jerdog · Aug 17, 2012 at 10:30 am

Android UI Design Patterns for Devs Looking to Standardize

One of the common concerns users have about Android apps is that they all tend to look and operate differently on core functionality. Some of them utilize the hardware/capacitive/onscreen buttons one way, while others ignore them entirely while choosing to use their own buttons in the app, etc. Add in the discussion about Android being or not being fragmented, and users have a pretty strong case for wanting increased application consistency.

Late last year, Google addressed these concerns when they published their Android Design Guidelines. The goal was to provide a good set of standards and baselines for creating apps that maximize not only Android’s more polished UI, but also a better User Experience (UX). XDA Forum Member ghost_301 decided that app designers and developers needed a good resource for all stock elements of Android 4.x into a single file for easier mockups.

…the main motivation of doing this is just to provide some stock elements of Android 4.0+ (Ice Cream Sandwich/Jelly Bean) in a single .psd file so app designer can really focus on creating awesome mock up to show their developers/clients. Some of the elements (very minor though) are just single layer of image, but they should be pretty adequate for quick mock up purpose.

In his design kit, he includes two PSD files, entitled Building Blocks and ADT.

In Building Blocks, it contains most, if not all of the stock ICS/JB UI elements that can be used to build an app mockup in Photoshop. Most of them covered both Holo Light and Holo Dark themes, so you can easily drag and drop the properly grouped UI elements to your app design.

As for the ADT (not to be confused with the Android Development Tools which is a plugin for the Eclipse IDE), it serves as a starting point for the app designers/developers of the app design. You have the choice to select the design template that start with different amount of tabs and holo theme, and the design in Photoshop starts from there.

For more information on the Design Kit and how to put it to use in creating stellar applications to then share with the community, visit his blog post.


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