06-15-2013 08:26 PM
68 123
  1. JMusic's Avatar
    GDE seemed to be the smoothest and most stable home replacement for me, followed closely by Openhome. GDE is by far the coolest and gets "Wow!" responses from people when they see it in action.
    01-19-2010 09:41 PM
  2. herki's Avatar
    Does anybody have any opinions on SlideScreen?
    Slide Screen by Larva Labs
    I downloaded the free version, and it seems like a really cool concept. I'm a bit iffy about losing all my pretty widgets and homescreens, so I use application mode. What I really like is the fact that it does RSS. About time I found a good RSS reader.
    01-20-2010 03:13 PM
  3. bcollins's Avatar
    im new to android stuff can somebody pleaseee tell me do you have to have a homescreen replacement thing to get all these nice themes and dock and stuff ?
    01-21-2010 06:54 PM
  4. herki's Avatar
    im new to android stuff can somebody pleaseee tell me do you have to have a homescreen replacement thing to get all these nice themes and dock and stuff ?
    Yes you do. But that's not nearly as tall an order as it seems. Most of the home replacements mentioned in this thread are available on the Android Market, and you don't need to root your phone to get them. They're all just another app.
    01-21-2010 07:34 PM
  5. bcollins's Avatar
    Yes you do. But that's not nearly as tall an order as it seems. Most of the home replacements mentioned in this thread are available on the Android Market, and you don't need to root your phone to get them. They're all just another app.
    ok thank you
    01-22-2010 04:55 AM
  6. phantrik's Avatar
    Launcher ++, Home ++ and stock home are fastest for me.
    Same here and I get good love from GDE/iDroid theme
    01-23-2010 05:26 PM
  7. stuckingoo's Avatar
    I am with the above poster. Tired them all, using home++ and the 2.1 launcher the most and was becoming very annoyed with how slow my phone was getting making me actually like the phone itself less and less. Then about a week ago i went back to the original home setup and have fallen in love with my Droid and its awesomeness all over again. So I too will be waiting for the 2.1 official launch before going back to a replacement home screen.
    I've tried all except Open Home.....and they all had one thing in common....with time they would bog down and force closes. So I'm back to stock which is solid. I do wish however there was one more screen....all the other things the alternatives offer are just frills IMO.
    01-28-2010 02:00 PM
  8. Bako's Avatar
    I think having a permanent 'dock,' as with DxTop, is more than just a frill. It's a solid feature, and I greatly prefer having my 5 most used apps available to me whichever home screen I'm on. I have made my peace with DxTop and use it now, though I often curse at the phone while waiting for it to 'recover' from exiting an app and trying to redraw the home screen, or when I change orientation. But the benefits outweigh the costs... until 2.1 that is.
    01-29-2010 11:23 AM
  9. chaddymoff's Avatar
    Defintely GDE. Set as the cube with 5 screens gives great organization, plenty of access, and rarely a performance delay.
    02-01-2010 01:53 PM
  10. ghdavis@RUNBOX.com's Avatar
    I've been experimenting with different home replacements, and although I've found many to add useful functionality and aesthetic bling, it has been a frustrating experience. For one thing, most don't import your existing icons or widgets, so you are compelled to spend a lot of time setting them up, just to discover that they might slow your Droid down considerably when fully outfitted. Also, having multiple home replacements installed seems to cause some errors (aHome, for example, just gave me cascading errors when I tried to use it; had to pull the battery). Note that I'm using a Droid with Android 2.01, and this thread was moved here from the Droid forum.

    So, since we have this nice community here, I thought it might be easier to just ask you guys what you like and don't like about the various home replacements you're using or have used in the past. There was a thread earlier about how home replacements slow the Droid down - obviously that would be a major consideration, and it's the reason I stopped using dxTop - but I'm also interested in the functionality and skinning options provided.

    My experiences so far

    This was the first home replacement I used, and from a functionality standpoint, probably still my overall favorite. But it really does slow things down; when I switched back to the built-in home, I was shocked at how fast it was and what I'd gotten used to using dxTop. I love the 4 home screens shaped like a diamond, so each is always accessible with one swipe, but was disappointed that 4 was the limit, since a big part of home replacements is adding screens. I also liked the added drawer (for running apps) and the customizable dock, though I wish there were a way to have them both accessible simultaneously. Finally, dxTop allows you to use nearly any theme or icon pack, even those made for other home replacements like Open Home. That was nice.

