Pixel Launcher with Google Now panel and Search Pill ported to work on any Android device
There isn’t a shortage of third party launchers on the Google Play Store. Some of them provide loads of customization. But what if you just want the Pixel Launcher to work on you non-Pixel devices? The Pixel Launcher brings the pure Android look to smartphones which is definitely worth a try.
XDA Developers did release guides to sideload the Google Now successor on non-Pixel devices but it had its own caveats. Although if you managed to install the launcher as a system app it would work well. But that needed the device to be rooted.
Seeing that there was no clean way to get the Pixel Launcher to work without root, a developer going by the name AmirZ tried to mimic what Paranoid Android did with the Google Now panel on their ROM. Teaming with another developer, DeleteScape, who was already half done with the same project, they were able to come up with quick results.
The resulting ported Pixel Launcher can now be used without root. It is based on AOSP’s Launcher 3. Having said that, there are some limitations. Firstly the ported launcher will need to have the same package name as the official Pixel Launcher. Secondly, other versions of Pixel Launcher must not be present on the device prior to the install. Take care of these two things, and you are well on your way.
According to AmirZ, the Google Now panel, the cool G Search pill animation, the handy swipe-based app drawer and the weather and data widgets are working well.