The standard Android home app is sometimes a bit too spartan. HTC phone owners may be annoyed at how much space Sense takes up, which really slows downs performance on “weaker devices”. Isn’t there something in between? Something that’s not too big, works efficiently and still manages to include a couple cool features? Why not give Zeam Launcher a try. Find out if this home replacement is of any interest in today’s test report.
Let me start off by saying that, yes, Zeam Launcher is really manageable in size. After downloading the initial 500kb file, the app ends up being around 840kb after installation. It uses just 20MB of RAM, which is about two-thirds of what HTC Sense needs. As a result, however, Zeam Launcher lacks many things that Sense has such as the weather clock, bookmark and small 1x1 widgets for Wi-Fi, Airplane mode etc.
Besides the things I just mentioned, I don’t miss anything from Sense. On the contrary, this home replacement includes the usual pinch-to-zoom feature, which let’s you see an overview of all your screens. There’s also a scrollable dock bar at the bottom where you can drag-and-drop all of your most used apps from the app drawer.
You can place up to seven apps on each one of the seven possible screens. That way you have quick access to all of the most important apps on your phone. You can position your apps in any order by simply long tapping them and moving them over. Opening and closing the app drawer is animated and the drawer also shows which app you opened last. The only thing missing is the option of arranging your apps into categories as is possible with ADW Launcher. Another great feature is the quick uninstaller: just long press any app icon and move it to the trash to wipe it completely from your system.
You can, of course, adjust Zeam to fit your needs:
Action Bindings: Adjust what happens when you swipe, double-tap, long-press etc. (toggle fullscreen, open app drawer, go to default screen)
Applications grid: Open/close animation, bookmark last app opened
Dock: Background, space between icons, auto-reset.
Screen & Controls
Here Zeam Launcher has shown itself to be useful for daily use: the controls are intuitive and similar to those of your most common home replacement apps. The additional features do not require any getting used to (the scrollable dock-bar, for example). It’s really nice to see that the screen can be viewed horizontally. If auto-rotation is turned on, the screen flips to the right position automatically. Besides the regular app icons, widgets and shortcuts, you can also add action-icons to the screen (see the screenshots).
In terms of screen and controls there’s virtually nothing to complain about.
Speed & Stability
Zeam Launcher reacts quickly and smoothly to every command – a must for any home-screen app. No lags, no crashes, no hassle. Even restarting the launcher (a necessary step for certain configuration changes) works faster than with HTC Sense. A solid 4 starts!
Zeam Launcher can be downloaded for free from the Market. Just short of 5 stars here because we have received an answer from the support team for over a week now.