The Android-L Experience

There is no denying the amount of effort and research Google puts into developing newer versions of Android, its popular mobile OS. With each new version of Android, Google has enriched the OS with numerous performance and usability enhancements. The much awaited Android Lollipop unveiled late last year has also introduced a plethora of goodies.

The changes are not very drastic, but they make the OS more user-friendly and versatile, say the critics and users. However, Lollipop rollout has been quite sluggish with a few manufacturers offering updates for selected handsets. If your Android device is yet to receive Lollipop update, do not lose heart. It is possible to get some of Lollipop functionalities by using certain third-party apps.

Also See: AirDroid 3: The Best Way to Manage Your Android Phone from Your Desktop

Lollipop-like Task Switcher on Any Android


Lollipop has received oodles of praise from users owing to its UI enhancement, fluidity and methods to deal with tasks in a better way compared to the earlier versions. The task switcher in Lollipop is a big enhancement over Kitkat and earlier builds of Android, as it is. If you are looking to experience the Lollipop task switcher which not available on your Android device, there is a way out.

You can use a third-party app to get the task switcher like Lollipop on older Android versions. You will not need to root the device or resort to any complex technical method for this.

Using Fancy Switcher for Android


This app is compatible with Android devices running version 4.0 and later versions. You can download this app free from Google Play. It does not take up much space on the device memory as well.

When you launch Fancy Switcher for the first time, it will pop a small tutorial-which is helpful. In this app, you get two modules. One of them is a fast app switcher with which you can access the last used app. As you swipe with a finger from the display’s left side a thumbnail preview will be shown by the app. As you lift the finger, the app comes to the forefront. To see the apps in live preview mode, you will need to launch this app first.

To enable task switcher resembling that of Lollipop head to the settings section of the app. Select Lollipop from style option. Three other options are grid, classic and cover flow. After that, the task switcher will don the look of Lollipop version. It is as close to the Lollipop task switcher as you can get but keep in mind that button for default task switcher will not get erased as such. This is expected as Fancy Switcher is not a system app.

With this app, you get a couple of methods to launch the task switcher. You may tap on notification from the app in the display’s app drawer. However, using the other method, where the app becomes a substitute of Google Now launcher, is also possible. When using this app, you will find a green dot close to apps in the task switcher. It indicates this app is running in the background.

The free version of Fancy Switcher shows  5 last apps used by you. Like other Android apps, its free version comes with a few limitations. If you want to override such feature and performance limitations, buy the app’s Gold version. It is quite affordable and unlocks plenty of useful features. In this version you can customize the smart slider to a great extent.

It also comes with a handful of transition effects that look really cool. Besides, you can choose to alter the background using a wallpaper of your choice. It can be made transparent if you wish so, like Lollipop version.

Summing Up

You will still miss a few features of Lollipop task switcher when using the Fancy Switcher app. However, there is no denying it gives you an experience pretty close to Lollipop. The gold version can give you a host of better features missing from the basic free version.

It does have a few bugs, but they do not mar the user experience much, as evident from its user rating of 3.7 in Google Play. If you are unsure about receiving Lollipop update for your Android phone, it is the most viable alternative to try out.

Further Reading: Go Button Free on Android: A Guide To Using Your Android Device Without Buttons