Most of Xiaomi’s Android smartphones ship with a custom user interface called MIUI. It includes some apps and features that aren’t available with stock Android… but it’s also historically been missing one thing that most Android phones have: an app drawer.

When you install a new app on a Xiaomi smartphone with the MIUI launcher, a icons for that app is automatically added to the home screen… much the same way it would be if you were using an iPhone or iPad.

Want to hide some of your apps in an app drawer? Up until now you’ve had to install a third-party launcher app to do that. But the folks at xda-developers report that Xiaomi seems to be testing a new version of the MIUI launcher that does have an app drawer.


Tapping the middle button in the app bar at the bottom of the home should bring up an app drawer that shows recent apps along the top and all apps below that, arranged alphabetically.

It’s not exactly a bleeding-edge feature: this is literally something most Android phones have been doing since day one. But it is a new feature for MIUI that helps it look a little less like an iOS clone.

Another new feature in the pre-release build of the MIUI launcher app is support for shortcut/quick actions that pop up when you long-press the icons for some apps… something other Android phones have had since Android 7.0 Nougat was released almost three years ago.

APKMirror has a download link for the new MIUI launcher, but you’ll only be able to use it on phones that are already running the MIUI version of Android.

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3 replies on “Xiaomi’s Android phones are finally getting an app drawer”

  1. I’d rather have the MIUI/FlymeOS method with the single Homescreen, and have an option to add an App Drawer. Rather than the standard launcher which is the App Drawer, with the option to add things to your Homescreen.

    It’s one the reasons I use Apex Pro/Nova Prime launchers. Almost none of the launchers give you this option.

    1. I started using Nova launcher on my hacked Fire tablet, then later on my Android One phone when I did not like the direction Google was going. Love having so many choices.

  2. This is actually a feature that is gone on the Android update 9 “Pie.” Indeed, your home screen will probably have these options:

    As many home screens as you want, but no App List (launcher).
    Exactly two screens accessible and an App list (By the way, the configuration of the ‘Home’ screen does not carry over).
    A mess with double-size icons.

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