There is no shortage of launcher replacements for Android, but once in a while a new one comes along and takes the launcher experience to a new level. Such is the case with TSF Shell Pro, a new launcher currently in development by a team of developers who call themselves C3D. TSF, their brand, stands for The Special Forces, and special they are - just take a look at what the team cooked up.


TSF Shell Pro has a UI so polished that your favorite launcher will feel like it was designed in 1999. How about 3D widgets with interactive modes and animations? And I'm not even going to mention lasso-style app icon selection, folder boxes like you've never seen before, pop-up menus, multitouch rotation, and free-style positioning (oh wait, I liked, I am going to mention those).

As I mentioned, TSF Shell Pro is currently in active development, but in the meantime we do have this 8-min video that showcases everything it can do. Just hold on to to your butts:

image image

The above kind of reminds me of TAT (The Astonishing Tribe) Home, but since the company was acquired by RIM, we don't expect anything good to come out of them for Android anymore.

I'm anxiously waiting for TSF's first public release, how about you?

Update: If the video looks crowded to you, it's because they wanted to demo all the features at once. If you don't like your homescreen to be busy, just don't make it busy - it's up to you.


Thanks, Nyamka Ganni!

Artem Russakovskii
Artem is a die-hard Android fan, passionate tech blogger, obsessive-compulsive editor, bug hunting programmer, and the founder of Android Police.
Most of the time, you will find Artem either hacking away at code or thinking of the next 15 blog posts.

  • Dave

    WOW. Release please.

  • Kaz

    Wow. I was prepared to be totally underwhelmed, but I was impressed...

  • HA

    That's a pretty cool launcher, but everything is cluttered. I'm sure it can be used in a more minimalist way.

    • Randy

      I think they cluttered it on purpose to show the full capability of the launcher, and to have many things to manipulate quickly to try to make the video as short as possible.

      • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii


    • George C

      As someone who finds it hard to fill two panels on Launcher Pro, I find this massive overkill. Holy crap clutter.

  • cassv

    Best Launcher ever!! Those guys are clever.

  • vision77

    Hmmmm...reminds me of something TAT has done but wouldn't release...can't wait.

    • Ravi E
      • Ron Amadeo

        It reminded me of TAT home and all, but wow. The screen switching and music player is almost identical to TAT.
        I don't mean like "They really like what TAT was doing and copied it" identical. It's more like "Someone smuggled source code out of TAT" identical.

        I wonder if it will also follow TAT's release schedule and never come out.

  • Joel

    definitely a buy. VERY impressive.

  • Kokusho

    No way this isn't Fake !
    NO WAY !

    And some people still need to ask why we love Android ?

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      Wait, so you're saying it's fake then?

      • Kokusho

        It's a joke...

  • Jim

    Dang..that's impressive. Hope it's as fluid as the video shows :)

  • http://www.burakcalik.com/ xmRipper

    How about system requirements? Looks like we need a quad-core cpu :O

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      Desire HD is used in the video.

  • Darius

    Seems like they took a lot of ideas from Bump Desktop, the company bought by Google...

    • rangga

      yeah i think of that too.lasoo, fan out

  • Reverend D

    Go Launcher you have not much longer on my phone...

    • Randy

      Yeah, I've been using Go Launcher for a while too, and until now didn't see anything that was worth replacing it. This may finally fill that spot!

      • kissmyassapple

        :( poor go. I too will ditch it for this launcher

  • http://www.magcube.blogspot.com kushang

    I WANT IT.. superb superb!

  • Dan

    Very very nice. Let's just hope it doesn't turn out to be like the many other amazing 'game changer' home replacements that never actually get released. (kite!)

  • Ben Baggley

    Looks like it has some good ideas but ends up with just too many ideas. The overall look ends up really cluttered and complicated. Also I don't think free-style positioning is a good idea, and with this thing it looks like if you don't know exactly what you're doing, you're going to end up pretty lost as there's a little too much to do.

  • http://www.twitter.com/Mordat Dominick


    I am in love.

  • Vangelis

    Wow, amazing! If now battery consumption is managed well then this will wipe them all..

  • Victor

    This is what Android gives us: freedom!!!
    Wow, impressive demo.

  • Ahmad Nadeem

    Hope they release early.......I have also been waiting for ROU UI but with no luck

    • http://twitter.com/teamrou Phil Oakley

      Hey, I'm working on ROU UI...it will be finished, don't worry. A project this big takes time :)

  • AngelZxxWingZ

    This is going to be huge!!!!!!!!....
    What monster phone is used in the video..... an 8 core with the best graphic card..... Maps running but still being able to have the flag effect .......or the quick preview......
    RESPECT.............. guys.....
    Either this is very optimized code or its just the phone can handle everything.........

    ...... This is a whole new way of customizing your home screen ..XD...

