AppSpot is an app launcher in disguise

July 8, 2014
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To say that Android has many homescreen replacements and app launchers is an understatement, but AppSpot could still manage to stand apart from the crowd. While it may behave like any other Android app, its sole purpose in life is to find and launch other apps. Yes, AppSpot is an app launcher that is an app.

Aside from the fact that it has an app icon that shows up in any app launcher and the fact that it has a homescreen widget, AppSpot's functionality matches that of most Android launchers in the market. It shows your apps, either in grid or list view modes, lets you set different sorting orders and lets you uninstall them. But even here, AppSpot does a few things differently. You can view "launchable" apps, that is, apps that would normally appear in other app launchers, as well as all other apps installed, even system ones. Each app has its own menu, where you can choose to launch, uninstall, or even view the details for each one. There is also a shortcut on the toolbar that takes you to Android's native app manager. You can also perform a batch sharing or uninstall by tapping and holding on each app you want to include in the queue.

appspot

Except for the ability to group apps, which some launchers don't have as well, AppSpot almost normal. Well, not quite. There are a few things that AppSpot does offer that could make it an interesting option. Primary among this would be the search option, found by tapping on the search icon on its toolbar. As you'd expect, this lets you type out the name of the app you want, or even use Google voice search. But that search mode reveals yet another rather unique feature. An icon with a clock and a rotation arrow will launch the most recent that you used, saving you some time and mental energy trying to think what that app was. A bit related to search is the fact that AppSpot finds a spot on the notification tray. This gives you quick access to the search and recent app function of AppSpot no matter what app you are using, as long as you can access the notification panel.

Admittedly, AppSpot is really a strange beast. It's homescreen widget version is one that will probably have a hard time finding a home. Some of its features, however, might be a good match for homescreen alternatives that don't exactly have featured or well-designed app launchers (I'm looking at you Jolla Launcher Alpha). AppSpot is also free to claim on Google Play Store, so it wouldn't hurt to try out for yourself, especially since it doesn't replace your favored homescreen.


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