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Nothing’s upcoming phone OS: How you can try it out

There's nothing beta than a new launcher!

Nothing Phone launcher beta screenshots

At Nothing’s March event, the company announced… well, nothing much. An upcoming smartphone was teased, and we got a look at a few select screenshots of said phone’s operating system. One takeaway was that the company would launch a beta version of its Launcher, so Android users could get a first-look at Nothing OS.

Now, Nothing has made the Launcher publicly available to Android users on the Play Store. The beta is free for anyone to download on a device running Android 11 or higher, and you’ll be able to set it as your device’s default launcher, if you so desire.

Once you’ve installed the launcher, you’ll be able to check out Nothing’s custom graphics and animations, in the company’s dotted design style. You’ll find clock widgets, weather widgets, and wallpapers in the company’s style. In a new feature for Android, you’ll be able to hold down on folders or individual icons to enlarge them, to make “the things you use most, more visible”.

How to try out the Nothing Launcher

If you fancy getting a taste of Nothing’s upcoming OS and want to download the launcher, here’s how:

  1. Download the Nothing Launcher from the Play Store.
  2. Head into Settings > Apps > Default Apps > Default Home App.
  3. Select the Nothing Launcher from the screen that appears.
  4. You’re good to go!

The launcher is compatible with devices running Android 11 or later and can be downloaded on any Android handset that meets these criteria. Previously the launcher was only available for selected handsets – Samsung Galaxy S21 and S22, and Google Pixels 5 and 6, but it can now be used on Android 11+ handsets from any manufacturer. If the Launcher really takes your fancy, you can also download additional wallpapers and ringtones from Nothing.

It’s unusual for a company to show off its pre-release software for an upcoming device, rather than the device itself. But it’s certainly a good way to experience what phone (1) will be like. And if nothing else, Nothing knows how to get people talking about it.