A week ago, Google finally revealed the highly-anticipated Nexus 5 along with Android 4.4 KitKat, after months of rumors and speculations. The new Android version is the biggest update sing the debut of Android 4.1 Jelly Bean and it brings quite a few neat features, along with a new launcher called Google Experience. As far as things stand, the Google Experience launcher could be a Nexus 5 exclusive.
The folks at The Verge got in touch with a Google representative who told them that “the new Launcher on the Nexus 5 is exclusive to the phone — though the company may change its mind and offer it for the Nexus 4 and perhaps even put it on the Play store someday.”
Well, it’s a shame that the Google Experience Launcher won’t end up on the Nexus 4, Nexus 7 (2012 and 2013), or Nexus 10, but why did the Mountain View-based giant chose this approach? Most likely to test the public’s reaction to the new launcher and definitely to put Google Now / Google Search in the centre of their mobile operating system.
So the Nexus 5 is no longer a pure Android smartphone? It’s one way to look at things. By changing the default launcher of their latest flagship, Google is having an approach similar to Samsung’s, Sony’s, HTC’s or any other Android OEM. By offering a customized experience via Google Experience Launcher, the hardware is not any more the only difference between the new Nexus flagship and its predecessors.
Of course, if the new Google Experience Launcher receives positive feedback from the Nexus 5 users we might see the Android 4.4 launcher hitting the Google Play and other Nexus devices, as well. Anyway, if you roam around XDA-developers forums you can find the new launcher extracted from Android 4.4 KitKat and install it on your device (whether it’s a Nexus or any other Android handset) right away.
What is your opinion on the matter? Is Google trying to make Google Now / Google Search the centerpiece of their operating system, or are they having an Apple-ish approach, trying to make the Nexus 4 owners buy the Nexus 5 for the Google Experience Launcher alone? Shout out in the comments section below.