Android 3.0 Honeycomb: what it looks like

Android 3.0 Honeycomb for tablets, a brand new, virtual "holographic" UI design

  • Android 3.0 is a new version of the Android platform that is specifically optimised for [[artnid:373671|tablet devices]]. Dubbed "Honeycomb", Android 3.0 has a completely redesigned interface that aims to take advantage of the larger screen of a tablet. These new UI features include an "action bar", a contextual option group displayed at the top of the screen, five customisable home screens, recent apps for easier multitasking, a redesigned on-screen keyboard, a new browser and an improved copy and paste function and much more.

    Five customisable home screens utilise a large grid that is maintained in all orientations. Home screen widgets, app shortcuts and wallpapers remain, while visual effects have been tweaked. Each Home screen also offers a launcher for access to all installed applications, along with as a universal search box.

  • A new feature of Android 3.0 is the System Bar, for global status and notifications, while the Action Bar provides contextual options displayed at the top of the screen. The Action Bar is always visible when an application is in use, but its content and theme are managed by each individual application.

  • The Android 3.0 browser has multiple tabs that replace browser windows, while a new "incognito" mode allows anonymous browsing. Bookmarks and history are now displayed in a single unified view.

  • Android 3.0 sees a complete redesign of the soft keyboard, with reshaped and repositioned keys the main benefit. There is also a Tab key, while users can hold down keys to access menus of special characters.

  • Multitasking is a key part of Android 3.0 and can be accessed via the Recent Apps list in the System Bar. This list shows a snapshot of each applications actual state when it was last viewed.

  • Android 3.0 offers an updated set of home screen widgets redesigned for use on larger screens. Several new widget types are available, including a 3D stack, search box, a date/time picker, number picker, calendar, and a popup menu.

  • The Android 3.0 email application uses a two-pane UI. The app lets users select one or more messages, then select an action from the Action Bar, such as moving them to a folder. Users can sync attachments for later viewing, while the app now includes a home screen widget.

  • The Contacts app uses a new two-pane UI and Fast Scroll, and also offers improved formatting of international phone numbers. Contact information is presented in a card-like interface.

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