Remember Google’s Now Launcher? The launcher was primary designed for Google Nexus phones, but it was better known for being an easy way to replace Android skins (from manufacturers) that looked terrible with a Material Design-friendly solution.
Well it seems the launcher will not be around for long. According to an email obtained by the Android Police, Google will remove the app from the Google Play Store and will no longer allow OEM partners to include it in their phones after March 1.
The email explains the decision. Since the Google Search Launcher Services library is currently available to b used by OEMs, there’s no need for the Google Now Launcher anymore. This means that Android phone manufacturers will be able to integrate the Now feed directly into their own launcher.
Many of the Now’s features have been integrated in the Google search app, and most references to “Google Now” have been removed from the app. With the launch of the two Google Pixels phones, the Pixel Launcher became the standard (although it’s exclusive to the two devices so far).
Google also mentions in the email, that although users won’t be able to download and install the launcher via the Play Store, it will continue to support existing users of the launcher by updating the Google Search app.