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      It says Desire HD in the video description.

  • Lamdroid

    ditto, what are the spec requirements for all that

  • KiltBiker

    Love it but one question. Being kind of new to Android, will this run on a stock phone or does it need to be rooted?
    Think it would look great on my Rezound.

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      You don't need root to install a custom launcher.

  • Randy

    I wasn't expecting my jaw to actually drop, as the description implied it would.... but it did. A few times. This thing looks AMAZING!

  • Indirect

    I'm planning on using this on my nook tablet since I can go with a stable usable UI as well as have everything I need with my minimalistic look I stick with for my tablet. So, this thing seems like a freaking beast and I want it...now...any idea of release?

  • Jerrod S

    I can see Google buying this up before it is released... Then no one gets to see it.

    Remember BlindType?

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      Don't think they will - Google isn't very known to buy Chinese companies.

    • Tzk

      It seems everyone believes Blindtype is baked into the ICS keyboard.

      Maybe why it's gotten great reviews.

  • Eric

    What is the weather widget with the city outline that they are using?

    And what is the weather live wallpaper with the cloud floating in the background?

  • Zaatour36



    F**K YEAH :D

    NOW, SHOW THAT TO iPhoners :P

  • jsomazz

    WOW, omg, wth, et cetera... I need that laucher so badly...

    Seriously, what a nice piece of software they have...

    Thats why i´m proud to have an android phone...

  • GraveUypo

    looks cool and all but also looks like a resource hogger. being easy on resources is very high on my priority list when looking for a launcher.

  • Micke

    Really nice! but, I don't know if I'll be using all it's functions. althought it looks really good! I especially liked the lasso marking tool! and the folder handling!

  • Arunasena

    Wow moment for me.

    What surprises me is that it's running on miui as some of the application are miui native as well as the contact page.

    • Aeires

      I noticed the MIUI icons as well. Should work though, I'm running Go Launcher on a MIUI ROM, and it runs great.

  • GregMG

    I'm on an HTC Evo 4G and although this looks epic, I have one word for you...


    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      I have one word for you - upgrade. You can't expect the latest tech to run great on a 2-year old device :)

      • Mesmorino

        The Evo 4g isn't that much older than the Desire HD, and it's certainly not two years old.

        Not to mention, battery life *is* a valid concern, regardless of the device's age. If he'd said it could lag, or stutter, or crash then sure okay, old device is old.

        • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

          Fine, the EVO is 1.5 years old, but the battery life could be very much related to how old a device is. If it has an old CPU or especially not enough RAM, it'll use way more battery than a modern device that has plenty of RAM and a beefy CPU.

          My EVO 4G ran like crap even on CM7 once I got over a few months of use and around 100 apps, and the battery was crap due to all the restarting that Android had to keep doing.

  • Rob

    No dock? =/

    I don't see what's so amazing about it

  • machtwerk

    The features and performance are really awesome, but I just can't stand this typical plasticy look that comes with (as it seems) EVERY chinese product/app, eg. Go Launcher/SMS/whatnot or MIUI.

    • sriracha

      i agree with the placticy look, i thought i was the only one. which is why i do not use GO Anything.

      i bet they achieve that look with lead based pixels.

  • brain wash

    Cool. Can I download it yet? How about now? Now?


  • Rob

    To quote Darth Vader, "Impressive, Most Impressive..."

    (Can this replace ADW baked into CM7?)

  • droilfade

    Remember bump top on PC?

  • http://www.amantalwar.com Aman

    Nice post Artem.

    Is this real btw, it doesn't look like it.

    Its worth getting an android phone just to check this app out.

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      It's not available for download yet.

  • magiman7

    That launcher was running on MIUI, don't know if anyone else noticed.

  • DroidDev

    Maybe its just me, but I see nothing new here. Its just a bunch of components from other launchers all smashed together in one. Now on to the real question, how well does a phone function with a 40mb launcher running all the time???

  • http://blog.nexcerpt.com/ Nexcerpt

    Wow. All the stuff no one ~ever~ needed to do, all crammed into one app! Smart!

    Like a complex video game in which you ~never~ advance, or earn anything. Stylin'!

    Finally, you can chew up all your CPU, without doing ~any~ pesky work. Smokin'!

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      With hardware acceleration, the GPU and not the CPU should be handling most of the load, and on a good device it has plenty of power to spare.

  • mastermind26

    Wow. I don't know what else to say. I'd get that app even if I had to keep my EVO plugged in 24/7/365/eternity.

  • Azzz

    That's impressive and I would love to try it once it is available for Android but I wonder how that will affect the battery live... think about it...

  • Lewis

    Christmas Wishlist:
    HTC sensation XE/Galaxy S 2
    Transformer Prime
    TSF Launcher...

    Hope Santa reads this

  • Josh

    I am extremely impressed with nearly every aspect of this video, especially the lasso selection and freeform placement of icons and widgets.

