Back when ICS was released, it brought a whole new stock launcher, leaving old-style GB launchers in the dust. One such launcher - ADW - just received a massive update in the Play Store, bringing it back from the dead.

This is basically a full re-write of the launcher, but it still offers many of the features that made ADW and ADW EX so popular back in the day, including icon themes, gestures, widget resizing, and more.

ADW is of course, free in the Play Store, while its "pro" version - ADW EX - will set you back three bucks. If you were a fan of ADW back in the day, or are just looking for a new launcher to test out, hit the widget to check it out.

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Cameron Summerson
Cameron is a self-made geek, Android enthusiast, horror movie fanatic, musician, and cyclist. When he's not pounding keys here at AP, you can find him spending time with his wife and kids, plucking away on the 6-string, spinning on the streets, or watching The Texas Chainsaw Massacre on repeat.

  • http://twitter.com/cabbieBot cabbieBot well played.

    • br_hermon

      I don't follow....???

      • sixty-four

        if you haven't already, google "1337"

      • Hidetomaru -> 1337 -> l33t -> leet


      • Charlie.foxtrot

        What has the Internet come to.......

        • http://twitter.com/cabbieBot cabbieBot

          damn kids not knowing their e-history :( *shakes cane*

    • fixxmyhead

      That was gay

  • aNYthing6

    I remember when ADW/Launcher Pro were *the* launchers to get. Wasn't even that long ago.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1118622192 Edward Germanotta

    Nothing like ICS and JB stock... Maybe nova

  • Joshua Anderson

    I always loved ADW back on my fascinate and thunderbolt. Now it's updated and I have it on my SGS3. There is NO better launcher

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

    Would have covered it way sooner if the app didn't have a retarded "Tons of fun!" changelog. For fucks sake, Ander.

    • disqus_GEzxWntYAq

      "Retarded"? How about you use something less offensive to certain sections of the populace.

      • http://twitter.com/jeffaandrews Jeff Andrews

        How about you stop being so sensitive.

      • Ravengenocide

        Please. It's just a word. If you can't stand people using words then you might reconsider being on the internet or at all.

      • Paul Lukitsch

        I thought "tons of fun" was silly, but kind of kitschy. Maybe you should cut back on the Adderall.

  • jordanjay29

    I would have gotten this sooner had Anders kept up on Android versions. Now I've moved on, and though I look back fondly on my ADW days, it's time to move on and move forward. My homescreens are pretty well set and I don't need too many features in a launcher, so I'll have to pass for now.

    • Abhisshack D

      Could not agree more, i brought ADW Ex when it was launched but than he did not update it for months and now i dont trust the dev anymore. i now move to Apex Launcher Pro and very much happy with it .

      • smeddy

        Me too, except I can't recommend TSF Launcher enough and I'd love to see AP cover it more

        • Ranger666

          not worth the money. I did try it and has some kewl features, but the price needs to come down to the average launcher price.

  • krackers

    I use nova launcher solely because it allows you to have folders in the app drawer, while still retaining the sleek holo interface. Is there any other launcher that has this functionality?

    • http://twitter.com/nastybutler77 Jameson Ahern

      Jelly Bean stock launcher does.

      • http://twitter.com/navjotbatra Navjot

        Doesn't let you have folders in the app drawer. It only has folders on the homescreen..

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=713947670 Steven Irving

      I've always used a custom folder in the app drawer with ADW? Had it picked out with all my main used apps, it is incredibly convenient

      • N4tur4lb0rnch1ll4

        Me 2. Using Apps Folders and ADW since Desire. It's working really fast until now. Now on SGSIII.

    • Ionut Costica

      Apex has it too...

      • Andrew Easley

        Actually Apex Launcher Free or Pro doesn't feature the option to have folders in the app drawer. I had been using Apex Launcher Pro for awhile, after finding it in it's early days on XDA and switching from Nova to it. When Nova Launcher Prime went on sale a few weeks ago for $0.25 though, I picked it up. I will continue to follow Apex though, since I own a license to it, and as soon as they add that functionality, I'll head back over...that is, unless Nova adds the features I like from Apex that are currently missing and more new features not in Apex. May the best launcher "win" :)

        • Ionut Costica

          Sorry, I was mistaken. For some reason I was thinking of the app dock, not the app drawer... You're saying Nova can do that? hmm... I think it's time I switched (grabbed Nova Pro during the last sale, thought it couldn't hurt...) ^_^

          • Andrew Easley

            Yup! :) I just hope that Apex gets that added functionality soon, as it has a few of my desired features that Nova doesn't have, such as more homescreen transitions and a more feature-rich gesture support.

