Redesigned Pixel Launcher appears on Google I/O demo unit

While many of us likely opt to use custom launchers, the Pixel Launcher has a number of cool features that you're not really able to get anywhere else. That might change soon, though. The Pixel phones were demoing Android's Instant Apps feature, but they also included a version of the Pixel Launcher that looks a bit different than the one that Google now offers. Rather than appearing as a pill-shaped button in the upper left corner of your screen, this Pixel Launcher has a gray bar that stretches across the entire screen and sits between your docked apps and the on-screen Android navigation buttons.

A second video shows the unreleased Pixel Launcher being used to search for Android Instant Apps.

Meanwhile, the date is just sitting by itself near the top of the display, below the status bar.

There's not a lot known about this Pixel Launcher and when or if it'll be released to consumers.

What do you think of this unreleased Pixel Launcher? It's possible that Google is making this search bar change to make it easier for users to reach, especially those folks that have extra large phablet screens.

As for when this redesigned Pixel Launcher could be unleashed to the public, there are a couple of major Google Android happenings expected for later this year, like the public release of Android O and the launch of new Pixel phones. It's possible that Google is prepping this new Pixel Launcher for one of those events and it somehow made its way onto a couple of demo units at I/O.