The New Launcher is Exactly What I Expected
You can download the kitkat launcher (and everything else) over at Droid LIfe.
I've been using it for a little while and I have mixed feelings.
-I'm really into the new app drawer button, the frosted glass is a nice touch
-I have one less reason to use third-party launchers now because the apps and widgets are un-joined and the background is transparent in the drawer.
-It seems faster on my nexus 7 '13
-The google search widget isn't just a link into Google Now, it actually lets you type and its nearly instant. This is totally awesome, and makes it worthwhile to have it up there. If you cancel typing there is a really slick animation of all the suggestions being sucked back into the bar. It's hard to capture in a screenshot.
-The swipe to the left to get to google now is really awful. I hate it. It completely breaks the way I've been organizing my homescreens since Eclair and I won't stand for it. It's like blinkfeed (if significantly more useful). You can't turn it off and it means you can't use the directions & depth of your homescreens from the centre to organize your life. I don't want 3 ways to access google Now. I was happy with the original 1, the other way they added is better, and 2 is enough anyway.
-You can have as many homescreens as you like. I gave up at 21. It doesn't slow down or stutter as you add more. Its cool, but I'll probably just keep five like always.