    This is the one I'm using now. Doesn't seem to slow things down as much as dxTop did, and lets you have lots more screens. I also like that there's a dock at the bottom, but frustrated it isn't very customizable. Also disappointed it doesn't seem to support themes, but perhaps that's the trade-off for performance.

    I tried this one briefly, and there seemed to be a lot to like about it - simple theme implementation, side-bar docks that were completely customizable, and lots of screens. But the themes all seemed to be made for children, and the whole app had a very pastel, nursery time quality that wasn't for me [edit: I've since discovered it can also use Open Home themes, so this opens up the possibilities for this free app]. Also, I didn't want to have to fill up 5-7 screens full of apps and widgets to find out if it slowed down considerably. I'd be interested to hear from a regular user of PandaHome regarding performance and theme availability.

    aHome (does not support the Droid)
    Earlier I noted that aHome Mini just crashed on my Droid. I've since looked at aHome and aHome Lite on the market, and neither supports the Droid. They specifically say so. So, no aHome for us, but at least that saves you $4.99!

    Edit: Additional Home Replacement Reviews

    Open Gesture
    This is a unique home replacement built around a gesture engine. It includes many of the typical features found on other home apps, including 5 horizontally arranges home screens (with a nice slider at the bottom you can use to navigate between them) and theme implementation, although I only found a handful of themes in the market, and those I downloaded weren't formatted for the Droid's screen (wallpaper was too short). First, I should say that the documentation is non-existent on the app - it only comes with an ad for the paid version in place of any explanation of its features. I had to go to their website (Open Gesture - Android Desktop Replacement | Hollowire) to figure out what was going on. You click on the lower left of the screen, and then draw a gesture anywhere; it takes a few moments to "analyze" it, and then something launches. Seems like a cool idea, since you can have it launch apps, call specific individuals, or just about anything. But I found the process of sliding to a new screen and just hitting an app icon to be easier and faster than using the gesture engine. Also, sometimes it got my gestures wrong, even though I was never that sloppy. The paid version apparently has added features, but based on the free one, I'm not sure it has enough to beat other home replacements. Screen movement was very smooth, I should note, but the app lacked lots of the options I expect, like control of whether a theme replaces your wallpaper, and there was no place to see what the gestures (pre-programmed or user created) actually did. You just had to remember. So, cool idea that could use a good dose of polish and efficiency.

    Open Home
    This home replacement's most prominent feature is its well developed catalog of themes, and it can also use aHome themes. However, most Open Home themes actually cost money, which I found disappointing, since Open Home itself will set you back a cool $5. For your money, you'll get a well thought out set of options, including my favorite - a mode that artificially maintains the app's memory requirements as though it were always running in the foreground, even when it isn't - this gives better home screen performance at the expense of other apps, but still, it kept things smooth. Other than good skinning, robust setting, and extra home screens, Open Home's biggest feature is a curiously placed, slide-out dock, which (once slid out) can be scrolled horizontally to accommodate custom shortcuts. I found this to be a really strange choice on the developers' part, and was disappointed that skins/themes couldn't relocate the dock to the bottom (or top) of the screen. Sitting squarely 2/3 of the way down, the dock and the search button opposite it, compromise the harmony of the screen's layout, while proving challenging to use while also switching screens, since the dock covers part of the screen when out. So my opinion is that it is a solid replacement, especially for skinning, but which unfortunately doesn't add much functionality, and isn't worth paying $5 for, when there are free and cheaper alternatives that are as good or better.
    Well, unfortunately, I have not had a very good experience with Open Home Desktop. I am plagued with MULTIPLE Force Stops and I arm considering eating the $5 loss and moving on... I continually get these "Force Stops" and it basically ruins the experience and no one can tell me why it is happening. Also, I cannot find out how to actually talk to a tech support that actually speaks reasonable English. In disgust, I went and purchased AHome only to find out that it does not run on the Android. It would have been nice for their software company to make that real clear in their ads. In addition, same problem, tech person could barely speak English, not enough to really help so I got my refund the same day after purchasing the software... My desktop replacement (3rd party) replacements have been a real disaster so far... any helpful instructions from anyone would be more then welcome... (O:
    02-03-2010 08:21 AM
  11. Zerazac's Avatar
    I thought rooting my phone would help with the lag I was getting with dxTop. I loved dxTop (themes,icons etc) but I'm back to the stock. So yeah I loved the dxTop LOOK but didn't like my phones PERFORMANCE. So I made folders to make it look nice and less cluttered. I WAS going to look into other home replacements but thanks to you all I'm not even gonna bother.
    02-04-2010 02:42 PM
  12. Brett's Avatar
    for anybody interested there is a new home replacement that resembles htc's sense UI.its called"panda hero". it has a few of the widgets that go with sense as well like the contact and bookmark widgets. it looks nice and the reviews seem to be good as well. I think the price is $3.99 which isn't bad for what you get. id try it but im satisfied with my htc skin on open home. just thought id let youguys know.
    02-07-2010 08:53 AM
  13. Bako's Avatar
    George, I think I specifically note in my review that aHome (all versions, last I checked) doesn't work on the Moto Droid, though it does apparently work on other Android phones. They do say this, at least on the main aHome version, in the product description. I didn't encounter any 'force closes' with Open Home, but then I didn't use it for very long. The benefits weren't great enough, imho, to justify either the cost or the lag. And they have the weirdest and least useful dock of all the home replacements.

