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Author Topic: Android 4.2 Brings Unique 10 Inch Tablet UI To Nexus 10  (Read 2221 times)

Offline Babyfacemagee

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Android 4.2 Brings Unique 10 Inch Tablet UI To Nexus 10
« on: November 07, 2012, 02:17:17 PM »

There are a number of improvements that Android 4.2, the version of the OS that comes standard with the Nexus 10, includes.  While the most talked are probably  multi-user support and Miracast Wi-Fi video streaming capability, one of the improvements that will have the most impact on the day to day use of the tablet by consumers is the new 10 inch optimized Tablet UI.   

Now when the Nexus 7 came out many were surprised that the UI took some of the elements of the Android Phone UI and seemed to 'mash' them with some of the features we had become used to on Android 3.0's 'Honeycomb' UI.   Android 4.2 takes this a step further and creates a distinct 'landscape centric' tablet layout with the knowledge that distinct from 7 inch tablets which are primarily used in portrait mode, 10 inch tablets are most often used in landscape.  One of the changes they made is to move the application switcher to the center and to have it fill the entire screen instead of lying on the left as can be seen in the following screenshots, the left being Honeycomb on a Motorola XOOM and the right being Android 4.2 on the Nexus 10.  You'll also notice that the main tablet controls are now located in the center vs. the left and the notifications are up top vs. the lower right.

On the left is Android 3.0 on the Motorola XOOM screen, on the right is Android 4.2 on a Nexus 10

There are numerous changes that have also been made between the portrait centric 7 inch UI and the landscape centric 10 inch UI.  In the following picture you'll notice the dock rotates to the right side of the screen in the 7 inch UI while it remains on the bottom center on the 10 inch. 

But while in portrait mode, the Nexus 7 screen shows the dock has rotated back to the bottom while the Nexus 10 stays on the bottom just as it was in landscape mode. 

Notice the 7 inch UI dock on the right has moved down to the bottom while the 10 inch stays.

Finally two more subtle changes are how to pull up the notification and quick settings screens.  First, notice that the time and date are located on the upper left compared to lower right on the Honeycomb UI way up above.   Then to access notifications you swipe down on the left side.  You swipe down on the right side of the quick settings menu.  Previously the quick settings menu was actually accessed by pressing a button located within the notifications menu.   This gives much quicker access to it. 

Notifications are accessed by swiping down on the left while the quick settings menu is accessed by swiping down on the right.

Now an argument could be made that the UI choices for the 10 inch tablet UI aren't maximally optimized for the larger screen.  However we think this was actually a smart decision by Google because the seem to have gone to efforts to retain the same usability and UI elements between the Nexus 7 and 10 (or any 7 inch Android 4.2 tablet and 10 inch tablet) so that those users used to one factor would easily be able to pick up and use the other with the same UI expectations.   so what do you think?  Would you have made any major changes to how they've designed the 10 inch Android 4.2 UI or did they do a good job.  Let us know your thoughts in the comments.
« Last Edit: November 07, 2012, 02:19:59 PM by Babyfacemagee »

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