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Design for Android

By Marc-Oliver Gern

Introduction

Android is getting a lot of attention from a growing community of great designers. It's been well known that the platform showcases a lot of great apps with new, never seen before user interfaces and touch gestures. I've been working with the Android platform a lot and will share some of the best resources on the web, that helped me understand specific usage, the device independent design framework and best practices.

Marc-Oliver Gern — Is a digital product designer who builds paradigm-shifting experiences and leads others to do the ...

Added by Marc-Oliver Gern: “Get your hands dirty right away. Even if you are not so into coding and Androids Design Studio Suite does not look appealing at all, I highly recommend downloading it. Just click a bit around and understand some of the tools and steps a developer needs to take. It helps you later expressing your ideas. There is a short video to get started: http://youtu.be/ZddHwDYqyIw

3 Understand core tools.

The official Android IDE Android Studio IDE Android SDK tools Android 5.0 (Lollipop) Platform Android 5.0 emulator system image with Google APIsDownload Android StudioTo get Android Studio or stand-alone SDK tools, visit developer.android.com/sdk/ Intelligent code editorAt the core of Android Studio is an intelligent code editor capable of advanced code completion, refactoring, and code analysis. The powerful code editor helps

Added by Marc-Oliver Gern: “Make yourself familiar with some of the basic UI elements used in most Android apps such as the Action Bar, Drawers, Spinners, the Six Pack and others. Go ahead and download the PSD files, fonts and icons. Axure and Omnigraffle templates are available on the internet as well. Just Google it.

4 Observe common UI elements.

Added by Marc-Oliver Gern: “Cool. Now, you had a chance to play a bit with some assets, but we want to take a step back again and squeeze in more Android Research Findings from Google's Jens Nagel , Rachel Garb and Nate Streu. Great video on Android Design for Success.

5 Preload your brain with design research findings.

Added by Marc-Oliver Gern: “I still don't get this Density-Independent Pixel thing. See it in more detail in this video. You really need to understand this – otherwise, your design looks bad on at least of the devices you are designing for. Not good for business. There is some help also here: http://density.brdrck.me/ and here: http://www.androiddesign.tips/

7 Adaptive Views. You really need to get this.

Added by Marc-Oliver Gern: “Learn from the best. How the Google Team in San Francisco redesigned Google Play and applied their design principles. Enchant Me. Simplify my life. Make me amazing.

8 Best Practices #2

Added by Marc-Oliver Gern: “Android is Google and as we all know, Google cares a lot about performance. So when you as a designer work on this platform, make sure you understand some of the basics, like http requests, network latency and GPU rendering. Always keep in mind that Android is a very popular platform in emerging markets that sometimes lack streaming and network performance. If you got hooked on performance, listen to Steve Souders – he is the man when it comes to performance: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ENYA_RCCjM

9 Mobile Performance. Think ahead.

Added by Marc-Oliver Gern: “Something you need to understand in general when designing apps for mobile devices – especially PHONES (which can receive calls and interrupt your app and experience ANYTIME).

11 Managing the Activity Lifecycle

As a user navigates through, out of, and back to your app, the instances in your app transition between different states in their lifecycle. For instance, when your activity starts for the first time, it comes to the foreground of the system and receives user focus. During this process, the Android system calls a series of lifecycle methods on the

Added by Marc-Oliver Gern: “Take your skills to the next level; Never stop learning. Also, don't forget to subscribe to Android Design in Action – it's a great way to keep yourself informed: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLWz5rJ2EKKc8j2B95zGMb8muZvrIy-wcF

14 Keep learning.

One of the very first steps to designing and developing an Android application is to determine what users are able to see and do with the app. Once you know what kinds of data users are interacting with in the app, the next step is to design the interactions that allow users to navigate across, into, and back out from

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