    I still use dxTop, despite the lag, because I am now addicted to (1) the persistent dock at the bottom of the screen, and (2) having all home screens on a 2-dimensional one-swipe diamond, instead of a one dimensional line. I even installed the Nexus One launcher, which has 5 home screens horizontally and a much nicer app drawer, but in the end rejected it because the diamond layout is much nicer. I just wish they'd add optional corner screens to create a 3x3 grid with 8 home screens (leaving the center one out, so that single-swipe access is maintained). dxTop seems to be resting on its laurels and releasing only bux-fix updates lately, which doesn't bode well for its longevity.

    I will check out Panda Hero, though if it's anything like the free Panda Home, I suspect I'll be disappointed, since that was the slowest of all home replacements I tried, and though it had an innovative layout (with retracting side docks) and full skinning support, in the end the performance drop was far too big a sacrifice to keep using it. And that was with a free app.
    02-07-2010 12:50 PM
  14. hardtorn's Avatar
    I used dxtop, panda, and home++, after a bunch of screwing around and setting up and tinkering I got fed up with slowness and glitches.

    I've gone back to the native home with no themes and slimmed down main screen to phone, 4 "messaging" apps, and the weatherbug widget. To the right: 3 folders and a Widget. To the left: browser, map, 2 speed dials, and calendar widget.

    It's REFRESHING time have a simple and clean look with wallpaper showing thru. Make folders. I have:
    - one music apps
    - one for games
    - one for frequently used apps

    It takes just a second to open a folder and keeps the screen clean and pretty.

    Simplify - ditch all of the home replacements that slow you down. Try going back to a very clean and uncluttered look and you'll enjoy the snappiness of the screen refreshes and the uncluttered simplicity.
    So I like the idea of folders... one of the few things I like about windows...
    I did make a folder... cant seem to figure out how to "name it".
    How do you put a name to the folders?
    02-09-2010 08:23 PM
  15. ninjataint's Avatar
    I use GDE with the Obsidian theme on my Droid. I only use three screens since I make liberal use of the application docks. The application dock allow me to have room for my widgets as do the call/add buttons always being on the bottom and not taking up useable space. I highly recommend the Obsidian theme because it keeps everything clean.

    I never really had any lag issues and now that I rooted (using Sholes 2.0.3 rom) and overclocked to 800mhz, GDE flies. I know 2.1 is coming but I don't know if I can give up my application docs and love the ability to add or remove home screens as needed.
    02-11-2010 03:36 PM
  16. mostendorf34's Avatar
    So I like the idea of folders... one of the few things I like about windows...
    I did make a folder... cant seem to figure out how to "name it".
    How do you put a name to the folders?
    click on the folder and when it's open long click on the name and you'll be able to change it

    I was using home++ on my droid and started getting 10-15+ FC a day and even though i love it and the dock i couldn't take it anymore so i'm back to stock but recently rooted and overclocked to 800mhz and it's running great and i have my 5 screens back so i can wait for an update on home++

    (i used home++ while rooted and overclocked and had the same FC issues)
    02-11-2010 05:57 PM
  17. Chillout's Avatar
    Ive been using DXTOP too, it was the first home replacement I've tried; I love everything about it except the epic lag when returning to home screen or waking up the phone. It drives me nuts, but the variety of themes you can use, icons, etc. along with the Dock, keeps me coming back to dxtop.

