ZLauncher Review

Review: ZLauncher

February 20 , 2006
Ratings: 4 of 5
By: Lulu Turnbull

What Is It?

Palm users often find themselves irked by the limitations of the built-in launcher;
for example, applications stored on the card cannot be categorized on the launcher screen. And, speaking of the memory card, the process of ‘copying’ applications then
‘deleting’ them can also be tiresome. Enter ZLauncher, one of the most popular third-party launchers in the Palm world.

How It Works

ZLauncher allows the user to create unique tabs for storing user-defined groups of applications. For example, one might create a tab consisting of all applications
needed at work, and perhaps a separate one for all games. Each tab can show applications on the card, as well as those in main memory. In addition, each tab can be
designed in a number of ways by altering the layout, icons and background. In the screenshots below, I’ve shown the same tab in different layouts.


Treo tabbed applications

Set-up and Layout

By offering countless themes, background images and iconsets, it’s easy to customize the appearance of you ZLauncher layout. includes a few themes, but be prepared for an additional cost for third party themes such as the Mac OS X Tiger theme. ZLauncher allows for a
completely minimalist approach, removing all tabs and text, or you can put as much detail in the top and bottom bars as possible.

The top and bottom bars can be configured to show status of your system (battery life, memory, card space, Bluetooth status). Alternatively, you can assign action
items such as activating your password lock feature on your device. The drop-down menu also gives handy access to some of the system resources such as performing a

Soft reset Treo

All the Bells and Whistles

Right off the bat, you should know coming into ZLauncher that it is much more than just a launcher. It has a robust file manager which allows you to view,
edit and delete file information in a manner akin to ‘Filez’. You might substitute ‘PowerRun’ with Zlauncher’s ‘move to card’ feature which allows you to simply
move the application to the standard \Palm\Launcher\ folder or opt to move it to the ZLauncher folder on the memory card allowing you to keep a shortcut in
main memory (ideal if you need to sync the application to the desktop). Finally there is a respectable ‘QuickLaunch’ feature that allows you to pop up a list of
applications to launch from anywhere on your Palm. Due to resource constraints on the Treo 650, I found this feature to be a bit buggy-often running slow or crashing.

Treo file manager

ZLauncher icons


ZLauncher effectively rolls several applications in one giving you much more bang for your buck. Outside of the issue with the QuickLaunch (which I attributed to resource contraints of the Treo), it is a rock-solid application. It is
completely 5-way button compatible, highly customizable and is an excellent addition to any Treo.

ZLauncher retails for $19.95 and is available as a free trial.

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