Can I show an app built with Android Studio on the Nreal launcher?

Hi developers,

I would like to run an app built with Android Studio (not with Unity) from Nreal launcher. Is it possible to show the app icon on Nreal launcher and run it by clicking with the laser pointer?

I have tried to install some Android apps but I cannot see the icons on Nreal launcher. What does Nreal launcher use to decide which icons to show? Can Nreal launcher show icons built with only Unity?

Hello @matsu ,
I am also doing RND on this, I would like to ask you that can we implement it in android studio (not in unity)
I know it’s sdk is for unity and i sound silly but i asked this because of curiosity.

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Thank you for your comment. But, I do not know what RND means.

BTW, I haven’t had a solution for the topic I posted on this thread. Sorry.

The “Nreal launcher” is just an app. Android does not let just any app - especially an untrusted third party app - launch other apps within its own graphical environment, due to security reasons (the host app could capture the screen, read content from it, or even execute actions on behalf of the user without authorisation).

The “Nreal launcher” (i.e. MR Mode) is just a virtual environment with a Unity-based web browser. Basically anything you see there is just a webpage. All the apps? You guessed it, website bookmarks.

What apps can do is take control of an external display - that’s exactly how the glasses work, the host app takes control of the two displays and sends appropriate camera angles to them. That’s why you e.g. can’t lock your screen while in MR Mode, because Android takes over from the app and disables the external screen.

There are things that circumvent this (e.g. Samsung’s DeX mode), but those are integrated deep into the system, and third party apps simply don’t have the permission to do the same thing.


Ideally on android this can be done with your own intents and Intent Filters.

Requiring no deep integration with the OS.
see: Interacting with Other Apps  |  Android Developers

It would also be good if you can wrap motion sensors, camera & output to each eye as services.
see: Ringkasan layanan  |  Developer Android  |  Android Developers

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Intents won’t be enough for the Nebula app to be able to run apps within its own graphical environment (the closest you can get to this is the AirCast Side view option, which starts a screen recording of the phone and outputs that to the glasses).

For a full-on VR/AR experience similar to SteamVR’s or Meta Quest’s menu, we need support from Android itself - which is unlikely to happen before Android 14.

With the Streaming Box, it should be possible to create such an environment, but it is a LOT of work and there’s no open source third party systems that could be used as a basis. IMO the Streaming Box should be running Linux with a VR/AR desktop environment (e.g. SimulaVR), combined with an Android runtime similar to what’s done on ChromeOS.