    I did download the new launcher, which I actually kinda like but since I can't use DXtop with it and rename my icons, I removed it for now. I know I can use Bettercut to rename Icons, which is cool, but I guess in the end I'm too spoiled with the icon packs you can use with a theme manager to go back to stock blah icons.
    02-13-2010 08:09 PM
  18. sybergato's Avatar
    I know I'm spoiled and greedy and want it all. . . but is anyone working on a home replacement that has all the bells and whisles combined into one app? Like the 3 or 4 different scrolling methods in the options? The option to have the dock drawers or the side drawers, without having to switch homes? I've tried a few of the home apps out now and I think that each have their positives and negatives. And I imagine that some DEV out there has tried them too or has been reading posts like this and thought, well I could update and add the option to put a side dock in GDE or something. . I dunno. . . I want my cake and eat it too right?

    btw, I'm using GDE. I love the Cube transition with a split wallpaper like day and night and a few others I had to find myself. With the screens set at 4, it's awsome. And the dock bar widget is super. . .but alas, a custom drawer would be nice as well as possible side docks for different set up. I have the other home apps on my phone, just don't use them as often. I have home switcher which is very nice, but the problem with that is that when you switch, your Icons and wallpaper stay the same. Wish I could have a red open home theme with red background and Icons then homeswitch to GDE Cube'd with darker Icons and a split wallpaper, Anyone else????
    02-14-2010 11:06 AM
  19. Chillout's Avatar
    I finally had enough of the epic lag that dxtop was giving me, so I began trying the other replacement options, including using the new 2.1 launcher. I tried everyone listed in this thread, along with sweethome. I had settled on Home++, I installed it and it seemed to be working fine. I was loving life with getting my speed back on droid; Home++ was working great. Then I started getting some weird lag so I rebooted and then it was ok. After a few hours though I started noticing random weird crap happening whenever I try to access the home screen; various parts of other home themes started appearing everywhere..icons from dxtop, launcher from home++, etc...so I was like WTF!!

    So I decided a factory reset was in order, a soft reset. I did that, phone came back up. I started the daunting task of rearranging everything again and downloading my favorite apps, etc. I was loving the super fast speeds, and crisp changing between the 3 screens. I went to reinstall Home++ and thought, I wonder if I can get dxtop to function better now that I wiped out my phone and started from scratch. So on a whim I redownloaded it (minus multiple icon packs I had before) and wonder of all wonders (knock on wood) it's actually been running really well. Virtually no log or very little even when using multiple apps and putting the droid through it's paces. I know using icon packs can slow up the phone so Im going to stick with the base icons for now.

    So at this time, I'm going to stick with dxtop again and see what happens. I really like being able to rename shortcuts and icons, but it's not a deal breaker if dxtop goes south again.
    02-19-2010 02:58 PM
  20. Chillout's Avatar
    An update for anyone that might be interested...I have been receiving some intermittent FC's since I reinstalled dxtop. They only seem to happen if I'm editing a folder or app, and it doesn't happen all the time, just random.

    Also, I had forgotten to put dxtop and beautiful widgets onto the ignore list for my task killer after I reinstalled them so that helps some as well.

    Overall I'll stick with the same set up for now and continue to monitor it. If it gets worse again I'll permanently remove dxtop and call it a day but for now, we shall see...
    02-22-2010 07:55 AM
  21. Chillout's Avatar
    and just when I say that...it started acting up again. I began getting epic lag last night on my phone just doing basic functions. I powercycled it but still kept getting lag. Goodbye dxtop, maybe when they do a real update to fix the lag I'll try it again but for now I installed the 2.1 launched and Bettercut and that so far is working quite well again...nice to have that speed back on my droid, permanently.
    02-23-2010 08:24 AM
  22. Chillout's Avatar
    I think I am droid home replacement app kryptonite or something. Since I posted yesteray, my 2.1 launcher started FC'ing so much I could barely even use the phone. As soon as one FC, there was another. I managed to get to the applications in the settings and uninstall it,then rebooted my phone and was working again but there I was stuck with the stock home again. I reinstalled Home++ and resetup my shortcuts using Bettercut and so far it's working well. If I start to have issues again though, I will uninstall Home++ and just stick with the stock home launcher for now. As long as I can keep using Bettercut, I can live with that if necessary for the time being.
    02-24-2010 10:31 AM
  23. kn0t's Avatar
    I use GDE. It takes a bit of getting used too but I really like it. I put a hero theme on top of that and it looks cool and works great, on both my cliq and behold 2.
    03-09-2010 12:53 PM
  24. that1bb's Avatar
    If you are just looking for a dock, additional screens and rock solid stability, check out Helix launcher.
    03-17-2010 11:44 AM
  25. Roy Aguilera's Avatar
    Helix Launcher2. Ruqqq did a hell of a job on it.
    03-17-2010 12:00 PM
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