We saw, and it was good. I’m speaking of Honeycomb, of course, and after getting an extensive look at the tablet-specific version of Android on-stage at Verizon’s keynote at CES 2011, Matias Duarte sat down with Engadget to talk more about what went into its creation and what it’ll allow hardware vendors to do once they make it available to everyone. Here are but a few of the cliffnotes, courtesy of Android Guys:
- He confirmed that Honeycomb is not just a tablet version of Android, but “is absolutely the direction for Android” for all kinds of devices.
- The multi-tasking UI gets an overhaul, with an on-screen button that users tap to bring up a view of recent apps– not just icons and names, but a “visible, tangible representation” of the what the app looks like. While the long-press goes away for this function, it is “still part of Android in terms of interacting and selecting objects.”
- An “application bar” at the top of the screen will show different actions the user can take, changing contextually to expose the most common functions and reduce the need to hunt through menus.
- OEM skins like Sense and Blur are not going away. Honeycomb will be open source like every other release of Android, and he “hopes partners will feel comfortable re-skinning it and adding value. … We want to craft a really solid basic platform for everybody to innovate on top of.”
He also confirmed that Android has surpassed the 300,000 mark in unique activations per day. Full video is embedded below for your viewing pleasure.