Thanks for posting here in the Google Nest Community.
I know how it feels when something isn’t working as it should, so let’s get this resolved. To get into the app launcher from your Nest Hub Max screen, you can swipe up from the bottom of the screen then tap “See all”. If this is not working you can reboot your Nest Hub Max to refresh. Once it boots back up, try it again and see if it will make a difference.
Keep me posted.