Android Developers Blog: Android 4.0 Platform and Updated SDK Tools

Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) is now official. Huge list of improvements, here are a few, for more click on the link:

Features borrowed from Honeycomb:
– No hard buttons on devices anymore (ie. menu/home/search), all buttons will be onscreen.
– Resizable widgets on homescreen (convenience, but will break some widgets until updated).
– New GMail app improvements, including action bar (easy access to more common functions).

Features borrowed from iOS:
– Drag/drop items on top of each other to make folders (folders can also be used for non-apps, such as quick dials)
– Easy screenshots with Vol-Dn + Power
– Camera access from lockscreen
– Very fast access to take photos

Other features:
– Flick away notifications (good for individual ones, instead of clear all, from CM7)
– Improved notifications / integrated music controls
– Auto reject with canned SMS (from CM7)
– Natural speech input (we’ll hear more about this very soon)
– Face unlock (intuitive way to unlock your phone using the front camera, good security but what about dark rooms?)
– New HD font Roboto (Droid Sans/Serif don’t look that good on 720p screens, Robot fills in the gap)
– Save pages for offline (within web browser)
– New Calendar app, supports pinch/zoom
– Data usage notifications/caps / stats (very useful for monitoring network usage)
– Built in photo filters (ala Instagram)
– Auto panoramas in camera app
– New Gallery app – magazine look / sort by people/geographic location (logical improvements)
– Video snapshots (press screen during video recording to take a separate photo)
– Live contact details (updated with latest social network information / updates)
– Visual voicemail improvements
– Android Beam – send photos/apps/contacts/links/maps between NFC-equipped phones by tapping them.
– Customisable favourites tray at bottom of homescreen
– Improved text input / copy&paste and accuracy

Android Developers Blog: Android 4.0 Platform and Updated SDK Tools

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