The official Google Plus page says the following:

“A few months ago we introduced an experience on Nexus 5 that made it easier to access all the goodness of Google Now directly from the home screen. Today we’re making that same experience available to more devices when you install the Google Now Launcher on any Nexus or Google Play edition phone or tablet running KitKat.

Google Now Launcher also gives you a beautiful, immersive, and simple experience. The full-screen, larger viewing area lets your wallpaper pop from every pixel. And of course you can place your favorite apps anywhere you like.

Are you a fan of the Google Now launcher? Let us know what you think in the comments section below!

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