Originally Posted by streether
Hi all -
So I'm just about to get my brand new N5 32gb black from Google Play (can't wait!) but I'm not sure how to use it to its full potential. I already read the beginner's guide on here, but I was wondering what I can do without rooting? I've been using an iPhone 4S for the last 2 years and had an HTC Legend before then that I did nothing with so I have no idea. I'm a bit of a noob so please be patient! I know you can download themes from Google Play but what's the deal with that? What's the difference between those and what you get when rooting? I really like how Google Now is front and centre, but can I install a new theme and still keep it so easily accessible? Like, how much can I customise how everything fits together? And how does that change if I decide to root?
Thanks a lot!
EDIT: Sorry, just realised this should go in the Q&A forum but don't know how to move it?
You can install something called a launcher from the Play store, such as Nova or Apex. These are home screen replacements. These will give you more customization, by allowing you to change your home screen grid, and/or apply icon packs. However, by installing another launcher, you will lose the "OK Google" and swipe to the right for Google now features. The choice is up to you.
For themes, you need to be rooted. These are themes that change your phones look, all around. I'll be honest, I wouldn't root for this. The android themes available aren't fantastic. If you want to theme, you can find tutorials on rooting, unlocking the bootloader, and flashing ROMs here at XDA or YouTube even. If you are new to this, I would recommend CyanogenMod11. It is pretty close to stock, stable, and gives you a few extra features as well as a theme chooser which lets you apply themes from the play store.
Without rooting, you can install widgets of your choice, install replacement apps such as browsers or keyboards, and install launchers.
If you decide to modify your device by rooting, flashing a ROM, or unlocking the bootloader, take caution and be sure to follow the guides exactly as written.
Sent from my Nexus 5 using Tapatalk