    • Freak4Dell

      Hmm...I was about to ask if any of these launchers had that function. I think I may like folders more than tabs. I need to go through the Nova settings and see.

  • http://www.facebook.com/YAYSAVERGN Eric James Salcido

    I picked it up on the 10c sale. So this is pretty awesome.

  • http://www.facebook.com/ncoulombe Nathan Coulombe

    I am SO psyched to try this out. Been using Apex since I got ICS, but I always loved ADW EX on GB. Looks epic from the video - lets just see how smooth this baby runs.

  • Gav456

    I used this pre-ics, but now that android does enough of the sweet stuff by itself, there was little use for it. Now I use Lightning Launcher (if you haven't tried it, go get it now)

  • cy_n_ic

    Gotta check it out just because. But i was always a fan of launcher pro over adw. Wish that phoenix would rise from the ashes. We still love you fede!!!

    • Freak4Dell

      Yeah, LP was always my favorite, and it was the first app I ever purchased. I switched to Nova and Apex a while back, but I'd give LP another try if it were ever updated.

  • Joseph Cascio

    It's a very nice update. I do like the action bar alot. Now I can remove the open drawer icon on the dock. It's also crazy smooth. Still some minor bugs to work out but it's a nice start. Also, some much needed features are missing. (Swipe shortcuts on the dock, hide apps that are in other groups from the All Apps group, Remove the double tap to customize icons[horrible implementation], make widget list/previews load faster).

  • http://www.anivision.org/ Christopher Bailey (Xcom923)

    It's probably to late for me to switch back. I've been waiting for adw to do something like this for a long time and Nova does all that this update does and I can't see a compelling reason to switch back.

  • Jason Scott

    I had forgotten about this until I saw this article. Put it on Simplex and it's worlds better than the Apex that came with it. May be my new launcher.

  • Bariman43

    I got ADW Ex on sale back when I still had my Samsung Intercept. To this day I'm convinced it sped up my phone because it was really smooth back then. Good to see it making a comeback.

  • br_hermon


  • MooleyBooleyTroll

    I used to use this launcher pre ICS and loved it. Just tried it on my HD and while it looks nice, its very buggy on my device. Going to keep it installed and keep an eye on updates.

  • Darren Hilton

    I'm running this launcher now took a while to learn it all but its a great launcher loving the sreach bar I've removed the app draw icon from the dock I'm now happy very smooth on jb

  • William_Gates

    There is no way to resize the icons on the desktop

    • Symmetry

      ADWSettings, Icons, Icon Size.

  • Bloodflame87

    Back in the day, I used to switch between ADW EX and LPP quite often. Since ICS, I've been using Apex - so yeah, pretty much the same story as a lot of other people. It's nice that ADW was finally updated after all this time, but I'm finding it a bit laggy on my Jelly Bean device, and even with it's newer look and features, it still has a dated feel to it. Thanks, but I think I'm gonna stay with Apex for now.

  • Aincalandorn

    It's really nice, but the wallpaper still doesn't render properly compared to Apex (Apex it shows it as I selected it, ADW Ex shows a horribly zoomed in version).

  • 27yearold

    I replaced JB and ICS front ALWAYS with Go Launcher. I can't stand how much space the bottom bar consumes normally, and how it looks like normal icons - terrible google design

  • Skyrocket user

    Skyrocket users beware!!!!

    The update on Oct 29th looked great, then another one on Oct 30th broke everything. It now crashes non-stop on my AT&T Skyrocket. I had to return the app to backup ( and sadly did not back-up the Oct 29th version.

    Hoping for a fix soon!

  • Dalgamor

    There is a terrible bug in this version that makes it useless to me. The app bar disappears if you edit some of the options, and then you cannot get it back! It's just gone. Only a complete reset (which loses ALL of the hours of setup) gets the bar back. Any work-arounds would be appreciated, As of now, I'm not going to waste another three hours of my life setting up all my screens yet again. Without the app bar, the main feature I like is gone. This is on a Toshiba Thrive, running ICS.

    • Dalgamor

      I found a work around :). Go to setup, and add the App Dock as a gesture, you can then get it to come back.

  • msgelter

    So, any idea how to kill the Google search bar at the top of the screens? Very obnoxious that they're forcing that onto the desktop.

  • copyright

    so now i have to pay for adw ex again not worth the money ill just go use go launcher again