When Google took the wraps off of its new Nexus 5 smartphone last year, it also introduced a new launcher that let the user access Google Now with a simple swipe to the right from the home screen. Since then, many Android users have been wondering when Google would make its launcher available to other devices. Wonder no more, friends, because the answer is “today.”
The Google Now Launcher is now available for download from the Play Store. It offers the same quick Google Now access that I described previously as well as the ability initiate a voice search by saying “Ok Google” when the search box is visible and transparent status and navigation bars.
So that’s the good news! The bad news is that the Google Now Launcher is only available to Nexus and Google Play edition hardware. That’s certainly a larger batch of compatible devices than before today when the launcher was a Nexus 5-exclusive — at least officially — but it’s still kind of a bummer that the Google Now Launcher isn’t yet available to non-Nexus or GPe products. Google does offer many of its other core Android apps to all Android users, though, so hopefully the Google Now Launcher’s compatibility will be widened in the near future.
If you’ve got a Nexus or Google Play edition device and want to give the Google Now Launcher a go, hit up the Play Store link below.