Saturday, October 26, 2013

Change your boring lock screen to an awesome lock screen with Start

Change your boring lock screen to an awesome lock screen with Start

Start -  is a new lock screen application for Android phones developed by Celltick. Those who are fed up looking at the same old lock screen then its time to get rid of it. This lock screen app just landed in playstore and its been doing well with 1,000,000 + downloads so far. So lets play around with it and see how its works.

Start provides multiple options in lock screen which saves you from the pain of unlocking phone every now and then for performing minor tasks. First lets look at the default lock screen which comes with start. Default lock screen displays time, date and battery at the top of the screen  like all other lockscreen widgets. There are ample of features which differentiates this from other lock screen widgets and those goes like this. There are totally 5 colorful shortcut buttons on the sides. 3 on the left and 2 on the right. Swiping those buttons in the direction opposite to it will display a beautiful drop down with feeds related to that option. Facebook , gallery, rss feed, yahoo weather and search are those 5 shortcut buttons. Swiping on Facebook button will display your Facebook feeds, yahoo weather will display the weather forecast and so on. Look and feel of that drop down is just amazing. For gallery options you will have to choose the set of photos which has to be displayed in that drop down. Below is how the default screen and drop down works.

Moving on to next set of options. You have a round button at the bottom of the screen which can be moved in quiet a different directions. Phone can be unlocked by moving it to left and you can change the ringtone mode by moving it to right. Note that, moving onto right will not navigate you to ringtone menu instead it will change the ringtone mode right away i.e from sound mode to vibrate, from silent to vibrate etc. If you don't like dragging that button then you can perform same operation in other way by sliding unlock/ringtone button towards the round button which is present in either side of it. Now those were 2 simple operations which can be done with that round button but there's more to it. Clicking on that button will display 4 more options in a semi circle. Those 4 options are phone log, message , media and recently used apps. Phone log option will display the logs in a circular patter around itself. Message displays all message related apps like sms, facebook messenger, email , whatsapp etc and those apps can be launched right from lock screen itself. Media will display camera, gallery videos etc. And these list of apps to be displayed for every option is configurable. To configure, drag that round button on any of those option and wait for couple of seconds without selecting anything , it will automatically displays the add button through which you can add more shortcuts. Check out the images below to get more clarity on what I explained.

Start settings menu can be accessed by dragging that 3 parallel lines button which is next to time/date at the top of the lockscreen. In settings menu you will find options to change theme, change background and widgets color and sizes. In functionality sections you can configure rss feed , facebook , gallery and other plugin related options. Default Android security can be enabled along with this lock screen and you will find this option in advanced section. I tried couple of themes and below are the screenshots of those.

Final verdict and few quick points

  1. Beautifies the lockscreen by getting rid of old boring lock screen.
  2. Quick access to favorite apps right from the lock screen.
  3. Look and feel of the app is very good.
  4. Might create a security hole if not used with default Android security.
  5. No option to delete the default apps in shortcut list. Like there is bluetooth option in message plugin which is irrelevant and can't be deleted.
  6. Good numbers of themes are available but it provides same set of options. Just  that the background and icons are different. Looking forward for more themes with more options from developers other than Celltick.
  7. No delay while launching apps from lockscreen.
  8. Start process will always be active by occupying  ~25 MB of RAM space and 0% CPU.

Users rating - 4.5
A&F rating - 4.7
Size - 5.31MB
Downloads - 1,000,000+
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