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The Most Fun Android Launcher. (Niagara Launcher Review)

Hello, this is TheTechBoy with a review of Niagara Launcher.   


Important: I updated Niagara Launcher to version 1.6.4 from GitHub while testing. 


What Is Niagara Launcher?


       Niagara Launcher is a free launcher for Android devices. It has a premium model that unlocks all the features. Niagara Launcher is not like most Android as it doe not allow for much customization, and not many widgets are allowed. This launcher is also the most fun I have had with a launcher, and it is speedy and has a great design. I hope a manufacturer uses this as their stock launcher.  




The Good

    Niagara Launcher is a joy to use. The animations are very fun to use, tapping an alphabet is decently accurate, and the launcher accomplishes its goal of being usable in one hand (although I usually use two hands). This launcher also makes it easier to find and access applications rather than the typical grid-based launchers. The setup of the launcher is also easy, the application entices you to choose 8 of your most used applications and it hides your least used apps. All other programs must be searched for via the scroll motion, or the search program by swiping upwards. Niagara Launcher also allows features a notification summary which is an interesting feature. (If you set it up)  

  
       

   The Niagara Button is also a great addition, it allows you to make a shortcut to an application that you use a lot. I decided to map the phone application to that button. Niagara Launcher allows you to set customizable icons for free, or use the premium Niagara dots. Swiping on the applications launches quick actions on the application, and allows you to start an application-specific function. For example, swiping on the camera causes the option to take a video or a picture. Doing that in Messages allows you to quickly text a contact. Applications also help you quickly see your notifications for that specific application. Holding on to an application and pressing delete deletes the application instead of taking you into a setting which is a good thing.  The Niagara Folder also allows you to create a folder on your home screen, and store applications there. You can store widgets in there, but this is a paid feature.  


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The Not-So-Good

   Even though there is a lot to like about this application, some modifications could be made. First is its integration with Sesame. I downloaded Sesame (which is a universal search program) but unfortunately, integration with that program is paid. This is one of the downfalls of this application, almost every advanced feature, like Niagara widgets, and gestures (such as swiping up on the Niagara Button) is locked behind a paywall. I understand that the developer has to make a living but one too many features are paid. 
Select a Widget (to add to folder) pro feature pop up. .


       Another minor disadvantage is the disappearance of the extensions. I have an entire folder of websites added to my home screen, but it disappeared when I installed Niagara Launcher. (According to Niagara, this is a fault of Android because launchers cannot import website shortcuts from other launchers.) However,  I was able to download some other shortcuts and add them to my home screen. Additionally, the starred applications are separated from the alphabetical applications. This means that you are forced to use the scrolling motion to access them which is a shame. When you are in the starred applications, the swiping up leads to the search bar ( If you have that setting on)


  
Conclusion: 

    In all this is a great launcher that I appreciate. However only install this if you know what you are getting into. This is unlike other launchers as it does not allow that many widgets or obscure customization changes. But if all you need to do is change the icons and the wallpaper, and have some fun in the process, this fun minimalist launcher is for you.


Tech Talk To You Later!!




Did you know that some of this article was typed on a phone?

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