New Android 4.0 UI could mean the end of Android fragmentation

New Android 4.0 UI could mean the end of Android fragmentation
Trying to cut back on the fragmentation that Android fans and foes alike have complained about, Google is now requesting from manufacturers that the code for the stock Android 4.0 UI, known as Holo, be included on all new phones. Failure to do so will result in Google taking away the manufacturers ability to access the Android Market. The new policy will still allow the handset producers to run their own skin over Android 4.0 just as long as Holo remains on the phone.

One major advantage to following this policy is that manufacturers will be able to update their handsets to the latest Android OS faster by keeping their skin apart from the OS it is running over. And by keeping menus and widgets all looking the same, it will mean that developers will have an easier time developing an app, knowing that it will look, feel and run the same on all Android 4.0 model smartphones. There will be three different Holo themes, Theme.Holo, Theme.Holo.Light, and Theme.Holo.Light.DarkActionBar

It certainly sounds like the age of fragmentation is coming to an end for Android and Google has done a very wise thing by allowing faster updates along the platform while still allowing manufacturers to impose some form of individualization on their Android models. If you want to make sure that the Android phone in your hand is following the new policy, simply look for the Android Market. If it is on the phone, you know that the manufacturer is following the new rules.

source: AndroidDevelopers via AndroidCentrral


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20 Comments

1. Carlitos

Posts: 669; Member since: Oct 23, 2011

Nice!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Just one question though, what do you mean by "..If you want to make sure that the Android phone in your hand is following the new policy, simply look for the Android Market."

6. pimpollofelice123

Posts: 30; Member since: Jul 02, 2011

It means that if they fail to include the "HOLO" theme on their 4.0 devices Google will not let them include the android market or and GAPPS!

10. Carlitos

Posts: 669; Member since: Oct 23, 2011

Thats Nice. Google putting down some really good rules.

2. droidguy2323

Posts: 55; Member since: Sep 23, 2011

Finally more Lg and Samsung late updates

8. bucky

Posts: 3785; Member since: Sep 30, 2009

dont u use a motorola??? If so, I definitely think you should quietly back out of the room :)

11. jroc74

Posts: 6023; Member since: Dec 30, 2010

If he lives in the US, he's fine. :)

3. Joshing4fun

Posts: 1245; Member since: Aug 13, 2010

About time. If one thing was going to be the downfall of android, it was going to be fragmentation. Crisis adverted!

4. maier9900

Posts: 272; Member since: Dec 17, 2011

Its about time Google said something... It took them a while to figure out what the fans like. Good job Google.

5. protozeloz

Posts: 5396; Member since: Sep 16, 2010

Ha! Talk about new years resolution still think Widgets and other stuff the manufacturers add should be in the form of apps and services that could go on the market among other things . We might see the with Google brand a bit separated from powered by Android brand like I used to say. If companies want to put their deep skins then they will need toto start building an app store or something

7. rjbp64

Posts: 28; Member since: Dec 15, 2011

To be honest, i think this is a smart thing to do. If i undesrtand it correctly, this will make all android phones the same in regards to the software. If you think about it, the reason why apple has many more apps than android is because app builders dont have to worry about how the will perform on different phones because of the different softwares that the phones are running. Now if all android phones go through with this, i promise that there will be a huge increase of apps for all of android. I say hell ya GNexus

9. bucky

Posts: 3785; Member since: Sep 30, 2009

I see what your saying and that would be lovely, but i honestly think fragmentation is always going to exist with Android. Its impossible to have soo many manufacturers have the openness they do and at the same time create the exact same specs to code too. screen res, gpu, cpu, screen size and ram all have to be taken into account. Just my thought.

12. Bluesky02

Posts: 1439; Member since: Dec 05, 2011

Good to see Google taking step towards this issue.

13. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

this is a great step for android. But im getting sick of the "android fragmentation" issue being thrown about yet the iOS fragmentation issue is getting zero attention. If this is the first you have heard about it, you proved my point.

14. musi722

Posts: 46; Member since: Dec 15, 2011

i hope so!

15. BlazinEmperor

Posts: 35; Member since: Nov 24, 2011

LOOL! Such an ugly UI! This thing looks so 2009, it's too basic... Am I lying?

16. chuckyoo

Posts: 34; Member since: Oct 18, 2011

yes you are lying!

20. frydaexiii

Posts: 1476; Member since: Dec 01, 2011

lol, have you seen iPhone OS ver. 1? Now look at iOS 5. Now look at Android Donut, and then at ICS. Now tell me which "thing" looks so 2009(or older)

17. chuckyoo

Posts: 34; Member since: Oct 18, 2011

Thanks Google for putting your foot down because unlike some, many of us would love to run AOSP base on our phone and the holo ui from google does just that. Likewise the fact that it will be easier to developers to create more app based on just the software vs. manufacturer junk clouding it. Now waiting for the great update on my Epic touch 4G with the AOSP holo UI. cheers!

18. ngo2dd

Posts: 896; Member since: Jul 08, 2011

There is a lot less people running Aosp then you think. CM is not ASOP.

19. Mario1017

Posts: 336; Member since: Sep 04, 2011

this really makes me wonder what the next HTC sense will look like

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