Google just wrapped up their 1 hour presentation of Android OS 3.0( Honeycomb), and all the need to know information is right here on Android Headlines. As you might have read in our previous Honeycomb introduction here, this is a reinvention of the platform specifically for tablets. As of right now the Motorola Xoom is the tablet of choice and is what all of this Honeycomb goodness is being previewed on.
Immediately there are major differences to note in the home screen. The notifications bar has be relocated to the bottom of the screen and now has navigation buttons integrated along the left. Notifications appear along the right and this bar remains present in all applications.
"The home screen is a really important part of our developer story. It's an application development platform in itself."
The notifications have been enhanced to make use of the increased screen real estate they now contain pictures and things like music contain widget like abilities allowing for useful controls without using any permanent screen space.
Widgets have also seen a major improvement and provide a noticeably richer experience. They now have a 3D look and feel and can be interacted with natural gestures to see new information or make selections. The email widget espicially provides useful functionality allowing easy access at glance.
Apps Designed For Tablets
Gmail is obviously one of the things that the Android platform is best at with this new version it seems better even than desktop version. With the use of separate intractable panes that Google calls "Fragments" you can jump from emails and contacts to messages seamlessly.
There is also a new graphics library named Renderscript that allows 3D interaction within an App. The Youtube interface is the perfect example of what this technology allows developers to create.
Google Books hasn't been left out and also features new 3D effects in its UI.
The same 3D enhancements have been brought over to the music app as well. The complete App suite has taken on this approach and the Holographic UI gives a unified experience across the board, while also giving a major incentive for app developers to maintain that experience.
Third Party Apps
The event also showcased third party apps, both those that have been designed specifically for the tablet and those that are ports from their phone versions. 3D gaming is going to be a major hit with titles such as Monster Madness from the Xbox and PS3 being brought over in full, with accelerometer and touchscreen interaction.
Another Interesting app with some new features is the CNN app designed for Honeycomb. It is called iReports and allows users to take and upload video and pictures directly from the app "Add your own commentary," and have it featured within the app for all to see. These are the kinds of improvements that we should begin to see across the board as the mobile and social market continue to advance along with technology.
There you guys, have an early overview of what was presented at Google's Android 3.0 Honeycomb. The platform is really shaping up and we are getting a better idea of the new tablet OS that should be upon us within the next few weeks. We will have a hands-on review shortly with more user impression on how everything comes together in Honeycomb.