Do you own a flagship Android smartphone like the Galaxy S8 Plus or the LG G6, and want the cool interface look of a Pixel 2? If you want to replicate the style of Google's newest smartphones on your own device but don’t know how, then this guide is for you. Alternatively, you can download the original APK file directly from the Pixel 2 with its Live Universe screen background, or use the new Nova Launcher update.
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Before starting, you’ll need:
- Action Launcher, free to download on the Play Store. The application is free, but for our tutorial you’ll have to unlock the Pro features which cost $3.99.
- Zooper Widget Pro, downloadable from the Play Store for $2.99.
- Pixel 2 Calendar Widget for Zooper Widget (file with a .zw extension that we’ll use later).
After downloading Action Launcher and accessing the Pro version, you'll first have to configure it:
- Open the Action Launcher Settings.
- Tap on Quicktheme:
- Choose the Clean Material theme.
- Tap on Quickbar:
- Choose your Search Box style (dock).
- Choose the Color option and modify the transparency to 15%.
- Move the cursor over the Corner Size option and change to 100%.
- Tap on Logo search, select Change icon and then choose the Google G (color) option.
- Tap on Icon pack and choose the Pixel Launcher theme (or whatever theme you like)
By adding the Oreo’s Adaptive Icons plugin, you can make the most of the Adaptive Icons feature that Android Oreo introduced on the Pixel devices that changes the format of all icons.
Choose Icon Appearance and Application shortcuts:
- Set Icon Indicators to None.
- Set Unread Badges to Mark.
- Make sure that Smart Icon Resizing is activated.
- Tap on Application Shortcut Style and choose Android O.
Now, go to Application List:
- Select Pixel Style.
- Set the grid's value to 5x6.
In Settings, deactivate the Quickpage option.
- In Dock, choose Pixel Style.
- In Files & Shutters, choose the Pixel Style again.
Finally, now go to Shortcuts:
- In the Gesture section, open the Sliding to top option.
- Activate the one finger option for the Contacts application.
Action Launcher has many options for personalizing your Android. © NextPit
Finally, the last stage of the installation setup: widgets. After downloading and opening Zooper Widget Pro for the first time, you can copy the Google Pixel 2 widget to your phone’s internal memory.
Place the. zw file in the "ZooperWidget/Templates/" folder.
Place the .zw file in the “ZooperWidget/Templates/” folder. Afterwards, you can place the widget on the main screen. Then follow these steps:
Hold your finger on a blank space on the home screen:
- Tap on Widget.
- Scroll through the list until you find Zooper Widget Pro and place one of the widgets on the home screen by holding a finger on it (I recommend sizes 4x1 or 4x2 but don’t worry about that right now, you can always change the size later).
- You’ll notice that the widget is dark in color and that it asks you to click on it to start. Do that.
- Then choose the SD card option.
- Finally, choose Pixel 2 Calendar Widget.
The first official APK files originating from the Pixels will of course be available and I’ll inform you when that is the case. For now, it’s still the only way to replicate the appearance of the new Google Pixel 2 on your smartphone, even before its arrival to the market.
Even the most popular Android launcher has been updated with the exclusive features from Google's Pixel phones and has placed itself in top spot of the competition by introducing these new features:
- Google search bar in the dock: Nova Settings – Dock – Search bar in the dock – Above or below the icons.
- Android 8.1 style shortcut menu: Nova Settings – Appearance – Shortcut Menu – Blocks (even though we need to point it out to the Nova Launcher creator, Android 8.1 still doesn’t exist).
- Adaptive animated icon during the drag and drop on the home screen.
- Much faster after the theme change or the modification of adaptive icons.
- Many improvements under the hood.
In the meantime, the folks over at XDA Developers have already found a way of sharing the APK file to install Pixel Launcher, extracted from the new Pixels. It includes the At a Glance widget which contains information on traffic and the calendar, and you’ll also gain access to the Google Now screen on the left hand-side without rooting.
The XDA Developers community have also found a way of bringing the Google Pixel 2’s animated wallpapers to other devices thanks to the APK file.
What do you think? Do you like the new look of the Pixel 2 home screen with the search bar at the bottom?