A new home screen replacement option has just crept into the Google Play Store. The Klinker brothers — the folks who brought us Talon for Twitter and EvolveSMS — are responsible for Blur, a home-screen that attempts to use info pages and cards to deliver information that matters to you. Think of HTC’s BlinkFeed and the constant news and social updates that you have access to be swiping to the left, or the Google Now launcher that gives you a quick look at what Google thinks is important to you at any given time.
Blur aims to be that, except in an open and extensible way. The launcher comes with an API that will allow third-party developers to create info cards and pages that the user can swipe to (you can have up to 5 pages going at once). For instance, Evernote could build a card that will show your latest note, or an entire page that will show your 5 most recent notes. You can swipe to the pages as if they were home screen panes, so you can get access to the app or information you need without having to be taken out of your home screen.
The app comes with a standard info page by default which you can a weather, clock and calendar widgets to. There’s also a calculator page so you can simply swipe to a quick calculation instead of pecking for the app in your app drawer. As expected, Talon and EvolveSMS have both been updated that adds Blur functionality, so you can set either of those apps as an info page and get access to text messages or tweets by swiping left. It’s pretty neat, and we hope developers catch and support this exciting idea as much as the Klinker brothers do.
Beyond that, this is your typical launcher — you get a no frills user interface for which to place icons, folders, widgets and what have you. It’s also just as customizable as any of the top launchers out there, giving the ability to change grid sizes, custom icon packs, unread counts, dock choices, gesture control through swiping up and down, font choices, home screen scrolling effects and more. The app is available as a totally free download from Google Play, so get on over there and download it to give it a shot.
Interested in joining the beta? You can find that community right here. Developers interested in implementing Blur functionality can head to the project’s Github page right here for documentation and APIs. We can’t wait to see how this thing evolves from here on out!
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