In case you didn’t know, Android launcher refers to your device’s home screen. This is where you’ll see all the menus, recommendations and apps on your device. Ideally, any device’s home screen should be intuitive and easy to use. At least that’s what Android set out to do when they created the latest version of the Android TV launcher. But they seem to have missed the mark completely.
There’s no shortage of complaints from users who say that the device’s home screen is cumbersome and difficult to use. If you’re experiencing this problem, you’ll be glad to know that Android allows you to replace the launcher if it’s not working for you.
1. TvHome Launcher
Users of webOS or TizenOS from Samsung or LG Smart TVs will feel right at home with the RvHome Launcher interface. This is one of the best Android TV launcher apps. It will instantly transform any regular TV into a proper Smart TV.
This launcher will show all of your apps at the very bottom of the screen in clean and sleek lines. Aside from its straightforward and minimalist design, this launcher enables you to customize the background image. You can use your Android TV remote control to scroll through the available options.
Attention: Read before you continue
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Ugoos TV is arguably the most popular Android TV launcher app. Its user interface is remarkably different from the original. For starters, the UgoosTV has a scrolling wheel situated on the left-hand side of the screen. From here, you’ll see nine categories including Options to Games, Internet and All Apps to name but a few.
Highlighted apps will usually appear on the right-hand side of the menu. This means they’re ready for you to open and view.
Not only that but UgoosTV lets you pick from nine different themes. This in addition to intuitive remote controls and customizable icons.
After much criticism from users of the original Android TV launcher, the HALauncher was introduced. This launcher is created according to the specs of previous versions. But with a lot of improvements in terms of accessibility and aesthetic appearance.
It separates the games and apps into two different rows, which makes things so much easier. In addition to this, the HALauncher supports app sideloading which means you’ll be able to see your sideloaded apps on the Home Screen! This is a huge deal for a lot of users who sideload apps onto their Android Fire TV Stick and Firestick devices.
As one of the best Android TV launcher apps, it comes as no surprise to learn that HALauncher enables users to customize the home screen further with a unique background image.
4. Simple TV Launcher
As the name implies this launcher likes to keep things simple, from design to operation. There are six app slots on the main screen and you can customize these spaces to only show your preferred apps. If you want to see all the apps in your system, simply scroll to the top-left corner of the screen where you’ll find all of your apps.
If you scroll to the lower-right corner, you’ll see a button that allows you to access the AndroidTV settings menu directly and without going through a lengthy process.
It’s also worth noting that this is an open source launcher which means its source code is available from GitHub. This means you can use Simple TV as a platform to create your own launcher if you have the expertise and time to do it that is.
5. UNICA TV Launcher
The UNICA TV Launcher is truly unique is that it offers customized visuals and comes in a unique design.
It also comes with a D-pad optimized navigation which makes it easier to use a D-pad remote control on your Android TV box. When you visit the home screen, you’ll notice that Android TV apps are separated into four different columns. This is to enable better navigation, plus users can customize categories with additional apps at any time. Just scroll down to the bottom of the screen where you’ll find the shortcut categories.
UNICA didn’t stop there, however, as this launcher also comes with a dedicated section for commonly used apps and custom wallpapers. The best part is you can try the UNICA TV launcher for 14 days without paying a dime.
6. Android TV Launcher
This Android TV Launcher was released by Google to alleviate the problems experienced by users of the original launcher. Although it comes pre-loaded in some boxes, this is not always the case. Unfortunately, this launcher has some niggles worth complaining about, such as usability and design flaws.
But then again, things could be worse. At least the Android TV Launcher offers you the chance to operate stock Android in any form while avoiding crashes. Plus, it’s available for free! What’s not to like about that?
7. Top TV Launcher 2
It comes with a built-in layout editor which you can use to move apps around until you find them a suitable place on the home screen. You can use the same function to add tiles and widgets too, or use the built-in tile editor to design your own tiles.
Another option worth mentioning is the folder creation function, which allows you to group different apps into one single tile. Not only is Top TV launcher 2 ad-free, but it comes with custom wallpaper options and PIN-protected app support!
How to Sideload Apps
- Use the desktop version of Google Play Store. You should see your device shown in the dropdown list
- Download the APK through an Android TV browser
- Send the APK to your device through a USB stick
Or use our WebSafetyTips FileLinked App Store
Whether you’re enjoying Android TV through a Firestick or Fire TV Stick, it’s always a good idea to use a user-friendly and versatile launcher, as the original may frustrate you. Hopefully, this article will make it easier for you to make a choice out of all the best Android TV launcher apps.
For the best results, be sure to use a VPN whenever you stream or download content on your Android TV device so you can avoid geo-blocking, data throttling, and other annoying occurrences.
Did you find this article helpful? Drop us a comment below and let us know which launcher you’d pick!