YASAN Launcher: Dev Update #1
A few months ago I posted about the story of mnml / YASAN Launcher (the linked post is new since the post was not originally posted on Medium) & what my plans are for its future. Since then, I have been working hard on the new version & I think it's now the time to talk about the progress I have made.
I should note that anything shown on this post is still a work in progress and might be changed in the final version.
Next-gen UI toolkit
The most major change in this version is that it is fully created using Jetpack Compose which is a new UI toolkit by Google for Android which makes creating UIs much easier and faster.
As far as I know, YASAN Launcher is the first Android launcher to be fully built using Jetpack Compose. Using it has let me add customization options much easier since the whole UI is created with code instead of having to work with XML files for the UI.
Although Jetpack Compose is still in beta & has its own issues, it should be stable enough once the new version is going to be pushed to live for all users.
Just like the rest of my apps, the default font is Rubik but now you have the option to change the app font from the provided font options.
The main problem with this feature is that it increases the app size tremendously. There is a downloadable font system for Android but it does not work with Jetpack Compose yet. I will probably decrease the font options until downloadable fonts are supported on Jetpack Compose.
I also would love to let users use their own fonts but I don't think that feature will be added in the first open early access version.
Custom App Icon Size Support
You can now customize app icon size on Home, Apps Drawer & Dashboard.
The images below show Home with the minimum & maximum app icon sizes:
More App Drawer Styles
App Drawer now has more customization options as shown below:
I know these might not look like much but they can create many different styles. My favorite is the icon-less grid style which I have never seen on any other launcher.
The dashboard is essentially the same as it was in the old version, it shows folders & some useful shortcuts. Although the plan is to make it much more customizable & useful than the old version.
Currently, it has fewer features than the live version but it will get its share of features before this version is pushed to open early access. My current favorite thing about it is the battery indicator which simply looks nice.
I have plans to add customizable shortcuts, media playback controls, and more to Dashboard but I am not sure yet if they will be ready for the initial open early access version.
Unlike the old version of the launcher, you can now use the launcher in landscape mode without any problems. I might end up limiting this feature to tablets but I have no plans to do that for now.
You can now disable optional data collection if you want. Disabling this option means I only get automatic crash reports from you & almost nothing else.
You should know that this launcher has never gathered personally identifiable data and never will, so you don't have to worry about that. The gathered anonymous data is mainly used to understand how the users use the app which helps me focus on the most used features.
The initial version open early access version of the new version will not have a new AI system but it gives the user more control over the AI. The user can choose between 2 AI systems & a basic launch count system.
v2 AI is the AI system used on the current/old version of the launcher which is available to install for everyone as I am writing this.
You might have noticed the “Advanced AI Options” button on the image above. This option will let users modify the AI data which can be useful for more advanced users. It currently only lets you delete AI data for each app.
Also, do not worry about your old AI data as the new version will work with your old AI without any problems and you won't lose any AI data.
New Versioning System
YASAN Launcher will no longer use semantic versioning (X.Y.Z) & each version name will consist of a date and name.
- Date: Shows when it was built/modified last.
- Name: Shows the major version of the launcher.
The name might change every few months & only when there are major changes in the app and the date shows how new the build is.
The current internal version is named Comet, but the open early access version will be named differently. For example, if I make an update today, its version will be named “2021.05.31 — Comet”.
The Other Features
The features I did not write about here are either already implemented but were not interesting enough (like App hide) or not implemented on the new version yet.
The DEV Version
A new DEV version of the launcher is now available to the internal testers. DEV builds are updated frequently and sometimes even more than once a day. The DEV version offers the most recent changes in the launcher but can be unstable & buggy.
If you feel brave enough & want to help with the development of the launcher you can join the internal testers by joining my Telegram group chat & following the pinned instructions to install the DEV version.
Since only 100 people can become internal testers, you should only join if you want to provide feedback. I should also mention that all the internal testers receive free Premium for the DEV version so they can fully test the app.
The DEV version can be installed in parallel with the normal/stable version so you don't have to worry about your AI data or anything else getting affected.
My current schedule is to push the new version as a replacement for the old version on August 1st, 2021. Once the new version has all the features that the old version has & is stable enough, it means it can be pushed as an update to the existing users.
I will post here once I reach a new milestone. You can follow me on Twitter, join the Telegram channel or Discord server to get notified when there is a new blog post available.
If you are not already a YASAN Launcher user, you can get YASAN Launcher from Google Play Store.
Thank you so much for reading,