Pixel Launcher on Android 13 DP1 adds support for two home screen layouts, possibly for a Pixel foldable
Android 12 is now old news. Yesterday, Google dropped the first developer preview of Android 13, the next major version of Android that brings many notable improvements, including enhanced privacy, per-app language controls, redesigned media player UI, themed icon support for third-party apps, and much more. Interestingly, Android 13 DP1 also adds support for multiple home screen layouts on Pixel phones.
Two home screen layouts for the Pixel Launcher
The new change allows the Pixel Launcher to support two independent layouts (a standard layout and a large screen layout) at the same time. The large screen layout is triggered (via Android Police) when you set DPI on your Pixel phone to 600 or higher. The layout looks a lot like Android 12L, with the clock shown on the right side and the taskbar at the bottom. Setting the density to its default value brings back the standard layout. Both layouts work independently, and any changes made within each layout are saved by the Pixel Launcher. Phones like the Galaxy Fold Z 3 offer two home screen layouts: one for the cover display and one for the interior display.
GIF credit: Android Police
Adding two home screen layouts on the current Pixel phones doesn’t make much sense. It’s highly likely that Google is adding this feature for the rumored Pixel Fold, which according to recent reports, will feature a large inner display and a small exterior display. It’s also important to note here that the two-screen layout support isn’t being added to the stock AOSP launcher, which would have deemed it generic support for foldable phones. Rather it’s built into the Pixel Launcher, which is exclusive to Pixel phones.
More slots for the taskbar
The taskbar, which was introduced with Android 12L, can now display up to six apps on the dock (via Esper). In the latest Android 12L beta, you can only dock up to five apps. In addition, the taskbar now also shows “suggested apps.”