I am an old gamer, so my eyes are not what they used to be. If and when I can, I like to have larger icons on my phone or tablet. I’ve been searching for a good launcher that will help me out and someone recommended BIG Launcher. At first I thought that the launcher made everything a bit TOO large, but after a while it grew on me. If you have vision issues or just want a unique looking launcher on your phone or tablet, Big Launcher is a great option. It’s simple to customize as well. I can simply make a new page of large blocks and add icons or links to whatever I want. The default options are set to provide someone with a basic selection of tools, like communication or even an SOS button. All of it is customizable and simple to use. The website provides plenty of tutorials that are simple to follow as well. Other app developers could learn a lesson or two from the devs at Big Launcher; simple and straight-forward is always better.
I sent in a few questions in, and received some answers from Jan Husak, co-founder of the BIG Launcher team.
Beau: What inspired you to make the app?
BIG Launcher: It all started when a phone of my mother’s got broken and we had to look for another one. There weren’t many senior models available here in Czech Republic by that time. And the few ones available were ugly, bulky and dumb. My mom wanted to use her phone to take some photos and to access the Internet. The Android phones started to grow, so I’ve gathered a few good developers around me and we started creating BIG Launcher as a weekend project. Our goal was to enable the people with poor eyes to use the smartphone. That was almost two years ago. Since then we’ve added lots of features and we’ve extended our target group from seniors also to visually impaired, legally blind, people with paralysis and other motoric problems. And also for technically challenged people, who just don’t want to be lost in the screens full of tiny icons.
How successful has it been? It appears to be really popular!
There are about 10,000 users of the full version and the demo version was downloaded about 80,000 times. So yes, people like it, and we’re really happy about it. We aren’t a large company, so we can’t afford expensive marketing campaigns. Word of mouth advertising is what keeps the downloads growing. We’ve built BIG Launcher from scratch, throwing away almost anything that is common in today’s smartphones. We’ve created something completely different from others, something simpler and more intuitive. And we’re glad it works, that people are happy to use our interface. And that we’re helping them to use their smartphones without any doubt.
Do you know how many of your customers need it because of poor vision and how many just enjoy the look of it? I’m sort of in both camps.
There is no way how to track that, but we’re getting positive feedback from both camps. Since we’ve introduced the downloadable themes and custom backgrounds, I think there are more ‘ordinary’ people downloading BIG Launcher, because they can customize it to match their style.
Do you have plans to make more tools for people who have vision issues?
Definitely. BIG Launcher is only a beginning – an instrument for using the phone. We’d like to grow the complete ecosystem of BIG Launcher themed apps to enable the people with poor eyes to use their phones as their window to the world around them.
Thanks again to the BIG Launcher team for creating such a wonderful product. Check out the official website and, if you’re interested in a launcher that makes everything easier to read or just want something unique, download the demo! I’ve fallen in love with the launcher simply because I can glance at the phone or tablet and see what I need to see. We often forget how much work our eyes do on a day-to-day basis, and my line of work means that I am always using my eyes to examine tiny details, fonts and screenshots. BIG Launcher helps me out, a lot, and even though some might scoff at the 10 dollar price tag, it’s well worth it. Remember that once you buy it and use it on your phone you can also use the same license on your tablet so you won’t have to purchase a new copy each time.