How to get the stock experience on any Android phone


Just a fraction of all Android devices are running the stock OS, even though this version is in many ways much better. Here are a few simple tips to make your device look and feel like a Nexus.

Change the launcher

The launcher is in other words the home screen – a place where all your icons and widgets can be found. Most phones don’t come with the stock version but this can be easily changed. To get the exact same experience as the one found on Nexus devices, download the Google Now Launcher from the Play Store. If you want something that looks similar but has more customization options, Nova Launcher will be a great choice.

RELATED POST: The 3 best Android launchers right now

Google Now Launcher
Google Now Launcher

Install Google apps

Many stock Android apps are available on the Play Store. Try downloading the Google Camera, Google Photos, Google Calendar, Google Keyboard, Clock, Gmail, Chrome and Calculator. Now disable as many of the stock duplicate apps and replace them with the new ones.

Change the theme (if possible)

On many devices (such as Samsung and LG phones) there is an option to change the theme. Look for themes called Material designStock Android, Android 5.0 or Android 6.0. This should change the colours of the system, the look of individual apps and icons or other UI elements to match Material Design which is the design standard of stock Android.

Change the icon pack

Most launchers have an option to change the icon pack. This will not work as well as swapping the theme (the icons in ex. the multitasking panel will not change) but should still help make your device look more like a Nexus. Among many other great icon packs, Glim Lite and Moonshine are both very good choices. While not identical to the ones on Nexus devices, the icons from these packs are flat and beautiful.

Get a new lockscreen

There is a variety of Material Design lockscreens available on the Play Store. Simply find one you like, download and enable it and deactivate the system lockscreen. If you care about privacy, be sure to check how secure your pick is as some alternative lockscreens can be bypassed very easily.

SEE ALSO: The 3 best alternative lockscreens for Android


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Patrick is a student and tech enthusiast, mostly interested in UI design, Android modding and custom ROMs.