This story was originally published and last updated .
The Microsoft Launcher can give you more control over your home screen and help bridge the gap between a smartphone and computer, provide it runs Windows. Microsoft Launcher’s “Feed” plugs you into numerous Microsoft apps and services you might already use on your computer, and it’s getting a makeover. The new update also adds landscape support and various bug fixes. This update first appeared in the preview app, and now it’s available in the main Play Store listing as a beta.
Here’s the full changelog for the new beta update.
• Support landscape mode
• Updated Microsoft Feed design
• Beautiful Wallpapers
• Improved performance
Fix in this build:
• Add up to 3 rows in Dock
• Organize your App Drawer with folders
• Double tap to lock screen
• Improved app search
• Fixed bugs and crashes
The Microsoft Launcher isn’t the first to bring landscape mode, but it’s a welcome change for people who want to use Bluetooth keyboards or just like holding their phones in awkward orientations. The changes to the Microsoft Feed are more substantial—it’s still in the same place (the far left home screen panel), but the new look is much cleaner and organized. The cards are evenly spaced with a blurred background underneath. It doesn’t display as much information on one screen as the original, but it fits with the minimalist appearance of the launcher as a whole.
The update also includes some new wallpapers in the Bing and Microsoft folders. Microsoft says the overall launcher performance has been improved as well. While they may not suit everyone’s taste (if you hate nature), it’s great to have the option to swap in a new wallpaper without needing to go online. These changes were first demoed in the Microsoft Launcher Preview app, but you can start using them by opting into the launcher’s beta program. If you aren’t registered, you can do so by clicking here. We also have the latest beta build on APK Mirror.
Rolled over to stable
After 3 months between updates, Microsoft has finally updated its Android launcher from v5.11 to 6.2. The big four points in the changelogs have carried through — the new Microsoft feed, landscape support, and the wallpaper tweaks. Performance improvements won’t be obvious without lengthy, regular use. The latest stable build is on APK Mirror, too.