Metova
Posted by Metova
May 22, 2012

Google Android Will Win The Marathon

There is no question that Apple leads the industry in many ways: beautiful design; easy to use operating system; an eye toward integrated product offerings, to name a few. But in terms of market share, Google Android is the undisputed leader. More importantly, Google is securely set up to continue this dominance for the foreseeable future.

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Metova
Posted by Metova
May 15, 2012

Android 4.0 development standards help designers embrace the platform

With the unveiling of Ice Cream Sandwich (Android 4.0) at the beginning of the year, Android also revealed its first suggested app design guidelines, departing from its long heralded stance that apps for Android don't have to abide by any rules as long as they aren't malicious. While these guidelines are by no means mandatory, they do imply that Android's flexible policies are getting a little more structure, which has us asking a series of questions: Is this good for the industry? Is it necessary for Android to continue to compete with Apple? Or should Android revert course and return to its "anything goes" cowboy roots?

I whole-heartedly welcome the 4.0 guidelines. The new UI offers more structure without being confining, and it helps fix usability issues that left Android feeling less design-forward than Apple. For example, in previous versions of Android, if users were in a gallery and wanted to delete a photo or multiple photos, they had to first click the delete icon before selecting what they wanted to delete, which is counterintuitive. The new guidelines utilize a contextual action bar wherein users can select a photo or multiple photos via a long press and then select delete, copy, save or any other action they would need to perform. The action bar also has a new "overflow" area where less frequently used functions are stored. It used to be that these actions were hidden in the native menu, which was arguably one of the most confusing things about Android for users and designers alike.

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