I have an Android 4.4.2 unit that has a custom application that needs to be launched on boot and when the user presses the home button. As it stands now, I can press the home button and get a list of launchers that can be used, unfortunately the app I'd like to use is not on this list. This unit is rooted and unlocked but, isn't our unit, so I can't (or shouldn't) install apps to get this feature working. Is there an android vanilla way of choosing what app you'd like to use, even if it isn't on the list of launchers. I can sideload an application if I absolutely have to, but I'd rather not as I'm not sure how the company renting these to us would feel about us adding apks to their device.

  • Although what you're asking and your details seem to totally contradict each other (Are you developing something? How can you test something without devices you can alter? Why are you trying to override the most important button that is set to a standard function?). But, to help, I use Nova Launcher and it allows to set the Home button to do whatever you want including opening an app. Overriding the Home button is probably not a good idea since it may be the only way to get out of a stuck app or similar problem. – paulmz Oct 1 '15 at 16:19
  • It was how the device came loaded, but during a software upgrade the custom app would not open automatically, and be locked to the home button. It's important because we cant have customers using anything but this custom app, it has to be locked in. I don't have to worry about being locked out, you can always access the settings from the pull down. – redcodefinal Oct 1 '15 at 16:22
  • You can try clearing the defaults of the current launcher, and then pressing the home button again. If the app doesn't show up in the list of apps, the app hasn't told Android it can work as a home screen. Even if you'd get Android to show the app as a launcher, Android would need to know exactly which activity to load from the app. Simply put: there's no standard Android way to do it if the app isn't in the list of launchers. It might be possible to hack the default apps database with root access or creating a custom app that does nothing but handle the home button and start the app you want. – gertmenkel Oct 5 '15 at 8:01

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