Changes to the Pixel Launcher are anticipated with the arrival of Android 11. The app launcher was updated only last month but resulted in some app icons missing. Now that the Developer Preview is out since last week, expect upcoming features and enhancements will be detailed or demoed in the coming weeks or months. XDA devs have managed once again to discover new changes by looking at the code. They are not final yet as the Android team can still decide whether to pull out or go with the changes.
Android 11’s Pixel Launcher has been found to be testing new actions in recent apps overview. It can also do auto-folder naming and hide individual app suggestions. The Pixel Launcher is simpler compared to Action Launcher, Nova Launcher, and Lawnchair but many people prefer simplicity and the streamlined look.
The Pixel Launcher comes pre-installed on Pixel phones. It doesn’t always get updates but when it does, the changes usually are important. The first release of Android 11 Developer Preview doesn’t bring updates for the Pixel Launcher yet but there are some hints on the code.
They could be for the next release and are already there but only hidden. The new Pixel Launcher build from the first Developer Preview version has been modified by an XDA dev as mentioned above.
The new actions in recent apps overview are presented with three actions: select, screenshot, and share. ‘Select’ is to highly the images and text while ‘screenshot’ captures the whole page or selection. ‘Share’ could be sharing the image to whoever or wherever. Individual app suggestions can soon be hidden with a “don’t suggest app” action. Naming a folder can also soon be done automatically.
Google is also said to be working on new double-tap gestures. The gestures may be different because they could be done on the rear of the phones. They are meant to launch common functions like the Google Assistant and Camera.