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Nova Launcher 5.1 beta adds Dynamic App Badges to display contact pictures, album art as icon badges from app notifications

Nova Launcher, our long time favorite home-screen app for Android, has been updated to version 5.1 in the beta channel, and it brings in a superb feature. The update adds Dynamic App Badges, to each app icon on your homescreen and dock.

Dynamic App Badges Nova Launcher
These icons will now display unread badges with content from app notifications. Basically this is how it works, you get an email or a message from someone in WhatsApp, Telegram, Skype, or your SMS app, youiwill the profile picture of the contact (providing they have one, else you will see the default icon style which that app uses). Isn't this what Tesla Unread does? Not really, Tesla Unread shows the number of unread messages in an app, not the profile picture of the sender

The new feature comes at a catch, in that it is not a static badge. That is, it gets the badge icon from the notification panel, from other apps. So if you dismiss a notification or clear the notification shade completely, the badges vanish. This also works with regular apps, such as music apps where it will display the album art instead of a contact picture, or app icons from the Play Store.

How to enable Dynamic Badges in Nova Launcher:

Go to Nova Settings > Notification Badges > Badge Type > Dynamic.

If you want to stick with numeric counts, you can still use TeslaUnread for that. Dynamic App Badges requires a device running on Android 4.3 or above. Download Nova Launcher 5.1 (currently at beta 2), from the Google Play Store, by opting in to the beta channel.

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