The early release sports an interface reminiscent of Aviate, but appears less devoted to contextual recommendations. While the current version is fairly basic, the big ideas may still be on the horizon.
The first thing I noticed is that Arrow replaced the stock icons for system apps like Phone and Messages, which isn’t in and of itself a bad thing but an unexpected behavior.
The main screen is divided into three sections. There is a row on top for recent apps, a larger area in the middle for frequently used apps, and the bottom row for user-selected quick access apps. One trick up Arrow’s sleeve is that you can swipe up from that bottom row, revealing more apps, folders, and recent contacts. It chooses all of these for you to begin with so that the space isn’t empty.
There is one page to the left and one to the right, each which serve specialized functions. You can’t add or remove pages at this point. Swipe right and you get a running to-do list, which is very simplistic but does offer the ability to add scheduled reminders. Let’s hope Wunderlist integration is forthcoming.
To the left is a set of shortcuts to recent and frequent contacts, in case the swipe-up shortcut wasn’t useful enough for you. Last but not least, the app drawer is similar to the Android M Google Now Launcher and many others with that style.
1) FEATURE: 3rd party icon pack support: Many of you told us to you want to theme your icons via a third party icon pack, and we have done exactly that. We love it and we hope you do too
2) FEATURE: Page management: You asked and we listened — you can now set another page as the homepage, and rearrange all the pages, including the Widgets page. Simply tap and hold on an empty spot on any page to get started!
3) ENHANCEMENT: We have once again improved the first-run experience for our new users. This time, we have focused on making the workflow better to help you enjoy Arrow on Day 1.
4) ENHANCEMENT: We have added Material Response on the People page.
5) BUG FIX: We have a few key issues that would freeze or crash Arrow.
6) Performance: We have optimized the battery and memory consumption further. Arrow should now consume less battery and memory!
Dear Beta community, we have an exciting MAJOR update for you:
1) Fully customizable home page. You asked, we listened. 100% freedom to place the apps and widgets that you want on your “Apps” page.
2) “Double tap screen to lock” feature is back.
3) Bing search. Swipe up on the dock and you will see the Bing search box at the top.
4) Collage feature. In “Recent” page, hold down on any of your photos at the top to HIDE, ANNOTATE, or SHARE.
5) Live wallpaper support.
Enjoy Arrow Launcher!