One of the more popular home screen replacement applications has received an update to version 0.8.4 and brings some new features, Gingerbread optimization, and more transition effects. The developer, Federico Carnales, announced the paid verson, LauncherPro+, will also be available in the Market soon. Previously, a user would purchase the Plus version via the PayPal link inside the free version. The new Android Market policies no longer allow this. I assume this will benefit developers in the long run. Currently, by avoiding the Android Market developers bypass paying Google a commission. However, I believe more people will probably purchase the paid version now that it’s easily available in the Market.
Here’s what’s new:
For Plus users only:
- Facebook login (for the Facebook widget) is now handled through the official Facebook app where available. This should help people with low DPI devices who were having trouble logging in before.
- Updated the Twitter API backend to fix some issues that some people were having with status updates.
- New Gmail widget! (Side note: Oh boy, this widget has been giving me lots of trouble to code. Since there’s no officially supported Gmail API in Android, there’s pretty much no documentation whatsoever on it). You can choose the source Gmail account, so you if you have multiple Gmail accounts, you can have a widget for each one of them. My intention was to have the widget simply open conversations in the official Gmail app when you click on them, but unfortunately 3rd party apps are not allowed to open that part of the Gmail app directly, so I had to create my own internal viewer to view them. It’s not as full-featured as the official app but it should be enough for most users. Replying to emails is handled by the official Gmail app (we can launch that part of it from 3rd party apps).
For all users:
- Gingerbread fixes and improvements. The 3D app drawer has been fixed to work properly on Gingerbread. Other tweaks should provide much improved graphics performance (smoothness) on Gingerbread as well.
- New homescreen transition effects: “Flip” and “Rotate 2″. The old “Flip” effect is now named “Flip 2″. If anybody can come up with better names for these transitions, I’m open to suggestions