Can’t find the perfect homescreen widget on the Android Market? Wish you could design your own? BITS is an editable homescreen widget that allows you to do just that. With BITS, you can choose from a wide variety of individually customizable elements (called “bits”) and add them in layers (one over the other) to a canvas size of your choice via simple drag-and-drop editing and additional controls for finer adjustment. Still in beta as of this writing, the widget is missing a few key features, such as, the option to assign actions to widget elements and importing custom graphics. However, most of these features, along with additional widget elements/bits, have already been listed on the developer’s website as possible additions in future updates.
We tested the latest version (AOTW, 0.57 beta) of the widget without any problems on an HTC Desire running MIUI 1.4.15. The Clouds bit does not display data for certain regions but that is a weather service related problem.
The widget comes in six sizes (2×2, 3×2, 3×3, 4×2, 4×3 and 4×4). Each widget element or bit is resizable and has its own options for customization. These options include changing the font, color and transparency of the text, changing the color and transparency of its shadow, changing date and time format and adding a static textual prefix or suffix. You can manually set the location for a widget or allow the widget to detect your current location automatically. The widget also allows you to set the refresh rate for time/battery and weather data separately.
Even though the editing interface is as flexible as they come, once you have more than two or three elements placed on the canvas, finer adjustment can become a tad taxing. Needless to say, there is a need for the option to enable snap-to-grid editing. Fortunately, said feature is already on the developer’s to-do list. You can view the aforementioned list of upcoming features and widget elements here.
The only feature that we thought would be a welcome addition to the widget and isn’t included in said list is the option to import custom graphics as widget backgrounds or possibly, for the Rectangle bit/element.
The video demo below explores each feature of the widget in detail.
BITS takes homescreen customization to a whole new level with what it currently offers and obviously has the potential to do much more. We can see it doing well on the Market when it finally does hit the shelves. Right now, the widget is available as a free public beta. Head on over to its XDA Developers forum thread via the link given below to download the APK.
Download BITS Beta
Update: Now available in the Android Market. Click here to proceed to its Market page.