5

My Nexus 5 has a useless and space-wasting Google Now search bar:

Ok Google

QUESTION: How can I remove the Google bar?

My rooted Nexus 5 runs stock Android 5.1.1, and I would rather get rid of Google Now if possible. I would rather not use a third-party launcher.

Notes:

  • isn't there a setting, at least in cyanogenmod is one. but I thought also on the vanilla android. but if you want, you can look for the launcher source code of the AOSP and modify it, and install it as separate launcher – Schwertspize Aug 30 '15 at 12:27
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    Seems like you need another launcher. The search bar is most likely hard coded into your current (Google Now) launcher. – GiantTree Aug 30 '15 at 12:43
  • While I agree with @GiantTree (I remember the very same "hardcoded" thingy), you could try disabling Google Now via the Google Settings app. Not sure whether that helps, but it's worth a try – especially as you don't want to keep Google Now anyway. – Izzy Aug 30 '15 at 15:04
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    Oy sh!t! Wasn't aware of that (who would dream of such a thing?) Sorry for that then. So that was what you meant by "the usual procedure"? Could you edit that into your question, and we remove the corresponding comments then? – Izzy Aug 31 '15 at 7:37
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    I would like to believe that Remove Google Search Bar on Nexus devices running on stock Lollipop should also work in Nexus 5, Android 5.1.1. However, the problem is, RossC's answer has been self-deleted, which I believe it should work using Xposed framework... – Andrew T. Aug 31 '15 at 8:16
2

Added: After more searching, I found How to remove the Google Search bar from your Android homescreen indicating you have these options:

  • Disabling Google Now, which is not recommended on the Nexus 5 as it might soft-brick your device
  • Install custom launcher, which you don't really want to do
  • Using Xposed framework (root required), which doesn't seem to work as Exposed and ART is a bad combination
  • Install a custom ROM, and then disable it

In other words, it seems like you need to make up your mind on either living with the Google Now search bar, installing a custom ROM, or install a custom launcher.

Original answer with fails

The 14 Essential Tweaks to Perform on Your New Nexus 5 Smartphone has the following to say on this topic:

You'll probably notice the search bar on the homescreen has a reminder to say "Ok Google" to trigger a voice search. It's a neat feature, but the text is a little annoying. It will go away only when you've proven you understand what it's saying. Just do any voice search from the homescreen to clear the text and get your nice, clean bar.

Fail 1: Does only remove the text, not the search bar

The previous tip is for the nexus 5 and lollipop, whilst the next tip is only for previous android version, from 25 Hidden Nexus 5 Features:

Open Google Now with the quick setting above, or swipe to the left and enter Google Now on the Nexus 5. Scroll to the bottom and tap the three dots on the bottom left (menu) > tap settings > and simply tap the On/Off switch at the top to disable Google Now.

Fail 2: Does only apply to previous version of Android

My final tip if none of the above works, I did the following on my Sony Xperia Z3 running Android lollipop:

  • long press on home screen on an empty space
  • toggle the hide/show button of the Google search bar

Fail 3: Correct procedure for some phones, but not for Nexus 5

Hope either one of these helps you out!

  • I'm afraid this won't work, since it's a known "issue" that it's impossible to remove the search box on Nexus device. Also, the Xperia Z3's method doesn't work on Nexus since there's no setting for that. – Andrew T. Aug 31 '15 at 10:47
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    The article you linked to says "You'll probably notice the search bar on the homescreen has a reminder to say "Ok Google" to trigger a voice search. It's a neat feature, but the text is a little annoying. It will go away only when you've proven you understand what it's saying. Just do any voice search from the homescreen to clear the text and get your nice, clean bar.". It is only for removing the text inside the bar, not for removing the bar itself. – Nicolas Raoul Aug 31 '15 at 13:09
  • @NicolasRaoul, Hmm... I was wondering about the text but it sounded so promising, that I thought I should mention it. That does render the entire answer kind of useless. Sorry. – holroy Aug 31 '15 at 13:12
  • It is not useless, at least it confirms that Google deliberately made it really hard to remove it (I am trying to do it on a more recent phone, and also failed - android.stackexchange.com/questions/215147/… ). – Mateusz Konieczny Jul 26 at 15:38

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