Review by Andrew Kameka on Thursday October 03, 2013.
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Android is known for customization. While other smartphone operating systems let users personalize the phone's appearance within certain confines, Android allows users to completely alter the appearance of the home screen, and no app represents as big of a change as Themer, an app that makes it easy to apply the unique creations often showcased on MyColorScreen.
MyColorScreen has long served as a showcase of the personal home screen sets up created by going into custom launchers and using a combination of widgets, wallpapers, and icon packs to introduce a very different look on Android. Themer is a new app, currently in limited beta with a long waiting list, that makes it easy for end users to enjoy those screens. The app is an alternative home screen launcher that lets users download themes by some of the more creative designers and then apply them in seconds.
Themer is reminiscent of Sweeter Home, the first Android launcher that was once the best way to show design chops on a smartphone. Sadly, Sweeter Home never quite reached critical mass and faded in popularity. Whereas Sweeter Home required plenty of tweaking and changing settings even when designers were happy to share their theme's assets with others, Themer is meant to require only downloading the theme and letting the app handle the rest. It's possible to further customize things by removing or adding widgets and shortcuts, reassigning apps, or changing wallpapers, but the appeal of the app is that someone has already done the hard work for you.
As one would expect with any beta, there are a couple of issues. The home screen itself performs reasonably well, but applying themes could be faster, and it also takes a few seconds longer to load when restarting the phone. Those are more minor problems that will only annoy users for a second or two every once in a while. The real area for improvement is making the smaller details even better. I'd love to be able to apply an icon pack because there are a couple of themes with layouts that I love but icons that are less appealing. The good thing is that this is a beta and already more stable and useful than apps typically are prior to their official launch.
Many Android users have lustfully browse forum and websites like MyColorScreen to see some of the most unique and appealing home screens available on Android. The depths of customization needed to replicate the looks of those screens hardly seems worth it for most people, so Themer is an excellent solution for that problem. Users don't need to download several widgets or icons and then painstakingly try to replicate the look. Instead, they can just tap a few buttons, download a theme, and give their home screen a completely different look. Themer requires an invite code to use, but you can download from Google Play and request an invite code.
Andrew is MobileBurn.com's managing editor. He is based in Miami, Florida.