I am new to android OS.I recently purchased nexus 5 and came to know about several launchers.They are just mind blowing experience.But one of my friends suggested me not to use launchers as they override native os or something like that.

My question is that is it really safe to use launchers? I don't want to make any harm to phone OS or anything.

Does it clear all data and clean up everything when I uninstall it?

Kindly provide me knowledge of launchers and what are the disadvantages of using it.


  • Launchers are pretty much safe. Just look at the app permissions before installing. I recommend Solo Launcher from my side. It's my favourite ;) Commented Sep 21, 2014 at 6:36

6 Answers 6


As with any app: look at the permissions it requests and think about whether the app legitimately needs those permissions. There's nothing inherently unsafe about using a custom launcher, but if it requests permissions that shouldn't be needed just to display a home screen, it may have hidden malicious functionality. (Or it may use them for legitimate purposes: for example, some popular launchers request permission to "directly call phone numbers" so that they can provide the ability to put direct-dial icons on your home screen.)

To see the permissions of an app you've already installed, go to Settings -> Apps, find the app, and scroll down to the bottom of its info page. You can also see an app's permissions in the Play store before you install it: scroll down to the bottom of the app's page in the Play store and tap on "Permission details".

Note that a launcher app will (naturally) know which other apps you launch with it. That's generally not a problem, but if the launcher app has Internet permission, it could potentially send information about which apps you use to a third party, which would be a privacy violation.

When you uninstall an app, any data stored with the app itself is removed; this generally includes things like customization settings. But if the app has "modify USB storage" permission, it may have also created files in your phone's shared storage area — the files you see when you plug the phone into your computer with a USB cable. Those aren't deleted when you uninstall an app, but you can delete them yourself, either with a USB connection or a file-manager app on the phone itself.

A custom launcher doesn't "override the native OS" in any unsafe way. It's really just a normal app that happens to respond to the phone's Home button.


In short, yes, most launchers are not harmful. They are just a skin to your phone and does not clear any of your personal data when you uninstall it. I recommend you look at Nova Launcher, Apex Launcher, Solo Launcher, or any other popular launcher. Good luck with your new Nexus!

  • I was always kindof worried about those launchers getting my info and using for malicious purposes. I guess it is one layer more of apps getting that info, but shouldn't be worse than, for example, spotify having it, right?
    – S. Dre
    Commented Jul 16, 2022 at 12:01

Launchers are not much different from any other app in this concern – so you should deal with them like with other apps. While one argument has already been mentioned multiple times here, let me sum up the basics in short:

  • check permissions as recommended already.
  • check votes (how many people have rated the app), downloads (how many have installed it), and ratings (how well is the app received). If inexperienced, try avoiding apps with no or only few downloads/votes until you get a feeling for it.
  • check reasonable comments (i.e. skip the one-worders like "good", "bad", "like" etc, and concentrate on those coming with real details)
  • try searching for reviews
  • when looking for an app, app listings on "trusted sites" can be helpful. I run such a site myself, where you can find ratings, votes, permissions incl. explanations, and links to reviews etc. listed along each app, so you might wish to check there.
  • Avoid "downloading" apps from sites you don't know, better stick to safe markets.

Helpful links:


You can use launcher in your phone,no problem with that. Before installing the check its permissions and you also need to trust that application. There are many good launchers in play store like google now,apex,nova..etc

You want to know that running 2 or more launchers can also heat up your phones ram,sometimes causes hanging .Nexus 5 has a good native launcher.

  • Since when does "running 2 or more apps" heat up RAM?
    – Izzy
    Commented Sep 26, 2014 at 14:23

Yes launchers are safe. But not all. Recently my Kaspersky detected trojan in CLauncher. Personally I am in love with Nova, light and flawless. Even it supported by almost all IConPacks too.BTW, Nexus 5 has already overhauled KK launcher . So , I dont think you need any launcher. But if you are willing to install one, I would suggest either EZLauncher or Nova.


yes ! you don't need to be wory m8. according to my experience most of the launchers are pretty safe so far although most of them try to make us to install their related apps but it depends if you want to go with them or not basically launchers are made to give a better look to OS whenever you want to install a launcher you just need to give a look at its details,ratings,reviews and description as well and I recomend you a few best launchers like Hola Laucher,CM Launcher,solo Launcher,aprex launcher .

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