Nova Launcher has received a new beta update earlier this week, pushing the custom Android skin’s version to 5.5-beta7 and introducing a new feature allowing users to replace the dock search bar inspired by Android Oreo with a different widget.
Stock Android 8.0 Oreo introduced a new search bar near the bottom of the screen, and Nova Launcher developers previously added a similar element to their Android skin, now ennobling it with the option of replacing it with any other widget, as long as it has a similar size of 4×1 squares. To replace the search bar, users need to long-press it, tap the “Replace” option, and choose a different eligible widget from the list.
Getting rid of the dock widget (or enabling it in the first place) can be done by going to “Nova Settings > Dock > Search bar in dock”, and selecting one of the available options (“None”, “Above icons”, or “Below icons”).
The latest Nova Launcher 5.5-beta7 release follows version 5.4 which was introduced in early September, as well as version 5.5 which was released only a few days later.
Version 5.5 continued to receive new incremental updates, with the previous 5.5-beta3 build launching in mid-October when it introduced additional Oreo-inspired features such as improved adaptive icons.
The latest update also includes additional unspecified optimizations and fixes, and users who may want to participate in the beta testing and acquire the latest build can do so by signing up for the program through the Google Play Store.
Opt-in to betas at