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Notifications are not working on Nova Launcher? Top 6 solutions

nova launcher featured

There are a lot of good custom launchers these days but Nova Launcher is probably the most popular out there. The level of customization and the sheer plethora of features include notification badges (premium feature). However, it seems that notifications are not working on Nova Launcher for some users, as badges are not shown on apps.

We made sure to shed some light on this problem and suggest a few applicable solutions below.

No notification badges on Nova Launcher Prime

1. Uninstall Tesla Unread

Tesla Unread is (or rather was) a companion app for Nova Launcher that brought numeric badges to Android. These days, due to certain permissions it requires, it’s not available on the Play Store anymore. You can still download it from the Tesla Coil’s website.

Now, Tesla Coil incorporated numeric dots (along with simple Oreo-like dots and dynamic badges) in the launcher itself. The problem is: they won’t stick after the notification is dismissed as is the case with Tesla Unread.

Also, you’ll need Nova Launcher Prime (paid version) in order to utilize badges. This is, in my honest opinion, money well spent considering this is the most popular and arguably the most feature-rich launcher for Android.

So, to cut the long story short, we suggest uninstalling Tesla Unread as it might have issues functioning properly on Android 10 (even on Pie).

2. Inspect Nova Launcher settings and restart the launcher

Now, let’s ensure that numeric dots (or alternative badges) are properly enabled along with the necessary permissions. After that, make sure to restart the launcher for the things to apply properly.

Obviously, Nova Launcher requires Notification permission in order for badges to work. With that said, here’s how to select and enable preferred Notification Badges in Nova Launcher:

  1. Tap and hold on to the Home Screen to open Nova Launcher Menu.
  2. Select Settings.
  3. Choose Notification badges.
  4. Tap on the Permission prompt at the bottom and grant Notification permission to Nova.
  5. Select preferred badges and get back to the main Settings menu.notifications not working nova launcher
  6. Scroll to the bottom and expand Advanced.
  7. Tap Restart Nova Launcher.

3. Make sure Nova is your default launcher

Certain custom Android skins impose aggressive limitations on third-party services. They tend to limit their work in the background which, for a system-wide app as a launcher, leads to issues.

So, ensure that Nova Launcher is set as your default launcher. That should resolve the issues with notifications not showing or missing notification badges from certain apps. Of course, if there’s a particular app that won’t work, ensure that all notifications are enabled. You can do so by navigating to Settings > Apps > Notifications.

  1. Open Settings and, in the search bar, type Launcher and open Default Launcher.
  2. Under the Default launcher, select Nova Launcher.notifications not working nova launcher
  3. Restart your device and test notifications to see whether notification badges appear.

4. Disable Battery optimization

On the same note, aggressive battery optimization might limit certain features of the Nova Launcher. That’s why we recommend checking whether the launcher is allowed to auto-start and not be restrained by the persistent battery saving.

Here’s how to make Nova Launcher battery optimization-proof in a few simple steps:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Choose Apps.
  3. Select All apps (App manager or Manage apps).
  4. Once there, locate Nova Launcher and open it.
  5. Enable Autostart.
  6. Open Permissions and grant all necessary permissions.
  7. Get back and open Battery optimization.
  8. Exclude Nova from all optimization options.notifications not working nova launcher

5. Reinstall Nova Launcher

The next step, in case the previous solutions weren’t of use, is to reinstall Nova Launcher. By reinstalling the app, you’ll clear the data and cache that might get corrupted. Also, you’ll get the latest working version. No need to uninstall the licensing app which is Nova Launcher Prime.

In addition, before installing the launcher again from the Play Store, we recommend leaving the Beta program. Of course, if you are already participating in beta testing for the app.

Follow these instructions to reinstall Nova Launcher on Android:

  1. Open Nova settings again from the Home Screen.
  2. Select Backup & import settings.
  3. Back up Nova configuration either locally or upload it to Drive.
  4. From the Nova Settings menu, tap Select default launcher.
  5. Choose System launcher as the default one.
  6. Then open Play Store and uninstall Nova Launcher.notifications not working nova launcher
  7. Restart your device and reinstall Nova from the Play Store.
  8. Finally, restore your backup and, just in case, check the Notification badges section once again. Grant Notification permission again if asked. Finally, set Nova as the default launcher.

6. Update Android firmware

Finally, make sure to keep your phone’s firmware up-to-date. You might experience issues with Nova on older versions of Android, as the app is progressively optimized for a few latest Android iterations.

That should do it. Thank you for reading and, in case you have any questions or suggestions, feel free to tell us in the comments section below.

Editor’s note: This article was initially published in April 2021. We made sure to revamp it for freshness and accuracy.

Picture of Aleksandar Ognjanovic

Aleksandar Ognjanovic

Managing editor at Mobile Internist. @lemmingspain My fascination with mobile technology, particularly Android and iOS, began years ago and continues today. I'm captivated by the constant evolution in the smartphone industry and its impact on our daily lives, always anticipating the next big innovation. That’s the main reason why I found myself writing instructive content on the subject for users who are not as familiar with all the bells and whistles.
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