How to change default launcher in Android 4.4 KitKat

BY Rajesh Pandey

Published 5 Nov 2013

One minor change that Google has introduced in Android 4.4 KitKat is the ability to change the default launcher much more easily.

Up until Android 4.3, users would need to install a third party launcher on their device and then press the home button to select a default launcher. If they wanted to switch back to the old launcher, they would either have to uninstall the current launcher or go to Settings-> Apps, find the new launcher and tap the ‘Clear defaults’ option.


With Android 4.4, users can change the default launcher by going to Settings -> Home and then selecting the default launcher.  The Home sub-menu also provides users with the option to uninstall unneeded third party launchers. Considering third party launchers are among the most popular apps in the Play Store, this new change is a right direction in improving usability.

The new ‘Home’ option makes sense when you consider the fact that OEMs might need to ship the stock Google launcher in all Android 4.4+ devices, since it is now a part of Google Search/Apps.