New UI / UX of F-Droid app

“I think putting “installed programs” in “updates”, and just sorting the list after updated most recently makes sense.”

Yep sorting them, which need updates first.

I also noticed the list was always empty!

Hello @c.lee,

thank you for joining us in the forum. It is sad to hear that you do not like the new interface of F-Droid, but that’s OK. We live in a world where everyone can have their own opinion about things.
What’s not OK, however, is how offensive you talk about your “discontent”.

As many people already have said, F-Droid is free and open source software and therefore everyone has the right to modify the software to it’s own needs. Like I and many other people have wrote, we as the team of F-Droid are very open to merge requests on the code of the Android client to make the application more “usable” to people who prefer the old design of F-Droid. Another option is “F-Droid Light” which we quoted a lot of times, too.

I hope you understand why I as a moderator of the F-Droid forum think that I need to change my moderation strategy. In the past I have left very offensive posts, like your’s is one, in place, but I don’t see any constructive feedback here. Therefore, this is an official public warning that from now on offensive trolling posts will be deleted from topics. For transparency reasons I will move them to a public post so people can see which posts got deleted. As of today, we as F-Droid never deleted any post for other reasons than spam.




Since 0.104 Design/Usability really sucks, so I’m still using F-Droid 0.102.3.
In every newer versions I’m missing a normal list of apps. I can just see chaotic tiles in different sizes with really bad overview. And I cannot switch between “What’s New” and “Recently Updated” Apps anymore. :frowning:

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I’m totally down with the other people criticizing the new UI of F-Droid. It is really not user-friendly for people on the Aspergers spectrum, who like ordered lists and categorizations and get anxious by graphical overstimulation. I think a Classic mode should be introduced, that will keep it white and simple, because not all devices have loads of computation power. Also Categories could be optional and switched on or off.

I still use a Samsung Galaxy S2 which has been dropped support for many popular apps from Google Play Store already. The same applies to modern websites, who are often overloaded with interactive contents, which frequently crashes the browser (this forum software also does that btw). It’s over 6 years old and is still in great shape, but most commercial developers don’t care, because they make shitload of money and never have financial problems upgrading and replacing their devices.

There is this eternal development race (apart from the mandatory security updates) of competing to make the biggest and most wonderful pile of code, because without constant innovation programmers would lose their jobs, so capitalism is to blame for this structural systemic failure of logical sense. The BSD/GNU approach would be to Keep It Simple Stupid (KISS), which means to make simple tools and libraries, that work well, but do ‘piping’ when you need additional features to avoid ‘featurecreeping’.


Thanks @Karmus for your message.
It’s sad for people having an handicap and people not having a lot of money.
I think the Categories are useful to quickly check applications on the same domain.
Maybe we should at F-Droid Team make another effort (Best effort) to help people having handicap…
I think it’s already defined in Guardian project.

Edit: As Peter said : " I am a strong believe that F-Droid is great because it is translated into so many different languages. I’m also a strong believe that we should make every effort to make it usable by people with various impairments."

The download link for f-droid 0.102.3 with the old user interface does not work any more (404).
It was still functional April 24th. Where can I get the apk?

(some of the 0.102.3 apk which show up on web searches have a different checksum, so just mentioning the checksum here)

sha256sum org.fdroid.fdroid_102350.apk

Moved to the archive here:


Thank you!

Hope it’s not offensive, adding a qr code for the download link:


Generated with R with the following code (the first line is only needed once) :

qrcode_gen(“”, ErrorCorrectionLevel = “M”)


For those, who are unsure like me to downgrade in order to have a simple, functional, non-bling-bling design: The old version under is fully working!

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As mentioned previously, in newer releases, just using Search (:mag:) icon will give App list just like it used to be, while preserving new features/security/updates.

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Yes. The search-icon opens a list. Which has nothing to do with the useful layout until 0.102: Installed apps, apps to be updated, What’s New, and some orientation about the app-section like ‘Games’, ‘Browsers’ and so on.
Meanwhile I realized, where this weird tile-layout is also present and where the tile-size itself simply means nothing: The MS-Windows menu.

I am also not a fan of the new UI. I just downgraded to the older version 102350, and I must say it feels so much better. It is clean, simple, functional. The new version feels cluttered and harder to use.

Here are some suggested improvements for the new UI.

  • Add a user option to use a simple list view (similar to the older app) instead of the current tile view. This new setting should apply apply everywhere it would be relevant: Latest, Categories, Updates, Installed, …

  • It makes no sense that we have to go into Settings to see a list of currently installed apps. This should either be merged with the current “Updates” page (my preference), or added as a separate toolbar item. If they were merged, you could just show a list with 2 sections, Updates and Installed. It could be called “My Apps” on the toolbar.

  • I don’t think I will ever use the “nearby” feature, so for me it is a useless distraction on the bottom toolbar. This could be moved elsewhere, or give users the ability to hide this icon on the toolbar. At the very least, swap the positions of the Updates and Nearby buttons, so Nearby is not in the prominent center spot.

  • Last but not least, I do not use automatic updates or notifications. I prefer to do these things manually. The settings do allow this mode of operation, but the UI does not handle it well. The following two items relate to this.

