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On my Asus Zenfone 8 running Android 13, there is an option to set my home screen layout to two-layer mode or one-layer mode. (Accessed by long pressing empty space on home screen, then selecting Preferences > Home screen > Layout).

home screen layout options

The description says the two-layer mode has an "All Apps button", but I don't have one in either mode. The only difference I could see when switching to one-layer mode was that my icon locations were reset. (The icon locations were restored when switching back)

What is the difference between the two-layer and one-layer modes for the home screen?

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  • One layer is the imitated UI of an iPhone where all's apps are present on the main screens. Of course they can not name it "iPhone style"...
    – Robert
    Mar 1, 2023 at 20:41

2 Answers 2

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The Asus' FAQ [ZenFone] Change Home screen layout explains the difference.

In two-layer mode all apps screen aka app drawer screen is accessed by performing swipe up gesture on the home screen. There might be a little upward pointing arrow on your home screen as well.

In one-layer mode "all apps" screen is accessed by swiping leftward on the home screen. In other words "all apps" are shown on one of your home screens.

The source of confusion for you is that term "All apps button". All apps button aka app launcher button is a legacy, a thing of the past. It was replaced by swipe up gesture a couple versions ago in some vanilla release of Android. Asus ought to fix this annoying but harmless bug.

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To amplify a bit on previous answer:

(My previous Android experience was YEARS ago, back on Android 7.x, and now I've been transported from Android 7.x to Android-13: Wow...my world has REALLY CHANGED!)

Two weeks ago, I bought a new Android-13 based phone (Samsung Galaxy-family). To summarize, I've struggled getting home-screen(s)? and app-screen(s)? arranged to my satisfaction, and have had to do 'factory-resets' a couple of times in the interim, due to what I'm calling 'bugs' (to be honest) and calling 'anomolies' (to be kind). Today, I learned some history: that my new Android-13 phone comes with a built-in 'skin' known as "One UI" (version 5.1, to be exact).

Let's talk about this (new?) 'two-layered' arrangement of 'icons'. In two-layered mode, it seems that all pre-installed icons are in alphabetical order. (Notice however that when you install more apps, they just get inserted into the next empty slot at the end, thus breaking any initially alphabetized ordering.)

At any rate, I think that these DRAWERS refer to levels. So, left-right swiping is staying within either the HOME-DRAWER (level) or the APP-DRAWER (level), and each drawer has its own separate series of 'dot-counts' (near bottom of the page) that indicate how many screenfuls of icons there are, and which position-relative horizontal screenful of icons that you're currently looking at.

So 'app-drawer' screens can be identified by fact there is only a 'search' field at the very top, and the 'dot-counts' at the very bottom...remainder of page is a full matrix of icons.

Whereas, 'home-drawer' screens can be identified by the fact that, at top of the page appears the "time/temperate/city-name" line of info, and near bottom are the 'dot-counts' and at very bottom are a single row of your favorite/most-frequently-used icons.

But now I've got to add what I REALLY think: This is a PISS-POOR initial design/layout they begin with!!! What they SHOULD HAVE DONE is to have the built-in wallpaper for the HOME-DRAWER (aka the 1st-floor) be 'light-yellow' [day-light metaphor] and DIFFERENT colored-wallpaper for the APP-DRAWER (aka the basement) be a'dark-ish' gray [night-light metaphor].

(Damn...wish I could figure out some way to ACHIEVE that background coloring, but so far, that doesn't seem possible !!!)

The 'show-stopper' in this whole mess is that their decision to even allow a SINGLE-LEVEL layout concept is a FLAWED idea!

Because, notice that there's even an additional setting to have 'hidden' sub-group of app-level icons. As it turns out, even if you knowingly never explicitly turn on 'hiding', their algorithm being used when you choose to switch from two-level mode to one-level mode, they will just DISAPPEAR some icons on you, leaving you totally in 'MUMBLE-MODE', and deciding to return your 'broken' phone rather than resorting to 'factory-reset'!

Don't fall for it...STAY in two-level mode, as though your life depended on it!!!

My 2-cents worth. Hope this helps.

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  • Note that you are free to download and use a 3rd-party launcher app to your liking though.
    – Andrew T.
    Apr 17, 2023 at 8:23
  • A suggested fix for this issue: Re-engineering to be able to have/require DIFFERENT colored backgrounds wouldn't be trivial. But, at a minimum, if they would just add some background, faded-out text under-layed on each page, saying 'home-page' or 'app-page'. as appropiate, that would go a good way towards helping users understanding the whole 'level-concept', and able to quickly recognise an 'app-level' page from a 'home-page'. Thanks for listening.
    – David Cook
    Apr 17, 2023 at 15:46
  • One last comment.. After struggling with my initial setup on Android-13. The initial home-screen has a slithering, multi-colored,wallpaper. Pretty. But once I re-arranged icons, and installed a few apps, I found that I couldn't read the app-names on many icons, simply because in different areas of an app-screens or home-screens, the different colors within an image/picture' type of wallpaper were just too visually confusing. So, instead of 'featured' wallpaper choices, scroll down 4 levels, to solid-colors, and start there. I'm betting you'll be happiest with one of those.
    – David Cook
    Apr 18, 2023 at 14:43

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