The introduction of Windows 8 brought along its most controversial feature — the Modern desktop interface, formerly known as Metro. In case you didn’t know that it had a name, the Modern desktop interface is made up of the new Start Screen and the app tiles on it. Many people have argued that the interface shouldn’t belong on a desktop because of its extreme simplicity and inefficient use of screen real estate, but would be much rather suited on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets.
If you’re an Android user, you should already know about the high customizability of your device in practically every aspect. Therefore, if you like the Modern interface, then check out these apps that can replicate it on your own device.
Fake Windows 8 Launcher
While you can’t do anything to change the general theme of all your apps to look more like those on Windows 8, you can definitely change the launcher on your Android device to replicate the Start Screen. And there’s no app that replicates that design better than the Fake Windows 8 Launcher. While it still isn’t a perfect replica of the interface, it most certainly comes close enough to mimic the new Windows desktop. Note that the Windows Phone interface looks slightly different compared to the desktop — while it also uses tiles, Windows Phone has them going vertically rather than horizontally with less space in between them.
Fake Windows 8 Launcher is also highly customizable, letting you choose which apps you’d like pinned to the start screen, what background you’d like to use, and even the username in the corner of your screen. The launcher also works in landscape mode, something which can’t be said about the stock Android launcher nor Samsung’s TouchWiz. Because of its accuracy and high configurability, this launcher gets my top recommendation.
Windows 8 for Android (Paid)
My next recommendation is a launcher simply called . Although I don’t like this one quite as much, it is still a very good alternative. It also offers some very nice looking tiles that can be set to both the small and large sizes, and even an auto hiding bar which can hold your most frequently used apps. Some of you may disagree with me, but I find it to be less clean than the Fake Windows 8 Launcher, especially because some apps don’t have tiles which have colored backgrounds as they should.
The developer also states that the app isn’t meant for tablet devices, which may be a downside to some. Additionally, it is the only paid app in this list – it costs $1.99 to use. However, some of you may prefer this one, and there’s absolutely no reason why you shouldn’t be able to use it.
Windows 8 for Go Launcher Ex
If you use the Go Launcher Ex, you’re in luck. The person(s) behind Pizero Design have come up with the for the popular launcher that is meant to give your Android device a Windows touch. This theme definitely doesn’t try to mimic Windows 8’s Modern interface to every detail, but instead takes some common elements and colors and puts its own twist on it. These are most noticeable in the All, Recent, and Running tabs located at the top. Otherwise, it’s a rather simple theme that still retains the Android feel, so you won’t have to get used to an entirely different launcher altogether. However, if you want something more true to the Modern interface — tiles included — then this may not be your best choice.
There are a good number of different options available for you to choose from to make your Android device look different. While these are among the best options for making your device look like Windows 8, there are many more just like these for other operating systems. There are options to make it look like an iPhone, Ubuntu, and beyond. If you’re interested in these or any other options, take a look around the Play Store! I’m absolutely positive that you’ll find a solution that’s right for you.
Have you made your Android device look like a different operating system? What tools did you use, or which ones were your favorite? What’s your favorite general Android interface customization? Let us know in the comments!