  • The default message in the updates tab is “Congratulations, your apps are up to date”, but that is unknown if the repo hasn’t been updated recently. There is also no visual cue that I can do a pull-to-refresh to update the repo. This screen should show the date/time of the last repo update, and a message or button to allow/prompt the user to do a repo update.

  • When the repo is being updated, the status/progress is displayed in the notification area. This is fine if the update is being performed in the background while the FDroid app is not in focus, but it is not good if the repo is being update while the app is in focus (i.e. manual update). I have to trigger an update in the app, then pull down the notification shade to watch the progress and wait for it to complete. That is an unnecessary hassle. In this scenario, the progress should be displayed in the app instead of the notification area. Older versions of the app did work this way. I do not understand why it was changed.



Thanks for your ideas - I think it is positive to outline alternatives to the existing UI. Although these alternatives describe pretty exactly the ‘old’ design. The reason, why I switched back to v0.102.

What I tried to find out are the reasons, why the developers realized such a deep change, which annoyed some old-fashioned, Asperger-, anti-modern …list to be extended… folks like me.

The reasons I found reading this thread:

  • Guidelines of the Material Design
  • Some ‘user-tests’ in the US and Austria, which gave the ‘most positive reactions’, as @pserwylo stated
  • the aim to be more attractive for new users

It’s very hard to discuss from a weak non-developer-position like @hotlittlewhitedog stated with the comic-strip. The situation reminds me a lot of changes of the GNOME-desktop in the Linux-desktop-ecosystem. That story in short words ended in a niche-life for this UI: nice looking, not recommended for new users.
This is the reality in the world of Open Source, which keeps it colourful.

So what to do?
First choice: Convince the devs: There will be coming the next fancy design-guideline, you will invest work just for some design-rules again? Ask some other and more people about user-experience, I bet, a bug is more annoying for them than a less fancy design. And: Are there more new users due to this design, sharing their apps with ‘people nearby’?!?

Second choice: Like @hans stated: Fork it. As an Open Source enthusiast I watched F-Droid growing, happy about the first 100 apps there, glad about bursting the 1000-apps-line. I personally will find a way to keep my favourite apps updated, even without an app making this much more comfortable.

But I would try to strongly support those, who keep the app (with a fork?) like it was before: Simple, clean, functional. @kovacs.zs @chumley @frief @Dominik @NicoAlt @Deadwax @borak and other

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I guess it’s not a question of attracting people with a fancy design but of avoiding to push away young people with unreasonably old-fashioned design. They just wont believe they can get modern apps with this vintage store.

And it’s tickling me to ask how old those in this thread who are opposite. I’m afraid the guess in my mind is right )))

The reason behind isn’t that new g likes weird designs but because they easily overcome nonstandard/unfamiliar thingies and just go on.

So you rather wish to push not-so-young people away? Admitted, I already crossed the 5th decade. And I see my students (I give courses for starters) looking as confused at the new UI as I do myself.

I see it’s no use discussing which UI to use: beauty as well as contact lenses lie in the eye of the beholder. But reasoning we stick to the new UI to not push away young folks is as discriminating as the other way round. Having both is a good solution, and Hans is just lying the foundation for that: separating the core (backend) from the UI. All it needs then is maintainers for both UIs :wink:

Like @kovacs.zs, @rustedpart and several others, I still very much prefer the old design over the MS-like tile stuff I’ll never get used to. So not being a dev myself, I can just hope someone picks it up again. Until then, I’ll stick with 102350 as long as it works.


So you rather wish to push not-so-young people away? Admitted, I already crossed the 5th decade.

Me? No way. If you knew me you’d know I don’t want to push people away. I just want to find deeper reasons of the rejection and how (some) people can overcome it. Anyway I don’t mean to push people in any sense and actually cannot influence further direction of the Client development.

And I crossed the 4th JFYI.

@All AFAICT, it’s not a “rejection” (issues


remain [currently] open, after all), but a matter of priorities. F-Droid team has their hands full w/ the current set of work, & must choose as they do to keep things moving (as much as they are). AFAIK, they’d prefer other devs take over ancillary forks, &c, to lighten the load.

TLDR: They’d be happy to work with, but don’t have capacity to do more.

Solution: More devs need to come onboard & answer the call for action!

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No offense meant. All I wanted to say that an XOR would always have that tendency :wink:

@TPS Yes, I’m aware there’s a shortage of devs. Hence I explicitly mentioned the preparations Hans is making. If that succeeds, all what’s needed would be creating a “classic UI” that calls to the core – which could be a third party app, while the core will be maintained by the F-Droid team.


@Izzy No offense meant to you, either, as you seem somewhat in the same position as I — understanding that there’s an impressive amount of work behind all these “small” (hrmph) requests, without being any kind of Android dev, & so are willing to give a lot of latitude to those that do all this. :bowing_man:

I submit that another thing we motivated non-devs can is encourage those that can to do when they haven’t. It’s a reason why you run a repo, & we (& those like us) encourage devs to be published via F-Droid & perhaps can also persuade those (or others) to work on F-Droid itself (or related projects, like these RFEs).