    That said, I hope there will be additional themeing options available. The highly rounded corners and soft gradients don't quite fit the look and feel that Google seems to be aiming for with ICS and their web based services.

    • Josh

      Ideally, some sort of third-party themeing support like GO Launcher, ADW, and LauncherPro have...

  • Chris

    APK here: http://www.tsfui.com/shell/index.html

    Google is your friend. Also, this is legit, it's the dev's site and totally cool to download.

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      I don't see any download links there.

    • Scooterman1

      Don't see the download link. Did you get a copy before they took it down?

  • L boogie

    Is this gonna be free or a paid app? Just wondering because when it launches, I'm there either way and while we're at it, hopefully it's phone & tablet optimized because I'm running the app on all my devices

    • Scooterman1

      I'm assuming that since it says PRO, they will probably have a trial, or lite version, and you guess the rest.

  • rugarth-android-man

    my jaw droppd... I paused the video, tied it back... and when I played, it dropped again! Shit....

    And Desire HD can pull this off? I wonder what the Galaxy Nexus / SII or Rezound can do then. Shit man...

    You are making the coolest launcher ever guys... keep up the good work!

    Hopefully Google will pay you as a bonus to make Android look so special!

    And the buttery smoothness... OMG!

    Oops! I accidentally pressed play and my jaw just dropped again. :(

  • Golightly

    They were playing YUI on their phone <3 Sold me right there, I love her. Well, that and this looks awesome.

  • jbonics

    They definitly steped it up a notch

  • Aaron

    Nice features, but those are some EXTREMELY ugly icons and folders, imo. Hope it offers the customizability of the big 3 (ADW, LP, and GO).

  • J Rush

    Hmmm...I'll definitely be checking this out when it hits the Market. And if support is needed, I'll gladly donate.

  • Jaime Lefebvre

    I'm guessing that small half circle in the bottom corner is how you switch screens? Seems clunky to me. As a right hander, its on the opposite side of where my thumb can reach to. Idk. It may be worth a try, but I prefer the minimalist of ADW ex.

  • Duffin

    The biggest question for me will be, does it allow scrolling widgets? I'm guessing it probably does since it has a bunch of 3D widget elements, but that's one thing that really limits me to a few launchers. I love my scroll-able widgets.

    If it does, I'd even be willing to pay 15 bucks for this thing, I think. Looks amazingly useful and fast.

  • dude

    If these guys collaberate with the rou people we would have the best launcher sinced.. Android itself

  • ricollie

    other web sites say you can download the apk file by registering with your email address. I have used microsoft translate to try and find it to download it with no luck

  • Maniac

    OMG! This is beautiful!!!!

  • Dan


    bye-bye, GO.

  • Spydie

    A lot of the features of TAT were stolen? or by the same developers? Anyway, I wouldn't hold my breath. Last year there was SUPER COOL launcher coming out, fantastic new ideas for screens, can't remember the name (anyone? maybe it was Slick UI?), but we never heard from it again. I wanted it SOOOO bad.

  • http://thereelreviewer.wordpress.com Brad

    Dammit! "2011/12/14 The first round of closed beta registration, temporarily unable to register new users." So they've closed off closed beta for a while. Hopefully I can get in on the second round because this is what I've been missing all my life. I mean, holy crap, that running on a Desire HD and running that smoothly. I'm sold. Although I'm a cheap guy, so I'll go for a lite version to see if it's really worth it.

  • lincthra

    Managed to track down the TSFRegistration.apk, but as the name implies, its just a Beta registration setup and doesn't let you into the launcher. Asks for your email, you click join, it reiterates that the beta is closed.

  • haragog

    I tried holding my butt as suggested…But it wasn't enough! OMFG!!!
    iOS is going to be kicked into the stratosphere (FYI :not a hater, actually use both).

  • Yobee

    Oh yes, PLEASE get me a jobsPhone! LMFAO! And in the spirit of the other responses to this marvel, WOW!

  • tdelta1000

    I think the UI could push Android over the top. In my opinion, this is what Android should move towards.

  • Duke

    This looks well good. If its really that smooth in practice then I rate this app a BUY

  • http://www.academia-nutcrackers.com Sven

    I am not entirely sure what most of Google Translate's translation means but it seems like the release is scheduled for February:

    "With additional features of the TSF Shell official release time is determined in February, when will be published in ANDROID MARKET, so stay tuned.
    Official home page (Homepage): http://www.tsfui.com
    official microblogging (Weibo): http://weibo.com/tsfui2
    official blog (Blog): http://www.tsfui.com/blog/"

  • samer badenjki

    niiiiiiiiiiiiiiiicccccccceeeeeeeee apk in syria

  • http://Androidpolice mauricio

    I like this app

  • vijay