Android 4.4′s new Google Experience Launcher brought us a very subtle, yet nice user interface change that gave the phone a really clean look. I’m talking about transparency in the navigation area and the notification bar. It’s not going to make or break your experience, but it’d be nice if custom launchers could enjoy that same visual fidelity. Thankfully, one of them now does.
I’m talking about Nova Launcher, one of the most well-known and widely used home-screen replacement apps currently sitting in the Google Play Store. A new beta update has come out that will allow users on Android 4.4 — or any phone that supports transparency in the navigation bar (see the list below) — to get transparent status and navigation bars.
Here’s a list of phones these new features should work on:
- Samsung Galaxy S3 (on Android 4.3)
- Samsung Galaxy S4
- Sony Xperia Z
- Motorola Moto X
- HTC One (rooted)
- Any Android 4.4 device ( Nexus 5)
Beyond that, this update also brings an option that will enable the new-style page indicator for the home screen and the new apps drawer icon. Wondering how to get into the beta? It’s simple: join this Google+ community, then head here to opt-in to the beta. From there, you should soon see an update for Nova Launcher in the Google Play Store.
It’s worth a spin if you aren’t a fan of the Google Experience Launcher but want that added bit of transparency. If you happen to be able to get transparent UI elements on phones other than the ones listed below, be sure to drop a line in the comments section and let us know!