The Nexus 5 comes with this useless and space-wasting Google Now search bar:

Not Ok Google

It is hard-coded, and I have been told the solution is to modify the launcher's AOSP source code and remove the hard-coded bar. I guess someone has done it already, so that's the purpose of the present question.


  • Just like the normal AOSP launcher, just without the bar and without Google Now.
  • Widgets must be usable
  • Open source, free
  • Maintained to follow closely new upstream developments
  • Available on Google Play or as an APK, or even better on F-Droid


(NOTE: If you use LineageOS then just long-press the screen, choose Settings, then disable "Search bar")

  • 1
    Google UIs are often good examples of wasted screen space. Aug 31, 2015 at 7:13
  • Added answer to your original question on Android enthusiasts
    – holroy
    Aug 31, 2015 at 10:03
  • Any issues in using Cyanogenmod's Trebuchet or SlimROMS' Slim Launcher? I don't know how Google Now launcher looks but these launchers are close to stock with some cool features too. They also meet the rest of your three requirements.
    – Firelord
    Sep 3, 2015 at 23:06
  • @Firelord: Is Trebuchet usable only on Cyanogenmod? Is Slim Launcher really open source? Thanks!
    – Nicolas Raoul
    Sep 4, 2015 at 4:05
  • @Firelord: Slim Launcher does not satisfy the first requirement. For instance, it does not support widgets
    – Nicolas Raoul
    Sep 4, 2015 at 9:19

1 Answer 1


Checking my list of alternative launchers, it looks like Launcher+ should fit your needs. Quotes from its description answer your listed requirements:

  • Just like the normal AOSP launcher: compiled straight from AOSP
  • just without the bar and without Google Now: Hide the Google Search Bar
  • Nexus 5: guaranteed to work on the Nexus 4 and 5 (and yes, I know about the special issue with those devices concerning the search bar – so this is the master criterium)

Unfortunately, the description doesn't mention a license (and no homepage to check with), so I must pass on that requirement. At least it "ships at no charge", and is available at Google Play.

Searchbar No searchbar, more space for icons
Screenshots prove: Searchbar is there, but can be hidden (Source: Google Play; click to enlarge)

I have not used this app myself, so I cannot vouch for it from personal experience. Play store rating is 4 stars at almost 6k votes, so it cannot be that bad. And one of your criteria seems to be only met partly: Maintained to follow closely new upstream developments – there wasn't any update lately to this launcher. Still, if you want to get rid of the search bar on your N5, it should be a good choice.

Alternatives you might wish to take a look at (not mentioning all your requirements, but according to the screenshots and "reading between the lines" might be a close fit as well):

  • Polaris Launcher: More up-to-date. According to the screenshots, you can disable the search bar – which is explicitely mentioned (just found it): Hide or move the position of individual desktop elements (search bar, dock, page indicator). The N5 is not explicitely mentioned. Comes in a free version with in-app-payment to go Pro.
  • Kcin Launcher is based on AOSP, and a little more up-to-date. Doesn't mention search bar hiding, but screenshots might indicate that (the sentence Highly customizable, with many useful settings could mean anything ;) No license mentioned here either.
  • Too bad it is not open source... if there is any open source alternative feel free to give another answer :-)
    – Nicolas Raoul
    Oct 26, 2015 at 9:04
  • 1
    I'm just cross-checking my resources, Nicolas, and will add some hints to my answer here – unless I find a "full match", which I then post in a separate answer :)
    – Izzy
    Oct 26, 2015 at 9:06

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